The Philosophy of the Act

Essay 15  The Experiential Basis of Natural Science

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THE presentation that follows advances upon two suppositions. In the interest of clarity it will be well to state the two presuppositions at the outset.

I. The reflective experience, the world, and the things within it exist in the form of situations. These situations are fundamentally characterized by the relation of an organic individual to his environment or world. The world, things, and the individual are what they are because of this relation. If presented as different from the form in which they exist in this situation, the difference is due to their existence in another situation similarly determined. These things and situations are identical in so far as their characters are the same and differ in so far as these characters differ. There are real identities, but these identities do not constitute things which have separable existences from the objects within which the differences exist, though in the isolation of abstractive thought they have been so presented. The peculiarities of the different situations are not those of appearances or phenomena which inadequately reflect an absolute reality. These situations are the reality. The identical characters of objects in the different situations are the basis for intelligent conduct, which involves different situations.

In regard to things, the identity we depend upon is the actual or inferred identity of contact experience, mathematically given in congruence in --,pace and simultaneity in time. We note the identity of distant characters in different situations, but in so-called scientific explanation we state these in terms of the natures and changes of bodies that are identical in actual or inferred contact experience. In general, there are those rela-

(216) -tionships, which are subsumed under meaning and concept, that may be identical in different situations.

2. The comparison of different situations and the recognition of identities and differences within them imply the constitution of the different situations in the experience of the same individual. However abstractly and symbolically this may be carried out, the abstraction and the symbolization can only take place over against an experience within which to some extent the compared situations actually exist. The statement of such an experience necessarily involves psychological analysis.


Psychological analysis is the statement of the process by which the individual in a situation extends its temporal extension into a past and a future by the assumption of certain of the attitudes which the distance experience implicates. In so far as a thing has the value of futurity, it is found in its relation to an individual whose ongoing conduct is determined by the result of the act which the distance relation has initiated. The psychological analysis has primarily to do with the determination of the situation through the individual. In this determination we speak of the object in terms of sensuous qualities, spatial and temporal perspectives, and imagery. If these characters inhere in the object, their reality is incident to the completion of the act, the actual or inferred attainment of the contact values which the act implicates. That is, their reality belongs to the future. The establishment of the future, with its relationship of temporal extension, identifies that with reference to which it is future, in other words, the present. The present as content embraces the contacts and other values of the act as an ongoing affair. It also embraces those distance characters whose reality lies in the future, but which immediately determine the conduct of the individual. These two implications of the distance contents relate them, on the one hand, to the reality of the thing, i.e., state them in terms of actual or inferred contact values to

(217) which they refer, or which explain them, and, on the other hand, state them in terms of the determination of the organic individual by the environment, i.e., in terms of so-called sensations, or rather of the organic processes which show this determination. These characters are, therefore, subject to a twofold abstraction-from the future reality of the things and from the past organic processes in the individual. They are, therefore, the present with reference to which these temporal relations are determined.

These characters have, therefore, a reality which is to be determined by later conduct. In so far as we act without question upon the stimulus of the distance stimulus, this reality accrues to them, and no abstraction is made of the present experience. They constitute the perceptual object. They are there; they are not known. When their reality is called into question, the abstraction is made, and they become what are called sense data. This same character of sense data belongs also to contact experience when we pursue the inquiry into the structure of matter by the use of the microscope or the imagination. In these cases the contact experience of the object appears actually or in imagination in terms of vision, that is, as distance experience. Its reality, then, belongs to an inferred conceivable contact experience. In this fashion contact experience itself falls into the realm of sense data, but only when the inquiry substitutes its distance characters for its contact character. If we turn the process around and, starting with the reality of the distance experience actually or in imagination, produce the conditions which bring about a distance experience, we have removed the original distance experience, e.g., vision, from its position and have substituted for it the minute objects of scientific hypothesis. In doing this, not only have we abstracted color from the object but we have given it a temporal position which does not belong to it. We paint the object, as a contact object, with the color. We give it its color at a moment when color does not belong to it, and we account for the fact that it has color in its statement as a contact experience by making the

(218) color a state of consciousness. We also overlook the fact that we are still pursuing objects which are distant objects, and are revealed under the microscope or in imagination as colored objects. And we do the same with the imagery of memory and imagination; because the distance experience is removed from possible contact, we constitute them states of consciousness. In memory the implied reality is forever lost to possible experience, and this is true of a great deal of the free use of the imagination. Imagery, therefore, seems to present a content that cannot be real, that cannot belong to the real world, and therefore is placed in the field of so-called consciousness. It is easy, then, to assimilate to this distance experience, and even contact experience when this has been substituted, through scientific hypothesis, for the distance characters of things.

It is the temporal aspect of things which is responsible for their psychological character. It is in so far as the reality of the thing is affected either with the future or with the past that we are able to isolate elements which are referred to the experience of the individual, which are abstracted as psychological contents. Things are what they are in the relationship between the individual and his environment, and this relationship is that of conduct. The stimuli from distant objects invite reaction leading up to contact experiences. The stimulus belongs to the. inception of the act, while the contact belongs to the completion. As an object in so-called perception, it is simply there, with no temporal characters. The question whether it will be what it is, or whether it was what it is, splits the object into the content that is immediately functional and that which awaits the completion of the act or that which was the completion of a former act. The content that is immediately functional belongs to that part of the situation in which the act is proceeding, i.e., to the individual, while that which awaits the completion of the act lies in the environment.

In the reflective process in which this question is asked and the answer sought, action is taking place) and objects are the

(219) means of the investigation. The division of the object, therefore, sets the element which belongs to the individual over against objects within which no such division has taken place. Objects seem to remain in their full content, even after the abstraction has taken place. The experimental process which enables us to answer the question goes on in a world which is not immediately affected by it. Thus the psychological element receives a status outside the world of conduct. It is only at the moment at which the question arises, e.g., whether what one sees is one thing or another, and while one stands in immediate doubt, that the simple division of the object into its two parts takes place. The vision becomes psychological as soon as the individual undertakes by various means to determine whether what appeared as vision is what it purports to be. The things which have both distance and contact values, i.e., are percepts, by which the answer is sought isolate the vision as having a character which is not that of the surrounding objects but which is related to them through their conditioning its appearance, not through its calling-out a response which an ultimate contact experience justifies psychologically. We use the real world to explain the distance experience, not as the conclusion of the act which the distance experience has initiated. In the meantime the distance experience has an existence entirely in the individual. It is the combination of these two phases of the experience which make up its so-called mental character. It is outside the real world and it is inside the individual. It is, furthermore, in a present which has been, by the problematic situation, abstracted from the future and the past. The full reality of the object which is subject to the analysis lies in the future or the past. The future and the past that cling to it are relegated also to this present and appear as present imagery. They also are mental, and the philosopher may take the final step, which the scientific psychologist, i.e., the experimental psychologist, refuses to take, that of relegating all experience to this knife-edge present.



When the philosopher takes this Berkeleian position, he ignores the fact that such a knife-edge present is a fiction set up for the purposes of the most exact measurement possible. However, the future and the past come back even into the psychological present, in the so-called specious present. The psychological or specious present is specious because, while it is an actual duration and not a knife-edge present, its duration is not that of the completion of the act within which the object is there, but that of reflection, i.e., the act of indicating, by gesture or significant symbol, the present characters of things at a distance in the individual. They are related to the individual, not to the object, and this indication takes place within a world that is there, a world of objects of which we are not reflectively aware. Corresponding to these abstracted elements of the objects are the objects which we refer to as the conditions of the distance experience, and which are therefore deprived of their distance characters. In the immediate process of indication, however, we reach abstractions that are freed from the distance characters and yet, lying in the world of direct perception or imagination, are assigned position over against the investigator, i.e., they are physical things in the same sense as that in which the analyzed objects were physical things. The abstraction from the distance characters, and the other imagery which clings to these, is ambiguous. On the one hand, it is logical, i.e., it is an indication of a character, excluding attention from all but this character. This leaves the relation between the character and the rest of the object open to determination. The Aristotelian conception of this relation is that of substance and attribute, that of inherence. Another metaphysical bias may substitute for this relation that of uniform association, or that of spatiotemporal conjunction. What is of moment in regarding this type of abstraction is that a synthetic process restores the abstracted characters and leaves the object with the same content as that which preceded the analysis. On the other hand, it is causal, i.e., it determines the causes or conditions under which

(221) the distance experiences arise. It is not an abstraction in a logical sense; it is an explanation, or, more fundamentally, it is the organization of the steps or means by which one reaches certain experiences. If we call it an abstraction, it is one which abstracts what we treat as a cause from what we treat as an effect. There is no justification in predicating an effect of a cause, but that is what we are likely to do when we have explained the color of an object. We are justified in predicating color of the object that is there, but, if we explain that the object, made up of electrons, is the cause of the color, we have taken this relation out of that of predication. It is when we do both abstract for the sake of predication and for the sake of explanation, and assume uncritically that this is the same abstraction, that we have set up a mental content-in one sense of "mental." For we have in the one case merely held off one characteristic of the thing from the rest of the thing, while in the other case we have set up an independent thing, which is the condition of the characteristic and of which it therefore cannot be a characteristic. It is then put into a mind, and the relations by which it is connected with the objects which are its so-called causes are made to connect it with the object as mental associations. The object so constructed can have the characteristic as a quality, and it can be predicated of this object.

The specious present is, then, that within which are present not only the immediate abstracted sense data but also the imagery of past and future experiences taken out of their place in the acts which they imply. It is a real duration, but this duration has no relation to the completion of these acts. These experiences belong to the reconstruction to which a later response will take place. They belong to the beginning of a later act. As such they are; in a present.

They do, however, lie within acts which we call those of thought, or reflection. And reflection takes place by means of significant symbols, and significant symbols carried back to

(222) their origins prove to be gestures, i.e., parts of social acts through which individuals adjust their conduct to that of others. They become symbols when the act which they preface is aroused as an attitude in the other individual. They become significant symbols when the individual that uses the gesture which calls out such an attitude in another calls out the same attitude in himself. When a gesture calls out a certain attitude not only in other individuals but at the same time in the individual who makes the gesture, we refer to this attitude as the meaning of the gesture, or symbol.

Reflection, then, is a type of action in which the individual in conversing with others is conversing also with himself and is able to call out in himself the same sort of a response which he calls out in another. He carries over the mechanism of co-operative conduct with others into his own conduct. It is this mechanism which enables the individual to isolate that in the act which lies in the individual from the completion of the act, and thus to distinguish the specious present from the future and the past; but it is important to recognize that the mechanism by which this is accomplished is that of the act, with its implication of perceptual objects to which the individual responds.

In this conduct the future values of things are represented by the attitudes which these symbols arouse. The attitudes may be very specific and concrete, as when we actually shrink from a distant dangerous object, and this attitude is recognized as imagery of the conduct which actual contact with the object would elicit, or when we find ourselves in empathy assuming the aspiring attitude of the walls of a cathedral. As a rule, however, the vocal symbols of "dangerous" and "aspiring" present such generalized attitudes that we could describe them only with a readiness to avoid or to stretch upward, and these descriptions lie in our experience only in the words with a vague sense of readiness to respond. This readiness exhibits itself toward other vocal symbols whose underlying attitudes are consonant with those which these terms arouse. In any case, in these so-called mental situations that are constituted by our conversations with others or with ourselves (a form of social conduct which we call reflection), the future of actual or possible conduct is repre-

(223) -sented by symbols and their answering attitudes which appear in the immediate experience of the individual. They bring into the experience of the individual the surrogates of the objects which would complete the acts which the individual initiates. it is a represented future and constitutes this a specious present, for the conduct of conversation is going on in a perceptual world. In the ongoing act things are what they are, and the future is in the objects, not in the individual; not until for some reason or another we start to reflect on the objects is it taken out of them and transferred in representation to the so-called mind, i.e., to reflective conduct in the individual. In ongoing conduct past and future meet in the duration of conduct. Something of the past and future are there, and the objects extend them before and after until a question arises which brings them into reflection and representation.


Two questions suggest themselves that may be referred to in passing. The first has to do with imagery. It is an experience that takes place within the individual, being by its nature divorced from the objects that would give it a place in the perceptual world, but it has representational reference to such objects. This representational reference is found in the relation of the attitudes that answer to the symbols of the completion of the act to the varied stimuli that initiate the acts. Bringing these different attitudes into harmonious relation takes place through the reorganization of the contents of the stimuli. Into this reorganization enter the so-called images of the completion of the act. The content of this imagery is varied. It may be of vision and contact or of the other senses. It is likely to be of the nature of the vocal gestures. It serves as a preliminary testing of the success of the reorganized object. Other imagery is located at the beginning of the act, as in the case of a memory image of an absent friend that initiates an act of meeting him at an agreed rendevous. Imagery may be found at any place in the act, playing the same part that is played by objects and their

(224) characteristics. It is not to be distinguished, then, by its function.

What does characterize it is its appearance in the absence of the objects to which it refers. Its recognized dependence upon past experience, i.e., its relation to objects that were present, in some sense removes this difference, but it brings out the nature of the image as the continued presence of the content of an object which is no longer present. It evidently belongs to that phase of the object which is dependent upon the individual in the situation within which the object appears.


Even when we consider only sense data, the object is clearly a function of the whole situation whose perspective is determined by the individual. There are peculiarities in the objects which depend upon the individual as an organism and the spatiotemporal position of the individual. It is one of the important results of the modern doctrine of relativity that we are forced to recognize that we cannot account for these peculiarities by stating the individual in terms of his environment. This is what has been undertaken by a physiological psychology. The physiological system of the individual is stated in terms of the physical world which the individual is said to perceive. If the spatiotemporal world of perception can be stated in terms of absolute extension, there may seem to be no objection to presenting the organism of the individual in the same terms; but if the very structure of that world is for the exact sciences dependent upon the relation of the individual to his world, we do not find in the analysis of the physical world the terms in which the individual can be stated, if that statement is, to do justice to what is peculiar to the individual. This conclusion is not affected by the imperceptibility of the spatiotemporal differences between the worlds of different individuals, as physics and biology deal with them. Other differences owing to the relativity of the world to the individual are enormous. It has been the

(225) assumption Of science that such relativity disappears when we bring organisms into the terms of the analysis of the environments by the exact sciences. If in principle this is not the case, we are estopped from assuming it in considering the more flagrant differences. The determining character of the individual in the nature of the object is effaced when we have reduced him to those abstract physical terms in which those peculiarities no longer appear.

The so-called sensuous characters of things disappear when we have stated them in terms of electrons, and these sensuous characters of things are dependent upon the presence of the structure of the organism of the individual. What we obtain is an abstract statement of conditions under which these characters appear; in other words, we get an explanation of them, not an analysis of them as they are. The so-called psychological analysis of these characters deals with them as they are in the individual, not as they are in the object. Nor can we simply return them in their psychological form to the object which has been stated in the explanation of an abstract physical science. These characters have actually emerged in the objects and not simply in the individuals, and our statement must include them as actually belonging to the object in the perspective of the individual where they exist. One thing that this certainly involves is according to the objects the future and the past which belongs to them in the perceptual world, as over against the knife-edge present which the exact physical sciences have set up as the ideal of measurements. It is only in the useful fiction of that present that things are made up of physical particles, for the complete contemporaneity of the particle with ourselves in our effective occupation of space implies the loss of all the distance characters. These distance characters separate us from the object not only in space but also in time. The distance is spatiotemporal. In terms of conduct it involves movement toward the object and the ultimate experience of contact and manipulation. If that contact experience is at the moment of its appearance in distance experience, it is in the implication

(226) of the act's being performed and the ultimate contact experience attained. The ultimate experience involves not only contact. It involves also manipulation, that is, the potential crumbling of the object into continually smaller parts. The contact experience through the action of the hand becomes also a distance experience. We advance from the whole to its parts. An ultimate physical particle is the end of the road. It is, therefore, functionally determined and represents the point at which the analysis in the act stops. In the world at an instant we have annihilated all these distance characters which separate us temporally as well as spatially from the objects. This is possible only in so far as the acts are completed in the representation of the individual, and this involves the attitude of the contact experience which belongs to the completed act. It involves also that the effective occupation of space by the physical particle should appear in the attitude of the individual, that of resisting his own pressure in contact and manipulation. The attitude of the individual is also the attitude of the particle: the individual in so far places himself in the thing, and in so far attains the complete contemporaneity which is the ideal of the world at an instant of the physical sciences.

In this situation the individual represents himself in the same terms of physical particles. He can become a part of the world at an instant only in so far as he does this, but in doing it he is in the same manner abstracting himself from durational experience as that in which he abstracts the rest of the world. What goes on in the whorl of electrons in the central nervous system has the same fictional reality as that which transpires in Betelgeuse. From the causal standpoint it enables us to determine the conditions under which the experiences will occur, under the hypotheses of science, and these hypotheses, as hypotheses, bring back logically the future which the knife-edge present has eliminated. It is only in representation that the world exists in the specious present, and it is only in the fiction of our exact sciences that it exists at an instant. To repeat what is implied by representation: it is the identification of the indi-

(227) -vidual through the imagery of pressure with the distant perceptual object, so that the temporal character of spatiotemporal distance disappears, and the object acquires the immediacy of the sense of the effective occupation of space which belongs to the individual.

In immediate experience objects are there with the future value which conduct involves. In some degree, which approaches zero in so-called moral certainty, expectancy accompanies all perceptual experience. All objects are affected with futurity and are in memory with the past. The reality of the object is not present; it is to be or has been. To such objects affected with futurity distance qualities belong. They do not belong to objects which are in the world at an instant. To objects in the past memory imagery belongs; they are what we remember. These images do not belong to them in the specious present, or in the world at an instant, for they inhere in objects that are past, as distance qualities inhere in objects in the future. Abstracted from their objects in the perceptual world and taken simply in their relation to the individual who initiates the act, they are called psychical, more especially when the conditioning or causal relation is set up between them and the physical situation which appears in representation, and this situation includes the central nervous system. There is no sense of disparity between the color seen at a distance and the object that lies in the future. Nor does the relativity of the object to the individual detract from the immediacy of the object. The double image when the eyes are not successfully focused has no tendency to detach the colored form from the object. It is only by an unnatural route that relativity leads to a view of the psychical nature of the experience. So long as the act is ongoing, there is no metaphysical speculation. in the eye that sees.


Contemporaneity is an affair of the specious present. It involves at least a momentary pause in ongoing action and the relation of different objects in the landscape with reference to

(228) continued action. The goal of that action is in the future, while over against this the immediate landscape is in the present. Before definite action takes place, any object may be the goal, or all objects lie in the specious present. The specious present is the immediate field conditioning possible action. Its presence lies in the persistent relations which render possible a group of possible responses. In this sense they are all copresent with the individual, but when action resumes the goal lies in the future. The cogredient world answers to the organization of response with reference to any possible action. A moving object within that field, if it is an object of attention, introduces an attitude of adjustment. With every change of position of the object, there is a suggested congruous reconstruction of the landscape. The degree of reconstruction depends upon the scope of suggested responses which the moving object entails. In the case of terror the whole landscape is confused, while a moving object at a distance leaves the field of immediate action unaffected.

The organization of action with reference to a specific goal determines what will be the order of intervening events between the individual initiating the act and the attained goal. Every alternative act answers to a different time system, for it involves a different set of events. Each object assumes a different date. If I do this, that object will succeed the other; while, if I do the other thing, these objects may remain contemporaneous, while another set will fall into successive relation. We are continually facing varying temporal perspectives. The answer to the question whether these different perspectives can be made temporally congruent depends on the discovery of some act, such as counting some series of events which is uniformly recurrent, in .all possible time systems answering to all the perspectives, within which the spatiotemporal succession of events in one perspective will have a one to one correspondence with that in another perspective. Such an act is the counting of the seconds on a watch. The set of events succeeding one another to the eye of the passenger in a railway train are in a one to one correspondence of spatiotemporal relation to the events succeeding

(229) one another to the eye of the man watching the train from the station platform, when each relates them to the second hands of concurrent watches. The landscape moves at the same rate as the train. In the same fashion one assures one's self of a congruent spatial landscape by the exact correspondence between the perspective of an object seen at a distance and that of the point from which this is viewed, when seen from the position of that object, and one obtains the assurance by the use of the measuring rod which remains in contact experience unchanged in either spatial perspective. In either case one depends upon a counting process of a temporal or spatial unit which remains uniform in the different perspectives, and the discovery that the summations of the temporal or spatial wholes, which correspond to one another in the different perspectives, agree. The watch or the revolution of the earth thus gives an absolute time, while the measuring rod gives an absolute space. It is, however, necessary to further analyze the assumptions involved in the concurrent watches and the permanent spatial unit of the measuring rod. In the case of the watch or the revolution of the earth, we assume that there is an absence of all causes which would make a difference in the movements of the wheels or of the earth. We assume, furthermore, that we can find a field that is at rest with reference to it, i.e., a specious present in which an individual would inhibit all action momentarily at least, and thus have a field of possible action with reference to which all possible action would take place. The experience of this field is, then, so abstracted from all change in itself that changes which take place with reference to it mark off portions of it which are not affected by them. Yet, as experiences, rest and motion imply each other. One implies that which is marked off by the other. In the case of the concurrent watches either there is irriplied a specious present within which they both exist and are seen to be concurrent (an absolute Newtonian time, a divine sensorium) or else we project the specious present of one individual with his time system into that of the other and remark the uniformity. The passenger and the station agent see each

(230) other's watch as the train goes by and thus authenticate the record. We are implying a momentary identical specious present. The representative of the absolute time has been found in the unchanged position of the fixed stars and has been abandoned with the recognition that there are no fixed stars-and we have no other approach to a divine sensorium. As our problem has to do with identical units of time and space in the system that is in motion and that which is at rest with reference to it, we cannot wait until the train has pulled into a station and then compare watches. This would not assure us of the uniform unit while the train was in motion. The assumption of a momentary specious present within which the watches may be compared as the train flies by, does by implication stop either the train or the landscape, as illustrated either by Zeno's question as to where the arrow is when it is in motion or by Einstein's analysis of what is involved in the most accurate signal that could be given of simultaneous events in two such moving systems. What comes out of this analysis is that any object which is moving with reference to a field of rest, a specious present, will have certain spatiotemporal relations to other objects which are moving with it, and that these relations will be different from those which these objects will have to each other if they constitute a field of rest, a specious present, and the other system is moving with reference to it. Enormous relative velocities are necessary to make these discrepancies possibly perceptible, but they are involved in any instance of such systems moving with reference to each other. In other words, units of time and space which would be uniform if both systems were at rest will not be uniform if they are moving with reference to each other. Another fashion of stating this is that events which will he contemporaneous in one system will not be contemporaneous when their dates are fixed by light signals to another system which is moving with reference to the first. Contemporaneity has to do with the succession of events upon one another. The telegraph poles are successive events to the man in the train; they are contemporaneous to the man on the station platform.

(231) If this be stated in terms of light signals, it comes to this: that, if we take into account the velocity of light, the light signals from one pole will reach the man at the station at the same moment as those from another pole. Again making allowance for the different distances which the light must travel from the different poles, to the man in the train which is hurrying toward the poles the light has shorter distances to travel in reaching his eye than the distance between the poles for the man at the station. But the time has been marked off by the passage of the equidistant telegraph poles, so that to the man at the station the time period on the train must be longer because, the distance having shrunk, the time interval divided by a smaller divisor must give a larger quotient.

In the analysis given above we have succeeded in abstracting time from space and space from time. The basis for this abstraction is the specious present. In this situation one inhibits all responses of movement toward or away from the objects within the field of rest, the cogredient set, and there remains the actual or possible movement of some object or objects with reference to this field. The objects in this field are physical objects, i.e., they are things contact experience with which is represented by our attitudes, and in these attitudes is the resistance of the object with which we come in contact. The experience is one that is identical with that of the resistance of the organism. It is the experience of contemporaneity. The act is representatively completed, and the temporal content is abstracted from it. But this temporal content can only be gotten at by motion, in which the temporal and spatial phases return to their concrete union in conduct. The time that is squeezed our of object..; through inhibition and representative identity is marked off by motion and measured by uniformly recurrent motion. Motion in a field of rest returns the futurity that belongs to things, while it presents to us the abstractions of timeless space and spaceless time.

It is this actuality of time in perceptual experience, inhering in things and indubitably present in even the specious present,

(232) which relativity has brought back into the abstractions of science.

Time is, then, the experience of inhibited action in which the goal is present as achieved through the individual assuming the attitude of contact response, and thus leaving the events that should elapse between the beginning and the end of the act present only in their abstracted character as passing. In the presence of an indefinite number of such physical objects in the surrounding field, the relation of these events to any one act is blurred into a general succession of events abstracted from any one series. It is rendered definite by breaking it up into the events or separate steps of acts which take place with reference to this field. These may be overt acts or pulses of attention directed toward imagery and the significant symbols appearing in reverie and the inner conversation called thought, or toward recurrent physiological processes. In these, spatiotemporal unity is restored, though it appears only in bodily experiences. It constitutes a specious present because, on the one hand, physical identity with distant objects gives functional contemporaneity, while the acts that are going on involve the actual concrete spatiotemporal happenings. If we regard these happenings simply from the standpoint of the generalized abstracted time, they become bare events emptied of all except their successive passing. In full action this abstracted time appears only as the sense of relative temporal extensions. In one direction we move toward the scientific ideal of the world at an instant, while in the other we move toward the heightened temporal intuition of a Bergsonian picture of the world.

Of fundamental importance is the recognition that the fixing of a specious present, a cogredient set, determines what events will be successive and what will be contemporaneous. The customary illustration of this is that given of the man in the railroad train and the man on the station platform. It has been noted that, if we assume a uniform velocity of light, the spatial and temporal units by which we measure abstracted spatial and temporal magnitudes will be different in one set according as

(233) they are viewed from within that set or from the other, though these differences would be imperceptible. As long as the units remain the same for perception, we have for all intents and purposes an absolute space and time built up out of these uniform units, i.e., a Newtonian situation.

It will be noted further that the question of the different values of the units of time and space implies that the individual in one cogredient set not only carries out measurements from his own standpoint but also by direct observation or through signaling (the import of which is his taking the position of the individual in the other cogredient set) compares a magnitude which is normal for the other set with the magnitude of the same extent from the standpoint of his own perspective. The phenomena of relativity would not exist if the individual in the train could not regard the surrounding world from the standpoint of the station, and vice versa. Relativity as an experience is the finding of the contemporaneity of different events, from the standpoint of the different perspectives, in the case of the same group of events, and then noting that the effect of this is to make the units of time and space differ, according as the individual uses it in the other set from the standpoint of his own perspective or from that of the other cogredient set. He must be able to adopt the point of view of the other and then his own and to compare the results as he takes now one standpoint and now the other. It is not a comparison of each with an absolute standard but amounts to the following: he measures a distance with a yardstick within the other set-that which is moving-as if it were a part of his own, i.e., moving within his own which is at rest, and then transferring himself to the other consentient set he measures the distance as it appears there and compares the two, finding that the yardstick and the second are, respectively shorter and longer in the one than they are in the other. The process of signaling, and the crucial importance of the velocity of light in Einstein's formulation, seem to have a relation to this experience of relativity. For relativity does not exist except in this experience. We do not in this experience discover

(234) something that exists in a world that is independent of the experience. The differences in the measurements of the same extents from the two standpoints of the different consentient sets exist only as far as the same individual is regarding the magnitude now from the standpoint of one set and now from the standpoint of the other. In so far as he retains consistently the one standpoint, no such difference has meaning. We may contrast it with the different accounts given of a physical object seen from different points, e.g., the much-worn penny of recent speculations. These can all be translated into the object seen from the point at which the intersecting diameters are equal. This translation in terms of a perspective geometry does not involve a change in the value of the units of measurement as one shifts from one standpoint to the other. Or, rather, the individual immediately without reflection translates the distorted magnitudes of visual objects seen at different distances and at different angles of vision into those of vision within the range of contact and at right angle to the symmetry of the object. He does not indifferently place himself in either perspective and regard the other as a distortion of the one he is occupying. There is an absolute standard constantly present in experience into which translation is constantly made. The changes owing to temporal perspective lie beyond the range of direct perception. Velocities have to approach that of light, and where these are reached the results can only be presented indirectly, as in the case of the alpha particle. We can conceive of situations in which we were surrounded with objects moving at the rate of 70,000 miles a second of which we had clear visual images, and of a similar translation of their dissymmetry, provided there were in experience some normal relative velocity with which objects moved with reference to one Another, and which would provide the norm of unit values. Complete rest would not provide such a norm because this can exist in experience only in the presence of change. In any case, changes in spatial, temporal, and mass units, owing to the relative velocities of moving systems, exist only in so far as the individuals, whose positions

(235) are those answering to the symmetry of the systems, each regards the other system as moving in his own and at the same time his system as moving in the other system at rest with reference to his own.

In current statements of electromagnetic relativity this does not seem to be the case. We set up our own system as absolute and state that, when an alpha particle moves with a velocity approaching that of light, its spatial, temporal, and mass values have changed. The assumption is logically on a par with that involved in the Fitzgerald-Lorentz hypothesis of the foreshortening of the diameter of the moving object which lies in the direction of the motion. We do not present the answering assumption that the alpha particle is at rest, while our system is moving with reference to it with a velocity approaching that of light. We figure out a result of the application of the principle of relativity without getting the experiential value of relativity. It is perhaps needless to say that this is unavoidable. When we present an airplane as moving at a velocity of 120,000 miles a second and assume that we can see the foreshortened diameters of its occupants in the direction of its motion, we can readily place ourselves in the airplane and see the corresponding foreshortening of the diameters of persons on the earth which are passing us at the same velocity. It is, however, practically impossible to place ourselves inside an electron in a Bohr atom and present the rest of the universe as moving with reference to it, if it be regarded as at rest. It is difficult enough to present a Bohr atom. It is hopeless to undertake to present a system of the universe whose elements are so moving that the electron in question may be regarded as at rest. We are forced to abandon rest and motion, which are experiential, and approach the scientific fiction of the world at an instant, but including in the conception of the physical particle its temporal dimension.


The abstract conception of the world at an instant implies a timeless space and, if it were a tenable conception of the uni-

(236) -verse, would eliminate the phenomenon of relativity. If at this point there were no time, there could be no temporal perspectives, and, if reality could be located at such a temporal zero point, the experiences of relativity would become appearances of a unique situation which would be just what it was in an instant of no temporal spread. The impossibility of such a conception, which eliminates not only time but also motion, takes us to the functional import of the conception as an approach to a limit that does not belong to extension, either spatial or temporal, but to certain characters that exist as limits in physical series. The point and the instant are, then, the spatial and temporal implications of such a character at the limit of its series. Such a point-instant would answer to the Euclidean definition of being without magnitude in so far as further division would reveal no further approach to the character that is the limit in the series. But something further is demanded, and that is position. Position in a cogredient set, a specious present, is attained in so far as distances and times are used to locate a physical element in the passing field. Four co-ordinates locate the physical element. If we realize that this set is but one of an indefinite number of sets within which the element is related to different objects and events, position is lost. If, however, we conceive of all the possible time systems with their corresponding spatial configurations, within which this element as an event would belong, another meaning is given to position. From the standpoint of the cogredient set, position refers to the set of numerical values of the four co-ordinates which fixes the so-called point-instant uniquely in the set. With the abandonment of any fixed set-absolute space and absolute time -- goes the loss of units of space and time which have the same value from one set to another.

The essential point is found in the simultaneity of moving objects in a distant field with the perceptual objects of the contact field. The nonmoving object in the cogredient set, as before stated, has a future value owing to its distance, which is in some sense abstracted through the inhibition of the acts

(237) which the distance object arouses. Through identification with the distant object, contemporaneity appears. The distant object as exercising the individual's attitude of pressure is temporally coincident with the individual. It is contemporaneous with the individual at the moment. If the perceptual relation involves a measurable period, the contemporaneity belongs to the moment of the individual's contact experience and antedates the completion of the perceptual process. This becomes appreciable in the case of the sound. Except with reference to stellar bodies, it is not appreciable in the case of light. If one assumes an appreciable time period in the perceptual process of vision, identification with the distant moving object introduces a problem.

While the body is at rest, the contemporaneity of the distant object involves no complication with the temporal character of the perceptual process. Its thereness, an essential part of the thereness of the percipient individual, gives it durational identity with the perceptual individual in his specious present, or this present expended in memory. Its contemporaneity is unaffected by the time involved in the distant process. When, however, the distant object is moving, identification with the percipient individual still leaves the location of the object in question. On the assumption of a light of infinite velocity, the object in the world at an instant would be where it was when it was seen, i.e., the identification of the individual with the object which carries with it contemporaneity would locate the object where it was at the moment at which it is seen. But light has a finite velocity. When the individual identifies himself with the object, it is no longer there. If he receives light waves from two different parts of an object moving toward or away from himself, the distance between these portions of the object will be theoretically foreshortened by the fact that the waves will have a different distance to travel from the two portions of the object. He will not be able to correct this foreshortening by simply subtracting the difference in the distance which the light waves have to travel, for he must also take into account the

(238) distance that the body has traveled since the light wave has left the object. The distance between him and the object is steadily decreasing or increasing in the time during which the light wave is traveling toward him. He is advancing to receive the wave or moving away from it. He could calculate this only if he knew the velocity of the object, but he can know this only on the basis of locating the object in his distance field, that is, by the contemporaneity of the light waves from the moving object and stationary objects which it passes. This contemporaneity ignores the fact that the object is moving, that the distance which the light wave travels from the stationary object to the individual is different from that traveled from the moving object to the individual.

What is evident is that the measurement cannot be from the moving object but must be from some point in the field with which the moving object is coincident. It is the identification of the individual with this object that gives the basis for the estimate of distance. If the individual identifies himself with the moving object, not only does the difficulty of determining the actual extents in space and time arise but the identification invites at once the formation of a cogredient set with the moving object as at rest. One can only determine the position of the moving object by reference of it to other objects that keep the same relations to it, i.e., one can only determine the position of the moving object within its own space. One can mark the positions within the space of the cogredient set at rest through which the moving object passes, but it is impossible to locate the moving object in these positions, for its motion contradicts, but accepts, the spatial relations of other things contemporaneous with it, as constituting a field capable of maintaining position, thus passing its motion to what had been at rest.

There are two reasons why this difficulty does not arise in experience. The first is that for all velocities which do not approach that of light the failure to reach contemporaneity between the moving object and the object at rest which it passes does not appear. If light had an infinite velocity, the situation

(239) which was presented above would not arise. The distance which the light has to travel between the individual and the moving object would not differ from that which the wave travels between the object at rest and the individual. In the second place, scientific thought for the purposes of exact measurement sets up the ideal situation of the world at an instant. The effect of this is to eliminate motion. For all purposes of determination of position the moving object is where it is in the same sense as the object at rest. From either of these standpoints the experiential fact of relativity disappears. So long as one can consider the moving object as contemporaneous with the object that it passes, there is no temptation to give it position in its relation to other objects in its own consentient set. It is only when one finds one's self in such a situation as that of the rapidly moving train that the invitation arises to such a passage from one consentient set to the other. In immediate experience one either organizes the landscape on the basis of one's own consentient set, in which case the objects seen succeed one another, or else one identifies one's self with the consentient set of a stationary landscape, and the different positions of the train succeed one another. It is the latter attitude that is dominant because the motion of the train is felt. Even in such trans ference no complications arise for immediate experience because the velocity of light enables us to maintain the contemporaneity of the moving object and that which it is passing. If we were dependent upon sound for the location of distant objects, this problem would arise, as is evident from the changing note of the whistle of a train rapidly approaching or receding from us.


The question forces itself upon us, "Why has the velocity of light this critical position in the doctrine of relativity?" Visual space is not the conceptual space of science, for in visual space parallel lines meet. The conceptual space of science seems to be abstracted from the congruent spatial relations of contact experience. Our immediate translations of visual experiences into

(240) those of the region of contact experience take away any resistance to the use of conceptual space. Should not the presentation of the situation of relativity in terms of physical particles in conceptual space remove the problem of the ambiguity of contemporaneity of events when looked at from the standpoint of different consentient sets which are in motion with reference to one another?

If we translate the problem from the form in immediate experience in which it has been stated into that of conceptual space abstracting from the experience of vision, we have sets of events which are occupied by physical particles. These events must be recognized as extended in time as well as in space. The space of a consentient set of events will thus be recognized as passing, that is, the variation of the temporal co-ordinates of all elements in the set will be identical. Within this set which is at rest, the co-ordinates of space of the objects at rest will remain the same. The result of this will be that the spatial structure and the spatial locations of the physical particles will, with the identical variation in temporal extent for all events in the consentient set, continually repeat itself-the fundamental fact in congruence. The fact of motion within such a set will be represented by a location of a physical particle (or particles) which does not repeat itself with the change in the time co-ordinate. The events which succeed these events will not have the spatial co-ordinates of these events when there is the same variation in the time co-ordinate. However, events which by this definition are in motion may retain the same relative relation to one another, that is, in the nomenclature of relativity they will constitute a consentient set. Are there standpoints from which they will repeat themselves?

Repetition implies the retention of the same spatial coordinates with the variation in the time co-ordinate. This will not be the case if the moving set is regarded from the standpoint of the co-ordinates of the other set. This other set is not only consentient but also cogredient. A cogredient set is one which is the extension by distance experience of the im-

(241) -mediate contact field of the individual. This contact field primarily includes objects which are not only those of vision but also those of contact. It is important to recognize that the body is one of the objects within this field in the same sense as objects with which the body comes into contact. The body is delimited by the same process by which these objects are delimited. It is true that the experience involved in the delimitation of the body includes the peculiar epidermal and muscular and joint surface experiences, but these peculiar experiences, while serving to characterize the body as a peculiar object, do not give to it a primary reality as distinguished from the other objects of contact. The thereness of the objects surrounding the body is essential to the thereness of the body as a physical object. This is illustrated by the fact that we locate objects at the end of a pencil or a cane held in the hand in the same sort of experience as that of the finger. Other objects in this field are not projections from the peculiar bodily experiences, but all objects within this field stand upon the same logical level, including the body as a physical object. The peculiar characteristics of the bodily object distinguish it from the other objects in the field and create a category of nonbodily objects, but this distinction has no bearing on the spatiotemporal thereness of the two categories. The primary experience of contemporaneity appears in the relation of the objects in this set. What one sees, one feels. The act has in it the continuity of passage. When, by the action of the hand, vision terminates in contact, and this and the bodily experience are there, the temporal phase of passage is abstracted from the whole. It is this experience within this contact field which we denominate as contemporaneity.

It is in the extension of this contact field to that of the whole range of vision that a translation takes place which involves in some sense the projection of the contact experience into the distant object. The seeing of objects at a distance in like dimensions with those in the immediate neighborhood is the translation. This includes not only the enlargement of diameters but also the correction of the distortions of visual projection. How-

(242) -ever immediate it appears, its actual or potential operation is evidenced I in the continual experimental testing of the structure of the seen object. This testing takes place not so much by comparison of the seen object with visual imagery of it within the contact field as in the preparatory adjustment of the system to contact reaction to it in advance of actual manipulation. The immediate assurance of the form of the elliptical penny is in the present readiness to pick up the circular coin. So far as this translation is a projection, it is of the contact situation, not of motor imagery; but there is an element of motor attitude in the adjustment of the organism to the contact reaction which would ensue if we had reached the object, and this is not a single attitude. There are various possible reactions dependent on the interpretation of the distance experience. It is the final organization of these tendencies which for the time being validates the interpretation of the distant object involved in our conduct with reference to it. It is when these adjustments involve the actual innervation of muscular tracts that the experience called empathy appears, for it is then that the individual as distinguished from the other physical objects even in the contact field is involved. Back of this adjustment of the individual to the distance stimulation in terms of readiness for future conduct lies the extension of the contact field to the visual field that transcends contact. This certainly involves some change in the visual form of distant objects in terms of the contact field. We do see things to some degree as they would be in closer neighborhood, and we see them in some degree as having the symmetry of this neighborhood, and in this vision what is termed "visual imagery" enters. This varies with individuals and with the same individual. Those whose imagery is entirely or predominantly motor presumably are less subject to such actual translation in visual content. With them the adjustments to possible conduct with reference to distant objects would functionally replace the visual translation. This extension of the contact field to that which transcends contact does

(243) not involve reflection, though interaction of the two fields is implicit.

The interaction becomes explicit at the point at which the future conduct of the individual, when the contact object is reached, determines present conduct. In this case the different possible reactions when the contact field is reached carry the contact field into the distance field, and functionally the individual with this field is identified with the distant field. The situation is problematic in that there are different possible contact reactions which inhibit one another, and whose organization is the condition of present conduct with reference to the distant object. The test of the successful plan of present conduct is found in the organization of competing future acts.

It is in this situation that the individual as a physical object appears, and it is here that projection, so far as it takes place, has any reality in spatial experience. It implies a spatiotemporal world that is there and cannot be used to account for the world that is there. Psychological analysis arises in the isolation of the elements in the objects which call out possible responses in the individual, and these responses in the individual as an object are in the same logical field as these stimuli. It is the contact field projected into the distant field, when possible later conduct serves to determine the present response. So far as these responses are dependent upon their organization in the individual, their existence is in him. The problematic future exists there as determining the present. On the other hand, the conditions of that conduct are there in a present which thus stands out over against this future. These conditions are the characters in the object, which are abstracted from the object through the inhibition of conflicting tendencies. They are, therefore, in this situation isolated from the objective field and left in their relationship with the individual. Otherwise they exist in the object in its relationship to the individual. It is not the relationship to the individual that renders them subjective, for in all perspectives of experience this relationship is there. It is the loss of the objective character, following upon the in-

(244) -hibition, that leaves them in the field of the individual over against a still unproblematic objective field.

Recurring now to the world at an instant, there are two factors here that are involved, contemporaneity and those series in the theory of physics which approach limits, i.e., whose occupying events imply an ideal limiting event or instant. Contemporaneity, as we have seen, is the temporal expression phase of the projection of the contact field into the distance field, carrying with it the individual with which the contact field is cogredient. The behavioristic necessity for this is found in the control over the act which preparation for ultimate manipulation exercises. Within this contemporaneous cogredient set, which is a duration, physical theory approaches a limit of duration, implied in the limit of the dynamic series, to locate the object that is moving within this set. While this procedure enables physical science to attain any required degree of accuracy in locating the moving object, it may not arrest the motion. The duration never is reduced to an instant. The object never is at a certain location.

We can, however, reduce this discrepancy to any required minimum of accuracy, and assuming the practically infinite velocity of light, i.e., that the moving distant object is where it is seen, we can within ordinary tellurian distances determine the velocities of moving objects within the cogredient set to any required degree of accuracy. Within this degree of accuracy we reach contemporaneity not only of bodies at rest but also of moving objects; but the moment that we take into account the finite velocity of light, we are estopped from locating the object at any visual place in the field of rest, for during the period within which the light wave travels to the eye the body has been moving, and the only method we have of ascertaining the dis- tance it has traveled is through the velocity which we are under~ taking to find out. The manipulatory attitudes which constitute the moving object a physical thing can be referred to the moving object only in so far as this contact field moves with the moving object. If one takes seriously the task of locating

(245) moving objects in a cogredient set at rest with a recognized finite velocity of light, one can maintain the physical reality of the moving object only by entering into the consentient set of that object, which at once transfers the motion to that set with which one was cogredient. Even in this case the visual experience of the object moving in the field at rest persists. While taking into account the velocity of light, one can assume that half the length of time it takes a light wave to travel to the moving system and back to the system at rest is the amount that must be subtracted or added in determining what events are contemporaneous in the two systems. The question is whether events that are simultaneous in one system will, by the application of this constant, be simultaneous as seen from the other system. Within each system there is a situation of rest. Within a situation of rest, light waves reaching a point simultaneously will not reach a point simultaneously in a system that is in motion with reference to the first, if we recognize the finite velocity of light. As long, then, as we project the contact field into the distance field in the constitution of the physical object, there will be in the two systems not only a difference in the simultaneity of events but also a difference in the dimensions of objects. Larmor and Lorentz discovered that to give general validity to the Maxwell equations in electrodynamics certain transformations depending upon velocity were required affecting the constants of time, space, and mass. Making use of these transformations, the differences in temporal, spatial, and mass characters in objects in a system moving with reference to another system are calculated and agree with the results of observations, notably in the MichelsonMorley experiment.

These transformations have been adopted as those which serve to translate the temporal, spatial, and mass coefficients of an object moving with reference to a cogredient set, when we regard the velocity of light as infinite-i.e., when we assume these temporal, spatial, and mass characteristics of the moving object to be those which a distant object at rest would have

(246) (for, when an object is at rest with reference to the cogredient set, the finite velocity of light can be ignored, there is no temporal perspective, and we see the distant object as it would be if it were in the contact situation)-from the values which the object would have if we were cogredient with it and the former cogredient set were in motion.

In the case of the spatial perspective we see things as we would handle them, while this is possible in the case of the moving object only if we place ourselves so within the object that it becomes the cogredient set of the observer, unless we assume an infinite velocity of light. If we assume the infinite velocity of light, the spatial, temporal, and mass dimensions of the moving object will be the same as those of the object at rest. There will be no temporal perspective, for in that case there would be absolute simultaneity of all distant events, at the moment of their perception. In other words, there would be an absolute time.

We correct the spatial perspective by seeing things as we would handle them. We can correct the temporal perspective only by placing ourselves in the moving object so that a cogredient set may arise with reference to which what had been the cogredient set at rest is now in motion, This can be done only with the greatest difficulty so far as sensuous presentation is concerned, while it is relatively easy when we are ourselves in motion to identify ourselves with the field which is at rest, within which the motion is taking place. In the moving train, we readily pass from the attitude of a person at rest, with the landscape sweeping by him, to that of an individual in a train hurrying through a landscape at rest. There is no demand in human conduct for the first transfer of attitude, while the second is of the highest importance. However, for all purposes of human conduct the velocity of light may be regarded as infinite, so that the transfer does not involve any translation of the coefficients of space, time, and mass.

The space of geometry is an abstraction from that of the contact situation. Here we have congruence not only of objects

(247) felt but of the seen objects with those that are felt. It is, however, an abstraction, for in the contact experience there are still the predicates of up and down and of right and left, and in the so-called conceptual space of geometry we are able to define points, lines, surfaces, and solids which do not exist in the space of contact experience. It is, however, of importance to recognize that motion and rest cannot be presented or defined without reference to an individual who determines a cogredient set, and that this dictum of relativity that rest in one system is motion in another involves, therefore, this same reference to an individual, and that the transformations of the coefficients of space, time, and mass are of values which suffer these transformations in one set from the standpoint of another, while the same transformations are implied of the corresponding values in the latter from the standpoint of the first. The mutuality of this relationship implies that the individual in one system so places himself in the other that he can regard this as at rest and vice versa. Relativity can only exist in the relation of cogredient sets in which the same individual occupies now one set and now the other in his presentation. Otherwise there would exist simply a series of disparate statements which could be brought into no relation to one another. This capacity, then, of identifying one's self with different cogredient sets is central to relativity.

It is not, however, peculiar to relativity, in its restricted sense of a mathematical theory of the physical world. It is involved in a common world, and then in the distinction between this and the experience of the individual which is contrasted with this, as well as in the distinction between the situations, or experiences, of different individuals when the same events appear in different spatiotemporal cogredient sets. In all these cases is found the mutuality which characterizes relativity.

In the common world we find the individual not only reducing all his visual perspectives to the congruences of contact but also identifying his own congruences with those of others. For in the reflective attitude in which such congruences are determined the individual exists in experience only in so far as he is an object

(248) of his own conduct, and he becomes such an object only in so far as he uses the processes of social conduct and acts as another toward himself. Nor is this confined to social objects in the strict sense of the term. His organism is an object to him in so far as he acts upon it as other objects act upon it. The resistances of objects other than his own organism are those that respond to his own pressures. The experience of physical things is of a common effective occupation of space in which the physical content belongs equally to things and the organism, and it is only as it belongs to things other than the organism that it belongs to the organism. In the psychological analysis of this experience we find the individual identifying himself with the object and pressing against the body, as one hand presses against the other; but this identification has reference to objects which have an existence which is independent of it. The psychological analysis does not reveal the physical reality of the object. It presupposes it. The psychological analysis is not a discovery of the reality of the object but a method of assigning the characters of the field of experience in so far as they are dependent upon the relation to the individual. The qualities of things, e.g., the secondary sensuous qualities, exist in the relation of things to organisms of a certain structure. Without such a structure the particular colors or odors would not be there. On the other side, the statement of the object in so far as it is determined by the field appears in the physical analysis. In each case the statement has to do with the same object, so that an inevitable parallelism arises. This psychological analysis is of a piece with the biological analysis of objects such as food, which appear as such when an animal form is there, such as an insect that is able to consume cellulose. The presence in the alimentary system of the insect of bacilli which can disintegrate the cellulose constitutes this a food. For other forms it is not a food. It is the mechanism of the insect which determines whether this object shall exist or not. The same parallelism arises when the cellulose is regarded from the standpoint of its physical and chemical characters, as being a part of an environment

(249) which is independent of the insect. For every food character of the cellulose there exists a purely physical statement of the object which is quite independent of the insect and its life. Cellulose as a food is relative to the insect. For another animal -- man, for example-it is a building material, another object relative to his life-process, answering to which there appears a somewhat different environment. Finally, there is the generalized physical environment of scientific research, in terms of which all these different environments may be stated, but this is relative to man as a scientific animal. Now, if there were but one animal and it had but one occupation, there would be but one set of objects. Relativity would not appear. There would still be possible an analysis from the standpoint of the organism, but, if there were no other occupation but that of eating, the analysis from the standpoint of the organism would be coincident with that of the environment, though there would be in the environment the negations which answered to the absence of food. Relativity involves mutuality. The object is relative to one form or to one type of conduct only in so far as it is another object in another situation. The generalized physical environment of science has been assumed to provide a situation within which such objects could be absolutely stated and defined. In the first place, however, the scientific concept has come more and more to take on the form of a rule or principle for the correlation of events in different situations in attaining measurements, and, in the second place, the recent doctrine of relativity has removed the absolute character of the spatial, temporal, and mass determinations of the physical object. Objects in one cogredient set have different spatiotemporal and energy characters from the standpoint of another cogredient set, depending upon the relative velocity of the movement of the sets with reference to one another. There is no situation within which absolute characters can be determined. What seems to remain is only the possibility of translating the values which objects have as experienced from one set into those which they would have in another.


Within the field of our everyday experience, in which we may consider the velocity of light as infinite, the congruences of contact experience provide us with a world of identical objects into which we can translate our visual perspectives, not only those of a single individual but those of others. It is of importance that we should not confuse the relativity of one situation to another with the distinction between the psychological and the environmental analyses. In the latter the dependence of the object both upon the individual and upon the field appears and the statement of the object from the two points of view, while in the former there appears the difference in the object owing to its entering into relation to another situation in which it is another object. Thus cellulose is building material for the human situation, but, recognized as food for the termite, it is food to be dipped in creosote, or to be replaced by other timbers. It is still food, but food relative to the building situation. From the standpoint of the food process of the termite it is as building material withdrawn from consumption. In this case we do not find the parallelism of psychological and physical, but correlation between the objects now in one situation and now in the other, with the recognition of the shift in characters which the object suffers as it is found now in the one and now in the other. In this case, however, we seem to find an absolute situation, within which the object may be found and to which it may be referred in either case. As a physically determined piece of wood, of definite chemical structure, it may be interpreted either as food or as building material. But wood so conceived is imperfectly known until it becomes such a chemical and physical structure that it may be recognized as an object in one of a thousand different processes. This structure is not so much a thing as a principle of organization from which a number of different objects may be deduced. As a thing it is an object that is simply there, not reflectively analyzed.

In psychological analysis we refer the object as stated in terms of the individual, and stated in terms of the environment, both to objects which are not reflectively analyzed. Both

(251) the food of the termite and the physical and chemical structure of the stuff are referred to the stick of timber that is there. In the same fashion we refer the colors, feels, tastes, and odors of an object, and the physical counterparts of these in an apple, to the apple that is there. This analysis can only take place in a world of such objects that are there and that are not disturbed by the analysis but are, in fact, presupposed by the analysis. The apparatus of the psychological laboratory is simply an extension of this surrounding world that is there.

In the analysis of relativity there is no such world that is there back of the objects in the different sets, or situations. On the contrary, the objects that are there are there in the different situations, and the analysis simply enables us to correlate them by transformations. The transformations imply that the object is cogredient to the same individual now in one set and now in the other. That is, identity of the objects is attained not by reference to an object that is there back of both statements but by the possibility of the object being an object at rest and an object in motion, and it can be neither of these except over against a percipient individual; and it can be the same object only so far as it is over against the same individual.


The Newtonian relativity, met this difficulty by setting up an absolute mass in an absolute space and an absolute time that were there, and these were identified with the world that is there for psychological analysis. The later theory of relativity has removed these, but in doing this it has thrown the doctrine back upon this possibility of the individual placing himself now in one and now in the other set.

For the vast majority of experiences the Newtonian definition of the object that is there in terms of absolute space, time, and mass is adequate. It is only when we reach the subatomic world and the problems gathering about ether, together with the two or three experimental tests of the Einsteinian doctrine, that these definitions become inadequate.


The adequacy of this definition consists in the identity of the spatiotemporal and mass coefficients of the thing that is there--say, the piece of timber--and the same coefficients of the termite's food and of the builder's beam. As has been already indicated, the moment that we take seriously into account the whole physical and chemical structure of the termite's food as food, and the tensile strength of the cellulose particles and fibers of the beam as a rafter in a house, we find ourselves correlating the termite's food and the rafter, not identifying the food and the rafter. In so far as it is food, it is creosoted or replaced, and, in so far as it is creosoted or replaced, it is food barriered from the termite. The tensile strength of the cellulose fibers have a different significance for the termite from that which they have for the builder, and the chemical structure of the cellulose has a different significance for each. One can correlate these characters, so that, taking their significance in each object, he can read out their significance in the other and obtain a principle of structure from which he can deduce food or building material. If now this principle of structure is referred to the stick of timber that is there, one has an identical thing that is either food or rafter, possessing a group of characters or a nature which has both significances. If we adopt this logical procedure, we have the Aristotelian concept in which we abstract both from the food value and from the building value of the stick of timber and conceive of it simply as wood. Or we can concentrate attention upon the principle of structure and obtain a rule or formula which permits of the deduction of both significances, thus not abstracting from these but involving them in the universal principle. If we take the latter logical attitude, the reference to the wood that is there is arbitrary and unessential. There is no reason why a piece of wood that is simply there would be endowed with such characters.

The logical justification for the identification of that which is there with the two objects, which are not identical but are subject to a one to one correlation, is that a Newtonian definition in terms of space, time, and mass can be made of this,

(253) which also holds for all intents and purposes for the termite's food and for the builder's rafter. As long as this definition holds, we can say of the piece of wood that it is both food and rafter, and it has the vast convenience that this thing that is there is the object with which we deal technically and economically. It is the technical and economic considerations, as well as various others, which draw the lines about the object that is there; but the Newtonian definition gives it not only exactness and measurability but also a formulation which holds common conditions of action and of science for all the other objects which arise in the different relative situations.

What the doctrine of relativity has maintained is that the space, time, and mass characters are not identical in the different situations, so that the object that is there may not, strictly speaking, be identified with the objects in the different situations but becomes an object in its own situation, if it is subjected to reflective analysis, and can only be brought into relation with the other objects through correlation.

It is this which distinguishes a thoroughgoing relativistic analysis from the psychological analysis. In the latter we are frankly stating the same object now from the standpoint of the individual organism and now from that of the environmentI am here abstracting from the metaphysical implications which have been attached to this analysis. The thing may be stated in terms of food, or it may be stated in terms of the tree that has produced this cellulose tissue which in relation to the termite becomes food, or again the object may be stated in terms of the so-called physical stimuli which answer in the thing to these characters regarded from the standpoint of the sentient organism. The thing that is there is subjected to analysis. but it does not itself pass away in the analysis.

The object that is there disappears in the analysis of relativity, except in so far as it can be stated in terms of events spatiotemporally extended and in the formula for the translation of the space-time distances of these events from one another from one consentient set to another. That which occupies

(254) the event is relative to the situation determined by the percipient individual.

With the Newtonian object identified with the object that is there, the psychological analysis seemed to reveal a reality of this object that was universal and absolute, while by this very identification it elevated the statement of the object from the standpoint of the individual into an independent entity, a consciousness, whose states as entities paralleled the physical entities. With the analysis of relativity the object that is there returns to its normal position in the situation determined by the individual and his environment. Its reality is that of the situation, to be interpreted in the light of the transformations which set up one to one correspondences between objects and their characters from one situation to another. The time, space, and mass differences of objects from one situation to another are so infinitesimally minute in everyday experience that we can regard these characters of objects in the different situations of different individuals as to all intents and purposes identical, but we are estopped from abstracting these characters and setting them up as entities that have independent existence outside their situations. We cannot say that we have discovered entities that are independent of experience-in other words, independent of the situations of percipient individuals and their cogredient sets-but we can assert that like percipient individuals would have, in an enormous range of experience, experiences which, in these Newtonian characters, would be measurably identical with those which we have or which we can present to ourselves. On the other hand, we are equally estopped from erecting a consciousness and its states into entities which have a parallel reality that is independent of the situations within which they belong.

There is nothing that is recondite in this. An apple that is well flavored to one individual may be insipid to another. We find no difficulty in this apple being both well flavored and insipid in these two situations. One eats it or throws it aside, as well flavored or as insipid, and assumes that he would find

(255) in the physical structure of the apple, if his physical analysis could be carried far enough, that which answers to each character, answering also to his palate, but not for that reason being located in the consciousness of the individual. He expects to find the identical Newtonian characteristics in the apple whether well flavored or insipid or both, and so calls it the same apple; but, if he carried his physical analysis far enough, he would find that the same situation that obtains over against the flavor of the apple obtains also over against the Newtonian characteristics. just as there is correspondence between the relation between the physical characteristics of the apple and the palate, so there is a correspondence between the time, space, and mass characters in the cogredient set of one individual and those in the cogredient set of another individual. We state the first correspondence in terms of so-called concept of flavor, but instead of this being an abstraction from the different flavors it becomes a principle of relationship between the chemical structure of the fruit and the reaction of the taste buds in the mouth, from which the very differences in flavors could be deduced. There is, then, a correspondence set up between the physical and chemical structure of the apple and the organs of taste in the two experiences which becomes the scientific concept of the flavor of the apple. It is the identity of this principle of relationship in the various instances which constitutes the unity of the concept. Given a full acquaintance with this structure and of the structure of the nervous apparatus in the individuals, one could translate from the flavor in one case to that in another. The translation, however, of the well-flavored apple into the insipid apple would not be a substitution of the one for the other in the sensuous experience of the individual. It would be an apple of one flavor to one which was of another flavor to another. In other words, it would be of a well-flavored apple which is in a sense distorted as insipid to another. Such an apple is evidently different as each experiences it in its relationship to the other's palate. The apple is one or the other according to the indi-

(256) -vidual in question, with a sense of aberration in the experience of the other.

It is exactly this situation that obtains in the two cogredient sets that are moving with reference to each other, where the velocity is assumed to be sufficient to lead to a corresponding shift of the Newtonian characters. Only in this case we are dealing with characters which are assumed to be constant in the experiences of different individuals. The shifting of characters carries with it, therefore, a paradoxical effect which does not obtain in the other situation. The paradox seems to lie in the confusion of the object that is there in our psychological and physical analysis with the set of contentless events whose positions and space-time distances from one another can only be stated in formulas capable of being given actual spatial and temporal contents in different cogredient sets, which is all that is left of the Newtonian object under the analysis of relativity.

The corresponding paradox is escaped in the case of the relativity of the flavors of the apple by the identification of the apple that is there with the Newtonian object, which seems to be identical in the two experiences. Here, we say, is an apple which is identical in the two experiences. It appears to one to have one flavor- and to the other to have another. We do not say that here is an apple which is well flavored but insipid to one, and an insipid apple which is well flavored to another, according as the experience is that of the one individual or of the other. Berkeleian idealism is just an attempt to substitute, in this field of sensuous experience, the object of a relativistic analysis for the object that is there in the psychological and physical analysis. Johnson's refutation of this idealism is a simple affirmation that, in making the psvchological and physical analysis, we do not abrogate the object that is there but presuppose it. In our statement of the apple in terms of so-called sensations, on the one hand, and in terms of the physical stimuli of these sensations, on the other, we are recognizing the mutual relation of the organism and its environment in the object; but, so far as we abjure metaphysical implications, this

(257) recognition does not impair the object that is there. For the psychological analysis undertakes to trace the relationship of objects which are not questioned in their validity to the individual. The refinements of this analysis enable us to correct the inadequacies of the object as it exists in the experience of the individual, but only upon the evidence of objects present in experience.

The psychological and physical analysis starts from, works with, and comes back to, a world of things that are there, and which could not be abandoned and still permit of the analysis. The analysis of relativity relegates the objects of this world, and the world with them, to the consentient sets which are relative to percipient individuals and substitutes for them the formulas by which the characters of one set may be translated into those of another, but these formulas do not constitute objects. These can appear only in some set or sets. What is, then, the relation of these two to each other? As long as we can keep the Newtonian object with its absolute spatial, temporal, and mass characteristics, it has been possible to maintain the two types of analysis in the same field. Customary doctrine has accepted a world of physical particles, in terms of space, time, and mass, absolutely determinable, and therefore identical in all sets or experiences. Short of these congeries of such particles, the world could be presented in terms of the different experiences of different individuals. Each individual had, then, his different world, and, as these particles lie beyond possible experience, the objects in experience seem to be relative to the individual, but with an assumed dependence upon the absolute entities. The object in experience disappeared as an absolute object and was replaced by an absolute object that lay out of the reach of experience but was implied in it. The justification for this implication even from the standpoint of scientific analysis may be dubious, but it has been the working hypothesis of all scientific investigation, up to the appearance of Einstein's doctrines. The development of a scientific concept which is a principle of organization within a process rather than a set of com-

(258) -mon marks which belonged to the Newtonian object has weakened the value of the Newtonian object as that with which scientific knowledge deals, and relativity has given it the coup de grace.


There is a distinction of fundamental importance between the relativity which has just been described as present in current psychological and scientific assumptions and that which belongs to the recent relativity doctrine. On the assumption of a Newtonian object, which lies outside possible experience and which is the real object which the object in experience implies, the object in experience becomes relative to the individual whose experience it is. This restriction of the object entirely to the experience of a specific individual is not at all involved in the doctrine of relativity. A number of individuals may belong to a consentient set. The same objects will be at rest and in motion for all who belong to that set. The same object is food for all animals with a certain digestive apparatus. In other words, this relativity is in no sense solipsistic. It represents a certain relation between the field and individuals. In so far as this relationship is identical, objects may be identical. A solipsistic relativity arises out of a doctrine of consciousness which identifies the object with states of experience of an individual. From this standpoint even likeness or identity of content in the object in the experience of two individuals would leave the objects distinct in their existence, though one might argue from such likeness or identity to some single object which both imply. An absolute idealism avoids this difficulty by merging all selves in an absolute self. Apart from this, however, if the uniqueness of the individual'--, experiencing includes the content of that experienced, there is no escape from this solipsism. It is a position which is readily assumed even inadvertently. There is so much of the object that does belong to the unique perspective of the individual, and the line can be drawn with so much difficulty between what is private in this sense and what is public, that

(259) it is easier to relegate the object entirely to the consciousness of the individual and leave the common character of the object to habitual inference. To this should be added the convenience of consciousness as a receptacle for the so-called secondary qualities which cannot belong to the Newtonian object, and for the so-called imagery, so much of which is found in the object. The illegitimacy of the distinction between the secondary and primary qualities leads naturally to the doctrine that the sensuous content of the object is to be found in sensations which are states of consciousness of individuals.

However, while from the point of view of this use of consciousness, the distinction between the secondary and primary qualities proves illegitimate, and while it reduces the Newtonian object to a thing-in-itself which lies beyond the range of experience and thus abrogates the object that is there, which the psychological and physical analysis presupposes, both the distinction between the secondary and primary qualities (in the form of distant and contact experience) and the Newtonian object (in the form of the measurable contact object) have definite values in the psychological and physical analysis, and, if freed from the implications of this doctrine of consciousness, they do not abrogate the object that is there but give the basis for the relation of the object that is there to this analysis. These values are found in the conduct which the object that is there in experience implies. Color, sound, taste, odor, and temperature all prepare us for certain contact reactions, and within the acts which perception involves these contact experiences constitute what we call the reality of the object. To affirm that these secondary qualities are states of consciousness that induce habitual inferences to a Newtonian object that is not a state of consciousness, and therefore lies beyond any possible experience, is evidently to falsify the value of these characters of the object that is there. In so far as we bring the object that is there within the range of reflection, it has just these characters. Objects are spatiotemporally distant from us and are there in experience as such. We see, hear, smell, taste, and feel them, but principally

(260) we see them, and this signifies, under analysis, that we are ready to move toward or away from them and that these motions lead to or away from certain contact processes which constitute the ultimate meaning of the act. The Newtonian object is a refinement of this object of ultimate contact, or manipulation. The object that is there has all these characters within it, but it is under analysis that they appear as characters and then are referred not to the object that is there but to the object of contact experience, which under scientific analysis becomes the Newtonian object. The object that is there is always at some distance; even when gotten into the hand it is seen or visible, and, pursued by the imagination or the apparatus of science, it is an object that has its location that belongs to a consentient set and is oriented in investigation by its spatiotemporal relations to the investigator. If we persistently abstract from its perceptual form, and define it rigidly in the mathematical terms of physical science, we find ourselves with the type of concept which serves to give not the content of an object in the sense of a thing that is there but rather a principle of organization from which an object may be constructed or deduced.

An object that is there at a distance existing in a field that is oriented with reference to a percipient individual has distance characters, and these characters are, in the field of human organisms, color and the other so-called secondary qualities. They belong to the object as spatiotemporally distant from the percipient individual. The simultaneity of the field at an instant has been already seen to be an extension of the experience of the contact field with its congruences, by means of attitudes which belong to the completion of the acts involved in perception. The simultaneities of colors, sounds, and- the like are simultaneities nut of things but of experiences of individuals, i.e., it we undertake to place the simultaneity in the colored or sounding objects, we can do so only by reverting to contact experience which these colors or sounds promise. The world is a world of hypothesis, however unquestioned the hypothesis may be. The world that is there, by which we test the hypotheses, is a world

(261) of objects, all of which lie in the future, beyond the actual contacts of immediate experience. If we say that the colors and sounds are present actualities, we affirm them of individual experience not of the objects. The astronomer noting the coincidence of the star's light and the hair line across the object glass is noting experiences of his own, which are subject to his personal equation. He is in the field of psychological and physical analysis. The psychological statement presents those characters which, abstracted from the object, lead the individual to acts involving spatiotemporal distance. They exist, as abstracted from the object, only in the individual of whose acts they are the inception. The physical statement presents the outcome of these acts, but the outcome is hypothetical when abstracted from the object. Within the object the outcome is not there as ultimate result but as control of the process. The other bank of the ditch across which one is springing is the solid earth upon which one alights, in the physical statement. As an object it is the promise of that upon which one expects to alight, and as such a promise it controls the spring. In the physical statement it is the hypothetical extension of the solid earth upon which one stands. As object it is the future controlling the present.

Within the act in its immediacy there is no division in distance between space and time. Distance is spatiotemporal. This has been stated as the interval between events, but the event is already an abstraction from the act. It involves an analysis of the act, and this can take place only in so far as the act is itself an object. In a sense the object is in the act, but it is an act only from the standpoint of the individual, otherwise it is experience. The act becomes an object, then, when the individual in his adjustment to different things, i.e., in the attitude of inhibition, presents the object in terms of his adjustment. The rivalry of different acts throws the individual back upon the controls which the object exercises.

The object that is there at a distance in its immediacy is not a solid thing existing at the instant of the perception, for its

(262) solidity is in the future or else is found in the attitude and imagery of the individual or in an inference. In its immediacy it is a control in the passing present of perception, determining the action of the individual. This passing of the present is not time, for time is a passage that is a whole which is broken up into parts and abstracted from those dimensions that persist when action is inhibited. It is out of this abstraction that these dimensions appear as space. In the immediacy of action all dimensions, spatial as well as temporal, vary with passage. Two characters, then, are involved in a temporal whole, which is time. One is the stoppage of the action toward or away from the spatiotemporally distant object which controls the action. The other is the extension of the whole passage of the whole act over the passage of the different stages in the act, in the relation which we call that of whole and part. In this fashion the temporal distance of things is squeezed out of action and becomes time, but as the action is estopped, it is a whole of passage only in so far as it corresponds in its parts with a passage in action that is going on. This matching (to use Whitehead's phrase) in passage of the ongoing action with that of the inhibited act is essential to the being of time. The inhibition takes place in the individual, and the matching must go on in the individual. Time and space, then, appear in the situations of organic forms, in their consentient sets, which are cogredient with them.

Such inhibitions belong to the situations of all animal forms. They live in landscapes, toward the larger part of the things in which they inhibit response, directing action to separate objects. However, this does not endow their landscapes with space and time as measurable entities, unless they are capable of matching in a one to one correspondence these extensions with elements of acts- that are going on. This capacity belongs to human individuals. This does not render their situations subjective in their spatial and temporal characters any more than the presence of powers of digestion makes food a subjective experience of the animals that possess this power. Nor does it restrict these specific characters to the situation of one individual. The situation

(263) is common to those individuals in which the matching agrees. In other words, the appearance of human individuals brings into their world ordered space and time, just as the appearance of organisms with eyes and ears brings colors and sounds. 1 am referring to the ordered space and time of our perceptual world. The so-called conceptual space and time of mathematics prove to be a principle of construction of ordered Dedekindian series which can be used for matching the spatiotemporal extensions of experience. If we undertake to set up an entity answering to this space-time, we find ourselves with events without content, to which position can be given only in so far as they can be conceived as lying in different consentient sets; but a consentient set implies some standpoint of a percipient individual from which its members can be regarded as retaining the same spatiotemporal relations to one another, and the distances between these events can be absolutely expressed only in a formula by which we can translate the space-time distances of one set into that of another.

The time that is squeezed out of the futurity of the distant object can be secured only by annulling its futurity, that is, by reaching a contemporaneity of the distant object with the individual. It is spatiotemporally distant from us, but it exists in the same present as that of the individual in his immediate contact field. In some sense the act must be present as completed. The act as completed implies a different object from the object that is there whose reality lies in its control over ongoing action. Its relation is not to the action by which one would reach or avoid the distant object but to the action that would take place if contact were already attained. We are already adjusting ourselves to the manipulation of the object. This object of manipulation is thus coextensive with the contact field of the percipient individual. We push this field out into the spatiotemporally distant world and capture it for the immediate present. It becomes contemporaneous. If we see the book as something to be taken up and opened, the mountain as something to be climbed, they are realities upon which this present tendency to

(264) act could be exercised. The spatial distance remains. The temporal distance has been canceled, for the act within which the passage takes place is syncopated in the presence of the attitude which belongs to its completion, while all the steps in the act in the intervening landscape (also in contact terms as manipulatory objects) are there in spatial terms. They are there in some sense as the past of the completed act, and yet in so far as they are an extension of the immediate contact field of the individual they are contemporaneous. Passage taken out of the act appears in the setting-up in the individual of the one to one correspondence between these steps and the temporal distance of the object. It is a hundred steps or a hundred seconds to the distant book. Ordered space and time come into experience with the advent of individuals who assume the relationships just described with their fields, and with these come the physical objects that are defined and identified by means of them. These physical objects, then, are not objects that are there in the sense of immediacy. The latter are temporally and spatially distant and do not carry with them the value of contemporaneity but rather that of futurity. They control action that is taking place. It is these objects that have the distance characters of color, sound, etc., the so-called secondary qualities. It is only when the relation of these characters to the physical object is sought that the demand for their explanation appears, and we undertake to translate them into the form of contemporaneity and thus take them out of the temporal dimension in which they belong.


I have indicated the situation of human individuals in its character of spatiotemporality and consequent physical structure. I have also indicated the peculiarity of the human individuals which is esponsible for this field, but this calls for further definition. This individual in the presence of various objects which invite to various responses, not only through the conflict of these tendencies inhibits the responses, but also through the extension of the contact field by imagery and the judgment of

(265) perception introduces the contemporaneous physical object and, as we have seen, reaches a perceptual object which includes within it contact values that anticipate the conclusion of the inhibited acts-values which become abstracted and are defined in terms of space, time, and mass in the Newtonian object. These values are neither found in the object that is there in immediate experience nor in actual contact experience. This contact value of the distant object appears as the imagery and attitude of the percipient individual, or else as the inference in what is referred to as the perceptual judgment, and this inference has to be referred to the experience of the individual. This situation, then, differs from that involved in the object that is there. In the latter the object is determined by the relation of the percipient individual and his field or environment. The distant object is there not only as distant but as a control in conduct; not as a something that is contemporaneous with the percipient individual. It has been common to say that the distant object is the sensation of color or sound and, as such, contemporaneous with the percipient individual. This, of course, is to deprive it of its character as an object which it has in experience, or to give to the object as temporally and spatially defined mass characters which are responsible for the secondary qualities located in the individual, but which are not the color or sound which are the characters of the object that is there. This latter view is in so far correct that the object is contemporaneous only as we regard it as a physical thing (the Newtonian object under the refinements of scientific analysis), but it falls utterly to do justice to experience which sees and hears the object as there controlling our action toward what is temporally as well as spatially distant from us, leaving the experience of the physical contact thing to tile outcome of the act, of to the so-called judgment of perception, that is, to implicit inference.

There are objects in the contact field of action. They are both seen and felt, but they are felt in such processes as that of mastication in which there is no reference of the seen to the felt. That which is felt leads on to other contacts. That which is seen acts as a control in the process of securing the food. The whole

(266) experience is a passing experience, in which that which is later abstracted as spatial passes as genuinely as that which is abstracted as temporal. There is here no motion as distinguished from action, for motion implies a field of rest that is contemporaneous within which change that embodies passage takes place. In action, what is to the observer rest (the moment in which action seems to cease) is either adjustment through relation to distance objects that are there or passing experiences of relaxation, in which one experience leads on to the next, and in which the field passes with the experience. The body of the percipient individual is not an object as a whole. Different parts of the individual are seen and felt, or are both seen and felt, but there is no experience in which the entire individual appears as an object. That there are peculiar characters that are common to these parts of the body of the individual does not constitute them a single object, for that arises only in so far as the individual acts with reference to it as a whole. It is only as the objects are fixed in a field of contemporaneity that the individual can be fixed as a persistent whole within such a field, and only as the hypothetical content of the physical object is so identified with the attitudes of the individual that the individual presses against the body's resistance to the object, can the percipient individual become an object in the field of physical objects.

It is evident that it is the formation of the physical object which is responsible for the appearance of the individual as an object, since it brings contemporaneity and also brings the possibility of the distinction between rest and motion, and the separation of space and time, and thus constitutes a new environment answering to the new individual. In other words, contemporaneity can arise only as distant objects which are future in their import can be brought hypothetically into the contact field, and so become physical objects.

The world of action that precedes this is a world without things. The ultimate contacts in action are affairs of food, sex, protection, warmth, rest, and sleep. In this world conduct does not abide with contacts but passes on to the completion of the

(267) physiological act. Contacts have no preferred status in the process, except that of immediate proximity to the goal.

The world of action provides no contemporaneity, for contemporaneity is an affair of a world in which the fixity of certain environmental relations renders possible the appearance of identity in the passage of events, that is, gives the conditions of the date of an event. The situation in the world of action which answers to contemporaneity is that in which the individual finds himself in a landscape whose stimuli are so balanced that they inhibit one another and allow of successful action with reference to some one distant object. The objects whose stimuli are inhibited provide the landscape within which action takes place, but their function in action is that of the preservation of the balance of the individual, the orientation of the individual in his movement toward or away from the distant object, and the carrying-out of the immediate contact processes by which motion, eating, fighting, sexual contacts, care of the young, protection, and the other physiological processes which are the culmination of acts are achieved. In none of these processes does the individual abide with the object as a physical thing, i.e., as a mediate something within the act to which he returns as an identical contact experience, however varied have been the distant experiences which have led up to it. There are, then, two characters in the physical thing that distinguish it from the distant object. It is a mediate identical goal, over against varied distant experiences, and it possesses a content, especially in manipulation, which conveys the resistance of one part of the body to another-what may be called an effective occupation of extension. It is essential that this contact experience should be of import in the activity of the individual and that it should enter into varied acts, in other words, that this identical object should become an implement. It takes up in a manner the whole act into itself. It can be seen, and it is at the goal of the process at which the act is completed.

It is the fact that the individual abides with the physical object, i.e., that he neither passes on to the completion of a physiological process which contact implies nor finds in the

(268) physical object an immediate step to a later act, which provides the situation for the development of the thing. That what is neither an immediate step in nor the completion of an act should be an object for the individual is evidence that it belongs to another world than that of action. As an implement it takes its place in another act, but it is an act of another character, one in which for the time being the contact goal has lost its physiological value and has come to embody uses. That an object should have a use in conduct implies that the object is not simply a stimulus but has in some manner taken up the rest of the act into itself, and this is possible only in so far as the individual who carries out the act becomes an object to himself. It is the type of conduct which is called conscious, or self-conscious, in which the individual responds to himself as a stimulus. This is a different situation from that in which parts of the individual excite him to action, as in the case of a sore foot or an irritation of the skin. These parts are, after all, only objects which act as stimuli and are not at all necessarily parts of a self. When the body has become a physical object, this has evidently taken place, for then the physical body as a whole arouses to action in its relation to other physical objects, but the unification of the body does not take place in action. One does not get outside of it, so that it appears as a stimulus to any sense as a whole. A situation in which this could take place would be one in which one's action toward an object should become a stimulus to the individual to respond as the object acts toward the individual. Then, in acting with reference to an object, one would be also acting with reference to one's self. In manipulation this seems to take place. The pressure of one part of the hand upon a hard object is in response to the feel of the object, but this pressure produces an additional feel of resistance of the object to the opposing side of the hand, which leads to a response of grasping the object more firmly. One's action is that of the object itself. One places one's self, so to speak, in the object, and so calls out in one's self a response for which one is responsible in so far as one acts in the role of the object.


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