Three books of occult philosophy written by Henry Cornelius Agrippa of Nettesheim ... ; translated out of the Latin into the English tongue by J.F.
Agrippa von Nettesheim, Heinrich Cornelius, 1486?-1535., French, John, 1616-1657.
Page  136

CHAP. LXI. Of the forming of Man, of the external Senses, and also the In∣ward, and the Mind: of the threefold appetite of the Soul, and passions of the Will.

IT is the opinion of some Divines, That God did not im∣mediately creat the body of man, but by the assistance of the heavenly Spirits compound, and frame him; which opi∣nion Alcinous, and Plato favour; thinking that God is the chief Creator of the whole world, of the spirits both good and bad, and therefore immortalized them: but that all kinds of mortall animals were made at the command of God; for if he should have created them, they must have been immortall. The spirits therefore mixing Earth, Fire, Aire, and Water to∣gether, made of them all, put together, one body, which they subjected to the service of the soul, assigning in it severall Provinces to each power thereof, to the meaner of them, mean and low places: as to Anger the Midrist, to Lust the Womb, but to the more noble senses the Head, as the Tower of the whole body, and then the manifold Organs of Speech. They divide the Sense into External, and Internall. The externall are divided into five, known to every one, to which there are allotted five Organs, or subjects, as it were Foundations; being so ordered, that they which are placed in the more eminent part of the body, have a greater degree of purity. For the Eyes placed in the uppermost place, are the most pure, and have an affinity with the Nature of Fire, and Light: then the Ears have the second order of place, and pu∣rity, and are compared to the Aire: the Nostrils have the third order, and have a middle nature betwixt the Aire, and the Water; then the Organ of tasting, which is grosser and most like to the nature of Water: Last of all, the touching is diffu∣sed through the whole body, and is compared to the grossness of Earth. The more pure senses are those which perceive their Objects farthest off, as Seeing, and Hearing, then the Smelling, Page  137 then the Tast, which doth not perceive but those that are nigh. But the touch perceives both wayes, for it perceives bodies nigh; and as Sight discerns by the medium of the Aire, so the touch perceives by the medium of a stick or pole, bodies Hard, Soft, and Moist. Now the touch only is common to all animals. Fot it is most certain that man hath this sence, and in this, and tast he excels all other animals, but in the other three he is ex∣celled by some animals, as by a Dog, who Hears, Sees, and Smels more acutely then Man, and the Linx, and Eagles see more acutely then all other Animals, & Man. Now the interior senses are, according to Averrois, divided into four, whereof the first is called Common sence, because it doth first collect, and perfect all the representations which are drawn in by the out∣ward senses. The second is the imaginative power, whose of∣fice is, seeing it represents nothing, to retain those represen∣tations which are received by the former senses, and to present them to the third faculty of inward sense, which is the phantasie, or power of judging, whose work is also to per∣ceive, and judge by the representations received, what or what kind of thing that is of which the representations are, and to commit those things which are thus discerned, and adjudged, to the memory to be kept. For the vertues thereof in generall, are discourse, dispositions, persecutions, and flights, and stir∣rings up to action: but in particular, the understanding of in∣tellecutals, vertues, the manner of Discipline, Counsel, Electi∣on. And this is that which shews us future things by dreams: whence the Fancy is sometimes named the Phantasticall Intel∣lect. For it is the last impression of the understanding; which, as saith Iamblicus, is belonging to all the powers of the mind, and forms all figures, resemblances of species, and operations, and things seen, and sends forth the impressions of other powers unto others: And those things which appear by sence, it stirs up into an opinion, but those things which appear by the Intellect, in the second place it offers to opinion, but of it self it receives images from all, and by its property, doth properly assign them, according to their assimilation, forms all the actions of the soul, and accommodates the externall to Page  138 the internall, and impresses the body with its impression. Now these senses have their Organs in the head, for the Com∣mon sence, and imagination take up the two former Cels of the brain, although Aristotle placeth the Organ of the Com∣mon sence in the heart, but the cogitative power possesseth the highest, and middle part of the head; and lastly, the memo∣ry the hinmost part thereof. Moreover, the Organs of Voice, and Speech are many, as the inward muscles of the breast be∣twixt the ribs, the breasts, the lungs, the arteries, the wind∣pipe, the bowing of the Tongue, and all those parts and mus∣cles that serve for breathing. But the proper Organ of Speech is the Mouth, in which are framed words, and speeches, the Tongue, the Teeth, the Lips, the Palate, &c. Above the sensible soul, which expresseth its powers by the Organs of the body, the incorporeall mind possesseth the highest place, and it hath a double nature, the one, which inquireth into the causes, pro∣perties, and progress of those things which are contained in the order of nature, and is content in the contemplati∣on of the truth, which is therefore called the contemplative intellect. The other is a power of the mind, which discern∣ing by consulting what things are to be done, and what things to be shunned is wholly taken up in consultation, and action, and is therefore called the Active Intellect. This Order of powers therefore nature ordained in man, that by the exter∣nall sences we might know corporeall things, by the internall the representations of bodies, as also things abstracted by the mind and intellect, which are neither bodies, nor any thing like them. And according to this threefold order of the pow∣ers of the soul, there are three appetites in the soul: The first is naturall, which is an inclination of nature into its end, as of a stone downward, which is in all stones: another is animal, which the sense follows, and it is divided into irascible, and concupiscible the third is intellective, which is called the will, differing from the sensitive, in this, the sensitive is of it self, of these things, which may be presented to the senses, de∣siring, nothing unless in some manner comprehended. But the will, although it be of it self, of all things that are possible, Page  139 yet because it is free by its essence, it may be also of things that are impossible, as it was in the Devil, desiring himself to be equall with God, and therefore is altered and depraved with pleasure and continuall anguish, whilest it assents to the inferiour powers. Whence from its depraved appetite there arise four passions in it, with which in like manner the body is affected sometimes. Whereof the first is called Oble∣ctation, which is a certain quietness or assentation of the mind or will, because it obeys, and not willingly consents to that pleasantness which the senses hold forth; which is there∣fore defined to be an inclination of the mind to an effe∣minate pleasure. The second is called effusion, which is a remission of, or dissolution of the power, viz. when be∣yond the oblectation the whole power of the mind, and intension of the present good is melted, and diffu∣seth it self to enjoy it. The third is vaunting, and loftiness, thinking it self to have attained to some great good, in the enjoyment of which it prides it self, and glorieth. The fourth and the last is Envy, or a certain kind of pleasure or delight at another mans harm, without any advantage to it self. It is said to be without any advantage to it self, because if any one should for his own profit rejoyce at an other mans harm, this would rather be out of love to himself, then out of ill wil to an∣other. And these four passions arising from a depraved appe∣tite of pleasure, the grief or perlexity it self doth also beget so many contrary passions, as Horror, Sadness, Fear, and Sor∣row at anothers good, without his own hurt, which we call Envy, i. e. Sadness at anothers prosperity, as pity is a certain kind of sadness at anothers misery.