William McDougall

Professor of Psychology at Harvard University, President of the Society for Psychical Research between 1920-21 and of the American Society for Psychical Research in 1921. Member of the Scientific American Committee for the investigation of Margery's mediumship. A keen but reserved investigator who took great care not to commit himself as to the genuine occurrence of the supernormal and agencies of an extra-terrene origin.

Integration and Disintegration from the Point of View of Consciousness

 - William McDougall -

          IN THE foregoing chapter we have discussed the theory of integration and disintegration of personality much as the extreme behaviourist might do, a behaviourist who ignores consciousness but one who, not dominated by the mechanistic dogma, recognises the purposive nature of all human activities. But we must not shirk the more difficult task of interpreting the facts of multiple personality from the point of view of consciousness.

The cases of alternating personalities are not of critical importance here. We can interpret them in terms either of the monistic or the dualistic view of the mind-body relation. If we regard the associative links of mental structure as represented in the brain by cerebral links, as we surely must, the monist will see in such cases a division of all the neural system of the brain into two groups, each group functioning separately and alternately with the other; the two groups having in common, in most cases at least, the nervous structures and functions that are most fundamental, such as the reflexes, the motor-mechanisms, and the instincts. The dualist may hold that the self, the soul, interacts with these two cerebral systems alternately.

It is the evidences of coconscious activities that are of critical importance and offer extreme difficulty to any attempt at interpretation. The monist may say (and this is the line taken by Dr. Morton Prince) that he sees no special difficulty - the individual is a co-operative system of dispositions which may be regarded equally validly as mental dispositions or neural dispositions, neurograms, engrams, or what-not; and, when division of the whole system takes place, each part functions as an independent whole, enjoying its own psychical activities, pursuing its own purposes, and retaining its own memories. But there is a difficulty which Prince seems to overlook in all his discussions. If to remember were nothing more than to have an idea recur to consciousness, to think again of an object previously thought of, the monistic interpretations might seem acceptable. But it is not so. To remember is to think again of an object, and to be aware at the same time that I have thought of it before, or that I have so perceived or thought or felt or acted. And this self-awareness and this recognition of the past experience as one's own is the fundamental and most troublesome fact of memory. The cases of multiple personality, and of coconsciousness especially, do but accentuate and bring out more vividly this fundamental fact. For we find repeatedly that, when one personality obtains command of the memories of another, he distinguishes between his own memories and those of that other. And, when a coconscious personality is aware of the thoughts and feelings of the other, it is not that for the time being the two personalities became merged in one common stream of thinking. Rather the coconscious personality reports the experiences of the other as something of which he becomes aware as experiences foreign to himself; he knows what the other thinks and feels, but he has also his own thoughts and feelings about the same object or topic.

It is in such facts that the dualist position seems to find its strongest support.

The dualist may argue that these facts imply a fundamental unity of the psychic self; that this unity is not something that can be explained, or can be attained by an integration of elements or factors of a lower order, that it is rather an ultimate fact which we must accept "with natural piety" (as Prof. S. Alexander says in another connection), a primary postulate or datum; and that, if we refuse to make this postulate, we shall flounder forever in a sea of confusions and obscurities. The dualist maintains that self-consciousness and true memory are functions that imply the true unity and continuity of a real being, a psychic being, self, or soul; and that such a self-conscious entity cannot in any sense be identified with the physical organism, or brain, or with any part of it; for the physical organism is a multiplicity of elements which appears more multitudinous and complex the further physical science progresses in its analysis of matter.

Now this reasoning cannot lightly be set aside. On really impartial and unprejudiced consideration of the problem, it does appear that no aggregation of elements or bits of conscious stuff, or of conscious processes, call them sensations or ideas or what you will, can produce a self-conscious Ego, a self-directing being aware of itself and its continuing identity over against other similar selves and the physical world. And, though the various forms of division of the personality may seem to imply a shattering or fragmentation of the self, more careful inspection of the facts seems to show that this implication is a false reading of the facts. The evidence of fragmentation may seem strongest in the case of those minor dissociations that result in such disabilities as an anaesthesia of a limb. But, when we obtain evidence of a secondary consciousness in such cases, we seem to encounter, not a mere aggregate of sensations but a thinking purposive agent, a self which, though it may be rudimentary, undeveloped, and greatly restricted in the modes of its activity, has yet the fundamental attributes of a self-conscious entity exercising the function of true memory. In this connection I cite the words of Dr. T. W. Mitchell and attribute great importance to them; because Dr. Mitchell is not a professional philosopher, but a medical man and first-hand student of the facts; and because the arguments of professional philosophers are generally somewhat suspect to the man of science. Discussing Janet's conception of dissociation, he writes: "So, therefore, when an idea becomes dissociated, he would seem to imply that it continues to exist in a wholly isolated state and, whether conscious or unconscious, does not belong to any self. But it cannot be too often repeated and insisted on that we have absolutely no knowledge of any such isolated mental material. If normally an experience that passes out of consciousness is conserved as a psychical disposition, it is as a psychical disposition which is part of some personality. If it is not dissociated, it remains part of the normal personality and retains the privilege of being able to reappear above the normal threshold. But if its passage out of consciousness is accompanied by dissociation, it may continue to exist as an unconscious psychical disposition or as a coconscious experience, and forms an integral part of some personality which may or may not be wider than that which manifests in waking life."(1) That is to say, we must interpret the minor phenomena of dissociation in the light of the major cases, the extreme cases in which the phenomena lend themselves better to investigation. In all such major cases, we find the dissociated activity to be not something that can be adequately described as an idea or a group or train of ideas, but rather the self-conscious purposive thinking of a personality; and, when we study the minor cases in the light of the major cases, we see that the same is true of them. Thus the agent that carries a post-hypnotic suggestion into effect as an "automatism" is not an isolated idea or train of ideas, but a subordinate personality operating for the time being independently of the primary personality.

(1) Medical Psychology, etc.

Another line of evidence, one of greatest theoretical interest, pointing in the same direction is afforded by a number of the extremer cases of dissociation. Perhaps the best instance of the kind is the new personality in the Hanna case (p. 484). We have seen that the new personality seemed to command the forms of knowledge without any positive content of knowledge; he could and did think very actively and effectively and self-consciously, even at the first when he had no such knowledge as depends on memory. The same seems to have been true of S. D. of the Fischer case at her first manifestation, and of secondary personalities in some other cases. How can we interpret this evidence, if not by assuming with Kant and Driesch(2) that the forms of knowledge or of thinking, the categories of thought, are innate in every mind, a character or possession of mind which is not acquired through experience but is given in the very nature of mind and to which mind owes its capacity to order the data of sense-experience in the form of knowledge of time and space and causation?

(2) Cf. especially Prof. Driesch's recent work, The Crisis in Psychology, 1925, where he puts forward this view very definitely.

The study of multiple personalities confirms, then, the view (derived from reflection upon normal experience) that thinking can properly be described, not as a mere juxtaposition or sequence of conscious elements, sensations, or ideas, or what-not, but only as the activity of an agent endowed with the power to order its sense-experiences under certain universal forms of thought or categories. And yet the same study of the same cases of multiple personality does unmistakably imply that normal personality, as we know it in ourselves and neighbours, is the product of an integrative process, such as we have sketched in the foregoing chapter, and is susceptible to disintegration that results in the manifestation of two or more personalities in and through the one bodily organism.

It would seem, then, that the study of multiple personalities does but accentuate and bring out more sharply the necessity of accepting both of two views of human personality which have long been held by different schools of thought and have been regarded as irreconcilably opposed. According to the one view, human personality is the expression of a unitary indivisible agent capable of self-conscious thinking and striving and of true memory. According to the other view, human personality is essentially a product of an integrative process by which a multitude of activities are co-ordinated in one harmonious system of activity.

Are we to leave these two views irreconcilably opposed? To my thinking it is impossible to reject either one in favour of the other; both are true, both must be accepted; therefore we must find some way of reconciling them. And fortunately such reconciliation is possible. I have attempted to formulate it in an address published some years ago(3). It is not an entirely novel proposal. It consists in adopting the monadic view of human nature, long ago proposed by Leibnitz, and modifying it in the light of modern studies. I shall try to restate it here; for, after many years of grappling with this problem, it seems to me the only view that is at all capable of meeting all the facts in a satisfactory manner.

(3) Presidential address to "The Society for Psychical Research." Proceedings, 1920.

Let us provisionally put aside the issue between monism and dualism; and let us accept as a working hypothesis the monadic view. Without stopping to ask whether a monad can be perceived as a material object, whether it is capable of phenomenal representation as some part or feature of the bodily organism as it appears to us in sense-perception, or to the anatomist or histologist, let us assume that a monad is an ultimate reality, a being that exists and is active in its own right; that the normal human personality is essentially a society of such monads, living in harmonious co-operation in virtue of the integration of them all in one system. Let us also assume that a monad is, potentially at least, a thinking striving self, endowed with the faculty or power of true memory; and that different monads are of very different degrees of development: some, being relatively undeveloped, exercise the powers common to all in a relatively simple and rudimentary fashion; others, being highly developed, exercise the same powers in a developed fashion.

We regard, then, the normal human personality as an integrated system of such monads; and the integrated system takes the form of a converging hierarchy. At the head of the hierarchy is the supreme monad which each of us calls "myself." And the integration of the system consists in the subordination of the monads of each level of the hierarchy to those of the next higher level. Complete integration according to this plan gives to the supreme monad control over the whole system. A close analogy obtains between such a system as I am sketching and such a social hierarchy as the Roman Church or an army in the field. And it is noteworthy that many psychologists who do not accept this monadic view of human nature, nevertheless point out the analogy between the human organism and a social hierarchy. Dr. Morton Prince is only the most outstanding of such instances.

The commander-in-chief of the army sits at the centre where all lines of communication converge; but the items of intelligence, the messages gathered in all parts of the field, are not transmitted directly to him; rather they are transmitted through a hierarchy of officers who select and digest all such messages into condensed reports. And much of the detail of incoming information never reaches him, but is used only by subordinate officers to guide them in the direction of subordinate operations of a routine nature. Such are the perceptual items of information that serve to guide the minor and routine operations of the human organism, in which operations only a limited intelligence and a special but restricted knowledge are displayed.

In a similar way, the commander-in-chief does not issue detailed instructions for all operations; he issues only general orders to his immediate subordinates, and these work them out in more detail and transmit the more detailed orders to their subordinates. The commander-in-chief could not, if he would, issue detailed orders, because he is ignorant of the details of the whole organisation. In a similar way the chief monad, ignorant of the details of the organisation over which he presides, issues only general orders, commands that the whole organisation shall move in this direction or in that, or that certain parts such as the limbs shall execute certain movements; whereupon the movements, involving the nice co-operation of a multitude of subordinate members of the system, each with his special place and function in the whole system, are executed in a way that conforms to the general order. This is literally what happens when the ordinary man sees a certain situation and takes intelligent voluntary action to meet it. His appreciation of the situation requires the co-operation of a multitude of facts and processes of which he knows nothing, facts of perspective, of disparation of retinal images, of accommodation and convergence, of light and shade, and so forth. And in a similar way the execution of his intention requires the co-operation of a multitude of processes of adjustment of which also he knows nothing. He merely becomes aware of the general nature of the situation, conceives and wills the general nature of his response to it; and all the rest is left to his subordinates. If any of them do not know their job, or are in any way inadequate to their tasks, the supreme command can only very imperfectly compensate for their defects by concentrating his attention upon the neglected details.

Hence, as I said in the address mentioned above, "the obvious and, I believe, inevitable inference from the facts is that I who consciously address you am only one among several selves or Egos which my organism, my person, comprises. I am only the dominant member of a society, an association, of similar members. There are many purposive activities within my organism of which I am not aware, which are not my activities but are those of my associates. I am conscious at any moment only of those processes within the organism, and of those impressions from without, which it is most necessary that I should take cognisance of. And I consciously control and adjust only a few of the executive processes of my organism, those only which are of primary importance for my purposes. But I and my associates are all members of one body; and, so long as the whole organism is healthy, we work harmoniously together, for we are a well-organised society, the members of which strive for a common good, the good of the whole society. My subordinates serve me faithfully in the main, provided always that I continue to be resolute and strong. But, when I relax my control, in states of sleep, hypnosis, relaxation, and abstraction, my subordinates, or some of them, may continue to work and then are apt to manifest their activities in the forms we have learned to call sensory and motor automatisms. And if I am weak and irresolute, if I do not face the problems of life and take the necessary decisions for dealing with them, then conflict arises within our system, one or more of my subordinates gets out of hand, I lose my control, and division of the personality into conflicting systems replaces the normal and harmonious cooperation of all members in one system. And in extreme cases such a revolted subordinate, escaped from the control of the dominant member or monad, may continue his career of insubordination indefinitely, acquiring increased influence over other members of the society and becoming a serious rival to the normal ruler or dominant. Such a rebellious member was the famous Sally Beauchamp, and such was, I suggest, the childish phase of the Doris Fischer case. All such automatisms imply literally a disassociation of the society or association."

But what is the nature of the process of communication between the members of the society, those communciations by means of which the chief monad receives his information and those by means of which he directs the operations of his subordinates? The study of multiple personalities seems to suggest only one answer to this question. We have seen that in cases of coconsciousness the one personality can sometimes force his cognitions upon the other personality in the form of hallucinations and of dreams; and we have seen how he claims to become at will directly aware of his fellow's thoughts, without confusing them with his own; and we have seen also that one of two coconscious personalities can sometimes force his affects and his volitions upon his fellow, who then experiences emotions and impulsions that seem foreign to his nature, or finds himself executing automatic actions, or suffering inhibitions of his own volition and efforts, in a way that he cannot understand. And in at least one case (the Fischer case) we have seen that one of several coconscious personalities claims to become directly aware of the thoughts of one of her fellows, and indirectly aware of the thoughts of another through reflection of them in the consciousness of the former. All the facts of this order point to the view that the communications between the monads are direct or immediate, that is to say unmediated or, as we may say, telepathic.

There is one kind of experience which we all have, and in which something of this direct communication is indicated, namely dreaming. Each of us feels that the dream is not made by himself, but rather is fabricated by some other mind and thrust ready-made upon him, and all that we have learned of dreaming bears out this view. My dream, as 1 remember it, may be full of significance and purpose of which I know nothing. To quote again from my address: "In sleep, I, the dominant member of my system, become passive and inert; I cease to send out controlling messages. My subordinates, released from my control, may continue to be alert and to think their own thoughts(4); and these are more or less reflected in my passive self as dreamimages and dream-thoughts. Since the modes of activity of these subordinates are more primitive, nearer to the purely organic and instinctive, than my own (for we must suppose that the mental functions are delegated to them in an order corresponding to their positions in the hierarchy, the most primitive to those lowest in the scale, the less primitive to those nearer to myself), the dream shows those archaic primitive and intuitive qualities which have been so well pointed out by Dr. C. G. Jung. And they come to my consciousness as something wholly foreign to myself, in the shaping of which my purposes and my thinking have had no share(5).

(4) Just as we have seen in cases of dual personality in which one personality deliberately concocts a story and forces it upon the consciousness of his sleeping fellow as a dream (p. 495).
(5) I cite (after Jung) a peculiarly instructive statement made by one of Janet's patients: "IIy a toujours deux ou trois de mes personnes qui ne dorment pas, cependant j'ai moins de personnes pendant le sommeil; il y en a quelques-unes qui dorment pen. Ces personnes ont des rÍves et des rÍves qui ne sont pas les mÍmes: je sens qu'il y en a plusieurs qui rÍvent ŗ d'autres choses."

In hypnosis also I am passive and my subordinates work independently of my control. They may receive and understand, retain and execute, suggestions of which I remain unconscious. And, if they carry out these suggestions in the post-hypnotic period, I may be surprised to find myself performing actions of which I have no intention and no prevision; and, if I attempt to inhibit or prevent such actions, I may be aware of a real difficulty in doing so, i.e., a difficulty in controlling and subduing the efforts of my subordinates.

"Frequently I form an intention and initiate a train of action for its execution, and then I may turn my attention to other topics, while my faithful subordinates continue to work towards the end prescribed. To take a very simple instance, I form the intention to go to a certain place and start out; then, though I may be wholly occupied with thoughts of other things, my purpose is duly achieved by my organism, i.e., my subordinates. Or, a more complex instance, I may set out to play a piece of music, and, having begun, may engage in conversation on other topics, while the execution of my purpose nevertheless continues to unroll itself through processes which involve a great amount of mental activity, including the appreciation at every step of the complex musical sounds which my fingers call from the instrument."

I shall not attempt to cite here any of the evidence in support of the reality of telepathy between distinct organisms. I must confine myself to remarking that such evidence is very extensive, and much of it is of high quality. Further, there is a vast number of what seem to be excellent instances which have never been recorded in print or writing. It is surprising to find how many men, of sober judgment and good education, can recite instances within their own observation or experience, and how many (including many medical men) have been convinced by such cases of the reality of telepathy. Now the point I wish to make here is that, in a large proportion of the best instances of seeming telepathy, the receiver of the telepathic impression has been either asleep (and has received the impression in the form of a dream) or in hypnosis, or in some kind of trance (as in such cases as Mrs. Piper and Mrs. Leonard). That is to say, the condition of quiescence of the primary personality, the chief monad, seems to be peculiarly favourable to the reception of telepathic impressions. And in normal sleep, it would seem, all of us are susceptible to the passive reception of such impressions. A feature of dreams of which I said nothing in earlier chapters may here be pointed out, namely, the fact that in much dreaming there are sudden breaks of continuity: the dreamer seems to dream a fragment of one story, and then a fragment of another that has no connection with the former, and then a third and perhaps more fragments, each unrelated to the others. If we attribute the dream-making to some one entity, called "the Unconscious" or "the Subliminal Self," this fragmentary nature of the continued dreaming remains inexplicable. But it is just what may be expected if we are right in assuming that the dream is the telepathic reflection by the chief monad of bits of the mental life of many subordinate members of the hierarchy of monads.

I suggest, then, that in cases of multiple personality we get a glimpse of the system of reciprocal influences between many monads which constitute the life of the whole personality. In dreaming, which occurs in a state of slight general dissociation, the normal personality reveals his composite nature; in hypnosis (when the dissociation is deeper) the evidences are clearer; and in well-marked cases of multiple personality (in which the dissociative cleavage is not general but rather very profound as between two systems of monads) the evidence becomes unmistakable, being expressed in conflict of wills for the control of the motor mechanisms and sense-organs by means of which our relations with the outer world are maintained.

This view enables us to account satisfactorily for such extreme examples of independent secondary personalities as Sally Beauchamp, Margaret Fischer, and Leopold of the Helene Smith case. Sally is a monad who has become dissociated, has escaped from the control of the dominant monad, or has been displaced from her place in the developing hierarchy at a very early age, and then has undergone independent development, securing control of a limited system of subordinates. Thus she remained, until the induction of deep hypnosis rendered the chief monad more completely passive and unresistant than hitherto and so gave Sally the opportunity to control the organs of expression more completely than she had previously been able to do. Further, Sally's long course of independent development had rendered her insusceptible to control by the chief monad, or incapable of fitting into the system that constituted the main personality of Miss Beauchamp. Hence, when Miss B. was restored to health by the synthesis of B1 and B4, Sally continued to remain outside the system, but "squeezed" as she said, i.e., denied all control over the subordinate parts of the hierarchy.

I suggest that Ireland affords a parallel to Sally. The organisation which is the British Empire may be likened to the organisation of a normal personality: Ireland has never been brought into willing subordination to the whole system; like Sally, she has remained rebellious from an early date in the development, when she was estranged by an act of violence; like Sally, she has struggled for her independence; and, during the shocks and distractions of the Great War, she has been able to assert herself successfully. Sally was the Ireland of Miss Beauchamp's body politic.

It is necessary to consider more nearly the memory functions. As I have indicated in Part 1, I hold that Prof. Bergson's distinction between habit and true memory must be accepted as valid. Habit is a matter of cerebral connections. True memory is of a different order; it is a function of each monad. The chief monad remembers, claims as its own, only its own former experiences; but the memories of its subordinates are in various degrees at its service; they may be reflected to it. And in hypnosis there seems to be no limit to the extent to which this reflection of the memories of subordinate monads may be carried; their past experiences are reflected as dream-like images and thus become the property of the reflecting monad.

But what shall we say of such cases of synthesis of two personalities to form one as we seem to have in the restoration of Miss Beauchamp by the synthesis of B1 and B4, and in the Hanna case? Shall we say that two monads become one? By no means.

The facts seem to be entirely compatible with the view that in such cases what happens is that the one of the two personalities becomes entirely subordinated to the other, ceases to exert independent control of any of those subordinate systems that we call instincts and sentiments, and is restored to such intimate rapport with the chief monad that all her memories are at the command of the other. This I suggest is the essential nature of the synthesis of two alternating personalities with reciprocal amnesia or independent memory-trains.

What other view of the memory functions can be reconciled with such an account as Dr. Cory gives of the relations of personalities A and B in the case of Spanish Maria? "B's memory is in some respects good, even remarkable. Her memory of A's early life is much better than A's. During these descriptions by B, A sees these scenes of her childhood pass before her, reproduced much as they might be in hypnosis ... Unlike many, perhaps most, cases of dissociation, each of these two selves is conscious of what the other does, that is, when either appears she is aware of what the other has done ... But the inner thought that lies back of the act is known only as much as the other sees fit to reveal."

I have argued in my address that this view of the memory functions has the further advantage of enabling me to interpret many of the effects upon memory of organic lesions of the brain, effects which upon any other view remain inexplicable.

"There is one class of facts which it seems impossible to interpret in terms of any other hypothesis. I refer to the effects upon sense-perception produced by destruction of certain parts of the sensory cortex of the brain, as recently demonstrated by the brilliant researches of Dr. Henry Head. These researches seem to have shown that, when certain sensory areas are destroyed, leaving intact the basal ganglia of the brain, the patient does not lose altogether the capacities of sensory experience with which the destroyed areas are concerned. Rather he retains the capacity for the corresponding qualities of sensation; but these sensory experiences are now of a crude undiscriminating kind. The change may be roughly expressed by saying that impressions on the sense-organs, which normally initiate delicate intellectualised perceptions, evoke in such patients only crude sensations. On the view I am putting before you, we may interpret such facts as follows: The sense-impressions are normally transmitted through a hierarchy of monads, undergoing further elaboration at each level, until they are reflected to the dominant in a highly elaborated form, conveying delicate spatial, temporal, and other meanings. The injury to the brain throws the higher members of this hierarchy out of action. In consequence the lower members must now report directly to the dominant; just as when, in an army, the superior officers of a division are thrown out of action, reports to headquarters must be sent forward by subordinate officers of the division, who, lacking the special experience of their incapacitated superiors, will report crudely and inadequately, so that their reports will reach headquarters lacking the intellectual elaboration and condensation which normally characterise them. That seems to be a quite satisfactory interpretation of the facts of this order, and I can conceive of no alternative; and I find in these facts strong confirmation of the hypothesis.

"You will observe that I take the spatial relations of the parts of the brain to be significant of some real and important relations. But I do not mean to bind myself to the view that the material world and its spatial relations as perceived by us are exactly what they appear to be. Nor do I apply to the monads any metaphysical adjectives, such as timeless or eternal or immortal or indestructible or indivisible; to do so would be to go beyond the warrant of the facts, it would gratuitously involve us in difficulties, and it is quite unnecessary. For the purposes of science we may with advantage leave the metaphysical questions on one side; we need not inquire whether what we call the body is merely the appearance to us of the system of monads, i.e., we need not attempt to choose between a dualistic and a monistic, or a pluralistic metaphysic. It is for the metaphysicians to adapt their speculations to the results of scientific research as these are brought to light and formulated in far-reaching hypotheses.

"The hypothesis which I sketch in vaguest outline brings before our minds a host of new questions to which we cannot at present return any definite answers. But this does not in any sense detract from its value or raise any presumption against it. Any such far-reaching hypothesis must have this result, which is indeed evidence of its value as a guide to research."

Upon the very obscure question of the structural basis of true memory, I will add only a few words. We do not know how the fertilised germ-cell embodies the history and all the multitude of qualities, bodily and mental, proper to the species; but if we attribute to it all this rich endowment of potentialities, I do not see that we make any very greatly extended demand upon our imaginations if we assume that a cerebral cell is the manifestation in the perceptual order of a monad endowed with true memory. Whether such memory is represented by, or in any sense correlated with, the electronic or minute spatial structure of the cell must remain for the present an open question. In any case we must, I think, suppose that the logical structure of the intellect and the categories of understanding are properties of the monad; whereas the content of historical knowledge depends upon the continued harmonious interplay of the associations between all the monads of the system, and is therefore liable to be gravely impaired by both functional and organic disorder of the brain.

The monadic view of personality I have sketched has this advantage - it does not commit us to any one metaphysical theory. We may refuse to concern ourselves with the deeper questions; or we may combine the monadic hypothesis of our psychology with a monistic pluralism, that is to say a pluralism which postulates real beings of one kind only, namely the monads; or we may combine it with a dualistic pluralism, one which postulates two (or perhaps more) kinds of real beings, those that appear in processes of mechanistic form and those which manifest purposive behaviour. Either view leaves us with many difficulties unsolved. But this is true of every metaphysical theory from the crudest materialism to the most shadowy and elusive idealism.


The article above was taken from William McDougall's An Outline of Abnormal Psychology (1926, Methuen & Co. Ltd).

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