The Clue of the Maze

Doubt logically carried out

Doubt as to the being of a God has but a short way to run to finish its legitimate career. No man, who believes that he has a soul can give better proof of his mental being than that which we can give of the existence of God. Let him try. He claims that his own consciousness is a proof of his being alive. We reply that it may be very good evidence to himself, but it can be none to us, nor would a rational man attempt to use it in that way. Our friend answers, “I work, and my work demonstrates that I am.” Precisely so, and God’s works demonstrate that he is. Quickly it is replied: “But you see me work, and you see not God.” To which we answer,—We by no means see you work: your body is not yourself, your true self we have never seen. Your mind executes its purposes through your external frame, and we see your limbs moving; but the soul which moves them is out of sight, and it is a mystery of mysteries how a spiritual subsistence, such as the mind is, should be able to operate upon matter. The initial impression of mind upon matter is a secret which no mortal has unveiled. You cannot prove the existence of your soul to another man except by the same arguments which prove the being of God.

If then you stretch your wings for a flight of doubt, be brave enough to fly onward to the Ultima Thule. Doubt your own existence. Doubt whether you doubt; doubt whether there be any you to doubt; doubt whether there be anything to be doubted. A thorough-going Agnostic ought not to be sure that he is an Agnostic; he should not in fact be too confident that he is himself, or that he is at all.
The Clue of the Maze.

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