Hesperian student / (Lincoln [Neb.]) 1872-1885, October 15, 1882, Page 5, Image 5
THE HESPERIAN, STUDENT. A ? thu mind wllh u n accurate copy of pluvious objects of sight; sccomll.v; abstraction, which separates qualities ami materials from tlio various objects supplied by con ccptlon ami UiiriUy Judgment, orlaslo arranges these ma Icrials and Tonus new combinations. Judgment is tho workman whoso tools are furnished by conception and abstraction. This properly Is termed by many tho c.rca. tlvc imagination. An apt illustration of tho work of this faculty is scon in Milton's Paradise Lost. His description of llic Qaiden of Eden was not an exact transcript of any spot belore seen, but was wrought from tho various strik ing scenes mid transcondant beauties which had at one time and another crowded into his mind. That is, con ception and abstraction furnished the materials plucked from this or that lovely spot, while judgment as the active Imagination wove them into an ideal paradise which only the mind could picture. Tliu scope of the imagination a as broad as nature, nay, it is even more so for this faculty can take out a few atlrl btites of nature and combine them in a thousand forms Tho imagination has most fully doveloped Itself in relation to the fine ails; indeed they do but take their rise from this power. Remove from them tho imagination and you have left ab tut as much as though you lake away the wax from the honeycomb. Music, as an art is entirely tho work ol the imagination. Wnat harmony is there" in the whistling of tho wind, in tho rustling of the forest, In Iho creaking of ibo ash swayed to and fro, or in tho chords of an inslrumentjwhcn struck according to previously con ceived combination. The paintings of tho masters have been tho result of imagination enthused over some enno bling theme from sacred writ perchance. The painter may lake the description of the writi-r and with tho aid of bis imagination put upon the canvas a far sublimcjpbjoct than tho writer himself over conceived of. Another thought worthy of oxprcsslnn is that tbe imag ination far transcends nature in its peifectind. The paint ing of the master must bo devoid of the deformities of na ture, it must ombiaco such a combination ol perfect qual as is not found to exist in reality. Tho landscape of a gm-dencr must In. without the blemishes of the wilderness. The building of the architect must be of finer workman ship than nature employs. The poem of the poet, the prose of the broser must shun the conventionalities and vul garities incident to every day life. The characters of the artist must bo true to their Ideal creation. Tho scenes to inlo which he introduces us says a writer are, in general, perfectly unlike those which occur in tho world. As his object is to plo&so ho removes from his descriptions every circumstance which is disgusting ntul presents us with histories of elegant and dignified distress. It is not such ficeni-s that human life exhibits. In fiuo the ideal of the artist rises far eyond his execution. The musician, the painter, the gardener, tho architect, tho poet, the writer of prose, llic novelist, none cau realize the model of his im agination. Another important use of the imagination is that in re lation to reading. If it be historical the mind immediate. ' ly becomes the theatre of action, the characters and events described "assume reality, everything is rccnacled with more or less interest according to (he degree of vividness 1 of thu imagination. The mind becomes unconscious of the words as tho woikofthc imagination goes on. It is not only in interpreting the particular words of a descrip tion thpt the powers of tho imagination and conception aro employed. They arc farther necessary for filling up tho different parts of that plcturo of which the most min- uto descrlber can only traco tho outline. In the best de scription thcronWeli left to tho rciifloFio supply: and tho effect which it produces on his mind will depend in considerable degree on the invention aud taste with which tho picture is finished. The ojlicfuses of tho imagination aro various. All In vention is due to tills power, lor what is invention but a new application of already existing materials ? Summar ily all progress In any direction can be traced to this power. IJeroft of Imagination there would bo nothing but an exact reproduction of what has previously existed; this from the very necessity of the case would forbid any progress. The varying Imaginative powers possessed by different persons is worthy of note. Thus, in all likelihood, no two pictures produced by acl ss in painting a drawing to whom hiwl been assigned tho same theme would in any respect resemble each other more than the necessities of the case might demand. No two persons, scarcely, will construct similar pictures from tho same description. Some being more vivid, others less so, some developing more completely one feature than another from a closer a'.qualn tance with that subject, others another. The Imagination correspond.! moro or less with the other traits or character or its being. Lastly, wo consider the relation which the imagination sustains to human happiness. Tho faculty of imagina tion, in the words of another, is tho great spring of hu man activity and the principal source of human improve mcut. As it delights in presenting to tho mind new scenes and characters more perfect than those which we aro ac quainted with; it prevents us from being completely sat isfied with our present condition, or with our past attain ments, and engages us continually in the pursuit of smno untried enjoyment, of some ideal excellence. Hence the ardor or the selfish to better their fortunes and add to their personal accomplishments; hence tho zeal or the pa triot and philosopher to advance tho virtue and happiness of the human race. Destiny this faculty and tin condi tion of man will become as stationary as thai of brutes. The pictures or the poet or the painter are drawn simply togivepleasuic; they are never faithful copies from na ture. Tho most brilliant composition of the music an is felicitous in its object, It is by means of the 'imagination that one man can sympathize with another in aflliction. Tho drunkard on the street cau be followed to his home. Tho pim-hcl and haggard looks of the wife and children clothed in tho habiliments or poverty and neglect, shrinking with tenor at the heavy tread upon the threshold or the brutal hus band and rather; all this cau be vividly pictured to the mind. Descriptions or suffering and woe conjure up to the mind scenes of wretchedness and distress. S in many other ways might bo shown the part the Imagina tion plays in drawing forth human sympathy, the object of which is the piomotion of human happiness. Gale. At a soecial meeting of Palladiaus Tuesday night tho following members were chosen to compete with the class from tho Union society in tho coming contest: CO. Chase, Orator, J. N. Drjdi-n, Essayist, A. G. Warner, Do bater, Minnie Parker, Declamor.