ther idea, than that the power by which our vo- litions are determined is the caufe of volition; for this is a mere identical propofition, which can never be ferioufly propofed as the fubject of philofophical difcullion. By the felf-dctertnining power therefore mull be meant, if indeed it has any meaning, either the a€tual exertion of voli- tion, or the mental energy which precedes voli- tion, and which is the efficient caufe ofit. Ifit means the actual exertion of volition, then the alliertors of this power evidently confound the caule with the efiiefzit, making the aEt of volition prior to itfelf, diPtinEt from itfell‘, and the caule of itfelf. But if it means the mental energy, pre- ceding and producing volition, it is then plainly equivalent to the term nzo/ive, and the queftion is reduced to a mere verbal controverfy. For this mental energy, denoting only a particular difpofition and {late of mind, mull itfelf have re- fulted from a previous difpolition of mind, as likewife that previous difpofition from one yet more remote. A regular and uninterrupted con- catenation of volitions, thus extending itlelf backwards to the original fource of agency, each volition or mental Ptate, like wave impel- ling wave, arifing from preceding, and giving rile to fucceeding Rates, or definite fituations of mind analogous to itlelf, and correfponding to

tholie immutable laws by which the mental, no lefs