William James, via John Dewey

What William James wrote about religious experience might well have been written about the antecedents of acts of expression. “A man’s conscious wit and will are aiming at something only dimly and innacurately imagined. Yet all the while the forces of mere organic ripening within him are going on to their own prefigured result, and his conscious strainings are letting loose subconscious allies behind the scenes which in their way work toward rearrangement, and the rearrangement toward which all these deeper forces tend is pretty surely definite, and definitely different from what he consciously conceives and determines. It may consequently be actually interfered with (jammed as it were) by his voluntary efforts slanting toward the true direction.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *