In many passages of his works on pathology, physiology, and psychology Lotze had distinctly stated that the method of research which he advocated there did not give an explanation of the phenomena of life and mind, but only the means of observing and connecting them together; that the meaning of all phenomena, and the reason of their peculiar connexions, was a philosophical problem which required to be attacked from a different point of view; and that the significance especially which lay in the phenomena of life and mind would only unfold itself if by an exhaustive survey of the entire life of man, individually, socially, and historically, we gain the necessary data for deciding what meaning attaches to the existence of this microcosm, or small world of human life, in the macrocosm of the universe.
Whilst Lotze had thus in his published works closed the circle of his thought, beginning with a conception metaphysically gained, proceeding to an exhaustive contemplation of things in the light it afforded, and ending with the stronger conviction of its truth which observation, experience, and life could.
Such are the four points of Cartesian method: (1) Truth requires a clear and distinct conception of its object, excluding all doubt; (2) the objects of knowledge naturally fall into series or groups; (3) in these groups investigation must begin with a simple and indecomposable element, and pass from it to the more complex and relative elements; (4) an exhaustive and immediate grasp of the relations and interconnexion of these elements is necessary for knowledge in the fullest sense of that word.4 " There is no question," he says in anticipation of Locke and Kant, " more important to solve than that of knowing what human knowledge is and how far it extends."
Trans., 1692), exhaustive but uncritical; notices in the editions of Garnier and Aime-Martin; A.
His Catena Aurea next appeared, which, under the form of a commentary on the Gospels, was really an exhaustive summary of the theological teaching of the greatest of the church fathers.