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him. In the brooding mother, in the tender father lie dormant all the judgments of the time on the conduct and
guiding motives of the little one.
The baby throws his arms about, kicks his legs, rolls his eyes. In these movements arising from internal
activities which, we can only state, relate to vascular distribution, neuronic relations, visceral and endocrinic
activities, is the germ of the impulse to activity which it is the function of society and the individual himself to
shape into organized useful work. Thus is manifested a native, inherent, potentiality, which we may call the
energy of the baby, the energy of man, a something which the environment shapes, but which is created in the
laboratory of the individual. The father and mother are delighted with the fine vigorous movements of the
child, and there is in that delight the approval that society always gives or tends to give to manifestations of
power. We tend involuntarily to admire strength, even though misdirected. The strong man always has
followers though he be a villain, and in fact the history of man is to a large extent based on the fact that the
strong man evokes enthusiasm and obedience.
This impulse to activity is an unrest, and its satisfaction lies in movement; in other words there is a pleasure or
a relief in mere activity. The need of discharging energy, the desire to do so, the pleasure and satisfaction in so
doing constitute a cornerstone of the foundation of life and character. This desire for activity, as we shall call
it henceforth, is behind work and play; it fluctuates with health and disease, with youth and old age; it
becomes harnessed to purpose, it is called into being by motives or inhibited by conflict and indecision and its
organization is the task of society. Men differ in regard to the desire for activity, with a range from the inert
whose energy is low to the dynamic types that are ever busy and ever seeking more to do. CHAPTER XI. 90 The child's first movements are aimless, but soon the impressions it receives by striking hands and feet against
soft and hard things bring about a dim knowledge of the boundaries of itself, and the kinesthet...
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This note was uploaded on 09/26/2011 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 110 taught by Professor Kannan during the Spring '11 term at Anna University Chennai - Regional Office, Coimbatore.
- Spring '11