Causes, occasional. In the Cartesian philosophy this title is given to
interventions of Deity to render causes productive of effects, which
have themselves no relation to each other, The seeming causes having no
intrinsic power are called occasional causes, as being but the occasions
of the Divine interventions, which are the real ones.
I apprehend the whole theory to have now died
away, at least as put forth by the Cartesians. What has been
said above on the first cause applies uniformly, and therefore
dispenses with it. It was thought needful, however, to explain
the action of soul on body, and that of body on soul.