Isis Unveiled: chapter I (an axiom of hermetic philosophy)

“For lack of comprehension of this great philosophical principle, the methods of modern science, however exact, must end in nullity. In no one branch can it demonstrate the origin and ultimate of things. Instead of tracing the effect from its primal source, its progress is the reverse. Its higher types, as it teaches, are all evolved from antecedent lower ones.

 
It starts from the bottom of the cycle, led on step by step in the great labyrinth of nature by a thread of matter. As soon as this breaks and the clue is lost, it recoils in affright from the Incomprehensible, and confesses itself powerless.

 
Not so did Plato and his disciples. With him the lower types were but the concrete images of the higher abstract ones.

 
The soul, which is immortal, has an arithmetical, as the body has a geometrical, beginning. This beginning, as the reflection of the great universal ARCHAEUS, is self-moving, and from the centre diffuses itself over the whole body of the microcosm.

 
It was the sad perception of this truth that made Tyndall confess how powerless is science, even over the world of matter. “The first marshaling of the atoms, on which all subsequent action depends, baffles a keener power than that of the microscope.”

 
“Through pure excess of complexity, and long before observation can have any voice in the matter, the most highly trained intellect, the most refined and disciplined imagination, retires in bewilderment from the contemplation of the problem.

 
We are struck dumb by an astonishment which no microscope can relieve, doubting not only the power of our instrument, but even whether we ourselves possess the intellectual elements which will ever enable us to grapple with the ultimate structural energies of nature.””

 
H. P. Blavatsky

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