“It would be as tedious as superfluous to begin a restatement of facts, so forcibly put by others. Mr. Wallace and W. Howitt, have repeatedly and cleverly described the thousand and one absurd errors into which the learned societies of France and England have fallen, through their blind skepticism.
If Cuvier could throw aside the fossil excavated in 1828 by Boue, the French geologist, only because the anatomist thought himself wiser than his colleague, and would not believe that human skeletons could be found eighty feet deep in the mud of the Rhine; and if the French Academy could discredit the assertions of Boucher de Perthes, in 1846, only to be criticized in its turn in 1860, when the truth of de Perthes’ discoveries and observations was fully confirmed by the whole body of geologists finding flint weapons in the drift-gravels of northern France; and if McEnery’s testimony, in 1825, to the fact that he had discovered worked flints, together with the remains of extinct animals, in Kent’s Hole Cavern was laughed at; and that of Godwin Austen to the same effect, in 1840, ridiculed still more, if that were possible; and all that excess of scientific skepticism and merriment could, in 1865, finally come to grief, and be shown to have been entirely uncalled for; when – says Mr. Wallace “all the previous reports for forty years were confirmed and shown to be even less wonderful than the reality”; who can be so credulous as to believe in the infallibility of our science?
And why wonder at the exhibition of such a lack or moral courage in individual members of this great and stubborn body known as modern science? Thus fact after fact has been discredited. From all sides we hear constant complaints. “Very little is known of psychology!” sighs one F. R. S. “We must confess that we know little, if anything, in physiology”, says another. “Of all sciences, there is none which rests upon so uncertain a basis as medicine”, reluctantly testifies a third. “What do we know about the presumed nervous fluids?…Nothing, as yet”, puts in a fourth one; and so on in every branch of science.
And, meanwhile, phenomena, surpassing in interest all others of nature, and to be solved only by physiology, psychology, and the “as yet unknown” fluids, are either rejected as delusions, or, if even true, “do not interest” scientists.
Or, what is still worse, when a subject, whose organism exhibits in itself the most important features of such occult though natural potencies, offers his person for an investigation, instead of an honest experiment being attempted with him he finds himself entrapped by a scientist (?) and paid for his trouble with a sentence of three months’ imprisonment! This is indeed promising.”
H. P. Blavatsky