isis unveiled: chapter chapter VII (thou great first cause)

“We have misgivings sometimes; we have questioned the impartiality of our own judgment, our ability to offer a respectful criticism upon the labors of such giants as some of our modern philosophers – Tyndall, Huxley, Spencer, Carpenter, and a few others. In our immoderate love for “men of old – the primitive sages – we were always afraid to trespass the boundaries of justice and refuse their dues to those who deserve them.

Gradually this natural fear gave way before an unexpected reinforcement. We found out that we were but the feeble echo of public opinion, which, though suppressed, has sometimes found relief in able articles scattered throughout the periodicals of the country.

One of such can be found in the National Quarterly Review of December, 1875, entitled “Our Sensational Present-Day Philosophers.” It is a very able article, discussing fearlessly the claims of several of our scientists to new discoveries in regard to the nature of matter, the human soul, the mind, the universe; how the universe came into existence, etc.

“The religious world has been much startled”, the author proceeds to say, “and not a little excited by the utterances of men like Spencer, Tyndall, Huxley, Proctor, and a few others of the same school.”

Admitting very cheerfully how much science owes to each of those gentlemen, nevertheless the author “most emphatically” denies that they have made any discoveries at all. There is nothing new in the speculations, even of the most advanced of them; nothing which was not known and taught, in one form or another, thousands of years ago.

He does not say that these scientists “put forward their theories as their own discoveries, but they leave the fact to be implied, and the newspapers do the rest….The public, which has neither time nor the inclination to examine the facts, adopts the faith of the newspapers…and wonders what will come next!

…The supposed originators of such startling theories are assailed in the newspapers. Sometimes the obnoxious scientists undertake to defend themselves, but we cannot recall a single instance in which they have candidly said, ‘Gentlemen, be not angry with us; we are merely revamping stories which are nearly as old as the mountains.'”

This would have been the simple truth; “but even scientists or philosophers”, adds the author, “are not always proof against the weakness of encouraging any notion which they think may secure niches for them among the immortal Ones.””

H. P. Blavatsky

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