isis unveiled: xii (forbidden ground)

“If it were certain that the limits of human experience could never be enlarged, then there might be some justice in Hume’s assumption that he was familiar with all that could happen under natural law, and some decent excuse for the contemptuous tone which marks all of Huxley’s allusions to spiritualism. But, as it is evident from writings of both these philosophers, that they are ignorant of the possibilities of psychological phenomena, too much caution cannot be used in according weight to their dogmatic assertions.

One would really suppose that a person who should permit himself such rudeness of criticism upon spiritualistic manifestations had qualified himself for the office of censor by an adequate course of study; but, in a letter addressed to the London Dialectical Society, Mr. Huxley, after saying that he had no time to devote to the subject, and that it does not interest him, makes the following confession, which shows us upon what slight foundation modern scientists sometimes form very positive opinions.

“The only case of spiritualism”, he writes, “I ever had the opportunity of examining into for myself, was as gross an imposture as ever came under my notice.”

What would this protoplasmic philosopher think of a spiritualist who, having had but one opportunity to look through a telescope, and upon that sole occasion had had some deception played upon him by a tricky assistant at the observatory, should forthwith denounce astronomy as a “degrading belief”?

This fact shows that scientists, as a rule, are useful only as collectors of physical facts; their generalizations from them are often feebler and far more illogical than those of their lay critics. And this also is why they misrepresent ancient doctrines.”

H. P. Blavatsky

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