“It is a dogma of science that perpetual motion is impossible; it is another dogma, that the allegation that the Hermetists discovered the elixir of life, and that certain of them, by partaking of it, prolonged their existence far beyond the usual term, is a superstitious absurdity. And the claim that the baser metals have been transmuted into gold, and that the universal solvent was discovered, excites only contemptuous derision in a century which has crowned the edifice of philosophy with cope-stone of protoplasm.
The first is declared a physical impossibility; as much so, according to Babinet, the astronomer, as the “levitation of an object without contact”; the second, a physiological vagary begotten of a disordered mind; the third, a chemical absurdity.
Balfour Stewart says that while the man of science cannot assert that “he is intimately acquainted with all the forces of nature, and cannot prove that perpetual motion is impossible; for, in truth, he knows very little of these forces; he does think that he has entered into the spirit and design of nature, and therefore he denies at once the possibility of such a machine.”
If he has discovered the design of nature, he certainly has not the spirit. for he denies its existence in one sense; and denying spirit he prevents that perfect understanding of universal law which would redeem modern philosophy from its mortifying dilemmas and mistakes.
If Professor B. Stewart’s negation is founded upon no better analogy than that of his French contemporary, Babinet, he is in danger of a like humiliating catastrophe. The universe itself illustrates that actuality of perpetual motion; and the atomic theory, which has proved such a balm to the exhausted minds of our cosmic explorers, is based upon it.
The telescope searching through space, and the microscope probing the mysteries of the little world in a drop of water, reveal the same law in operation; and, as everything below is like everything above, who would presume to say that when the conservation of energy is better understood, and the two additional forces of the kabalists are added to the catalogue of orthodox science, it may not be discovered how to construct a machine which shall run without friction, and supply itself with energy in proportion to its wastes?”
H. P. Blavatsky