Letter | Published:

Science and Nature


IT is undeniable that the attitude towards Nature which inspired the author of NATURE'S motto, is implicitly repudiated by many of its readers. For that spiritual intimacy between Nature and man, which formed the substance of Wordsworth's poetry, is questioned and even rejected by a large body of investigators. To them Nature is the sphere of essentially impersonal energy and law, which are either absolutely indifferent or actively hostile to human ideals. Huxley, for example, regarded the ‘cosmic process’ as everywhere antithetic to ‘social progress,’ thus unconsciously destroying the continuity of evolution just where it becomes of supreme value to humanity; and in precisely the same spirit Mr. Bertrand Russell foresees the ultimate extinction, by natural agencies, of everything for which he himself bids us strive.

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