Excerpt from book: n SCIENTIFIC AND PSEUDO-SCIENTIFIC REALISM  Next to undue precipitation in anticipating the results of pending investigations, the intellectual sin which is commonest and most hurtful to those who devote themselves to the increase of knowledge is the omission to profit by the experience of their predecessors recorded in the history of science and philosophy. It is true that, at the present day, there is more excuse than at any former time for such neglect. No small labour is needed to raise one's self to the level of the acquisitions already made ; and able men, who have achieved thus much, know that, if they devote themselves body and soul to the increase of their store, and avoid looking back, with as much care as if the injunction laid on Lot and his family were binding upon them, such devotion is sure to be richly repaid by the joys of the discoverer andthe solace of fame, if not by rewards of a less elevated character. So, following the advice of Francis Bacon, we refuse inter mortuos qucerere vivum ; we leave the past to bury its dead, and ignore our intellectual ancestry. Nor are we content with that. We follow the evil example set us, not only by Bacon but by almost all the men of the Renaissance, in pouring scorn upon the work of our immediate spiritual forefathers, the schoolmen of the Middle Ages. It is accepted as a truth which is indisputable, that, for seven or eight centuries, a long succession of able men?some of them of transcendent acuteness and encyclopaedic knowledge? devoted laborious lives to the grave discussion of mere frivolities and the arduous pursuit of intellectual will-o'-the-wisps. To say nothing of a little modesty, a little impartial pondering over personal experience might suggest a doubt as to the adequacy of this short and easy...
|Book:||Science And Christian Tradition|
|Author:||Thomas Henry Huxley|
|Publisher:||General Books LLC|
|Number of Pages:||102|
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