Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 16


page 47


In regard to the constitution of matter, the neuclus of it as it were which as yet no power of the imagination can enable us to conceive of as absent therefrom, I will here express an idea which just occurs to me, and enables us, I think, to remove a great part of that difficulty we now experience in forming a conception of force without a material, a solid something as it were, to give body to it.

Taking the fruitful idea of the similarity of world systems to chemical compounds as regards the motions involved; and the similarity again in this respect of the structure of these compounds to that of our so termed elementary molecules as manifested to us by chemical researches; I would suppose that each molecule itself is composed of a system of entities, every one of which has a motion of its own; these subdivisions of the hypothetical elementary molecule I again imagine to be in their turn divided, and that each further subdivision of it has a proper inter-motion of its own, and so on ad infinitum.

Thus I am able to conceive of a maximum, almost an infinity of force, with a minimum, or an infinitely little of what we at present must think of as a solid.

Thus if we must conceive of a solid at all, that is of something without inter-motion, we have it as a something we may never hope to find, a point as it were, ever receding as we attempt to approach it.

We can look upon matter practically as force infinitely intervolved, solid congeries of force. By such conceptions I think we are raised, besides, to form truer ideas of what we term matter than we can now; and so we are put on the way to consider what I believe is correct, that this world is more of a spirit-world than we now hold it to be; that it has an infinitely higher status than we now believe it to have; and that it has a nearer bond of union with God than a lifeless motionless inert mass can be supposed by us to have.