Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 2.djvu/334

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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

self driven to suppose God unconscious, to escape supposing him wicked. "This consideration," he says, "is decisive against the admission of consciousness in God." But stay!—if God has not the consciousness of what there is evil in the world, Hartmann argues, on the other hand, that he has the idea of it (the Vorstellung). Does not this idea suffice, as well as consciousness could (in our view they are exactly the same thing), to pledge the Divine responsibility?

 
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EVOLUTION AND THE SPECTROSCOPE.
By F. W. CLARKE.

MEN of science may be divided into two great classes—thinkers and observers. And, although both classes are often represented in one individual, the distinction between them is practically valid. For, in classifying mankind, no sharp boundaries can be drawn. The observer, on the one hand, contents himself with merely ascertaining facts, and rarely deduces more than the simplest and most obvious conclusions from them. He is in some measure an intellectual miser, who accumulates, but never uses. It is the thinker, however, who gives shape to science. His generalizations make true science possible. To him, a discovery amounts to something more than its mere self, and is valuable, like a choice seed, largely for what it may become. He ranges facts into series, gives each series its proper place in a science, clusters the sciences into groups, and, studying these groups with reference to each other, and to the grand problems with which thought is always busied, seeks to arrive at higher conceptions of the universe, and of the essential unity of all material things. At the present day this method of comparison has led to the announcement of the philosophy of evolution; a philosophy which places the physical world in a clearer light, and classifies a greater number of facts, than any other scheme that human earnestness and ingenuity ever devised. Surely it is worth while for us to study all great discoveries with reference to their bearings upon this philosophy.

Probably none of the many remarkable discoveries of the nineteenth century are more important or more striking than those achieved by means of the spectroscope. It is now less than fifteen years since this famous instrument was devised, and already it ranks in importance side by side with the telescope and the microscope. New fields of research have been opened, which, widening ever since, show as yet no signs of approaching limits. Chemical analysis has been simplified, many optical researches facilitated, and four new metals discovered. Our knowledge of the sun and stars has in some