Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 81.djvu/95
A SCIENTIFIC EXPLANATION OF LIFE
repute in many quarters. But Cinderella, to paraphrase Huxley's apt characterization of science, modestly conscious of her ignorance in high matters, lights the fire, sweeps the house and provides the dinner, and in reward for this, is called a base creature, devoted to low and material interests. But this charge shows nothing so well as ignorance of her ways, for in her garret she has visions of the order which pervades the seeming disorder of the world, visions of the great drama of life, with its full share of pity, terror and also of abundant goodness and beauty. She has at her command, knowledge which she is ever ready to place at the service of those who will use it, and she knows enough about ethics to foretell social disorganization from immorality with the same assurance with which she predicts bodily diseases from physical trespasses. No brighter light than hers is set for mortals in all the firmament, and by its light, dim though it be at times, we must walk, devoutly thankful for the few rays of insight that now and again illumine the path.