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194. Now, if we regard the dissipation of energy which is constantly going on, we are at first sight forcibly struck with the apparently wasteful character of the arrangements of the visible universe. All but a very small portion of the sun's heat goes day by day into what we call empty space, and it is only this very small remainder which can be made use of by the various planets for purposes of their own. Could anything be more perplexing than this seemingly prodigal expenditure of the very life and essence of our system? That all but a petty fraction of this vast store of high-class energy should be doing nothing but travelling outwards in space at the rate of 188,000 miles per second is hardly conceivable, especially when the result of it is the inevitable destruction of the visible universe, unless we imagine this to be infinite, and so capable of endless degra dation.
195. If, however, we continue to dwell upon this astounding phenomenon, we begin to perceive that we are not entitled to assert that this luminous energy does nothing but continue to travel outwards. It is perhaps too much to say that Struve's speculations prove an ethereal absorption, but they must be taken in connection with other considerations. We have already maintained (Art. 151), that we cannot regard the ether as a perfect fluid. Now it is not easy to suppose that in such a substance all vibratory motion should pass outwards without in the smallest degree becoming absorbed or changing its type.
We are prepared doubtless to expect a great difference between the ether and visible matter in this respect, but can hardly imagine that it is absolutely
free from the capacity of altering the type of the energy which passes through it. Such a hypothesis appears to us to violate the principle of continuity.
196. But we may go even further than luminiferous vibrations which take their rise chiefly at the surfaces of bodies, and extend our speculations into the interior of substances, since the law of gravitation assures us that any displacement which takes place in the very heart of the earth will be felt throughout the universe, and we may even imagine that the same thing will hold true of those molecular motions (Art. 56) which accompany thought. For every thought we think is accompanied by a displacement and motion of the particles of the brain, and we may imagine that somehow these motions are propagated throughout the universe. Views of this nature were long ago entertained by Babbage, and they have since commended themselves to several men of science, and amongst others to Jevons. Mr. Babbage,' says this author,1 'has pointed out that if we had power to follow and detect the minutest effects of any disturbance, each particle of existing matter must be a register of all that has happened.'
197. But again, we are compelled to imagine (Art. 215) that what we see has originated in the unseen, and in using this term, we desire to go back even further than the ether, which, according to one hypothesis (Art. 152), has given rise to the visible order of things. And again, we must resort to the unseen not only for the origin of the molecules of the visible universe, but also for an explanation of the forces which animate these molecules (Art. 150), and not
1 Principles of Science, vol. ii. p. 455.
only so, but we are always carried back from one order of the unseen to another (Art. 220). Now if this be the case-if THE UNIVERSE be constructed with successive orders of this description connected with one another-it is manifest that no event whatever, whether we regard its antecedent or its consequent, can possibly be confined to one order only, but must spread throughout THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE.
198. To conclude: we are thus led to believe that there exists now an invisible order of things intimately connected with the present, and capable of acting energetically upon it-for, in truth, the energy of the present system is to be looked upon as originally derived from the invisible universe, while the forces which give rise to transmutations of energy probably take their origin in the same region.
And it appears to us to be more natural to imagine that a universe of this nature, which we have reason to think exists, and is connected by bonds of energy with the visible universe, is also capable of receiving energy from it, and of transforming the energy so received. In fine, it appears to us less likely that by far the larger portion of the high-class energy of the present universe is travelling outwards into space with an immense velocity, than that it is being gradually transferred into an invisible order of things. This last conclusion is, however, more of the nature of a speculation, and is by no means essential to our argument.
199. If we now turn to thought, we find (Art: 59) that, inasmuch as it affects the substance of the present visible universe, it produces a material organ of memory. But the motions which accompany thought must originate in and also affect the invisible
order of things, because in the first place the forces which cause those motions are derived from the unseen, and because, secondly, the motions themselves must act upon the unseen, and thus it follows, that Thought conceived to affect the matter of another universe simultaneously with this may explain a future state' (see Anagram, Nature, October 15, 1874).
200. This idea, however, requires further development and explanation. Let us therefore begin by supposing that we possess a frame, or the rudiments of a frame, connecting us with the invisible universe, which we may call the soul.
Now each thought we think is accompanied by certain molecular motions and displacements in the brain, and parts of these, let us allow, are in some way stored up in that organ, so as to produce what may be termed our material or physical memory. Other parts of these motions are, however, communicated to the invisible body, and are there stored up, forming a memory which may be made use of when that body is free to exercise its functions.
201. Again, one of the arguments (Art. 84) which proves the existence of the invisible universe, demands that it shall be full of energy when the present universe is defunct. We can therefore very well imagine that after death, when the soul is free to exercise its functions, it may be replete with energy, and have eminently the power of action in the present, retaining also, as we have shown above, a hold upon the past, inasmuch as the memory of past events has been stored up in it, and thus preserving the two essential requisites (Art. 61) of a continuous intelligent existence.
202. The conception of an unseen universe is not a new one, even among men of science. The deservedly
famous Dr. Thomas Young has the following passage in his lectures on Natural Philosophy :-' Besides this porosity, there is still room for the supposition, that even the ultimate particles of matter may be permeable to the causes of attractions of various kinds, especially if those causes are immaterial: nor is there anything in the unprejudiced study of physical philosophy that can induce us to doubt the existence of immaterial substances; on the contrary, we see analogies that lead us almost directly to such an opinion. The electrical fluid is supposed to be essentially different from common matter; the general medium of light and heat, according to some, or the principle of caloric, according to others, is equally distinct from it. We see forms of matter, differing in subtility and mobility, under the names of solids, liquids, and gases; above these are the semi-material existences, which produce the phenomena of electricity and magnetism, and either caloric or a universal ether. Higher still, perhaps, are the causes of gravitation, and the immediate agents in attractions of all kinds, which exhibit some phenomena apparently still more remote from all that is compatible with material bodies. And of these different orders of beings, the more refined and immaterial appear to pervade freely the grosser. It seems therefore natural to believe that the analogy may be continued still further, until it rises into existences absolutely immaterial and spiritual. We know not but that thousands of spiritual worlds may exist unseen for ever by human eyes; nor have we any reason to suppose that even the presence of matter, in a given sarily excludes these existences from it.
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