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Крукс, Уильям

Дата рождения: 17. Июнь 1832
Дата смерти: 4. Апрель 1919

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Сэр Уильям Крукс — английский химик и физик, член и президент Лондонского Королевского общества, от которого он в 1875 году получил Королевскую золотую медаль. В числе других его наград — медали от Французской академии наук , Дэви и медаль Копли . В 1897 году королева Виктория пожаловала ему рыцарское звание. В 1910 году он получил «Орден заслуг». Крукс вошел в историю как человек, открывший таллий и впервые получивший гелий в лабораторных условиях.

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Цитаты Крукс, Уильям

„I have nothing to retract. I adhere to my already published statements.“

—  William Crookes
Context: No incident in my scientific career is more widely known than the part I took many years ago in certain psychic researches. Thirty years have passed since I published an account of experiments tending to show that outside our scientific knowledge there exists a Force exercised by intelligence differing from the ordinary intelligence common to mortals. This fact in my life is, of course, well understood by those who honored me with the invitation to become your president. Perhaps among my audience some may feel curious as to whether I shall speak out or be silent. I elect to speak, although briefly. … To ignore the subject would be an act of cowardice — an act of cowardice I feel no temptation to commit. To stop short in any research that bids fair to widen the gates of knowledge, to recoil from fear of difficulty or adverse criticism, is to bring reproach on science. There is nothing for the investigator to do but to go straight on; "to explore up and down, inch by inch, with the taper his reason; "to follow the light wherever it may lead, even should it at times resemble a will-o'-the-wisp. I have nothing to retract. I adhere to my already published statements. Indeed, I might add much thereto. I regret only a certain crudity in those early expositions which, no doubt justly, militated against their acceptance by the scientific world. My own knowledge at that time scarcely extended beyond the fact that certain phenomena new to science had assuredly occurred, and were attested by my own sober senses and, better still, by automatic record. I was like some two-dimensional being who might stand at the singular point of a Riemann's surface, and thus find himself in infinitesimal and inexplicable contact with a plane of existence not his own. I think I see a little farther now. I have glimpses of something like coherence among the strange elusive phenomena; of something like continuity between those unexplained forces and laws already known. This advance is largely due to the labors of another association, of which I have also this year the honor to be president — the Society for Psychical Research. And were I now introducing for the first time these inquiries to the world of science I should choose a starting point different from that of old. It would be well to begin with telepathy; with the fundamental law, as I believe it to be, that thoughts and images may be transferred from one mind to another without the agency of the recognized organs of sense — that knowledge may enter the human mind without being communicated in any hitherto known or recognized ways.

„The human body, which long experience and habit have taught us to consider in its highest development as the perfection of beauty and grace — "formed in the image of God " — is entirely conditioned by the strength of gravitation on this globe.“

—  William Crookes
Context: The human creature represents the most perfect thinking and acting machine yet evolved on this earth, developing through countless ages in strict harmony with the surrounding conditions of temperature, atmosphere, light, and gravitation. The profound modifications in the human frame, which any important alteration in either of these factors would occasion, are strangely unconsidered. It is true there have been questionings as to the effects that might be occasioned by changes in temperature and atmospheric composition, but possible variations in gravitation seem almost to have escaped notice. The human body, which long experience and habit have taught us to consider in its highest development as the perfection of beauty and grace — "formed in the image of God " — is entirely conditioned by the strength of gravitation on this globe. So far as has been possible to ascertain, the intensity of gravity has not varied appreciably within those geologic ages covering the existence of animated thinking beings.

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„Steadily, unflinchingly, we strive to pierce the inmost heart of Nature, from what she is to reconstruct what she has been, and to prophesy what she yet shall be. Veil after veil we have lifted, and her face grows more beautiful, august, and wonderful with every barrier that is withdrawn.“

—  William Crookes
Context: In old Egyptian days a well known inscription was carved over the portal of the temple of Isis: "I am whatever hath been, is, or ever will be; and my veil no man hath yet lifted." Not thus do modern seekers after truth confront nature — the word that stands for the baffling mysteries of the universe. Steadily, unflinchingly, we strive to pierce the inmost heart of Nature, from what she is to reconstruct what she has been, and to prophesy what she yet shall be. Veil after veil we have lifted, and her face grows more beautiful, august, and wonderful with every barrier that is withdrawn.

„All the phenomena of the universe are presumably in some way continuous; and certain facts, plucked as it were from the very heart of nature, are likely to be of use in our gradual discovery of facts which lie deeper still.“

—  William Crookes
Context: Let me specially apply this general conception of the impossibility of predicting what secrets the universe may still hold, what agencies undivined may habitually be at work around us. Telepathy, the transmission of thought and images directly from one mind to another without the agency of the recognized organs of sense, is a conception new and strange to science. To judge from the comparative slowness with which the accumulated evidence of our society penetrates the scientific world, it is, I think, a conception even scientifically repulsive to many minds. We have supplied striking experimental evidence; but few have been found to repeat our experiments, We have offered good evidence in the observation of spontaneous cases, — as apparitions at the moment of death and the like, — but this "evidence has failed to impress the scientific world in the same way as evidence less careful and less coherent has often done before. Our evidence is not confronted and refuted; it is shirked and evaded as though there were some great a priori improbability which absolved the world of science from considering it. I at least see no a priori improbability whatever. Our alleged facts might be true in all kinds of ways without contradicting any truth already known. I will dwell now on only one possible line of explanation, — not that I see any way of elucidating all the new phenomena I regard as genuine, but because it seems probable I may shed a light on some of those phenomena. All the phenomena of the universe are presumably in some way continuous; and certain facts, plucked as it were from the very heart of nature, are likely to be of use in our gradual discovery of facts which lie deeper still.

„A view of the constitution of matter which recommended itself to Faraday as preferable to the one ordinarily held appears to me to be exactly the view I endeavor to picture as the constitution of spiritual beings. Centers of intellect, will, energy, and power, each mutually penetrable, while at the same time permeating what we call space, but each center retaining its own individuality, persistence of self, and memory.“

—  William Crookes
Context: A view of the constitution of matter which recommended itself to Faraday as preferable to the one ordinarily held appears to me to be exactly the view I endeavor to picture as the constitution of spiritual beings. Centers of intellect, will, energy, and power, each mutually penetrable, while at the same time permeating what we call space, but each center retaining its own individuality, persistence of self, and memory. Whether these intelligent centers of the various spiritual forces which in their aggregate go to make up man's character or karma are also associated in any way with the forms of energy which, centered, form the material atom — whether these spiritual entities are material, not in the crude, gross sense of Lucretius, but material as sublimated through the piercing intellect of Faraday — is one of those mysteries which to us mortals will perhaps ever remain an unsolved problem. My next speculation is more difficult, and is addressed to those who not only take too terrestrial a view, but who deny the plausibility — nay, the possibility — of the existence of an unseen world at all. I reply we are demonstrably standing on the brink, at any rate, of one unseen world. I do not here speak of a spiritual or immaterial world. I speak of the world of the infinitely little, which must be still called a material world, although matter as therein existing or perceptible is something which our limited faculties do not enable us to conceive. It is the world — I do not say of molecular forces as opposed to molar, but of forces whose action lies mainly outside the limit of human perception, as opposed to forces evident to the gross perception of human organisms. I hardly know how to make clear to myself or to you the difference in the apparent laws of the universe which would follow upon a mere difference of bulk in the observer. Such an observer I must needs imagine as best I can.

„Telepathy, the transmission of thought and images directly from one mind to another without the agency of the recognized organs of sense, is a conception new and strange to science.“

—  William Crookes
Context: Let me specially apply this general conception of the impossibility of predicting what secrets the universe may still hold, what agencies undivined may habitually be at work around us. Telepathy, the transmission of thought and images directly from one mind to another without the agency of the recognized organs of sense, is a conception new and strange to science. To judge from the comparative slowness with which the accumulated evidence of our society penetrates the scientific world, it is, I think, a conception even scientifically repulsive to many minds. We have supplied striking experimental evidence; but few have been found to repeat our experiments, We have offered good evidence in the observation of spontaneous cases, — as apparitions at the moment of death and the like, — but this "evidence has failed to impress the scientific world in the same way as evidence less careful and less coherent has often done before. Our evidence is not confronted and refuted; it is shirked and evaded as though there were some great a priori improbability which absolved the world of science from considering it. I at least see no a priori improbability whatever. Our alleged facts might be true in all kinds of ways without contradicting any truth already known. I will dwell now on only one possible line of explanation, — not that I see any way of elucidating all the new phenomena I regard as genuine, but because it seems probable I may shed a light on some of those phenomena. All the phenomena of the universe are presumably in some way continuous; and certain facts, plucked as it were from the very heart of nature, are likely to be of use in our gradual discovery of facts which lie deeper still.

„In every form of research there must be a beginning. We own to much that is tentative, much that may turn out erroneous. But it is thus, and thus only, that each science in turn takes its stand. I venture to assert that both in actual careful record of new and important facts, and in suggestiveness, our society's work and publications will form no unworthy preface to a profounder science both of man, of nature, and of "worlds not realized" than this planet has yet known.“

—  William Crookes
Context: I see no good reason why any man of scientific mind should shut his eyes to our work or deliberately stand aloof from it. Our Proceedings are, of course, not exactly parallel to the Proceedings of a society dealing with a long-established branch of science. In every form of research there must be a beginning. We own to much that is tentative, much that may turn out erroneous. But it is thus, and thus only, that each science in turn takes its stand. I venture to assert that both in actual careful record of new and important facts, and in suggestiveness, our society's work and publications will form no unworthy preface to a profounder science both of man, of nature, and of "worlds not realized" than this planet has yet known.

„It has been said that "Nothing worth the proving can be proved, nor yet disproved."“

—  William Crookes
Context: It has been said that "Nothing worth the proving can be proved, nor yet disproved." True though this may have been in the past, it is true no longer. The science of our century has forged weapons of observation and analysis by which the veriest tyro may profit. Science has trained and fashioned the average mind into habits of exactitude and disciplined perception, and in so doing has fortified itself for tasks higher, wider, and incomparably more wonderful than even the wisest among our ancestors imagined. Like the souls in Plato's myth that follow the chariot of Zeus, it has ascended to a point of vision far above the earth. It is henceforth open to science to transcend all we now think we know of matter and to gain new glimpses of a profounder scheme of Cosmic law.

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„It is curious that the popular conceptions of evil and malignant beings are of the type that would be produced by increased gravitation“

—  William Crookes
Context: It is curious that the popular conceptions of evil and malignant beings are of the type that would be produced by increased gravitation — toads, reptiles, and noisome creeping things — while the arch fiend himself is represented as perhaps the ultimate form which could be assumed by a thinking brain and its necessary machinery were the power of gravitation to be increased to the highest point compatible with existence — a serpent crawling along the ground. On the other hand, our highest types of beauty are those which would be common under decreased gravitation. The "daughter of the gods, divinely tall," and the leaping athlete, please us by the slight triumph over the earthward pull which their stature or spring implies.

„It can scarcely be denied that the fundamental phenomena which first led mankind into chemical inquiries are those of combustion.“

—  William Crookes
Context: It can scarcely be denied that the fundamental phenomena which first led mankind into chemical inquiries are those of combustion. But, as we have just seen, minimized beings would be unable to produce fire at will, except by certain chemical reactions, and would have little opportunity of examining its nature. They might occasionally witness forest fires, volcanic eruptions, etc.; but such grand and catastrophic phenomena, though serving to reveal to our supposed Lilliputians the existence of combustion, would be ill suited for quiet investigation into its conditions and products. Moreover, considering the impossibility they would experience of pouring water from one test tube to another, the ordinary operations of analytical chemistry and of all manipulations depending on the use of the pneumatic trough would remain forever a sealed book.

„I will point out a curious, inveterate, and widespread illusion — the illusion that our earthly bodies are a kind of norm of humanity, so that ethereal bodies, if such there be, must correspond to them in shape and size.“

—  William Crookes
Context: I will point out a curious, inveterate, and widespread illusion — the illusion that our earthly bodies are a kind of norm of humanity, so that ethereal bodies, if such there be, must correspond to them in shape and size. When we take a physical view of a human being in his highest form of development, he is seen to consist essentially of a thinking brain, the brain itself, among its manifold functions, being a transformer whereby intelligent will power is enabled to react on matter. To communicate with the external world, the brain requires organs by which it can be transported from place to place, and other organs by means of which energy is supplied to replace that expended in the exercise of its own special functions.

„I shall try to utilize this temper of mind today by clearing away, so far as I can, certain presuppositions, on one side or on the other, which seem to me to depend upon a too hasty assumption that we know more about the universe than as yet we really can know.“

—  William Crookes
Context: I am not disposed to bewail the limitations imposed by human ignorance. On the contrary, I feel ignorance is a healthful stimulant; and my enforced conviction that neither I nor anyone can possibly lay down beforehand what does not exist in the universe, or even what is not going on all round us everyday of our lives, leaves me with a cheerful hope that something very new and very arresting may turn up anywhere at any minute. … I shall try to utilize this temper of mind today by clearing away, so far as I can, certain presuppositions, on one side or on the other, which seem to me to depend upon a too hasty assumption that we know more about the universe than as yet we really can know.

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„It is equally difficult, hemmed in and bound round as we are by materialistic ideas, to think of intelligence, thought, and will existing without form or matter and untrammeled by gravitation or space.“

—  William Crookes
Context: Popular imagination presupposes spiritual beings to be utterly independent of gravitation, while retaining shapes and proportions which gravitation originally determined, and only gravitation seems likely to maintain. When and if spiritual beings make themselves visible either to our bodily eyes or to our inward vision, their object would be thwarted were they not to appear in a recognizable form; so that their appearance would take the shape of the body and clothing to which we have been accustomed. Materiality, form, and space, I am constrained to believe, are temporary conditions of our present existence. It is difficult to conceive the idea of a spiritual being having a body like ours, conditioned by the exact gravitating force exerted by the earth, and with organs which presuppose the need for food and necessity for the removal of waste products. It is equally difficult, hemmed in and bound round as we are by materialistic ideas, to think of intelligence, thought, and will existing without form or matter and untrammeled by gravitation or space.

„Most students of nature sooner or later pass through a process of writing off a large percentage of their supposed capital of knowledge as a merely illusory asset. As we trace more accurately certain familiar sequences of phenomena we begin to realize how closely these sequences, or laws, as we call them, are hemmed round by still other laws of which we can form no notion.“

—  William Crookes
Context: The most helpful quality which has aided me in psychical problems and has made me lucky in physical discoveries (sometimes of rather unexpected kinds) has simply been my knowledge — my vital knowledge, if I may so term it — of my own ignorance. Most students of nature sooner or later pass through a process of writing off a large percentage of their supposed capital of knowledge as a merely illusory asset. As we trace more accurately certain familiar sequences of phenomena we begin to realize how closely these sequences, or laws, as we call them, are hemmed round by still other laws of which we can form no notion. With myself this writing off of illusory assets has gone rather far and the cobweb of supposed knowledge has been pinched (as some one has phrased) into a particularly small pill.

„May not our boasted knowledge be simply conditioned by accidental environments, and thus be liable to a large element of subjectivity hitherto unsuspected and scarcely possible to eliminate?“

—  William Crookes
Context: If a possible — nay, reasonable — variation in only one of the forces conditioning the human race, that of gravitation, could so modify our outward form, appearance, and proportions as to make us to all intents and purposes a different race of beings; if mere differences of size can cause some of the most simple facts in chemistry and physics to take so widely different a guise; if beings microscopically small and prodigiously large would simply as such be subject to the hallucinations I have pointed out, and to others I might enlarge upon, is it not possible that we, in turn, though occupying, as it seems to us, the golden mean, may also by the mere virtue of our size and weight fall into misinterpretations of phenomena from which we should escape were we or the globe we inhabit either larger or smaller, heavier or lighter? May not our boasted knowledge be simply conditioned by accidental environments, and thus be liable to a large element of subjectivity hitherto unsuspected and scarcely possible to eliminate?

„No incident in my scientific career is more widely known than the part I took many years ago in certain psychic researches. Thirty years have passed since I published an account of experiments tending to show that outside our scientific knowledge there exists a Force exercised by intelligence differing from the ordinary intelligence common to mortals“

—  William Crookes
Context: No incident in my scientific career is more widely known than the part I took many years ago in certain psychic researches. Thirty years have passed since I published an account of experiments tending to show that outside our scientific knowledge there exists a Force exercised by intelligence differing from the ordinary intelligence common to mortals. This fact in my life is, of course, well understood by those who honored me with the invitation to become your president. Perhaps among my audience some may feel curious as to whether I shall speak out or be silent. I elect to speak, although briefly. … To ignore the subject would be an act of cowardice — an act of cowardice I feel no temptation to commit. To stop short in any research that bids fair to widen the gates of knowledge, to recoil from fear of difficulty or adverse criticism, is to bring reproach on science. There is nothing for the investigator to do but to go straight on; "to explore up and down, inch by inch, with the taper his reason; "to follow the light wherever it may lead, even should it at times resemble a will-o'-the-wisp. I have nothing to retract. I adhere to my already published statements. Indeed, I might add much thereto. I regret only a certain crudity in those early expositions which, no doubt justly, militated against their acceptance by the scientific world. My own knowledge at that time scarcely extended beyond the fact that certain phenomena new to science had assuredly occurred, and were attested by my own sober senses and, better still, by automatic record. I was like some two-dimensional being who might stand at the singular point of a Riemann's surface, and thus find himself in infinitesimal and inexplicable contact with a plane of existence not his own. I think I see a little farther now. I have glimpses of something like coherence among the strange elusive phenomena; of something like continuity between those unexplained forces and laws already known. This advance is largely due to the labors of another association, of which I have also this year the honor to be president — the Society for Psychical Research. And were I now introducing for the first time these inquiries to the world of science I should choose a starting point different from that of old. It would be well to begin with telepathy; with the fundamental law, as I believe it to be, that thoughts and images may be transferred from one mind to another without the agency of the recognized organs of sense — that knowledge may enter the human mind without being communicated in any hitherto known or recognized ways.

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