A YOUNG SCIENTIST'S LESSON PROBLEM

In the present state of human advancement, when scarcely a week passes without a new "wonderful" discovery being announced, it is the ambition of the average man to know everything. As there is so much to keep in touch with, he is forced to adopt the cramming habit, devouring the main features of his morning paper as he swallows his breakfast and rides to his place of business, and devoting most of his evenings and Sundays to scanning the magazines and cumulative weeklies, that he may be posted on all the happenings of the day. Therefore, when you meet him, he is ready to discuss in extenso the latest exploit to reach the North Pole in an airship, or the chemical production of "life" from beef-juice, or the substitution of the spiral theory for the nebular hypothesis. He has not time to look studiously into the topics; but in his untroubled superficiality is contented with his smattering.

The habit of forming decided opinions upon subjects of which he knows little is a natural consequent of this method of acquiring knowledge; for the human being would lose his chief enjoyment if he could not have opinions and express them—he must have opinions, with or without wisdom. Thus, when a new system of thought comes up, the average man gets a crammed view of it, generally from somebody or some source that knows no more than he, and presto! he thinks he knows all about it.

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Poem
"BE STILL, AND KNOW"
May 25, 1907
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