IN his very interesting address on "Science and Religion," before a recent London gathering, Mr. Arthur Balfour spoke of the relation of physical science to human conditions in terms which will provoke much thought. He is reported as saying that while "he could not conceive of human society permanently deprived of the religious element, he looked to [physical] science, more than to anything else, for the amelioration of the human lot in the future."

When one thinks of the tremendous gain in the command and control of natural resources, of the possessions and capabilities of life which have been secured to the race since the days of Francis Bacon, he may be led to think that the ex-Premier's anticipation is abundantly warranted,—that the hope of humanity does indeed lie in the direction of that investigation, invention, and adjustment which is chronicling ever more marvelous achievements. It is impossible, however, to meditate upon this subject without speedily being brought face to face with the question whether, after all, these modern wonders in the way of the discovery and utilization of so-called natural resources and laws have really hastened or hindered humanity's ethical advance. As one realizes that the supreme end of life is the attainment of character, racial quality, i.e., spiritual dominion, he can but give place to doubt as to the real value, the bettering effects upon thought and life-habit, of many of those things which have been classed as the most significant waymarks of modern science.

July 18, 1908

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