The Vegetable Spirit, By Isaac Newton Essay

1861 Words Dec 19th, 2016 8 Pages
Vegetable Spirit:
The “vegetable spirit” was a concept introduced by Isaac Newton who was an active physicist in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. To Newton, the vegetable spirit was a vital alchemical principle that explained cohesion and surpassed the realm of vulgar mechanics. He thought the Light of Genesis could be explained by the vegetable spirit and its fermental virtues because it was the vital ether in the world and God’s agent on Earth. Newton’s vegetable spirit represents the struggle between science and religion within our class. Ultimately, Newton thought the vegetable spirit rectified the growing division between science and religion, would eliminate atheism, and lead alchemists and laymen alike to (T)ruth. Mesmerism:
Mesmerism was the blanket phrase ascribed to the work and theories of Franz Anton Mesmer in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. While many though science had fully permeated society in developed countries, mesmerism proved people still held magical practices in a place of relative respect. Mesmer was a doctor who believed in animal magnetism, or an invisible force/fluid that could lead to healing often though the method of rubbing one’s hands over a patient. For Mesmer, he saw no difference between animal magnetism, electricity, or gravity, yet most elites did not take his work seriously. Mesmerism embodies the religious and social conditions in a society which distinguish “real” and “fake” science as well…

Related Documents