Is Life a Dream?

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<ul><li><p>Is Life a Dream?Author(s): Rudolph H. KlauderSource: The Scientific Monthly, Vol. 65, No. 3 (Sep., 1947), p. 266Published by: American Association for the Advancement of ScienceStable URL: .Accessed: 08/05/2014 08:40</p><p>Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms &amp; Conditions of Use, available at .</p><p> .JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range ofcontent in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new formsof scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact</p><p> .</p><p>American Association for the Advancement of Science is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve andextend access to The Scientific Monthly.</p><p> </p><p>This content downloaded from on Thu, 8 May 2014 08:40:41 AMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p></li><li><p>266 THE SCIENTIFIC MONTHLY </p><p>apply, we can in short order show that the subiect is talking nonsense. </p><p>DONALD B. CREECY, JR. Annapolis, Md. </p><p>IS LIFE A DREAM? </p><p>Far below the level of mind, where Mr. King finds it hard to imagine that the addition of life to matter-energy has not introduced something qualitatively different, we may detect the beginnings of the marvelous transformation that takes place when lifeless matter becomes alive. It is the trans- formation from passivity to activity, from indif- ference to interest; in short, with the birth of life comes also the birth of values. </p><p>What a living thing does is good or bad; and, if it does not do right, it ceases to live. Further- more, it evaluates its environment; it chooses what it will have, whether of matter or energy, and rejects the other. We may say that the amoeba has conduct; we could never say that of a stone. It has an object in life-to fill the world with amoebae-and it pursues that object. </p><p>We may even say that the "primordial proto- plasma globule" that first received the spark of life, immediately upon that endowment, began to seek truth. A change occurred in its environment. That change was of moment to it. It called for a reaction. Unless that reaction was correct, true to the meaning of the change, a wrong adjustment would be made. We possess the truth when we foresee consequences. </p><p>Since it would he only nonsense to speak of lifeless things in this way, it seems to me Mr. King is on firm ground; but, of course, the mechanists call for proof, and we haven't got it. Who can measure life? </p><p>RuDOLPH H. KLAUDER </p><p>Ocean City, N. J. </p><p>NOTA BENE </p><p>My deepest gratitude,for, and appreciation of, your interest in high-school students. Participation in the activities of the A.A.A.S. is a supreme joy and of the highest inspiration to a young person who is interested in science. </p><p>I attended the Richmond meeting of the Associa- tion in 1938 at the age of fifteen, upon the kind invitation of Dr. Herbert Zim, and became a member of the Association and a subscriber to THE SCIENTIFIC MONTHLY a few weeks later. I can assure you it was a great thrill and stimulus. </p><p>HERBERT SCHEWARZ, JR. New York City </p><p>TO A COPRINUS </p><p>ON ACCIDENTALLY KICKING ONE OVER (With Apologies to Robert Burns) </p><p>Wee modest flower of the dung Whose virtues yet remain unsung- Like all things living, old or7 young, Or low or high, Thou art from Nature's bosom sprung To live and die. </p><p>In every alley, road, or lane Where equin-e excrement has lain Thou rearest up thy shaggy mane- A noble sight To charm the scientific brain With rare delight. </p><p>Let none condemn thy lo00 degree Or habits of coprophily; For were it not for such as thee The myriad dead Would fill the earth from sea to sea Still undccayed. </p><p>If Psalliota's lustrous fame Or Amnanita's evil name Are equally beyond thy claim- The fates have set A part for thee a higher aim And nobler yet. </p><p>For thou hast yielded mysteries To scientists fromi learned Fries To Buller, Kniep, and Vandendries, Whose brains and wills Sought laws of sex and spore release Behind thy gills. </p><p>Thou hast made dry and scarious Professors joy-delirious Who found that sexes various Existed in Coprinus fimetarius Instead of twin. </p><p>0 fungus of the shaggy tress, Of gills that slowly deliquesce- When Man has sought eternal cesse Thou wilt remiiain To liquidate the dreary mess Left in his train. </p><p>THORVALDUR JOHNSON </p><p>Winnipeg, Man. Canada </p><p>This content downloaded from on Thu, 8 May 2014 08:40:41 AMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p><p>Article Contentsp. 266</p><p>Issue Table of ContentsThe Scientific Monthly, Vol. 65, No. 3 (Sep., 1947), pp. 181-268The Fish and Wildlife Service [pp. 181-198]That More People May Live Better [pp. 199-206]Progress in the Transformation of Energy [pp. 207-212]Trends of Vocational Achievement in Mental Disorder [pp. 213-216]Problems in Map Editing [pp. 217-226]Criminal Law for Atomic Scientists [pp. 227-230]The Research Council on Problems of Alcohol [pp. 231-233]Arranging Meetings of the A.A.A.S. [pp. 234-240]Nor Gauge the Fruit [pp. 240]The Cats-To-Clover Chain [pp. 241-242]Korean Scientists Organize [pp. 243-245]Populational Characteristics of American Servicemen in World War II [pp. 246-252]Book ReviewsToward Cosmic Energy [pp. 253-254]Easy Writing's Curst Hard Reading [pp. 254]The Literature of Propaganda [pp. 254]Progress and Poverty [pp. 255-256]Naturalists Observe-- [pp. 256-258]Gladly Wolde He Lerne, and Gladly Teche [pp. 258-259]Remembrance of Things Past [pp. 259]Most Punctual Miracle [pp. 259-261]From Murmansk to Vladivostok [pp. 261]Time Was of the Essence [pp. 261-262]Wartime Necessity [pp. 262-263]Rivaling the Silkworm [pp. 263-264]</p><p>Comments and CriticismsOn the Nature of Entities [pp. 265-266]Is Life a Dream? [pp. 266]Nota Bene [pp. 266]To a Coprinus [pp. 266]</p><p>Technological Notes [pp. 267]The Brownstone Tower [pp. 268]</p></li></ul>


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