Secretes of Nature

Saturday, September 6, 2008

"First of all, I consider that the secrets of Nature … are not spoken of, least every man should understand the…. As Socrates and Aristotle willeth, for he affirmeth in his book of Secrets, that hee is a breaker of the celestiall seale that maketh the secrets of Art and Nature common; adding moreover that many evils betide him that revealteth secretes…. In things proper, therefore, and in secretes, the common people do erre, and in this respect they are opposite to the learned…. Now the cause of this concealement among all wise men is the contempt and neglect of the secretes of wisedome by the vulgar sort, that knoweth not how to use those things which are most excellent. And if they do conceive any worthy thing, it is altogither by chance and fortune, & they do exceedingly abuse that their knowledge, to the great damage and hurt of many men, yea even of whole societies, so that he is worse than mad that publisheth any secret, unlesse he conceale it from the multitude, and in such wise deliver it, that even the studious and learned shall hardly understand it. This hath beene the course which wise men have observed from the beginning, who by many meanes have hidden the secrets of wisedome from the common people."

—Roger Bacon (c. 1212-94)