…suppose Newton had gone to his grave with his formula, what would he have been without, what would Newton have remained with. And it was thus, through asking these sorts of questions, that I arrived at my Theory of Souls. What is a soul, I said to the Other,? You mean you expect me to have knowledge of the soul? I laughed and laughed, well what is a soul, what could a soul be, but all those things we might have said in life but didn’t say and refrained from saying. Newton, if he had not spoke his theory, if he had not spoke his truth, that would have been his soul. Though as it is, he had none (for he spoke the thing he had to say, gave up his soul, revealed the formula).

No, I will not say that is the soul, (even now I find myself unable to inform you of it). But it is what nourishes it, absolutely so — round and round they would refuse to repeat it, until they were spun into people who were utterly silent — silence would blanket every bit of mankind, each particle of Humatum would be listeners, — they would be all attention — ! —

Now says the Other, wouldn’t it be also desirable, if not even more desirable, if people did share what they knew — even if, as you claim, speaking robbed us of our true selves– but refrained from saying what they didn’t — refrained from saying what they only guessed at, or supposed, or opined, or “had heard somewhere”, or for some reason felt inclined to say; wouldn’t that be even more beneficial to the peace of the world, to the depth of the world, and maybe even for those people’s souls, if they stopped making assertions for which they had no certain proof? For we find pleasant and useful Newton’s formula and speaking can lead to understanding and to cooperation. Provided only that we do speak of what we do know and do not speak of what we do not.

It is not the view I outline in my treatise, I respond, but I will grant you there is a certain merit to that view — yes, intuitively and on the face of it, I would say it is clear that people should share what they do know and not share what they do not — or it would be, were it not that my very own treatise takes rather the opposite view of the matter, and that is result of a very long study.

Be that as it may, said the Other, what is it you mean by this term you’ve been using “Humatum”? Something quite simple, I replied. It’s true (as I have elsewhere proved) that animals are types of gasses, I suppose? — You have said so, yes. — And gasses are composed of molecules? — Yes — And humans are types of animals? — yes, again, the Other said, oh now I think I begin to see…. And molecules have the names of molecules? — Hold on, I’m not sure what you mean by that. — I mean something I think very simple: that there are sort of names appropriate to certain types of things and it is by those sorts of names you call those sorts of things. I mean: there are sorts of names appropriate to people and you call people by those names as opposed to the sorts of names you give to objects; you give cars certain types of names and planets somewhat different types, and this is why people say such things as “that’s a great name for a car” because that name is the exemplar or model of a certain name-type; and in the same way, there are names appropriate to molecules and those are the sorts of names we give to them. We don’t call molecules Larry or Jose or Mazda 2x or Return of The Dead, but helium and nitrogen and the like? — Yes, now I see that you’re quite correct. — And isn’t “Humaton” a name like that we would give to a molecule or at least suggestive of the science that deals with molecules and atoms? — Now I see, said the Other, yes of course.

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