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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 24.djvu/800

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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

The antipodean graziers are wool-growers. Until lately, mutton was merely used as manure, and even now it is but a secondary product. The wool-crop improves year by year until the sheep is three or four years old; therefore, it is not slaughtered until this age is attained, and thus the sheep sent to England are similar to those of the country squire, and such as the English farmer could not send to market under eighteen pence per pound.

There is, however, one drawback; but I have tested it thoroughly, having supplied my own table during the last six months with no other mutton than that from New Zealand, and find it so trifling as to be imperceptible unless critically looked for. It is simply that, in thawing, a small quantity of the juice of the meat oozes out. This is more than compensated by the superior richness and fullness of flavor of the meat itself, which is much darker in color than young mutton.—Knowledge.

 

A DEFENSE OF MODERN THOUGHT.[1]
By WILLIAM D. LE SUEUR, B. A.

FROM the point of view of the present writer, there are good reasons for believing that a general readjustment of thought is now in progress, and that it is destined to go on until old forms of belief, inconsistent with a rational interpretation of the world, have been completely overthrown. This progressive readjustment is not a thing of yesterday; it is simply that gradual abandonment of the theological stand-point which has been taking place throughout the ages. As a modern philosopher has remarked, the very conception of miracle marks the beginnings of rationalism, seeing that it recognizes an established order of things, a certain "reign of law," with which only supernatural power can interfere. The progress beyond this point consists in an increasing perception of the universality of law, and an increasing disposition to be exacting as to the evidences of miracle. No candid person can read the history of modern times without arriving at the conclusion that the whole march of civilization illustrates, above everything else, this gradual change of intellectual stand-point. Man's power keeps pace ever with his knowledge of natural law and his recognition of the uniformity of its operations. What we see to-day is simply the anticipation by thousands of the conclusion to which all past discoveries and observations have been pointing, that the reign of law is and always has been absolute. This is really what "agnosticism," so called, means. It means that thinking men are tired of the inconsistencies of the old system of belief, and that they de-

  1. From a pamphlet reply to a lecture on "Agnosticism," delivered by the Lord Bishop of Ontario.