Agassiz, Louis – Essay on Classification – If we can prove premeditation prior to the act of creation, we have done once and for ever with the desolate theory of materialism
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
ESSAY ON CLASSIFICATION By LOUIS AGASSIZ
I confess that this question as to the nature and foundation of our scientific classifications appears to me to have the deepest importance, an importance far greater indeed than is usually attached to it.
If it can be proved that man has not invented, but only traced this systematic arrangement in nature, that these relations and proportions which exist throughout the animal and vegetable world have an intellectual, and ideal connection in the mind of the Creator, that this plan of creation, which so commends itself to our highest wisdom, has not grown out of the necessary action of physical laws, but was the free conception of the Almighty Intellect, matured in his thought, before it was manifested in tangible external forms — if, in short, we can prove premeditation prior to the act of creation, we have done once and for ever with the desolate theory which refers us to the laws of matter as accounting for all the wonders of the universe and leaves us with no God but the monotonous, unvarying action of physical forces, binding all things to their inevitable destiny.
I think our science has now reached that degree of advancement in which we may venture upon such an investigation.