THEOSOPHY, Vol. 89, Issue 3, March/April 2001
(Pages 129-130; Size: 5K)
THOUGHT IN THE AMOEBA?
Drawn from "Kosmic Mind," by H. P. Blavatsky
OCCULTISM tells us that every atom, like the monad, is a little universe in itself; and that every organ and cell in the body is endowed with a brain of its own, with memory, therefore, experience and discriminative powers. The idea of Universal Life composed of individual atomic lives is one of the oldest teachings of esoteric philosophy ...
If plants can be shown to have nerves and sensations and instinct (another word for consciousness), why not allow the same in the cells? Science divides matter into organic and inorganic bodies, only because it rejects the idea of absolute life and a life-principle as an entity. Otherwise it would be the first to see that absolute life cannot produce even a geometrical point, or an atom inorganic in its essence. That day when a full recognition of a universally diffused mind will be an accomplished fact, is not far off. It is only a question of time.
Especially interesting are cases of consciousness and positive discrimination -- one is almost inclined to say thought -- in the Amoeba. Now the Amoeba or animalculæ is, as all know, a most simple elementary cell, a microscopic protoplasmic drop, formless and almost structureless. Yet it shows in its behavior something that zoologists, if they do not call it mind and power of reasoning, will have to coin a new term for.
Under a powerful microscope, when moved by hunger, it first projects its pseudopodiæ (false feet) by the help of which it crawls. Among a great variety of plants it comes across a Spirogyra, and placing itself on it, it bursts the tissue, sucks the contents of one cell and then passes on to another, repeating the same process. This naturalist never saw it take any other food, and it never touched any of the numerous plants placed in its way. Another Amoeba -- the Colpadella Pugnax -- showed the same predilection. The naturalist adds these significant words: "The way of acting of these monads during their search for and reception of food is so amazing that one is almost inclined to see in them consciously acting beings!"
The Arcella is another unicellular organism. Helpless in a drop of water under a microscope, lying on its back, the following curious fact is observed. Under the edge of one of the sides of the protoplasm gas-bubbles begin immediately to form, which, making that side lighter, allow it to be raised ... and thereby turning over its body. After this, it proceeds to suck back into itself the gas-bubbles and begins to move. It proceeds to generate large bubbles of gas, when, becoming lighter than the water, it is raised up to the surface of the drop.
The ancient Hindus gave every atom consciousness and a distinct name of a God or a Goddess. Their Pantheon of 300 millions of deities they relate to the atoms, cells, and molecules of everything that is.
The whole body of man is composed of cells, and these cells are now being recognized as individual organisms and -- quien sabe -- will be recognized some day as an independent race of thinkers inhabiting the globe, called man!
Note: In case you want to read it, before going on to the next article in this grouping, here's the link to HPB's article, entitled "Kosmic Mind", that the Editors drew this collation from.--Compiler
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