The living element is another matter entirely.
Life itself is a mysterious essence and existence. In the most elementary
beings, beginning with bacteria invisible to the eye, automatism and
mechanicity are visibly surmounted. Living beings, from the lowest forms
upwards, reveal their own will in movement, in the desire to eat, in some
elements of orientation, in the ability to feel, in comprehension, and then in
a form of reason and "purpose." This purpose may have various
directions. Of course, here the law of "cause" is active, but it is
regulated by "personal" yearnings: a plant knows when it is healthy
to turn to the light, when it must hide or open the shell of its flower. On the
small planet Earth — what a richness of forms of living beings in both the
plant and the animal world! And the source of their nourishment is dead matter:
earth, air, water, and so on.
And how expedient it happens to be, that dead
nature is unchanging in its "laws of cause"! And how easily the
living element is able to use the dead one!
And what an incomprehensible active Wisdom
is revealed to us in their union and coordination!
Life is amazingly capable of coordinating itself
in relation to dead nature. Nonetheless, freedom is inherent to it as well.
Life cannot be locked within the iron cage of necessity. It has the strength
within itself to break the bonds of dead nature. Clearly, life has a
particular, special beginning in the world, which is spiritual in quality.
Reason, will, the ability to feel and react are inherently contained in life.
What greatness of conception! What fullness of
existence in this coordination of death with life: a domain where only the laws
of cause and effect have their say, with another one, where freedom and
expediency are ruling!
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