In a message dated 12/23/00 8:15:09 PM Eastern Standard Time, [log in to unmask]
> precisely. newton was the last of the magi, but, having discovered some
> remarkable and remarkably consistent formulas for physical actions, got
> appropriated by his successors as the founder of modern physics. he was
> not only an alchemist, but a millennial calculator, and when at the end of
> the 19th cn, these writings were discovered, they were essentially buried
> by historians of science who wanted him to represent "objectivity."
Why the _last_ of the magi? Can't we extend the list by including, at least,
Einstein, Heisenberg, and Feynman? There's one book about Newton's alchemical
experiments, but I haven't read it and can't recall the title. I think it
also covers his euqlly hush hush religious beliefs. I've seen him called a
Judaicizer, but hard to know what that means in absence of further
explanation. If you think of references on the millennium-calculating, let
me know. Anything on Newton on your web site?
I think what we might be agreeing on is that science is in large measure an
art. IMHO, those 19th century folks who wanted to make everything
"scientific" did real damage, whether it's Hermann Gunkel's "scientific"
approach to Psalms or Wilhelm Ostwald's "scientific" approach to color.
Ostwald seems to really love color and the visual arts, except that he thinks
they're rather disreputable unless they can be shown to be "scientific."