The Theory of Infinitesimal Humanities
or System of Four Gradations
If my ignorance of many sciences is not an insurmountable obstacle to what I contemplate, I will attempt some day to develop more completely a theory which is only in germ in the preceding article (and which is not without analogy to the “Series” of Fourier and the “Triad” of Leroux, but more rational, I think.) It is the theory of “Infinitesimal Humanities” or the application, to all the beings in universality and to the universality of all beings, of the system of the three kingdoms (mineral, vegetable, animal), crowned by the fourth, the hominal, or perfectible essence of every organism, conducting agent which makes the transit from a body of an inferior species to another body of a superior species, a sort of intermediary which puts them in direct communication, and establishes exchange between them: the body of the lower species delivering what is most “hominalized” in it to the body of the higher species and receiving in compensation what is least hominalized in the other, or, to put it another way, the most “mineralized.” — Any physical or moral sensation is the result of a contact -– a shock or kiss that places what is most pure in the lower into relation with what is most impure in the higher -– circulation thus propagating from organism to organism and from sphere to sphere, from attraction to attraction, via the four gradations, variously and universally manifested. This system must be given a geometrical figure that I would represent in the form of a cubed triangle whose three points on the base correspond, one to minerality, the other to vegetality, and the third to animality, and the culmination, the peak of the pyramid, to hominality.
If the discovery of this law is true in relation to humans, as everything demonstrates to me, the law must be universal and be found again in the infinitely small as in the infinitely great. It is applicable to all that exists. It is an instrument that can be used to penetrate deeper into the immensities of the Unknown. Undoubtedly, this is not all; it is a key, and there is more than one door to open, more than one mystery to explore. But the key can put us on the road, it can clear the way to sudden clarities, and within the darkness, bring light!
… Yes, but what would I make of this key by myself, with my crippled intelligence, afflicted with paralysis and blindness, I who can do nothing except by trembling, by groping? … The key … The darkness … Ah! Always the mantle of Alexander over the eyes of Diogenes, always a cloud between Poverty and Science, always Privilege!…
Ignorance! Ignorance! … get out of my sun! ! !
Source: Le Libertaire (New York), 10 janvier 1859.
Working Translation by Shawn P. Wilbur