Nature Is The Mother Of All Things


Furthermore, man has come into existence out of Nature. He is her

child. She provided him food, raiment, and shelter. She nourishes

him, strengthens him, and vitalizes him. At the same time she

disciplines, punishes, and instructs him. His body is of her own

formation, his knowledge is of her own laws, and his activities are

the responses to her own addresses to him. Modern civilization is

said by some to be the
onquest of man over Nature; but, in fact, it

is his faithful obedience to her. Bacon truly said, says

Eucken,[FN#187] that to rule nature man must first serve her. He

forgot to add that, as her ruler, he is still destined to go on

serving her. She can never be attacked by any being unless he acts

in strict conformity to her laws. To accomplish anything against her

law is as impossible as to catch fishes in a forest, or to make bread

of rock. How many species of animals have perished owing to their

inability to follow her steps! How immense fortunes have been lost

in vain from man's ignorance of her order! How many human beings

disappeared on earth from their disobedience to her unbending will!

She is, nevertheless, true to those who obey her rules. Has not

science proved that she is truthful? Has not art found that she is


[FN#187] Eucken's 'Philosophy of Life,' by W. R. Royce Gibbon, p. 51.

Has not philosophy announced that she is spiritual? Has not religion

proclaimed that she is good? At all events, she is the mother of all

beings. She lives in all things and they live in her. All that she

possesses is theirs, and all that they want she supplies. Her life

is the same vitality that stirs all sentient beings. Chwang

Tsz[FN#188] (So-shi) is right when he says: Heaven, Earth, and I

were produced together, and all things and I are one. And again:

If all things be regarded with love, Heaven and Earth are one with

me. Sang Chao (So-jo) also says: Heaven and Earth are of the same

root as we. All things in the world are of one substance with


[FN#188] Chwang Tsz, vol. i., p. 20.

[FN#189] This is a favourite subject of discussion by Zenists.