‘The world may be more than a mere combination of events.’ – Louis Pasteur via American Minute
by Bill Federer
Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis recommended in 1844 that doctors at Vienna General Hospital wash their hands after doing autopsies and before delivering babies to prevent mothers from dying of puerperal fever.In the early 1800’s, nearly 25 percent of all mothers giving birth in hospital maternity wards were dying of puerperal fever, with epidemics sometimes reaching 100 percent.
Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis was so ridiculed for his ‘hand-washing’ suggestion that he had to leave Vienna and eventually died in a mental asylum.
In America, Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., made the same suggestion and was similarly criticized by medical professionals.
Dr. Joseph Lister stated: “I am a believer in the fundamental doctrines of Christianity,” and told a graduating class:
“It is our proud office to tend the fleshly tabernacle of the immortal spirit, and our path, if rightly followed, will be guided by unfettered truth and love unfeigned. In pursuit of this noble and holy calling I wish you all God-speed.”
Tragically, three of their five children died of typhoid, which led him to research the causes and preventions of diseases.
Louis Pasteur’s study of micro-organisms and his germ theory revolutionized medicine.
Louis Pasteur along with Ferdinand Cohn and Robert Koch are considered the fathers of the science of microbiology.
Describing anaerobic (without oxygen) bacteria, Louis Pasteur commented:
“The more I study nature, the more I stand amazed at the work of the Creator. Into his tiniest creatures, God has placed extraordinary properties that turn them into agents of destruction of dead matter.”
“Life is in the germ, that it has been but in a state of transmission since the origin of creation.”
In an interview with the Mayor and the President of the Chamber of Commerce of Orleans, France, Louis Pasteur talked of:
“Science, which brings man nearer to God.”
In January, 1860, Louis Pasteur wrote to Chappuis (Vallery-Radot, Life of Louis Pasteur):
“I am pursuing as best I can these studies on fermentation which are of great interest, connected as they are with the impenetrable mystery of Life and Death.”
President Eisenhower wrote January 8, 1954:
“Pasteurization of milk has prevented countless epidemics and saved thousands of lives.”
As a young man, Louis Pasteur wrote to his sisters, November 1, 1840 (Rene’ Vallery-Radot, The Life of Louis Pasteur, translated by Mrs. R.L. Devonshire, Vol. I, NY: McClure, Phillips & Co., 1902):
“These three things, Will, Work, Success, fill human existence. Will opens the door to success both brilliant and happy; Work passes these doors, and at the end of the journey Success comes to crown one’s efforts.
And so, my dear sisters, if your resolution is firm, your task…is already begun; You have but to walk forward… If perchance you should falter during the journey, a hand would be there to support you.
If that should be wanting, God, who alone could take that hand from you, would Himself accomplish its work.”
At his formal inauguration to the Faculty of Letters of Douai and the Faculty of Sciences of Lille, Louis Pasteur remarked, December 7, 1854:
“Dans les champs de l’observation, le hasard ne favorise que les esprits préparés” (In the field of observation, chance favors only the prepared mind.)
President George H.W. Bush referred to this statement, February 13, 1989:
“You know, Louis Pasteur once said: ‘Chance favors only the prepared mind.’…For America to be prepared for the future, our children must be educated.”
In a letter to his father, February 7, 1860, Louis Pasteur wrote (Vallery-Radot, Life of Louis Pasteur):
“God grant that by my persevering labors I may bring a little stone to the frail and ill-assured edifice of our knowledge of those deep mysteries of Life and Death where all our intellects have so lamentably failed.”
“Dear children, the dear grandfather is no more…Until the last moment I hoped I should see him again, embrace him for the last time…He died on the day of your first communion, dear Cécile; those two memories will remain in your heart…
I was asking you to pray for the grandfather at Arbois College. Your prayers will have been acceptable unto God, and perhaps the dear grandfather himself knew of them and rejoiced with dear little Jeanne over Cécile’s piety.”
In The Life of Louis Pasteur, written by Rene’ Vallery-Radot, translated by Mrs. R.L. Devonshire, (Vol. I, NY: McClure, Phillips & Co., 1902, p. 257), Louis Pasteur wrote:
“Great discoveries…introduce into the whole of Society that philosophical or scientific spirit, that spirit of discernment, which submits everything to severe reasoning, condemns ignorance and scatters errors and prejudices.
They raise the intellectual level and the moral sense, and through them the Divine idea itself is spread abroad and intensified.”
“In each one of us there are two men, the scientist and the man of faith or of doubt. These two spheres are separate, and woe to those who want to make them encroach upon one another in the present state of our knowledge!”
President Lyndon B. Johnson stated April 7, 1966:
“Years ago Louis Pasteur said, ‘I hold the unconquerable belief that science and peace will triumph over ignorance and war; that nations will come together not to destroy, but to construct; and that the future belongs to those who accomplish most for humanity.'”
Shortly after his death, Louis Pasteur was attributed with the quotation:
“The more I know, the more does my faith approach that of the Breton peasant. Could I but know all, I would have the faith of a Breton peasant woman.”
“Absolute faith in God and in Eternity, and a conviction that the power for good given to us in this world will be continued beyond it, were feelings which pervaded his whole life; the virtues of the gospel had ever been present to him.
Full of respect for the form of religion which had been that of his forefathers, he came simply to it and naturally for spiritual help in these last weeks of his life.”
Being one of the first European scientists to reject the evolutionary theory of spontaneous generation, Louis Pasteur insisted that life only arises from life, stating:
“Microscopic beings must come into the world from parents similar to themselves…There is something in the depths of our souls which tells us that the world may be more than a mere combination of events.”
American Minute is a registered trademark. Permission is granted to forward. reprint or duplicate with acknowledgement tovwww.AmericanMinute.com