Wednesday, May 15, 2013
John Donne, A Plurality of Worlds, and Mormonism's Take
This excerpt comes from Donne's Devotion 5. Here, he laments on the solitude of illness and then muses how loneliness is against God's methodologies. Rather, God works to propagate the human race, as in the Garden of Eden, he said that "it was not good for man to be alone." Donne then makes an even bolder statement:
"Men that inhere upon nature only, are so far from thinking that there is any thing singular in this world, as that they will scarce think that this world itself is singular, but that every planet, and every star, is another world like this; they find reason to conceive not only a plurality in every species in the world, but a plurality of worlds; so that the abhorrers of solitude are not solitary, for God, and Nature, and Reason concur against it."
While it is not clear whether or not Donne theologically adhered to a "plurality of worlds," his belief that God's working to propagate the species certainly made him consider this idea. Certainly Mormonism's statement is more bold, as we speak of "worlds without number." But worlds beyond ours is hardly an idea that we can solely claim to our own theology.