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The Earth Is Only A Front Yard
by [?]

The philosophers, political economists, lawmakers, editors, sociologists, and all the other would-be deep thinkers of this earth, are really engaged in a pretty small business.

We are like a swarm of human beings cast away on some desert island. This earth is our island, a little island in space, and it is a desert island and a badly arranged island in more ways than one. Many of us lack good dwellings, some of us lack food, all of us are worried about the future. The island is infested with mosquitoes and with diseases that we have not learned to conquer. There are many criminals on it that prey upon the honest people–criminals at the top and criminals at the bottom of society.

And all of those who think and sympathize with their fellow creatures are busy with the problem of putting things right on this little desert island that carries us along in the wake of the sun.

Most of us imagine that the most important work for men is the organization of life on this little planet. That is a very small and mean idea of man’s real destiny.

When a man builds a house, the planning of sanitary arrangements must first be attended to. After that begin the real life and the real interests. That real life and those real interests are not confined to the front yard or the back yard of the man that owns the house. —-

So it will be some day with us who are now engaged in the detailed organization of the little home which we call the earth.

We are fixing up our moral plumbing–fighting poverty, injustice, and, above all, ignorance. We are fighting the meanness that comes of competition and the greater meanness that is based upon the dread of poverty in the future. Some of us are piling up millions that we can never use, while others suffer for lack of that which could be abundantly supplied.

All these little earthly questions that seem so big will be settled in time.

But a few years in the sight of Time–a few hundred centuries, perhaps, as we count them–and our earthly habitation will have been made fit to live in. We shall have eliminated the unfit–not by killing them off, but by educating them. We shall have solved the question of poverty by solving the question of production, and especially of distribution. We shall have developed a citizenship capable of earnest work, of sobriety and of moral decency, without the spur of want, imprisonment or the scaffold as necessary adjuncts.

In time the human race will have solved its little problems here–the problems that seem so vast to-day.

When that time comes we shall be like the man who has put his house in order, and our thoughts will not be confined to this little piece of ground. Then we shall appreciate the cosmic wisdom which has divided our day into darkness and light–the light for the enjoyment of the material beauties of our earthly home; THE NIGHT FOR THE STUDY AND ENJOYMENT OF THE VAST, MYSTERIOUS UNIVERSE SPREAD OUT AROUND US.

Everybody knows that the aged require less sleep than the young. In the future, this will make old age what it ought to be, a blessing, because it will give to the old more hours of the night for contemplation of the Infinite and all its wonders.

Those of us who now think themselves very abstract when they speculate on the North Pole, or when they discuss the possibility of reclaiming the Desert of Sahara, will have their minds many millions of miles away from this earth a great deal of the time.

We shall communicate, perhaps, with our sister-planet, Venus–the planet most like ours in physical arrangement. We shall be intensely interested in that world, where it is always night on one side of the planet, and always day on the other.