The Sentient Garden | By Jim Nollman | Issue 225 | The Sun Magazine

The Sentient Garden

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I liked Jim Nollman’s “The Sentient Garden” [September 1994] because the author allowed for views other than his own. Nollman stated his case, but recognized the possibility of error — an openness that’s unusual in matters of faith.

If faith is strong enough, truth becomes irrelevant. But if truth is important, then we must consider probabilities. Cabbages have no known sense organs to receive messages sent by humans. Nor do they have central nervous systems capable of interpreting those messages. Nor have they time to learn how to act on such messages. Thus, although it remains possible that cabbages understand and act on our attempts to communicate with them, the chances of this being the case are infinitely slim.

Years ago I wrote an editorial about dragons. The premise was that no one can prove dragons do not exist. The problem with sentient gardens is exactly the same.

Edmond I. Eger II, M.D. San Francisco, California
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