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Prematurity in the Kingdom of the Fish:
A Brief Fable about Electromagnetism

"And so I made several claims.  I claimed that the earth is surrounded by a magnetosphere, that Jupiter is surrounded by even a much stronger magnetosphere, and that Jupiter sends out radio noises; that the solar system itself is permeated by a magnetic field that is centered on the sun, and that the sun is charged, and so are the planets, and so are the galaxies. - Immanuel Velikovsky (An informal address at Youngstown State University April 11, 1973)

Once upon a time there was a kingdom of highly intelligent fish whose population was fortunate enough to live peacefully in an un­disturbed world.  For the most part, the fish nibbled from day to day on their plankton without questioning the premises of their existence and without burrowing deep into the mud below or swimming far in­to the heights above.

But in this kingdom of fish there were a few inhabitants whose curiosity exceeded the average of their fellows to such an extent that visitors from another realm doubtless would deem them to be intellectuals.  Moreover, some could even be called scientists because they were professionally dedicated to pushing back the frontiers of knowledge.  They were not, as to be expected, all of the same opinion about the composition of their surroundings, and not one of them comprehended totally the nature of his environment.

Then one day a particularly brilliant fish made a discovery.  Alas, however, none in the established "schools" were able to visualize the reorientation of the facts that it required; therefore the fish were un­willing to investigate its implications, as they were quite capable of doing.  Hence, as of the time this fable was written, the insight went largely unappreciated.

What was this discovery which, had it been understood, might have solved a number of the mysteries of life in the fish kingdom?

Water.

Joseph May

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