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October 10, 1925


JAMA. 1925;85(15):1139. doi:10.1001/jama.1925.02670150037014

When science and traditional experience clash, it is often well to preserve an open mind, for our knowledge is finite, and, while carefully garnered facts have a permanence of value that cannot easily be thrust aside, the new acquisitions sometimes compel a revision of the point of view or permit a different approach to a debated subject. The coming years are likely to afford various illustrations of this in such poorly cultivated fields as climatology. There is a long series of traditions and a not inconsiderable group of empirically attested opinions regarding the relations of light, air and water to human well being. Some of them are too deeply rooted to be easily brushed aside even when no plausible explanation is at present forthcoming. Others have yielded to scientific investigation to the extent of disclosing an interpretable justification for the long held beliefs. Sunshine embodies forms of radiant energy that