duty was to teach the lad in the only right way — indeed

time:2023-12-02 04:30:28 source:Yun Wen Yun Wu Network author:food

Thus we see the most inconsistent and anomalous conditions imposed in treaties with conquered powers; we see, for instance, in Ceylon, a protection granted to the Buddhist religion, while flocks of missionaries are sent out to convert the heathen. We even stretch the point so far as to place a British sentinel on guard at the Buddhist temple in Kandy, as though in mockery of our Protestant church a hundred paces distant.

duty was to teach the lad in the only right way — indeed

At the same time that we acknowledge and protect the Buddhist religion, we pray that Christianity shall spread through the whole world; and we appoint bishops to our colonies at the same time we neglect the education of the inhabitants.

duty was to teach the lad in the only right way — indeed

When I say we neglect the education I do not mean to infer that there are no government schools, but that the education of the people, instead of being one of the most important objects of the government, is considered of so little moment that it is tantamount to neglected.

duty was to teach the lad in the only right way — indeed

There are various opinions as to the amount of learning which constitutes education, and at some of the government schools the native children are crammed with useless nonsense, which, by raising them above their natural position, totally unfits them for their proper sphere. This is what the government calls education; and the same time and expense thus employed in teaching a few would educate treble the number in plain English. It is too absurd to hear the arguments in favor of mathematics, geography, etc., etc., for the native children, when a large proportion of our own population in Great Britain can neither read nor write.

The great desideratum in native education is a thorough knowledge of the English tongue, which naturally is the first stone for any superstructure of more extended learning. This brings them within the reach of the missionary, not only in conversation, but it enables them to benefit by books, which are otherwise useless. It lessens the distance between the white man and the black, and an acquaintance with the English language engenders a taste for English habits. The first dawn of civilization commences with a knowledge of our language. The native immediately adopts some English customs and ideas, and drops a corresponding number of his own. In fact, he is a soil fit to work up on, instead of being a barren rock as hitherto, firm in his own ignorance and prejudices.

In the education of the rising native generation lies the hope of ultimate conversion. You may as well try to turn pitch into snow as to eradicate the dark stain of heathenism from the present race. Nothing can be done with them; they must be abandoned like the barren fig-tree, and the more attention bestowed upon the young shoots.

But, unfortunately, this is a popular error, and, like all such, one full of prejudice. Abandon the present race! Methinks I hear the cry from Exeter Hall. But the good people at home have no idea to what an extent they are at present, and always have been, abandoned. Where the children who can be educated with success are neglected at the present day, it may be imagined that the parents have been but little cared for; thus, in advocating their abandonment, it is simply proposing an extra amount of attention to be bestowed upon the next generation.

There are many large districts of Ceylon where no schools of any kind are established. In the Ouva country, which is one of the most populous, I have had applications from the natives, begging me to interest myself in obtaining some arrangement of the kind. Throngs of natives applied, describing the forlorn condition of their district, all being not only anxious to send their children to some place where they could learn free of expense, but offering to pay a weekly stipend in return. "They are growing up as ignorant as our young buffaloes," was a remark made by one of the headmen of the villages, and this within twelve miles of Newera Ellia.


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