Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

EDUCATIONAL.

EDUCATION IN RUSSIA.

At the last meeting of the Tufts Alumni, February 13, at Young's Hotel, Mr. Gorow read a paper on Education in Russia. The following is a brief abstract of the address:

In Russia, education, like everything else, is under the absolute control of the Government, and is shaped according to the private interests of the latter, without regard to science or civilization. The manufacture of obedient, unreasoning subjects is the only aim. The task of training and educating the younger generation is distributed among the various ministries and departments, but by far the greater part of the work is controlled by the ministry of Public Instruction. In all, about thirty million roubles, or fifteen million dollars, are spent for this purpose. This sum does not include the five million roubles of the Zemstoo Educational Budget. Of the whole sum, the ministry of Public Instruction had, in 1882, distributed seventeen millions in the following manner: three millions for the universities, eight millions for the gymnasiums, half a million for the administration, the rest—that is, five and a half millions—for popular education, or elementary schools. Of these, there are twenty thousand, containing over a million pupils. The gymnasiums have about seventy thousand scholars, and the universities ten thousand. It may thus be seen that less than three million dollars is spent by the Government on the common school education of a people numbering ninety-five millions. It spends less than any other European State. The following is an illustration of the actual condition of education in the thirty-two provinces where the Zemstoo, or local self-government, has been introduced. According to official reports, in three provinces only does the number of children of the school age—that is, from seven to thirteen—actually attending school form one-third of the entire number of this age; and this happens in provinces where a great part of the inhabitants are German colonists, or Tartars. In seven provinces, the number of scholars, or those who can read and write, is from twenty to thirty per cent. ; in five provinces, it is from fifteen to twenty per cent. ; in nine, from ten to fifteen per cent. ; and, in eight, less than ten per cent. In other provinces, the situation is still less inviting. As there are no exact statistics on the question of illiteracy, only an approximate estimate can be made. The probable maximum of those who can read and write Russian can hardly exceed fifteen per cent. In general, education in Russia offers a sad and revolting spectacle. At present, thanks to the efforts of Count Tolstog, Minister of the Interior, and Mr. Katkoo, the well-known reactionist, new university regulations are to be introduced, which will deprive these learned institutions of even the shadow of apparent independence, and transform the professors into mere tools of the Minister of Public Instruction. Thus, science will lose its last refuge. The best teachers and professors will voluntarily resign, or be expelled and put under the supervision of the police, as was dope at the Moscow University last summer; and their places will be filled by men

of servile mediocrity. From the black list published in American papers, it is well known that many works of the most famous authors are prohibited in Russia. All fair or foul means are resorted to, in order to keep the people still longer in that state of intellectual darkness which alone insures the possibility of an irresponsible autocracy. Is it, therefore, to be wondered at that the vast northern empire, so rich in natural resources, occupies one of the lowest grades in the intellectual scale of the civilized world? —Christian Register.

THE very liberal proposed gift of our friend Isaac H. Clothier, of an educational or pedagogical department to the Friends' Library, at Fifteenth and Race street, ought to be known to Friends generally. It is to be a memorial to his honored father Caleb Clothier, one of the earliest of the workers in that library, and for many years its librarian.

Such generous actions often have a tendency to stimulate others “to love and good works,” and we can very earnestly ask those who have been blessed with abundance of means, to consider if it would not be wise to do thoughtful deeds like this which may benefit many generations, while they are yet in the full vigor of life, and so have the enjoyment of seeing the great advantage they are conferring on others. Certainly a bequest is sometimes attended with difficulties, but an outright gift, as we understand this to be, is a very simple matter, not likely in any way to miscarry.

The name of the new department is to be “The Caleb Clothier Educational Department.” It is for the use of all who use the Library, but especially for the advantage of the teachers in our schools. S. R.

THE best pedagogic culture and experience has a fatal tendency to run into mechanical form and land its professor in the old limbo of a finished teacher. We are impressed with this fact in looking over some of the new books and a good deal of the writing in journals thrown up by the recent movement for improved methods of instruction. A good many of these elaborate directions for extracting knowledge from the childish intellect, and for imparting valuable information to youth, are as stiff, lifeless and unfruitful as any of the old-fashioned memoriter and mechanical ways of instruction which the new methods are brought forward to displace. No child in a state of natural development could possibly evolve through such a tortuous labyrinth of thought or observation as some of these methods indicate. Many of them in the attempt at simplicity become puerile, and any bright child will laugh to scorn the mincing steps of the teacher who tries to lead him in this way to knowledge.

One of the evil results of these long drawn out and unnatural methods is felt in some normal schools, where the ignorant or partially educated pupilteacher is imprisoned in the device, as the flame of a candle is suppressed by the extinguisher, and goes forth to a hopeless experiment of “trying it on ” in her first school room. The trouble seems to come from the persistent academical habit of so many of our teachers, to whom we look for the elaboration of systems of instruction. They seize the form of the new education without the spirit, and the old deadness is the result. The whole of the new education may be put into one phrase—life and more life; and without life “in the inward parts,” the best method is only the sepulchre of the teacher.—N. E. Journal of Education. THE most unfortunate frame of mind for both teacher and school officer is a feeling of self-satisfaction with what has been done, and a fixed resolve to let things remain as they are. In no sphere of human activity is a sincere desire for the highest and best more imperative than in the school-room. Here, of all places, is a spirit of hospitality to new ideas, essential to sound and successful work.—James McAlister. PUBLIC instruction for girls, in schools similar to those provided for boys, has been decreed in France. The scheme has been under consideration for four yeras. These schools will be managed exactly as the Lycies or High Schools for boys, and bear the same name. This action of the Superior Council of Public Instruction makes it no longer necessary for French republicans to send their daughters to the convent schools to be educated.

CORRESPONDENCE.

DEAR EDITORS: As I recline on my bed, resting under the infirmities of eighty-eight years, with the assurance that my day's work in the church, the home and the world is nearly if not quite done, listening to the touching statements made by many who are in their full strength; of their desire to carry the work on, though it might not be exactly in the same way; the tears will gather, and I feel assured that as these seek the same aid in humble acquiescence with divine requirements they will be led aright. And for yourselves, if you continue steadfast in your good work, it will prosper in your hands; for the wealth and power of Him who created worlds and peopled them, has never been exhausted.

And as generations pass from the stage of action and others take their place, changes of vast importance arise that call for enlargement of mental comprehension and different courses of action, and yet are equally effective in lengthening the cords that bind all together in harmony. Truth we know, never changes, but its appliances are to meet the states of the people, if too high to bring down into a state of humility; if too low, to raise them to a more lofty point of view. Work then while you may, for “the fields are already white unto harvest,” and both they that sow, and they that reap, rejoice together, being made partakers of the same blessed hope. SARAH Hunt.

West Grove, Third mo. 22d, 1885.

THE article headed “Unity the Prime Element of Strength,” which I find in Friends' Intelligencer, No. 5, and signed by I. W. G. so nearly accords with my views in reference to the condition of our beloved Society, that I feel that I must endorse it, for we are told to know no man after the flesh, but after the Spirit. If we dwell in the spirit, then will we dwell in the life, and this life is the light of men, and if we do individually mind this light, then I believe we

would yet see our way clear, but if we persist in the will of the creature, it will grow darker and darker, until our lamp, which formerly shown so brightly, will go out, for we now seem to be in the condition that the young man was, when he asked the Divine Master what good thing he could do that he might inherit eternal life. When the Master told him, the price was too high ; just so with us, we know of the Great Physician of value, who can heal all our maladies, but his price is too high, we must take up the daily cross, become submissive, and do his will in his time (not ours) we must humble ourselves, in fact we must reform ourselves, before we undertake to reform the world, we must own that we are poor, for we are not rich as formerly, as our condition proves. A. R. V.

[ocr errors][merged small]

The one safe path of life is to seek to know the will of God and to do that will with all our might. Life is full of anguish and despair; but the burden of earthly existence would be immensely lightened, if we could always have within us the consciousness that we are where God wants us to be. How much of sorrow and suffering is of our own seeking ! We are ruled by mad whims and impulses; and, blinded by folly, we imagine we are going right, though pitfalls are before us. Life is a series of embarrassments and perplexities. All that we can do is to seek the Light, and struggle to follow it over rocks and deserts. But the sad fact is that we struggle by fits and starts. Long intervals of indolence follow after a brief period of severe conflict, and there is very little real advancement through such intermittent efforts. Untruth surrounds us. The heart is steeped in untrue feelings, the hand is upon untrue work, the head is full of untrue projects. We think and feel and do so much that does not lead to God. And is not every bit of such thought and action a deviation from the true path, a going away from the great goal? If we were to add up the hours that are wasted in vain pursuits or low desires, they would make a terrible aggregate ; and the moments of true prayer or thirst would sink into nothingness by comparison How, then, can we wonder that there is so little peace in our daily existence? Life is meant to be a joy and not a continuous groan ; and, if we find it to be rather the latter than the former, it is because we identify life with shows and appearances instead of bringing it into harmony with Truth. Earthly sorrows do not cloud the path of the man who is bent upon acting loyally and feeling rightly in whatever situation he may be placed. Life must be miserable as long as it rests upon things which are only fleeting shadows. It begins to be radiant and profound in proportion as it recognizes the Eternal, and follows that alone. The wretchedness of earthly life is only in being separated from things upon which we are meant not to depend : restlessness is only in running after bubbles. Let the soul meet the Over-soul, and all anguish will be drowned in the joy of that union.—Indian Messenger.

GREAT hearts alone understand how much glory there is in being good.—Michelet.

FRIENDS INTELLIGENCER.

PHILADELPHIA, FOURTH MO. 4, 1885.

FoRBEARANCE.-If we desire perfection, Paul says, we must “let patience have her perfect work;” but how few reach such an exalted place | And why? Because we are so full of self, so sure that we, and we only, are right and in the possession of the real truth. In the minor matters of every day life, the results of an impatient spirit are often most grievous.

These should teach us the great good of forbearance, even if we heed not the injunction of the great Apostle. Alas ! that we are so slow to learn, and then vex ourselves with the thought, that somehow nature's laws are out of joint, forgetting that the just Lawgiver heeds not our petty misfortunes, except in the large pity, He always bestows on those who fail to read aright His perfected plans.

We need too, this sweet patience in Society matters. All cannot see alike or be able to embrace the truth at one time, so we should not unduly press the new thought that presents itself with such force to us. Jesus fully recognized this in that most touching expression, “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” He knew that his devoted disciples were not prepared to receive all that had been given to him, and he withheld from them what was clear to him. Coming near to our own times, that sage of Rugby, the late Dr. Arnold, says: “truth is not always to be insisted upon, if by forcing it upon the reception of those who are not prepared for it, they are thereby tempted to renounce what is not only true, but essential, whether about things human or divine.”

So let us be patient one with another, not neglecting to offer that which comes to us, as clearly right, giving it time to find proper lodgment in mind and heart. And on the other hand, let us keep our hearts open to receive, and be careful not to offend or weary the least of these “little ones” by rejecting the truth revealed through such, lest the ancient figure of the “mill-stone” be realized, and we lose the gift of sound judgment and perchance suffer also spiritual death.

THE MORAL LAW AND THE SPIRITUAL-George Fox, in his youth, was an illustrious example of faithfulness to the moral law. His sense of right and wrong was so clear that, as he says, “the Lord taught me to be faithful in all things,” yet even this remarkable degree of morality did not satisfy his craving for true spiritual experiences. Had he

rested satisfied in the observance of the outer law, the world would have lost one of the great lights which illuminated some of the dark places of the earth, and gave hope and consolation to many struggling hearts. The moral law is given us first, and we are also given the ability to understand and to practice it. The fulfillment of this law has a compensation for all the self-denial which is practiced, but it does not bring us into oneness with the spirit of the Highest any more than it did George Fox in his day.

To say “mere morality,” implies a doubt of its efficacy, and no shadow of a reproach should be cast upon a condition which is just as right, and just as important as any preparation for a great work; but the point we, as Friends, would impress is, that it is not all. We profess to be led by the spirit of Christ in our own hearts; this we believe to be the great Teacher, “teaching as never man taught;" now, to be led rightly, we must be acquainted with our leader, and we must know the voice of this guide sufficiently to distinguish it among all other calls; moreover, we must be faithful enough to obey its dictates. When Peter discovered that the controling power in Jesus was the Christ or spirit of God, it was evidence to that blessed teacher that the foundation stone of a spiritual life had been laid in his disciple, and he, whose labor had met with such tardy acknowledgment, blessed that condition, and declared his church was to be built thereon. *

Believing, then, that the temple wherein the Holy One abides is the human heart, we may see that the observance of the outward law is simply gathering together the materials and putting them in shape for the occupancy of the holy Presence, but that it is unfinished and incomplete unless so occupied.

We may safely press upon the young people our fundamental doctrine of the influence of the Holy Spirit in the mind of man, trusting that the openings in a youthful heart so influenced, will be in accord with right and truth. We may remember how new views of a religious nature were opened in the mind of George Fox after his eyes were anointed to see the true leader, and how Scripture passages were made plain and the instruction therein contained revealed to his understanding, and from his time to the present there has been an unbroken line of witnesses to the reality of this teaching. We ought to hold fast without wavering to the simplicity of our profession, keeping it clear of entangling and estranging beliefs which draw away the attention from the one thing needful. When the woman of Samaria found that she was in the presence of a prophet, she appealed to him for his judgment upon a matter of belief, but

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

MCCAHEY.—On Third month 22d, 1885, in Baltimore, Md., Rachel McCahey, daughter of the late Amos and Grace Read, in the 68th year of her age; a member of Baltimore Monthly Meeting.

MCKIMMEY,-On Second month 4th, 1885, at Lincolnville, Ind., Mary McKimmey, in the 86th year of her age. She was born in South Carolina in 1799, and while yet a child was taken to Tennessee, and from thence, in 1812, to Wayne co., Ind. She married William McKimmey in the year 1819, and was the mother of eight sons and two daughters. In 1839 they removed to Wabash co., Ind, where she and her family assisted in subduing the forest of Lagro township and erecting an humble log house for worship, which she lived to see succeeded by a new frame meeting-house at Lincolnville. In 1843 she united in membership with the Society of Friends, and continued a zealous, faithful and consistent member until death ; for a great many years she occupied the station of elder. Her last illness was borne with patience, she was ready to o to her heavenly home, fully believing that through Jhrist she should conquer. Few of earth meet death with so much fortitude, none with brighter hopes beyond. The writer having for twenty-five years known this mother in Israel, well remembers her counsel and advice. J. W. M.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

JoHN BRIGHT on the wars during the reign of Queen Victoria: “Cast your eye back for a moment upon the reign of the Queen. Do you imagine the reign of the Queen is remarkably a reign of peace and that Heaven should be thanked for the long peace that we have enjoyed? How much peace have you enjoyed 7 A great many other people, at your cost, have not enjoyed it. Three wars with China, the most peaceful empire in the world; a war with Burmah; I know not how many wars in South Africa, even before the Zulu war; a war in the Crimea of the greatest proportions; two Afghan wars, in one of which not less than 60,000 camels died of hunger, thirst and over-labor; another war in Egypt; and I assert that it was not possible for anybody to form, I will not say a just defense, but a reasonable excuse, for the wars that have been waged by this country during the reign of the Queen.”

[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]

For Friends' Intelligencer.

THE CLIFTON SPRINGS SANITARIUM.

In Ontario county, N. Y., is a health institution that is widely known and justly famed. It is called “The Clifton Springs Sanitarium,” and is located on the Auburn branch of the New York Central Railroad, about midway between Geneva and Canandaigua, and about twenty miles south of Lake Ontario. The house is within a hundred rods of the station, and, in addition to the omnibus facilities, there are rolling chairs and attendants for conveying feeble or disabled patients to or from the train. The adjacent village, Clifton Springs, contains about one thousand inhabitants, and affords many conveniences, without being any disparagement to the appearance of the place, or causing any detraction from the comfort of the patients and guests of the Sanitarium. The prohibition sentiment is so strong that no liquor is sold in the township; while the attendance at the several churches indicates that the inhabitants are a religious as well as a moral people. In addition to the library, which is open daily, there is a free reading-room, well supplied with periodicals and books of reference. The library is the gift of a Friend, whose name it bears, and the building, including reading-room and halls, is a do nation from Dr. Foster. In the afternoon and evening one may step into this reading-room and find from two or three to a dozen boys sitting quietly at the table reading or consulting the books of reference. In the same building are two halls—a large and a small one—in which lyceum meetings are held, and public lectures delivered. The Young Men's Christian Association has been giving a course of free lectures this winter, for the benefit of the inhabitants of the village and surrounding country. The prohibition of the liquor traffic seems to have removed the necessity for other prohibitions, and the people mingle in their religious, beneficent and business association on the common ground, and with the mutual understanding that every one means to do right. The Sulphur Springs, which have given part of its name to the place, are situated within a few rods of the Sanitarium, and the waters closely resemble those of the Greenbrier White Sulphur Springs in Virginia. They have been long known and celebrated for their curative properties. The Sanitarium was established about thirty-five years ago, by Henry Foster, M. D., a physician of the allopathic school. When he purchased the property, there was “only a small wayside inn, with a small bath room and tub for the use of sulphur water.” Now there is a building here that will accommodate three hundred guests, and in the summer season there are sometimes more than that number in the house, and about an equal number boarding in the village, and availing themselves of the treatment. In the winter season the number is much smaller; at present it is about one hundred and seventy patients. Of the great variety of diseases treated here it may probably be said that nervous, rheumatic, pulmonary and dyspeptic patients constitute the largest number. The medical staff consists of seven physicians—six males and one female. They are all allopathic graduates, and two

of the number have had experience abroad. They are accessible at all times, affable and courteous, and soon secure the esteem and confidence of their patients. The superintendent, matron, clerks, bathers, nurses, waiters and all the attachés of the institution seem to be actuated by one spirit, that of kindness and good humor. The intention, as indicated by words and actions, would appear to be to make the mind and the body of each patient just as comfortable as circumstances will permit, and not to deny or refuse anything except on the ground that it would be hurtful. This kindness has a wonderful effect upon those whose physical condition would tend to make them irritable, but whose restoration to health is greatly promoted by cheerfulness and equanimity. There is religious service in the house daily, and most of the patients who are able attend it. In addition to the sulphur baths, of various temperatures, there are Turkish, electric, chemical, condensed air, salt, sponge, showers, sprays, etc. There is a special arrangement for treating bronchial and pulmonary affections, by inhalation. The entire building is heated by steam, and the temperature is uniform in sitting-rooms, halls and sleeping-rooms. The house is also supplied with gas and electric lights, and a very convenient elevator. The rooms are comfortable, mattresses excellent, and a watchman passes each door every hour in the night. He observes as he passes, and, if any mark is put out, he will come and inquire what is wanted. The table is abundantly supplied with an attractive and healthful variety of food, which is well served. The physicians recommend generous diet in nearly all cases of chronic disease. The Sanitarium is intended as a beneficent rather than a moneymaking institution. A few years ago, Dr. Foster deeded the property to a board of trustees, who now have charge of the management. There are about forty acres of land attached to the anitarium, including a fine park and a gymnasium. Calisthenic exercises are practised, under an instructor, twice daily. There is a temptation to lengthen this article, by going more into details, and saying still more in praise of the place, but respect for the valuable space in your columns induces a conclusion at this point. Many readers of this paper have been at the place, and I trust they will unitedly agree with the writer that it is a comfortable and desirable retreat for invalids. H*. Third month 28th, 1885.

How much easier it is to see defects, than to see beauties, in anything at which we look. No arteducation is requisite to the perceiving of a broken arm or a nose, on an ancient Grecian statue, or of the weather-stains on its marble surface; but it does require a trained eye and a cultivated taste, to recognize the lines of beauty, and the tokens of power, in a discolored and a battered fragment of a masterwork of art. And so it is in the reading of a book, or in the observing of a character: the ability to perceive that which is worthy, and that which is admirable is higher and rarer than the ability to perceive errors and flaws.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »