..."and a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the way of holiness; evil minded people shall not travel on it, but it shall be for those wayfarers who are traveling toward God. (Isaiah 35:8, adapted)

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

G.K. Chesterton on Education....

I am quite prepared to promise the secularists
secular education if they on their side will
promise not to have moral instruction. Secular
education seems to me intellectually clean and
comprehensible. Moral instruction seems to me
unclean, intolerable; I would destroy it with fire.

Teaching the Old Testament by itself means teaching
ancient Hebrew ethics, which are simple, barbaric,
rudimentary, and, to a Christian, unsatisfying.
Teaching moral instruction means teaching modern
London, Birmingham and Boston ethics, which
are not barbaric and rudimentary, but are corrupt,
hysterical and crawling with worms, and which are
to a Christian, not unsatisfying but detestable.

The old Jew who says that you must fight only for
your tribe is inadequate; but the modern
prig who says you must never fight for anything is
substantially and specifically immoral. I know quite
well, of course, that the unreligious ethics
suggested for modern schools do not verbally assert
these things; they only talk about peaceful reform,
true Christianity, and the importance of Count
Tolstoy. It is all a matter of tone and implication--
but then, so is all teaching.

Education is implication. It is not the things you
say which children respect; when you say things,
they very commonly laugh and do the opposite. It
is the things you assume that really sink into them.
It is the things you forget even to teach that they
... G. K. Chesterton (1874-1936)in the Illustrated London

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