Page:Convocation Addresses of the Universities of Bombay and Madras.djvu/139

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University of Bombay

teaching in the colleges and high schools, and the example of these superior institutions is sure to be followed by the middle class institutions, and ultimately even by the primary schools,—until, at length, we have a complete system of national instruction in ethics adapted to the degrees of intelligence and capacity as found in the different grades of students. To found, to elaborate, to establish such a system should, I think, be a subject of ambition and of anxiety to this University and to all engaged in the work of public instruction. The Natives will certainly be the willing subjects of such teaching. Moral philosophy is a theme on which the sages, lawgivers, and philosophers of the Hindus, have dilated from the earliest times, and which has engaged the reverential thoughts, and attracted the affectionate regards, of the best men amongst the Natives for many generations,—though the aberration of the practice of most people from its maxims has been as frequent and patent in the Indian nation as in any nation. I apprehend that many thoughtful Natives, while thankfully acknowledging all that has been done in this direction by the public instruction under British rule, do yet lament that a more systematic effort is not made to unfold and evolve before the minds of the young those eternal principles of right and wrong, which serve as beacons for the due conduct of life, and which ought specially to be included in an educational system that necessarily excludes religious teaching. With the majority of the Natives, such a systematization of ethical teaching would augment the popularity of our national education. It would elevate and crown the moral edifice already founded by the effects of our liberal education, by the discipline of our institutions, and by the personal example of our teachers.

I have already urged this most important matter on the consideration of the Syndicate, who, finding some difficulty at present in effecting the requisite alteration of the educational course, intimate that they will take an early opportunity of bestowing their renewed and careful consideration on the matter.

Lastly, I would remind you of the stimulus afforded to high education by the recently promulgated rules for the admission of Natives to the Covenanted Civil Service. The Covenanted Civil Service. Though the admission may operate very slowly, yet the fact of even a few being admitted, will animate the educated classes with hopefulness, and will display to their gaze a goal which, though distant perhaps,is yet shining. The merits of Natives in the judicial and legal profession have long been acknowledged; while their aptitude for the higher branches of the executive and administrative