Page:Convocation Addresses of the Universities of Bombay and Madras.djvu/593

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300 University of Madras.

pursuing them. Of all branches of study after Letters, this is that which is most necessary for a public man, more especially for those who are connected with the public Press. But besides such men your country needs more and more for its development, men possessed of a sound knowledge of Physical and Natural Science, partly in the role of teachers, partly as actual workers in industrial activities. They are required as teachers to give the mind of the people a more inquiring turn, a greater interest in Nature and its Laws, and some knowledge of the natural resources of their country. The industrial enterprise of Europeans may raise local interest and attract labour and capital, but it is only when the mind of the people is set in a new direction by the general spread of scientific knowledge that much result can be attained. Why is it that with but one or two solitary exceptions, which but prove the rule, every enterprise for developing the wealth of the country comes from Europeans? The reply generally is—the Natives are too poor, they have no capital for great or novel enterprises. There is truth in this, but it is not the whole truth, because your capitalists, as a rule, do nothing. The new energy of a people does not require great enterprises to test it. It may be shown as well in small things as in great; in the making of a brass-vessel, in the planting of a hedge, in the digging of a well, or in the introduction of a new seed or of a new plant. If intelligence and a love of progress are there a poor people can do much. The history of the world has shewn how poor and isolated peoples have risen high in the scale of peoples when fired by such a spirit. It is through an education, which teaches the child to use its hand, its eyes, its reason as well as its memory alone, that such a change can be wrought in the mental attitude and in the habits of a people. But you need the actual workers also, especially in the higher industries, for it will not do simply to teach. There is some reason to think that this decade may show a marked advance especially in the development of the mineral wealth of the country; and if you have not practical workers of your own people in the scientific departments of such industries their place must needs be taken by Europeans. You must push in and secure your place, or make a place for yourselves. But what is the course you usually pursue? You take to Law or to the Public Service, instead of seeking out a road, painful though it be, which will in the long run make you of as real service to the country. Men can in a way create their own destiny. The conditions of industrial life in Southern India require all the vitalizing power that you are able to afford. Prove yourselves true friends of your people, and furnish this