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ESSAY IX.

OF THE COMMUNICATION OF KNOWLEDGE.

In what manner would reason, independently of the received modes and practices of the world, teach us to communicate knowledge ?

Liberty is one of the most desirable of all sublunary advantages. I would willingly therefore communicate knowledge, without infringing, or with as little as possible violence to, the volition and individual judgment of the person to be instructed.

Again ; I desire to excite a given individual to the acquisition of knowledge. The only possible method in which I can excite a sensitive being to the performance of a voluntary action, is by the exhibition of motive.

Motives are of two forts, intrinsic and extrinfic. Intrinsic motives are those which arise from the inherent nature of the thing recommended. Extrinsic motives are those which have no constant and unalterable connection with the thing recommended, but are combined

how “ Alps on Alps arise*,” in opposition to the daring adventurer. Having done so, they must always in a considerable degree leave him to surmount the obstacles for himself. Language is adequate to the first of these objects; it sinks under the delicacy and individualities of the second. The groveling and fecble-hearted are consequently discouraged ; they desert the vocation they hastily chose. But the courage of the generously ambitious is by this means elevated to its noblest height.

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ESSAY IX.

OF THE COMMUNICATION OF KNOWLEDGE.

In what manner would reason, independently of the received modes and practices of the world, teach us to communicate knowledge ?

Liberty is one of the most desirable of all sublunary advantages. I would willingly therefore communicate knowledge, without infringing, or with as little as possible violence to, the volition and individual judgment of the person to be instructed.

Again ; I desire to excite a given individual to the acquisition of knowledge. The only possible method in which I can excite a sensitive being to the performance of a voluntary action, is by the exhibition of motive.

Motives are of two forts, intrinsic and extrinfic. Intrinsic motives are those which arise from the inherent nature of the thing recommended. Extrinsic motives are those which have no constant and unalterable connection with the thing recommended, but are combined

with it by accident or at the pleasure of some individual.

Thus, I may recommend some species of knowledge by a display of the advantages which will necessarily attend upon its acquisition, or flow from its poffeffion. Or, on the other hand, I may recommend it despotically, by allurements or menaces, by showing that the pursuit of it will be attended with my approbation, and that the neglect of it will be regarded by me with displeasure.

The first of these classes of motives is unquertionably the bett. To be governed by such motives is the pure and genuine condition of a rational being. By exercise it strengthens the judgment. It elevates us with a sense of independence. It causes a man to stand alone, and is the only method by which he can be rendered truly an individual, the creature, not of implicit faith, but of his own understanding,

If a thing be really good, it can be shown to be fuch. If you cannot demonstrate its excellence, it may well be fufpected that you are no proper judge of it. Why should not I be admitted to decide, upon that which is to be acquired by the application of my labour ?

Is it necessary that a child should learn a thing, before it can have any idea of its value? It is

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probable that there is no one thing that it is of
eminent importance for a child to learn. The
true object of juvenile education, is to provide,
against the age of five and twenty, a mind well
regulated, active, and prepared to learn *.
Whatever will inspire habits of industry and ob-
fervation, will fufficiently answer this purpose.
Is it not possible to find something that will ful-
fil these conditions, the benefit of which a child
shall understand, and the acquisition of which
he may be taught to desire ? Study with desire
is real activity : without desire it is but the fem-
blance and mockery of activity. Let us not, in
the eagerness of our hafte to educate, forget all
the ends of education.

The most desirable mode of education there-
fore, in all instances where it shall be found
fufficiently practicable, is that which is careful
that all the acquisitions of the pupil shall be

preceded and accompanied by desire. The best motive to learn, is a perception of the value of the thing learned. The worlt motive, without deciding whether or not it be necessary to have recourse to it, may well be affirmed tu be constraint and fear. There is a motive between these, less pure than the first, but not so displeaf

* See the close of Efsay I.

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