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Irving Murray Scott.

Evolution of education. Annual address before the Nevada State University, Reno, Nevada, Thursday, June 3, 1897 online

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Evolution of Education
Annual r^ddrsss before the
Nevad^i State University,
Reno, June 3, 1897

By



Irving Murray Scott



||^0litti0n of ^Anc^iion^



Bnnual B^^re00

Before the Nevada State
University, Reno, Nevada,
Thursday, June 3, 1897.



m
Irving ni>- Scott.



"^x^olntion 0f %A\xc^tion.



Bnnual Bbbrees

Before the Nevada State
University, Reno, Nevada,
Thursday, June 3, 1897.



36^

flrvtnG riD, Scott



THK HICKS-JUDD CO.,

PRINTKRS, PUBLI8HKRS, BOOKBINDERS,

IS FIRST ST., S. F., CAL.



37 ieH 4 cL



EVOLUTION OF EDUCATION.



Mr. President, Messrs. Regents,

Ladies and Gentlemen:
The founders and promoters of the Univer-
sity of Nevada are well deserving of the highest
honor and praise for their efficient efforts in the
noble cause of education. " 'Tis education forms
the common mind; just as the twig is bent, the
tree's inclined." Education is largely the motor
of progress and civilization. Its function is to
refine and ennoble all within its scope. It re-
dounds to the honor of the State. It is the bul-
wark of civil liberty. Not only is it of the
greatest utility in all the various affairs of life,
' but, as Cicero eloquently says : " It is the food of
r youth ; the delight of old age ; the ornament of
= prosperity; the refuge and comfort of adversity; a
\ delight at home, and no hindrance abroad; it is
■ a companion by night, and in travel, and in the
country."

The beautiful and inviting site of this Univer-
sity, surrounded by extensive and fertile valley
lands, with majestic mountains not far remote,
rich in minerals and the precious metals, the
granite-filtered water, pure as that from the Cas-
talian fount, and the air of Elysian purity — all
conspire in assuring glorious success to the Uni-
versity of Nevada from the present on to the
most distant future. Among the many valuable



features of the University, I would especially com-
mend that of its open doors to the free access of
the fair sex as well as to the more robust.
Recognition of the equality of the sexes is an
evolution from the barbaric state of our race to
that of the civilized.

M}' theme for the present occasion is

EVOLUTION OF EDUCATION.

Nature in her works records progress in
characters not to be misunderstood. Thus the
record reads : Nature evolved from elements the
primary or azoic rocks ; from these by mechanical
and chemical action she evolved soil ; from this
she evolved vegetation ; and from it she evolved
animal life in its various forms from the mollusk
up to man. The matter that pre-existed as ele-
ments has by successive steps been transformed
into animal substance. Nature precludes the pos-
sibility of either animals or vegetables subsisting
on elements; nor ma}' the animal subsist upon
minerals. Vital force, as such, is non-existent till
the vegetable is evolved for its action. " Life,"
says Professor Dana, " commenced among plants
in seaweeds, and it ended in palms, oaks, elms,
the orange, rose, etc. It commenced among ani-
mals in mollusks standing on a stem like a
plant ; it ended in man. There were higher and
lower species created through all ages, but the
successions were still in their general range of
higher and higher grade. With every new fauna



and flora in the passing periods there was a fuller
and higher exhibition of the kingdoms of life.''

On the subject of the evolution of life, Pro-
fessor Joseph Le Conte, enjoying the van of the
world's ablest scientists, says: "It (life) must
have come somewhat suddenly, but not, therefore,
by other than a natural process ; for the process
takes place dail}^ and under our eyes. When the
necessary conditions — sunlight, chlorophyl and
living protoplasm — are present, light and chemism
change at once into life force, and mineral matter
into living matter."

Aristotle, probably the ablest of the Grecian
metaphysicists, held that " plants have soul with-
out consciousness; that all animals have soul —
body and mind in them being inseparable; that
man has soul — intellect passive and intellect active;
that his intellect passive and his body are insepar-
able ; but that his intellect active is pure form —
cognition of the highest principles, existing as an
entity distinct, detached from matter; that it is
the prime mover of all — an immortal, self-sub-
sisting substance, the essence of deity."

This speculation of Aristotle respecting the
soul — the intellect active^ as he terms it, is adopted
by some authors of intellectual philosophy, and is
a tenet of religious faith with a vast number of
the human family.

" But of mind, apart from the body," says
Professor Bain, " we have no direct experience,
and absolutely no knowledge. * * * We are



not permitted to see a mind acting apart from its
material companion. * * * We have every
reason for believing that there is an unbroken
material succession, side by side with all our
mental processes. From the ingress of a sensa-
tion to outgoing responses in action, the mental
succession is not for an instant dissevered from
physical succession."

"Whatever," says Dr. Draper, "is not founded
on a material substratum is necessarily a castle
in the air. Old-school philosophers have sailed
upon a shoreless sea from which the fog never
lifts. '•■• '•■• '■'^- God ever materializes. =s: * *
No nobler conception can be had of the Great
Author of the wonderful forms around us than
to regard them all, the vegetable and animal,
the living and lifeless, the earth and the stars,
and the numberless worlds that are beyond our
vision, as ///


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Online LibraryIrving Murray ScottEvolution of education. Annual address before the Nevada State University, Reno, Nevada, Thursday, June 3, 1897 → online text (page 1 of 2)