Imágenes de páginas

the new religion of reason met with little ap- old forms in her rites and prayers, the minister's preciation.

What can the church do to strengthen religious belief? But, first, what is the church? Protestants, too, still always think of it as consisting of ministers, consistories, and church administration. This is a Catholic conception. Just as surely as the state does not consist of the government but of the entire people, so surely does the church consist not of the clergy but of the Christian community. Neither ministers nor the church government can check the spread of atheism without the aid of the community. Primarily, the consciousness of solidarity, of spiritual community, must be strengthened. If those who turn their back upon the church and become atheists because they find it faulty would cooperate to solve its problems they might soon realize what the church needs as well as what it could do for themselves. Ignorance is often the cause of unbelief. Kuno Fischer, the Heidelberg philosopher, remarked that in no domain are ignorance and an inclination to dogmatic

judgment greater than in that of religion.

But the church, on her side, should have a deeper realizing sense that times have changed. "If she should not surrender aught of her abiding truth, neither should she heedlessly condemn 'modern science,' modern conceptions,' as opposed in principle to the Christian religion."

The church, like every historical religion, clings to the old. The nearer it feels to its founder, its source, the surer is it of possess ing the truth. That is why the Roman Catholic Church refers to Peter as the first bishop in Rome, why the Protestant church goes back to Christ and the Bible.

The old traditional rites and the biblical language are dear to it; but they strike the modern man as strange. In our realistic age many have ceased to comprehend symbolic modes of expression; and if the church be right in preserving the

speech should not always be that of Canaan, in their outside, apologetic activity, in speaking but brief, strong, and practical; and particularly to those whom they would win over, should they follow present thought and speech.

A spirit of soberness is following upon scientific intoxication. Materialism is still a method of physical research, but it is no longer a philosophy; it does not suffice for a conception of life. Following the example of great English investigators, genuine research in Germany, too, once more recognizes its limits.

What the church should do to controvert the evil already done by popularizing the materialist view of life and by Socialist agitation is to "treat in a popular way such questions as: Is the Bible God's word? Is there a God? Is there a life after death?"

Much, it must be recognized, has been done by the church in the last decades in the way of good, of guarding its members from unbelief, of ices for children, which they have learned to gathering in the erring. It has organized servlove; founded associations of Christian young men; established shelters, houses of refuge, and the members of the congregation to co-operative sanitariums. Through its organization it incites benevolent activity. In many other ways has it become a beneficent instrument. More than 15,000 Protestant deaconesses give unostentatious a like devotion the Sisters of Charity and vaevidence of unselfish Christian kindness. With rious institutions of the Catholic Church pursue their charitable work.

Great as the harm that atheism has accomplished among the German people, the writer concludes, the church need have no fear. "She stands upon firm ground. She should complain less and have courage. The nation cannot dispense with her work."


S there any real, scientific basis for the time-honored belief that the swallows' high flight, the ascent of the trees by the tree-frogs, and the fishes' eagerness to bite indicate good, the opposite conduct, bad, weather? Robert Lendlmayr, professor of zoology at the University of Prague, considers this general subject of animals as weather prophets in an article in a German scientific journal, reprinted in a recent issue of the New York Staats-Zeitung. The reason, says the professor, that the swallows fly high or low, and the tree-frogs ascend or descend the trees, is that the insects which they pursue as

food fly sometimes high and sometimes low. The greater inclination of fishes to bite is accounted for by the fact that many insects flying low in order to lay their eggs in the water or when weak from breeding, fall into the water, which stimulates the fishes to a more active quest of food. The behavior of the swallows, tree-frogs, and fishes, then, is regulated by that of the insects, and, if the former can be considered to afford weather indications, it is really because the insects give such indications; whereas, the insects seem so little aware of coming weather conditions that, instead of seeking safety close to the

ground when bad weather threatens, they often mount up in the air, and we find them dashed to the earth, wounded or killed, by hailstones or raindrops.

Then comes the really valuable part of the article. We quote from its more important conclusions:

Observations upon the behavior of these animals sufficiently exact for scientific use may be most easily made with the tree-toad. I have in my time carried out two series of observations upon it, recording the heights above the ground at which these creatures confined in a high cage were at certain times of day, and used these notes for the construction of a curve which I then compared with the meteorological curves showing temperature, atmospheric pressure, moisture, rain, and wind. The result of the comparison of the former tree-toad curves with the latter meteorological curves was that no sort of connection existed between the ascent and descent of the tree-toads and the weather, either coming or contemporary, but that the time of day so far had an influence upon the conduct of these creatures, as they were wont to ascend toward evening. This negative result of observations makes it seem doubtful also whether the biting of the fishes and the high or low flight of the swallows have any connection with the coming weather, and points to the insects' flying up chiefly toward evening without regard to the

coming weather. Consequently, it must be conceded that the connection (contested by the mals and the subsequent weather is not proved. meteorologists) between the conduct of the aniFrom this, however, it is not to be concluded that no such connection whatever exists. It is by no means proved that, by the aid of improved methods, we shall not some time in the future succeed in proving such a connection, nevertheless.

[ocr errors]

The possibility is not to be summarily dismissed that many species of animals (particularly the insects) sense electric waves emanating from distant storms, the local electrical tension, the ionizing of the atmosphere, the permeability of higher air strata to light in small waves, and the atmospheric pressure, as well as moisture and temperature, and by certain combinations of such perceptions are reflexively led to special actions that stand on a casual relation to the coming weather. The question whether the high or low flight, respectively, of the insects and the behavior of the fishes, tree-frogs, and swallows standing in connection therewith can be used as weather indications seems to me to be not yet finally answered. So far as the scientific investigations hereupon permit a conclusion, no connection exists indeed; but, since an instinctive accommodation of the conduct of the insects to the coming weather is possible, and would undoubtedly be extremely advantageous to them, I deem it nevertheless not impossible that such a one exists in fact.


AT this time of general colonial expansion, it is interesting and important to note the methods of a country which has been eminently successful in its colonial undertakings. That country is Holland, a colonial power to a greater degree than any other except England; like her with subjects overseas far exceeding those of the motherland. A recent number of the Deutsche Rundschau contains an elaborate article by Adolf Mayer on the Dutch colonial possessions. Java is, however, the one to which the writer devotes almost exclusive attention, as being the best example of what may be accomplished in colonization by proper methods.

The great Island of Java is half the size of Germany, and as densely populated. The writer goes into detail regarding the conditions of soil and climate, which are most favorable to the growth of the tropical products raised there. The periodical extensive rainfalls and other climatic features, however, though advantageous to vegetable life, are very trying to foreigners. Java, in short, is stamped as a country for plantations, but

tion,-two wholly different propositions, which people inexperienced in colonization continue to confound. Java is not peopled by the Dutch; they form the leaven, but, in numbers, are only an inappreciable fraction of the population, about one in 700, yet it is that fraction that organizes, rules, manages, and, in a certain sense, exploits. There is hardly a Dutch family of the nobility or the higher middle classes of which some member has not been active in the East or West Indies, returning home with advancing years.

In order to colonize a land, the writer remarks, whose inhabitants we wish neither to decimate nor drive out, but to guide in accordance with their will, what is needed above all is to understand the soul of the people. The rest is purely a technical problem, which, presupposing the necessary energy, solves itself. So here, the writer discusses, at length, beyond the technical features of climate, sail, existing labor resources. and so on, a side of the question where cold izing nations fail far more frequently; and Java offers so interesting a model because

ly that the native population of the island has increased fourfold in the past century. The important question arises: How has she achieved her success?

The Malay of Java is by no means either so devoid of energy or so tame that he will bear lasting injustice or mismanagement. Severity, violence even, he will endure if they are conditioned by tradition and custom. But he will not stand a palpable injustice. For the time he appears perfectly impassive, but he secretly sharpens his kris or dagger and attacks the unjust overseer by night or in some lonely spot. The familiar phenomenon, too, in the Sunda, Islands of running amuck must "give us pause.' The Dutch system of government, then, has these features:

To be regardful of the feudal conditions which prevailed at the conquest of the country, modifying them only as self-interest demands. The old princes and nobles have remained; the honorary service which they regard as the essence of their dignity has been maintained. The Dutch of ficials, termed Residents, were co-ordinated with the native rulers in such a way that a native prince of the same district was to be treated as on an equal social plane, though as a younger brother, a minor.

The princes are in receipt of a large income, now paid by the Dutch Government, the greatest of them obtaining $360,000 or over, while the Governor-General receives but $108,000 and the Residents about $14,


The government is administered by natives as far as possible. Only the higher functions fall everywhere into the hands of the conquerors. To the lower grades of service in every department, as clerical employees, as surveyors, even physicians, the natives are admitted, and are prepared for these vocations in special schools.

The Dutch officials must master the language of the island completely. They are prepared in this in special schools in Delft and Leyden, where they likewise acquire a knowledge of East Indian institutions.

greater, indeed proverbial, energy, and the greatness and power of his motherland.

A Nation's Duty to Its Colonies. During a recent after-dinner speech at the Colonial Congress, held in Paris recently, M. G. Leygues, French Minister of Colonies (as reported in the Journal de St. Petersburg), said:

Colonial work is rough and hard, but for the To colonize is to go forward in our might to normal man no work can be more ennobling. tection and our instruction, to bend our wills to meet and to civilize races that need our prothe exigencies of new conditions and new cli

mates, to exercise our mental strength on the complex problems of the infinite diversity and the infinite possibilities of unknown life and unknown ground. To colonize means to call to being by new birth. It means creation. The material result is to increase the national capital and the capital of the universe, by lighting fires on untried hearthstones, and to make a dwelling place for hope and courage in a far-off land. Colonization is the highest work of man's fraternity, because the human good is the real reason,—the only reason,-for colonization. Colonization that aims at any object lower than the human good,-man's moral education and his physical well-being, is a low, degrading, and brutal work, a work unworthy of the strong


It never can be anything but dangerous, M. Leygues continued, to hold possession of a suffering or a weak colony. No country can hold colonies with any credit, or with any benefit to itself,-unless it can assure its possessions of peace, order, and comfort.

France keeps peace in her domains beyond the seas because her policy is broad and generous. We have proved to our colonists that we are true. They know that we are acting for the common interests, theirs and ours. We have taught them that the real meaning of our liberty is brotherhood. This talk of assimilation" is all wrong. There is no such thing possible. The idea is an error, and we must renounce it

now and forever. No one has ever "assimilated the races. In the diverse forms racial genius, racial morals, racial intellect, the essenFor outsiders the question is, indeed, not how tial racial qualities. there are equivalencies or the system could be improved, but, rather, what correspondencies, but there can be no identity. they may learn from Dutch colonial administra- Why should we impose our mental habits, our tion. We may learn something from every one, tastes, our manners, customs, and laws on people -and Holland, eminently practical to start with, for whom the words family," "society," and and rich with the experience of time, teaches us "property" hold a meaning diametrically oppothat she has achieved her great successes by site to the meaning that they, hold for us? striving to adapt herself as closely and as wisely France knows better than to force her colonists as possible to foreign conditions, not in accord- to the impossible. We do not attempt such an ance with a scheme concocted at the council- imposition,-first, because the national nature is table, but in touch with actual life. The Dutch- broad; next, because the barest philosophy man seeks to know the real soul of the people, would teach us better; and, last of all, because and treats them in accordance with that knowl- we know that to exploit such a policy would be edge; he is, in spite of his northern nature, re- to play with fire. Such play would be danmarkably adaptable; he conforms to the gerous; it would breed suspicion and defiance in strangers' ways, their dress, and so on, in con- our colonists. The fundamental principle of trast to the Englishman, who drags his country colonial policy should be unquestioning respect with him everywhere. If the latter is, in spite for the beliefs, the customs, the traditions of the of this, a good colonist, it is owing to his still subjugated or the protected people.


ALTHOUGH the word zemstvo has

loomed big in press dispatches during the past two years, and although this somewhat characteristic Russian institution has been freely discussed in magazines and general literature, the physician of the zemstvo has been only briefly mentioned when he was mentioned at all. In order to do tardy justice to a neglected hero, Dr. Wigdortschik gives a sketch (in the Russische Medicinische Rundschau, of Berlin) of the work of the zemstvo physician.

Dr. Wigdortschik first calls attention to the generally known fact that Russia is divided into governments and districts. But it is not so generally known that every district is divided into several medical districts, the number varying from three to ten, according to the size of the district and the development which the practice of medicine enjoys in the locality. In those governments, however, which are thickly populated, and in which the zemstvo organization is in the hands of progressive men, the size of the medical districts is reduced to a minimum. This is the case with the Moscow government, where the average radius of the medical district is only about nine kilometers, although the contrary is true for the Vologda government, which is thinly populated, where the medical districts have a radius of sixty or more kilometers. Likewise, the number of people in a single district varies widely; we have a minimum of 13,500 in the Petersburg government, and a maximum, 60,000, in the Ufa government.

These medical districts are the workrooms of the zemstvo physician, and this man is the guiding mind in the vast system of free medical assistance which is given the people by the zemstvo bodies. In choosing a place for the residence of the physician, density of population and means of communication are the deciding factors, since the residence of the physician is the central point in the development of the entire medical work of the district. Consequently we find grouped around the physician's residence the different buildings which are included in the scheme of free medical assistance: hospital, pharmacy, lying-in pavilion, and so forth, although it must be understood that the completeness of the installation is not the same

The zemstvo physician is assisted in his work by men and women physicians and by. midwives, and "thanks to the development of schools and colleges during the last decade, an army of devoted and unselfish workers has been brought into the field. These men and women stick to the head physician to the last breath.”

The physician of the large city who thinks that he is overworked will do well to consider the prodigies accomplished by his Russian colleague. There is no doubt that only a man devoted to the cause and totally forgetful of self would ever enter this exacting field.

hospital work, but he is obliged to make periodiNot only must the physician take care of his cal trips through his entire district. Every day hundreds of sick persons come to the hospital from all parts of the country, and it frequently happens that a zemstvo physician sees and prescribes for from 100 to 200 patients a day. Naturally it is impossible for the physician to make anything like a complete investigation under these circumstances, but the unavoidable neglect is balanced by later examinations and also by the reception of a large number of the patients in the hospital. The evil is also mitigated in many governments by increasing the number of medical districts, in that of Moscow, for example, the number of patients is limited to forty per physician and per day. The great names which glorify Russian medical annals are nearly all of men who have served their time in the zemstvo work. In many an outlying district one frequently finds a medicament in application or a surgical procedure in use which has just been described in some international medical journal. Many of the zemstvo physicians also become extremely skillful surgeons, and it is by no means rare for one of the men to be called from the field to some great university.

The salary which the zemstvo physician receives in no sense compensates for the value given, although this is somewhat due to the nature of the work. Thus, the physician is paid by the zemstvo and nothing is received from the patients themselves.

The patient in the majority of cases is in no position to pay for medical advice nor does he feel an obligation to do so, as the physician is paid by the taxes collected from the peasants. It happens, however, that the peasant at times does offer the physician an honorarium, but in almost any case the proffered fee is refused, because the physician is unwilling to create the impression among the other patients that he gives greater care to those who can pay than to those who cannot. As a rule, the salary of the physi

tremes being $500 and $1000, and in several peasant. These men come in vital touch zemstvos the salary increases with the time of with Russian misery, they see before their service. It rarely happens, however that even

after twenty years' service the physician receives very eyes all the reality of Russian poverty, more than $1000, although a house, rent free, is ignorance and wrong, and their one thought frequently included. Especially worthy of men- is to rouse the people from their lethargy. tion is the vacation time alloted the physician by The erection of schools, libraries, and asylums many zemstvos,-yearly one month, and after three or four years a vacation of several months. is almost invariably due to the initiative of This vacation time is always utilized by the men zemstvo physicians, and these men not only in special work in foreign centers. unfold an activity in this direction, but they also deliver lectures to the peasants, lend The zemstvo physician truly loves the them books, and do all in their power to make starving, crushed peasant; he is intensely in the serf a man. "Naturally the Russian . sympathy with the poor, stupid Russian serf, Government is constantly working to stifle and he considers his work a moral duty to his the liberalizing propaganda, but the men in fellows. Under these circumstances it is not the field present a solid front, and they are surprising that in spite of his onerous work in many respects the soul of democratic the physician still finds time to enlighten the Russia."



one who notes carefully the advertising signs of the large German towns and also those of German Switzerland will be struck with the frequent recurrence of the words "Licht-Luftbad Anstalt." A little further investigation will show that the building on which this sign is placed is surrounded by a high fence, and if one goes in side numbers of men and women will be found disporting themselves in the open air. These people are clothed sufficiently, but the clothing they wear is light to a degree and it admits all of the air and sun possible. A little more inquiry and the stranger will find that this establishment is but one of a large number scattered throughout the whole of Germany, and that it stands for a new method of returning to nature. There is nothing of the fad about the method, however, and close investigation will show that the results obtained are excellent and permanent.

Professor Schneider, in the Centralblatt für Allgemeine Gesundheitspflege (Bonn), discusses the new treatment in enthusiastic terms, telling us that, if there is one thing man has remained behind in during the great progress of the last fifty years, it is the care of the body. And, with all the unreason of the situation, we consider disease the curse of God instead of looking the matter clearly in the face and recognizing that our physical failings are, in the great majority of cases, caused by violation of the laws of health or the satisfaction of abnormal appetites. With the increase of disease, however, great efforts have been made to get rid of it, and among

these efforts that of physical culture is the most pronounced to-day.

Man is not a water animal, but an air animal. Air is his element and this element is vital in health and disease. Therefore, we find the air-bath highly recommended by experienced physicians; we are told to live in the air, sleep in the air, and bathe in the air. And the salutary effects of this advice are not slow in appearing. Diseased and nervous persons grow stronger and, in the majority of cases, well under this régime, and the constant movement and gymnastic exercises which are incident to the treatment are valuable auxiliaries in the curative process."

At first the air-baths were used only by sanitariums, but later they were developed by associations, and now the initiative is being taken by municipalities. Professor Schneider advises all cities and towns to acquire as soon as possible a parcel of ground and turn it into an air and sun bathing place for the people.

It will be found that this returns as much interest in health on the investment as hospitals be chosen at a point which is not exposed to the and tuberculosis solariums. The ground should wind, but it must be in the open and isolated from dwelling houses as much as possible in order that purity of air and freedom from obA three-meter fence servation may be assured. sodded if it is not already covered with grass. is also indispensable, and the earth must be In one portion of the plot a pile of sand should be placed as a lounging place on warm days, and ample douching facilities should be provided. Gymnastic apparatus must also be a part of the establishment, as this is an important feature of the treatment.

« AnteriorContinuar »