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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 142 pages of information about Darkest India.

These might be arranged with the treble object of religious instruction, bodily recreation, and in order to find an occasional special market for the surplus goods that we produce.

Everything would be managed with military precision.  The place would be previously prepared for the reception of the people.  An attractive programme would be arranged.  Everybody would be made to feel comfortable and at home.  And no effort would be spared to make the occasion morally and spiritually profitable, as well as valuable for the relaxation it afforded to the bodies of those who attended, and financially profitable for the purpose of our Social Reform work.

CHAPTER XX.

HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?

In order to put the whole of the foregoing machinery into motion on an extensive scale, there can be no doubt that economise as we may, a considerable outlay will be unavoidable.  True we are able to supply skilled leadership under devoted and self-sacrificing men and women for a merely nominal cost.  True we have Europeans willing to live on the cheap native diet, and to assimilate themselves in dress, houses and other manners to the people amongst whom they live.  True that we have raised up around us an equally devoted band of Natives, in whose integrity we have the fullest confidence and whose ability and knowledge of the country will prove of valuable service to us in the carrying out of our scheme.  True that around our 450 European and Native officers, we have enlisted and drilled a force of several thousands of earnest soldiers of the Cross, who are pledged abstainers from all intoxicating liquors and drugs, who have renounced all forms of impurity and sin,—­who have promised to devote their lives to the social, moral and spiritual regeneration of their fellow countrymen,—­who are accustomed to pray and preach in their leisure hours, without being paid a cowrie for doing so, and who not only support themselves and their families by their labor, but contribute for the support of their officers.

Nevertheless, while it is a fact that this cheap and efficient agency exists for the carrying out of the reforms that have been sketched in the foregoing pages,—­it cannot be denied that a considerable sum of money will be needed for the successful launching of the scheme.

Once fairly started, we have every reason to believe that the plans here laid down will not only prove strictly self-supporting, but will yield such a margin of profit as will ultimately enable us to set on foot wholesale extensions of the scheme.  No doubt there will be local disappointments and individual failures.  We are dealing with human nature, and must anticipate that this will be the case.  But the proportion of success will far outweigh the fraction of failure, and when the profits and losses of the scheme came to be balanced year by year we have no doubt that socially, physically, morally and financially we shall be able to show so enormous a gain that the most unreasonable of our critics will be silenced.

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