Education for Childhood or Maturity - RR148B4

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Professor: Rushdoony, Dr. R. J.
Title: Education for Childhood or Maturity
Course: Course - Philosophy of Christian Eduction in Christian Schools
Subject: Subject:Education
Lesson#: 4
Length: 1:20:30
TapeCode: RR148B4
Audio: Chalcedon Archive
Transcript: .docx Format
Philosophy of Christian Eduction in Christian Schools.jpg

This transcript is unedited. It was:
Archived by the Mt. Olive Tape Library
Digitized, transcribed, and published by Christ Rules
Posted by with permission.

Our subject this evening is Education for Childhood or Maturity. One of the more serious errors of our time is that we too often take, as a fact of nature, something which is a fact of humanism. Too often we assume that something is God-ordained in that God intended it as the normal and natural part of life, when it is simply a perversion engendered by the religion of humanity, or humanism.

One of these perversions is that phase of life now taken for granted as a natural part of life: adolescence. Adolescence is not a natural phenomenon. Throughout most of the history of civilization and mankind, adolescence has not existed. It is, for the most part, a modern phenomenon, having rarely occurred in the history of mankind, and representing a radical departure from the normal experience of humanity. You will, however, find in most education departments in colleges and universities across the country, as a part of the educational department’s requirements, a course on the psychology of adolescence, and you will be told that adolescence is a normal part of human development. Not so. Most of the time in human history, that age which we call adolescence has not been a time of storm and stress and rebellion, that while they’re the closest imitation of parents. Instead of children being at warfare with father and mother, they’re most anxious to follow their guidance. Why? Because, under normal circumstances, youth begins to feel its growing maturity approaching womanhood and manhood, and therefore, it feels most anxious to attain to those things that characterize mature womanhood and mature manhood. Thus, historically throughout civilization, whether in simple tribal cultures or advanced societies, when children begin to approach their teens and not in their teens, they have normally felt the closest to their elders. Boys, anxious to put on those things which pertain to manhood, girls most anxious to put on those things which pertain to womanhood. Maturity has been a goal, and maturity was to be learned from one’s elders. Then why this strange deformity? Or perhaps better call it insanity. One of my daughters called it that, when she was twelve years old seeing what she saw among other girls in the area. She said, “Dad, I hate to think about being a teenager. Kids go crazy when they hit their teens.” She never did. Why? Because from the beginning, she had been reared in terms of a rooten branch principle that made it clear that adolescence was not a normal thing, but a twisted, a warped thing. [00:05:03]

Now, what undergirds the present theory of adolescence...[edit]

Now, what undergirds the present theory of adolescence, because it is a theory and it is an aberration? It is the doctrine, the religious doctrine of evolution, the myth of evolution. In terms of the myth, you have an automatic progress so with each generation, humanity moves a step forward in its evolution towards a higher race, and therefore, imbued with a doctrine of evolution, you have the kind of thing you had in the sixties when you said, “Never trust anyone over thirty. They belong, you see, to the past.” The wave of the future is the wave of children coming up, and if they are to advance, they must cast off the bonds of the past. The doctrine of evolution thus, requires you to see as a necessity the breaking of ties rather than the establishing of ties for the older generation. One of the slogans of recent years is, “I want to be free. I want to be me.” It’s a product of the philosophy which undergirds this aberration, adolescence.

Adolescence thus, is a recent thing. It is a product of an alien religion. We must never treat is as something normal. Again, we have another alien concept in our midst, the current concept of childhood. Because of the doctrine of evolution, very early there came about an opinion that held that ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny. That the child in its development repeats the history of the race. That supposedly, as an embryo, it goes through all the animal stages from the fish stage onto the present, and then as a child goes through the stages of mankind, and hence, you teach them something about Indian culture and so on, because they’re going to go through the tribal stage until they reach and develop past the present state of mankind.

Well, first of all, in any college course today, you will get drawings of the human embryo which ostensibly show the embryo going through a variety of stages which seem to indicate that the embryo indeed does recapitulate evolution. Those drawings were, in the 1890’s, I believe, exposed as fraud. The perpetrator was a noted scientist of the time; Ernst Haeckel. The fact that they were exposed as a fraud did not lead to their abolition. They continued to be used with minor variations to the present. They represent fraud. Nor does the child repeat the history of the human race in its development, but if you assume that the child does, and as far back as the day shortly after G. Stanley Hall, it was shown that this recapitulation theory was a myth, but the idea still persists like Haeckel’s drawings, in our thinking. You will assume that the child is a primitive, and only step by step is brought up the level of modern man. [00:09:41]

This is the implication of the theory of evolution...[edit]

This is the implication of the theory of evolution, of the religion which undergirds the theory of evolution, but for us, as Christians, we must believe that man was created a mature creation, a mature being. Adam was not created a child nor an adolescent, but a mature man, and the basic nature of man is maturity, and this immediately condemns all current psychology including many ostensibly Christian versions. If you are interested in the subject, if I may be pardoned a commercial, my most recent book is entitled Revolt Against Maturity, and the point I make in that book is precisely this: That Adam was created a mature man, and basic to sin is a revolt against maturity. Man likes to kid himself, to give himself and his children, and everyone that sin represents immaturity. Sin, whether it is in the child or in the man represents a revolt against maturity, because the image of God as it is in man, and as it was given to Adam is one of maturity, knowledge, holiness, righteousness, dominion, and man does not want to acknowledge that he, as a person created in this image of maturity, is rebelling against maturing and willfully choosing to be a child, and therefore to excuse his sins.

Our doctrine, therefore, whether of the man or of the child must be one which is in conformity with scripture. This morning I pointed out that the child has the same IQ at the age of Day 1 as year 21. The only difference is the data that it accumulates. The child is as intelligent at every step as he will be years later. If you’re not parents now, and you will be, you’ll find very quickly that a child in a high chair, barely able or not yet able to talk can outsmart you very often, and that they show every mark of a mature depravity. [00:12:49]

Now, consider the implications of all of this, for...[edit]

Now, consider the implications of all of this, for education. For humanism, beginning with the Enlightenment long before Darwin, evolution was a fact of cultural history. Darwin simply put the capstone with his doctrine of biological evolution on a long development of the theory of evolution. First, there was the theory of social evolution and finally the doctrine of biological evolution. Rousseau’s doctrine of primitive man as the standard, of course, before Darwin began to turn evolution backwards, looking to primitive man as the ideal and as the standard, and man began to understand himself by looking to the past, not forward to the new creation in Christ, nor to the mature creation in Adam, from which man had departed and in terms of which he is recreated in Jesus Christ.

As a result, because we have seen not maturity as basic to the nature of man, but primitivism. In every area of life, we have come to worship primitivism. We have primitivism in art, primitivism in literature, primitivism in education, educate the child not the man, and the result has been a progressive deterioration of education, of the content and of the quality. We have moreover as a result of this education for a permanent childhood. What is the goal of most people today? Permanent childhood. Permanent youth. No way you can better flatter anybody by telling that they are 60 or 61 that, “Oh, I wouldn’t have thought it. I thought you were 40 years old.” The worship, you see, of youth, but immaturity. I’m happy to report, by the way, that I’m 61. I’m proud of my grey hairs, I’ve earned them. I believe in the biblical doctrine which says that, hoary hairs are to be respected, and the more hoary hairs I get the more I favor it, but I was brought up that way, and age was respected, because the word of God required it, and maturity was the goal, not immaturity. [00:16:26]

But in our clothing, in our manners, in every way we...[edit]

But in our clothing, in our manners, in every way we try to perpetuate the idea of perpetual immaturity, and no where is this more visible than in education. Humanistic education wants to turn schooling into play. The more tools you can get, mechanical tools, to turn it into play, the more supposedly successful it will be, and the more, of course, you give the child the idea that he is to be pleased, when in terms of our faith the child is to please God. The sooner the child learns that, the better, because they’ll have a healthier perspective on life and on themselves.

I mentioned this morning that we no longer have very many child prodigies and they were once commonplace, and I pointed out that it was because, at that time, not having the doctrine of evolution, they recognized that the child had all the potentialities and the abilities of any adult, and they educated them accordingly. Puritan mothers saw to it, if they were at all conscientious that, as soon as their child was able to speak, they not only answered the endless questions their children asked, which was a tremendous stimulus to their growth, but they also tried to teach them to read between the ages of 2 and 4. It is also been found incidentally, the more adults there are in a home, the greater the stimulus to the mental growth of the child, because there are that many more adults to give attention to the child and to answer its questions, because a child is an endless source of questions in a godly home, where there is attention given to the child and the delight in the child’s growth. The prodigies you see were a product of this kind of attention, and if they were at all intelligent, they developed phenomenally. [00:19:18]

Dobinei, the first of the two Dobineis, one was an...[edit]

Dobinei, the first of the two Dobineis, one was an 18th century church historian, the other came at the time of Henry IV, the earlier Dobinei. At the age of five, had not only been thoroughly instructed in the doctrines of the faith and could read and write fluently, but knew the meaning of the Lord’s table. When he was one of the number captures by the Inquisition, he was given his choice of partaking of the mass, even though he was a child it was a test for all of those they had caught, or facing the stake. At the age of five, he gave a very clear-cut testimony to the {?} but then, of course, he was not a child. He was a young man because of what he had been taught so that between the ages of five and ten, Dobine conducted himself with more intelligence and a clear statement of his faith in repeated situations than your adult church officers very commonly will today.

Or consider Paschal. Pascal’s father educated his own son. By the time he was eleven, he had mastered physics and written, I believe, a treatise of light, which is very basic to physics. Imagine writing something that becomes a major scientific contribution at that age. His father, because he wanted him to concentrate in the area of physics, had kept him away from mathematics, and the boy asked his father what mathematics was about. The father gave him a two-sentence definition of mathematics. The boy went away and almost overnight reproduced the whole of plane and solid geometry from the definition. How is that possible? Oh yes, I’ll grant you he was a genius, but we have geniuses today who cannot do that. The difference was in the kind of schooling they received. It presupposed the doctrine of creation, and that man was created mature, that he did not evolve out of non-being into a primitive blob, and from there on to primitive man. [00:22:31]

We need not go to these great figures...[edit]

We need not go to these great figures. I’ve talked to many a family, because genealogy interests me. I think it’s an important thing. The Bible shows a great deal of interest in genealogy, and I think it’s good to do so, especially if you have no horse thieves in your background. My father could recite, father and son, his family background to the early Middle Ages and earlier, and trace it back to the 17th century BC. It was a marvelous thing. I feel rich for that. Now, as I’ve talked to people as I so often do, the thing that keeps coming up, “Well, my grandfather was a sea captain at the age of 18, sailed a ship around the Horn.” That was not uncommon. A man at 18, captain of a ship? Yes, that was commonplace. Those of you who know American history know who Admiral Faragut (?) was. The age of 59, when he was an admiral, he was a 50 year veteran of the U.S. Navy, and {?} they didn’t count his first year and a half, almost two years, because he was a cabin boy. That was not unusual.

You all know the hymn, Amazing Grace. John Newton went to sea not too long after the same age as Faragut. Before he was 20, he was a ship’s captain. Not unusual in those days, and in those days, a ship’s captain had to have a lot of navigational knowledge in his head, a tremendous knowledge of mathematics. He didn’t have as many instruments to rely on.

Oh, I can tell you stories, even from my childhood. It wasn’t too far back, by the way, when you still had, in some of your small town and rural areas something of the old spirit living. I went to school with a boy named Hobert Brown, and he was not unusual, but his father died before he was in his teens and Hobert took over and ran the farm, managed it, made a success of it, and I can point to other boys I knew who did the same. Today, the state would take over, you see, and put the children of that age into a foster home because they would be regarded as children, but they were then, men, and they performed the work of men. What is the difference? It’s a false doctrine of man, a doctrine of man grounded on an alien religion, an anti-Christian religion, humanism with its belief in evolution, and so today, we do not have maturity, and so today we postpone maturity endlessly. [00:26:43]

I’m going to make a prediction, as of here and now...[edit]

I’m going to make a prediction, as of here and now. It’s a safe one because here and there there are Christian schools which are tentatively moving towards this. I won’t name them because it would be premature, but before too many years, in Christian schools, children will complete what is now completed in twelve in nine or ten years, and will be well ahead of the state school children. The whole span of education will be shortened, because first there will be a progressively stronger discipline in the home, a more and more self-conscious awareness of the issue in the schools and on the part of the teachers, and thus a greater aptitude for learning on the part of the pupils and of teaching on the part of the teachers. Already, it becomes more and more difficult in every good Christian school to receive transfers from the government schools without some kind of remedial work, and even then, you have to select the better pupils.

You see, the doctrine of evolution says that because it is primitivism that is basic to man, the most recent and therefore the weakest factor in man is his reason, his mind. It is the last development of evolution. If it’s the last development, it’s the least powerful, the least determinative, and so it is man is seen in terms of his emotions, seen in terms of that which is primitive in man. Freudianism, of course, is the epitome of this position.

As a result, the mind is the last thing you can rely upon in man, because it is so continually governed by the unconscious with all its primitive desires that the mind is very weak as against these unconscious, primitive forces in man. This makes man, you see, hardly a creature who can be well-educated. Basic in him, is a primitive, subhuman nature, which will override his reason. How far can you go when that position undergirds your view of a child and of the man? Moreover, it produced, you see, in children when you gear them to this revolt against maturity, as I call it in my book (that’s another commercial) to an unwillingness to mature. So that maturity becomes offensive. It means settling down into a mold, it means becoming obsolete, so you must continually assert the primitive aspect of your being. You must ostensibly, primitive aspect of your being really, your sin. You must rebel. You must revolt. You must not conform, and as a result, it produces progressively a person who is in revolt against civilization and education. [00:31:19]

A few years ago, a very interesting book was written...[edit]

A few years ago, a very interesting book was written by Gunther Stent. I always like to refer to it because it amuses me so much. Dr. Gunther Stent is a molecular biologist at the University of California at Berkeley. He’s a very brilliant man, and a very pessimistic man. The jist of his book really has to do with the belief of man that God is dead, but he never mentions the name of God. As I mentioned to some of you yesterday, one of the things that amuses me, when I go on university campuses, the real profanity there is no longer the four-letter words. Those are highly respectable. The profanity that makes them cringe in shock is to speak about God and especially about Jesus Christ. They cringe in embarrassment to think that anyone so primitive is on a platform in a modern university. So, Gunther Stent does not speak of God, but what he is saying is that what we have for a long time dreamed of the day when we would have cleared ourselves of the superstitions of the past and be rid of all these obsolete ideas. But what has happened? We are now beyond good and evil, beyond right and wrong, and therefore, beyond progress, because what is better? What represents progress? You no longer have any standard, and so he says, in the arts you have anti-art. You have John Cage recording random sounds on tape recorders in the streets, and then playing these as a symphony of the streets, or some such thing. Or having the orchestra get up and sit for fifteen minutes in silence; the symphony of silence. Or you have artists who will put a piece of canvas on the ground, splash different colors of paint on their motorcycle wheels and drive back and forth across the canvas. Or you have poets writing anti-poems in which various words are simply thrown onto the page. What are they saying? That there is no meaning.

Now, if there is no meaning to life, what is the point of anything, and so he says the pleasure of principle now governs mankind increasingly, and we are rapidly moving to the same dead level as the Polynesians, and so, he says, we are beginning to see the results in graduate studies. We no longer have the zeal for discovery on the part of graduate students. They are antiquarians. It happens to be their “thing” to be interested in physics, or biology, or chemistry just as it’s somebody’s thing to play a guitar, and so he says very soon, even that will disappear, and mankind, in a couple of centuries, will disappear. I believe it was April of 1971 when Natural History gave the book about a four-page review. I think it was one of the editors who reviewed it, as I recall. By and large, he was in agreement with the book until he came to Dr. Stent’s prediction that mankind would only last another couple of hundred years, and he said, “I cannot buy Dr. Stent’s optimism.” Well, you see, this is the logic of a faith that is humanistic. It has no standards, finally it can no longer educate of see any hope for man. [00:36:19]

One of the books our Foundation has put out is an edition...[edit]

One of the books our Foundation has put out is an edition of Watt’s Divine and Moral Songs for Children. There is an introduction to it by Mrs. Elizabeth A. Wells. Watt’s songs are excellent, and those of you who deal with primary children would do well to buy the book to use those poems for your children. But the essay that she writes is superb, and no matter at what level you are in education, you should read it for that introduction. She points out that the idea of literature for children is a relatively new thing. It is a product, to a great extent, of the doctrine of evolution and the modern concept of the child, that prior to that, what the child was given to read was the Bible, Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress and his other words, Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, and so on, and as she points out, this created an entirely different kind of person than is created by reading Winnie the Pooh.

Now we’re not going to get back to those old standards overnight. One of our problems is not only the children but their parents. The parents represent the old humanistic evolutionary thinking. They themselves look at their children with evolutionary eyes even though, when they open the Bible, they say they believe it from cover to cover. But step by step, as you take children up through Christian school, and as you yourself mature in your teaching, you are going to think of the child, not in terms of evolution, but in terms of God’s creation of us into maturity, and of man’s sin as a revolt against maturity, and you will be less and less indulgent of immaturity. You will progressively enable the child to see that they are not the center, and it is not the purpose of education to please them, but it must be their purpose to please the Lord God of Hosts. [00:39:33]

Moreover, as I indicated this morning, we need to educate...[edit]

Moreover, as I indicated this morning, we need to educate parents to their responsibilities, and their capabilities as teachers. The most difficult task in all of education, from kindergarten on through graduate school, is regularly accomplished by every mother, with ease. It’s this: teaching a baby who understands not a word of any language, the mother tongue. It’s a remarkable achievement done regularly by every mother, so it’s ridiculous to assume that mother’s are incapable of teaching their children. They’ve already performed the most difficult task in all of education. They’ve done it in short order and at no step in the entire schooling of a child is anything learned more rapidly than that particular tremendous discipline of learning. But this is regularly underrated. Just as I indicated, the desire of the young child to learn is underrated.

I know that when my boy entered school, we were in a place where there was no Christian school so that, briefly, they had to go to a state school, which was very painful for me, and I shall never forget how eager my son was to go to school and learn. He was going to be grown up. He went and nothing was said about learning to read and mastering anything. That was his desire. Instead he was given a lot of pictures to draw, and he came home almost in tears. In fact, everyday as he came home with a folder of drawings that the teacher sent home with him, I would see him walk into the house, around to the back door, into the kitchen and past the wastebasket, and drop them, held behind his back, into the wastebasket as he walked past it. He was embarrassed and ashamed by that stuff. It was baby stuff he told me once. He wanted to be a man. [00:42:50]

The story that I enjoy telling tremendously is one...[edit]

The story that I enjoy telling tremendously is one of a radio announcer in a western city. I was called into the community to speak at a Christian school commencement exercise. During the day and a half, or two days before, I spoke to several organizations in the community and I was asked to speak on this secular radio station on a call-in show. The man conducting the show was quite a remarkable young man. He had been, until recently, an airline pilot but he felt that it took him away from his family too much so he had chosen this position soon after he returned to the airlines however. At any rate, he had an infant boy and a daughter of five. About six months previously, the daughter had started kindergarten at the public school in his neighborhood. Later on, he put the child in a Christian school, but that’s another story. The girl came home in tears. She expected to be a big girl, to learn how to read. Nothing happened, just a lot of silly songs and games, she said. So, after she came home crying two, three days in a row, Don felt very upset about it. So, he went out and looked around, made some inquiries, and bought an alphabet book, and a couple of other story books and sat down, taught his daughter the alphabet, without knowing it taught her phonics, and in a very short time, in a matter of a few weeks, she was reading. In fact, she could make out the headlines and other things on the newspapers he received. She didn’t understand it but she could read the words. She was very proud of herself. She made, however, the mistake of reading something proudly at school on the bulletin board, and Don said, “My wife was away for the day, and they called me at the radio station, that there was an emergency at the school,” and he said, “I had no idea what had happened. Was my girl in an accident or had she done some horrible thing? What was the emergency?” He said, “I hurried down there,” and he said, “the principal and the kindergarten teacher began to rail at me with vehemence about the tremendous damage I was doing my child, that didn’t I know that a child was not ready for such things, and to push a child could do a great deal of damage.” [00:46:21]

And he said, “They really ticked me off for quite awhile...[edit]

And he said, “They really ticked me off for quite awhile. Finally, when they were out of breath, I told them, I said, ‘You know, it’s a strange thing. Being an airline pilot I enjoy flying, and I’m a member of a club and therefore, I have access to a plane, and on Saturdays I help my wife out by taking the girl off her hands and I go down to the airport, and from the time of about four, four and a half, my daughter flying with me every Saturday, began to ask me to teach her what this and that control meant.’” So he said, “‘By the time she had started kindergarten, although,’” he said, “‘this was not according to Hoyle and I could have gotten into trouble if it was known, I could sit there and never touch the controls and she could take that plane off the ground, fly it around, and land it,’” and he said, “‘you’re telling me she’s not mature enough to learn how to read? Why she flies a plane and she reads.’“ And he said, “You know, they were very angry with me.” Well, he told me this over the air, and they had radios in the teacher’s lounges at the various public schools in that city, and you should have seen the switchboard light up.

Well, you see, why, when we have the doctrines we do, do we underrate children? Is it not because we have imbibed of the false doctrine that is around us, and with which unfortunately we were trained too often as a result of our public schooling and our college and university training? And the net result of it all has been to deform our outlook and to make it at point sub-Christian. And if we apply biblical doctrine to our children, the results will be remarkable. My children, before they were in their teens, were so far ahead of what I was at that age and in college that it was startling to me and marvelous in my eyes, and I believe their children will be even further along because they are being reared systematically in terms of the biblical doctrine of creation and of man, and therefore, of the child. [00:49:16]

The child, you see, has tremendous capacities...[edit]

The child, you see, has tremendous capacities. We need, therefore, more meaty teaching for them constantly, more meaty training of the child, and then of the adult. Education is not entertainment. It is learning, and it is learning not that we might be better equipped to realize ourselves. That’s a humanistic concept, but that we might better fulfill that which is God’s purpose for us. You see, we are not our own. We are God’s property. We have no right to use ourselves or our children in terms of our own purposes, but only in terms of the Lord’s purpose. The term “Lord,” kurios in the Greek, in its root meaning means slave owner, and also God. It means, therefore, that we are the absolute property of the Lord Jesus Christ, that there is not an atom of our being that is our own. This is why we are commanded, both in our lives and in every area of the word to bring every area of life and thought into captivity to Jesus Christ.

In terms of this, we must be mature men in Christ, and mature women, and we must educate for maturity, because immaturity is sin. It is a revolt against maturity, against God’s creation of us. Modern man, humanistic man is increasingly an impotent person, and I mean that in the most literal and fullest sense of the term. He is progressively, mentally, spiritually, and physically impotent. He is a child, a primitive in a world that requires men, and this is why less and less, will humanism be able to command the future, because it is rearing its own for impotence, it is committing suicide. We, the more we educate for maturity, the more we educate young Christians to exercise dominion in the Lord’s name. [00:52:56]

Has it ever occurred to you why our Lord’s words, Matthew...[edit]

Has it ever occurred to you why our Lord’s words, Matthew 28:18-20 are called the Great Commission? The Great Commission? They are called the Great Commission because “the” commission was the commission to Joshua, in Joshua 1:2-8, I believe, and if you put the two commissions together, you can see that our Lord’s Great Commission was a repetition of the commission to Joshua, only now it is to all the world. It’s “Go ye therefore,” and as the Lord told Joshua, “Withersoever thou goest, where so ever thy feet shall tread, when you go in my name and in my power, that will I give you.” “Go ye therefore now into all the world and make disciples of all nations,” of the men, of the nations, of the institutions, “and lo, I am with you alway, even till the end of the world.” Now, we’re not told to look to see what results we get. Those are in the hands of the Lord, but we are told the duty is ours to occupy, to occupy till He comes, and therefore, we must go, but we can only go if we are mature, and hence, we must educate, not for perpetual childhood, but for maturity.

Are there any questions now? Yes?

[Audience] {?} [00:55:28]

[Rushdoony] All of them are learning to read at a good...[edit]

[Rushdoony] All of them are learning to read at a good rate, or some only.

[Audience] All the time {?}

[Rushdoony] Yes. I think we need to help those who are learning at a rapid rate and not to hold them back. Ideally, if there can be some way of separating the two and enabling those who are learning at the most rapid rate to go on, to go on. It will provide an incentive, in most cases, for the others, because we want to produce leadership, mature people in Christ, and therefore, without neglecting those who are backward, we’ve got to, at the same time, enable the best to go ahead, to do nothing to hold them back. Let me add that I’ve actually seen, in some kindergartens where they have reading programs that, in time they get the children so highly motivated by delighting in progress and in growth, that their only problem with the children becomes this: the children want to steal the more advanced readers and sneak them home to read overnight. Now, that’s motivating them, you see. It takes time to do, but don’t hold back your best students. Yes?

[Audience] {?}

[Rushdoony] It isn’t any one child psychologist that has advocated this doctrine of “don’t pressure the child.” It’s been almost the universal thing for some years as a result of the doctrine of evolution, and of the kind of thinking that G. Stanley Hall represented, that the child recapitulates the race in his development. There are a few humanistic psychologists that are trying to break with that, but by and large, the students in the schools are still held back, because it is believed that too rapid a rate is not good for their social development, and the social development takes primacy, because the public school has essential a political goal in the schools, not the development of the child’s welfare. So, it is not thinking in terms of an individualistic humanism, but a socialistic humanism. Yes?

[Audience] {?} [00:59:34]

[Rushdoony] Sometimes, it will depend on the child...[edit]

[Rushdoony] Sometimes, it will depend on the child, as to which is best, but if the child shows a readiness to go onto a more advanced level, by all means encourage the child. One of the most remarkable things I ever saw was in a school I visited a few years ago, and this boy was so miserable in the state school, and so mistreated by other pupils because he really wanted to learn, and the teacher regarded him as anti-social. The term that was used was that his behavior was deviant, because he was not interested in socializing. The child was coming home in tears, he was a fifth grade boy. The parents heard about a Christian school in the area and drove something like 20 miles to make sure the child got into school. Well, the boy blossomed and in no time at all, he was not only showing a great deal of interest in every subject, but his interest in {?} became so intense that he went into the principal’s office and saw a Hebrew textbook and he asked if he could borrow it and be given help to start learning Hebrew. He did, on his own. Well, you see, unless you let a child go ahead in such cases, you’re cutting off a potential leader of the future. That child has a tremendous aptitude. It was all but destroyed in the state school. It began to find itself in the Christian school. Now, this is sometimes difficult in a school, I grant you, but think of the excitement of having students like that. The student never will thrive if a straightjacket is placed upon him of an alien faith. It is in the nature of the child who is godly to want to learn to grow because the child wants to imitate adults, and if the pattern of imitation that is set up for the child is a godly one, the possibilities are very great. Yes?

[Audience] You made reference several times to {?} children to learn. Would you ever think that the {?}

[Rushdoony] The question is would I advocate that the Christian school go lower and lower in its age limit for admittance and what affect would this have on the relationship of the child to the home? It’s a very good question. First of all, we are faced increasingly with two facts: One, the state schools are thinking of going lower and lower. They are thinking in some state of four years old, and in others, three year olds. The only reason they have not yet undertaken it is the lack of financing. State legislatures are not yet ready to appropriate the funds. These men hope that, somehow through federal funding, they will get the funds to do it. So, you have the fact that this is the goal, on the part of the state schools. Then second, you have the fact that, increasingly more and more rigid regulations are being imposed upon any kind of care of children under five. Some of the cases in this area are quite startling. To cite one, and if you’ll pardon me a moment, I’ll try to locate it. [01:04:54]

Yes, the Merrywoods Baptist Church of Houghton, Louisiana...[edit]

Yes, the Merrywoods Baptist Church of Houghton, Louisiana reports an attack on their work by the Louisiana welfare department. The department is seeking to require the church to license its nursery as a child daycare center. The nursery was being used by the church’s Thursday morning soul-winning visitation team. According to the Louisiana statutes, any gathering of five or more children constitutes a daycare facility no matter that it is a part of the church, and must be state-licensed. Among the thirty-plus stages {?} of requirements are included the following to obtain a license. 1) No discipline of any kind is permitted, 2) Children are not permitted to bring their own lunches, 3) It is recommended that each facility have state-approved guidance counselors and teachers. The church is standing firm in their resolve not to submit to this unconstitutional control. According to Pastor Bill Burrough, “We have no intention of compromising our biblical stand. If we do so, then it is only a matter of time until they tell us what we can and cannot teach our children and preach from the pulpit.” I’ve been reading from the “Christian Watchman” of the Christian Schools of Ohio.

Now, that’s not an isolated case. It’s the kind of this that’s increasingly becoming a reality. So you have on the one hand, the attempt by the state to move into this kind of thing and to take over all children at that age, and on the other hand, to make it so difficult for Christians to take over that it becomes impossible. So, we have a real battle there.

Now, what about the Christians moving into this area? A truly Christian school will, in working with such young children, make sure that it does not weaken the family but strengthens it. It will, at the same time, work closely, as I indicated this morning, with parents to let them know how much is taught the child before the child even learns to speak, and how much they contribute in the home to the education of the child. So it can and should be made a cooperative venture with the home. I think all such parents should be required, before they place their children in such a school, to come to a training course, so that they learn their responsibilities and the importance and centrality of the family so that it becomes a joint venture, then it can be a tremendous asset. You see, a Christian church, a Christian school, and a Christian family should not be at odds. Each should be strengthening the other, and we need to develop everything that will strengthen the tie between the three of them. Yes? [01:08:27]

[Audience] {?}

[Rushdoony] Yes, the question is with regard to the rise of vocational training. Can I postpone that because I’m going to be dealing in one of the next evening meetings with the whole idea of liberal arts education, and in relationship to that, I will touch on that, and I can’t touch on it now without getting involved too much in that subject. Now, if I don’t deal with it satisfactorily at that time, please, please ask questions on the subject, because it is an important area. Yes?

[Audience] {?} take control. {?}

[Rushdoony] Power. The purpose is power.

[Audience] {?}

[Rushdoony] Of course. If they can control the child, and remake the child, then they have the perfect instrument for molding the future, they believe, and they want to create people who will be creatures of the state and its schools, not creatures of God. That’s the goal. You see, it’s a religious concept, and a religious goal with these people, and you can never fully grasp their objectives until you see the religious aspect of it, and that’s where they put us to shame. They are the ones who have manifested the religious fervor, the zeal, the dedication, and we’ve been lackadaisical about our faith. We’re paying a price for it now. Yes?

[Audience] {?} [01:11:34]

[Rushdoony] Well, good question...[edit]

[Rushdoony] Well, good question. The question is what should a couple do, if I understood you correctly, who are living in an isolat4ed area, have their children to educate and there’s no Christian school in the area. How shall they go about it? Is that your question?

[Audience] {?}

[Rushdoony] Oh yes.

[Audience] {?}

[Rushdoony] Yes. You are either educating your child deliberating or by default, you see. So, if you’re not teaching the child consistently in everything you do in the home, turning it into a ritual of education, you’re allowing the child to pick up things from the radio and television, and from other children, so you’re allowing strangers to educate your child. Now I do know of situations where families have schooled their children entirely themselves. In most states, this is not possible. I know of one situation where a group of mothers were anxious to have a Christian school. They could not have one, they didn’t have the means, they were in an area where costs were prohibitive, no property available, and they didn’t have the assets if there had been property available. {?} found a loophole on the state law. You know, women are the best researchers of all. They have the patience and the determination. The liberal movement in this country, the conservative movement, and almost any movement you can think of would fall flat on its face and this country would grind to a halt without the women.

Well, to proceed, they found out that while there are all kinds of regulations about Christian schools, there were none, that is property regulations, none with regard to tutoring. So, they decided that they were going to be tutors, and one was going to tutors first graders in her living room, another in her house was going to tutor second graders, and so on. So they {?} the children around amongst one another, they had a going Christian school and no one knew any better. There was no need to record it, no need to do anything. [01:11:22]

This reminds me of a very amusing situation...[edit]

This reminds me of a very amusing situation. There’s a man I know in a western state, Arizona, who is a militant Christian and a conservative. He’s so far to the right of the Burch Society that the Birchers look like flaming red to him, and living in a situation where he found no fellowship religiously, and no school to put his children into, and realizing that, in terms of his work, he was going to be there the rest of his life, being a young married man, he got a book on midwifery and studied it. He had four children, the oldest is now about 15 or 16, and he delivered every one of them. He didn’t register a single one of them when they were born, and he told them all, “As far as the government, and IRS, and future draft is concerned, you don’t exist. Now, if you ever seek a legal existence with social security, the government, IRS, or anybody else, I’ll disown you, and I’ll show you how to make a good living entirely on a cash basis so that nobody ever knows you exist. [laughter] His wife has educated everyone of those children, and before they were in their teens, they had read every book I had printed, had written, and a great, great deal more, a remarkably brilliant boy, and the girl, and it’s quite a remarkable situation. Now that’s one man’s solution, I’m not recommending it, but it always delights me. Any other questions? The last question. Yes? [01:17:04]

[Audience] {?}

[Rushdoony] Yes. A good question. If one of the states got through something, such as the case against Wisner if Ohio had succeeded. Every other board of education in the country, I was told by a state legislator as I mentioned yesterday, was prepared to follow suit. To impose all kinds of regulations and their requirement to teach humanism on all Christian schools. What would Christian schools do? We have a beautiful answer from the enemy. Take it to court. The courts are so slow and so inefficient, that before they could proceed by going to court which would mean a stay of execution, you can tie them up for years to come. There are all kinds of way you can delay action. For example, in the Joe Lewis case in Ohio, in which the Reverend Joe Lewis, a Baptist minister in Ohio, has now taken the board of education to court on the grounds that they are unconstitutional because they represent an establishment of religion and therefore, should be outlawed. What is the board of education doing? It’s stalling, it’s postponing action month after month, year after year. They don’t want to go to court on that. Well, we can use the same tactic. So you see, if the worst comes to the worst, the inefficiency of the court is a beautiful thing. It’s a tremendous protection against injustice. All it requires is patience and a lawyer who knows how to use every kind of delaying tactic under the sun. Well, with that, our time is ended. Thank you. [01:19:43]

End of tape.