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CURRENT EVENTS AND DISCUSSIONS 



One Hundred Years of Missions in Madagascar. — "The Centenary 
of Missions in Madagascar" is discussed by F. H. Hawkins (Inter- 
national Review of Missions, IX [Oct.. 1920], 570-80). During the month 
of October the Island of Madagascar observed the completion of a 
century of successful mission work. A very extensive evangelistic 
campaign, the contribution of large sums of money for the promotion of 
benevolent and educational programs, and an extended series of special 
thanksgiving services are the special features of the celebration. 

The progress of missions in this "great African island" since its 
beginnings in 181 8 is a story of great interest. It falls into four periods: 

(1) The period of planting (1818-35), during which the first missionaries, 
chiefly Welshmen, laid a splendid foundation for the years to come. 

(2) The second period (1836-61) was one of very severe persecution, 
under new royal families; but in spite of martyrdoms, imprisonments, 
and tortures, the Christian forces multiplied tenfold. (3) The years 
1862-95 cover an era of progress and expansion. They saw the flocking 
of thousands to the Christian church in mass movements. Despite 
the inadequacy of workers in the various missions the results of these 
movements were conserved in a marked degree. (4) Since 1896 the 
French have had control of the island. This change brought inter- 
national difficulties, followed by a strong Jesuit propaganda and a 
great materialistic and atheistic campaign. In recent years, however, 
the French rule has done much to facilitate the spread of missionary 
enterprises. 

At present Anglicans, Lutherans (American and Norwegian), 
Friends, the Paris Evangelical Missionary Society and Roman Catholics 
are conducting missions. The various Protestant bodies are co-operating 
in a number of specific tasks. Evangelism, education, hospital work, 
and the publication of great quantities of Christian literature are promi- 
nent phases of present activities. The methods used in religious edu- 
cation, both in Sunday schools and for higher theological training, 
seem to be particularly efficient and modern. The outlook appears 
encouraging for continued advance. 

The WU1 to Be Religious.— In "The Place of the Will in Religion" 
by Professor George A. Wilson, an article in the Methodist Review 



CURRENT EVENTS AND DISCUSSIONS 201 

(Oil, [Sept.-Oct, 1920], 687-98) a suggestive emphasis appears. 
Because the emotional element often is regarded superficially as the 
essence of religion, and because traditional thought has directed men to 
intellectual assents as the sources of religion, this author finds a need of 
considering the place of man's volitional nature in religion. 

The conative, volitional nature includes all propulsive forces of 
subconscious life, possesses complete motor equipment for making 
choices, evaluations, decisions, carrying out purposes, creating and 
organizing activity. Religion in its significance and motor force belongs 
to the deeper stratum of life where also the will is at home; thus religion 
in its inner life becomes will rather than feeling or intellect. As the 
will gathers up the latent powers, so religion centralizes and unifies life. 
On the contrary, ordinary experiences distract and scatter life; worship 
is comparatively more difficult for the person of a highly developed and 
complicated life, as his defective will is unable to dominate the distracting 
and distorting cross-currents of life. 

The will does what needs to be done in religious life. When the 
self becomes restless and longs for the ideal and spiritual, the will seeks 
what can satisfy, and under proper direction lays hold of the satisfactory 
meanings and interpretations of fife. Therefore, to relegate the will 
to a subordinate place in religion means the progressive devitalization 
of religious life. If intellectualism is enthroned, the result will be 
intellectual division or self-deception. If emotionalism reigns supreme, 
moral aberrations and abnormalities, based on selfishness, will develop. 
In healthy religion the will is supreme, emotion sweetens the act, and 
intellect furnishes the necessary framework and articulation of religious 
experience to guide and protect the active nature in realizing itself. 

Two practical bearings are suggested. In conversion experiences 
the decision should be made only when the will is in control of the situa- 
tion. Prayer is a conference of the person's will with the supreme 
will of the cosmos, which resides in the cosmic mechanism, rendering 
the universe hypersensitive to will-attitudes. This cosmic will is headed 
toward the realization of a kingdom of wills. 

A World of Creative Evolution.— An article entitled "The Conser- 
vation of Values in the Universe," by J. E. Turner, in The Monist (XXX, 
[April, 1920], 203-19) suggests an optimistic view of the conception 
of Evolution. The splendid conquest of science has been followed by a 
strange aftermath of philosophical hesitancy and even pessimism 
because of the rareness of the best. Yet the idealistic or monistic phi- 
losopher, worthy of the name, may proclaim that universal change brings 



202 THE JOURNAL OF RELIGION 

about a never-ceasing heightening of values, making ultimate retro- 
gression an impossibility. Each generation is enriched by the preceding 
one. The individual is equipped with values of the past; in him they 
are further developed, the highest being rare and restricted; such 
development taking place universally unites in producing better indi- 
viduals, and the process continues from this advanced starting-point. 

Metaphysically this reasoning is established as follows: 

i. Reality is at once both diverse and unified. The universe is 
a complex of inter-related, individual systems, each connected with 
and expressive of the whole outside itself. 

2. The dynamic of the universe is the increasing complexity in 
each system or sector, adding new characteristics present in some other 
sector. The addition is caused by the response to the strange charac- 
teristic. This being a universal occurrence means a heightening of 
localization, specialization — values. The continuous process is insured 
in the fact that the entities of the lower scale are stimuli and determi- 
nants of higher and more complex systems. 

3. This evolutionary advance is a necessity. Each instant of 
cause and effect is determined by its predecessor, in which predecessor 
the totality of each phase of the whole is present. Each system owes 
its nature and character to the whole. Every change, effected by new 
connections between sectors, is a response to an alteration in the environ- 
ment; hence the response itself changes. In this changed response is 
the nucleus of a new system — making for increased complexity. 

Idealism Invincible. — Despite the many attacks leveled against it, 
the position of modern idealism is more secure at the end of the decade, 
1910-20, than at its beginning. Recent developments are reviewed in 
an article entitled "Modern Idealism," by E. S. Brightman, in the 
Journal of Philosophy, Psychology, and Scientific Methods (XVII, 
no. 20 [Sept. 23, 1920], 533-50). 

Idealism is hard to define, as there are at least four main types: 
The Platonic, with its emphasis upon the objectivity of values; the 
Berkeleyan, insisting that consciousness is the essence of all knowable 
reality; the Hegelian, which asserts that the only value is the totality 
of experience; and the Lotzean, finding in selfhood or personality an 
ultimate fact of fundamental significance. A vague working definition 
of idealism is belief in the ultimate reality or cosmic significance either 
of mind (in the broadest sense) or of the values revealed to and prized 
by mind. 

Some main characteristics of idealism during the years 1910-20 
are the following: (1) Its struggle with realism, where idealism has 



CURRENT EVENTS AND DISCUSSIONS 203 

fought to save mind or consciousness from being dissolved into elements 
only neutrally, externally, not mentally, related to each other. (2) The 
peculiar treatment of epistemology, in that both the Hegelian or specu- 
lative idealist and the new realist are interested in the nature and 
function of knowledge and yet try to reject epistemology. The outcome 
has been a new kind of epistemology with the activity of the self still 
a factor in knowledge. (3) A renewed emphasis on the philosophy of 
values has arisen especially among the speculative and personalistic 
(Lotzean) idealists. The concrete must receive primary recognition, 
value is fundamental in knowledge and reality, transcends the career 
of the finite personality, and should be preserved both in finite per- 
sonalities and in objectivity. The personalist further gives ethics the 
preference over logic, and holds that meanings are acts of the self. There 
is no value except as embodied in personal life. 

The Death of Some Noted Scholars. — During the past year the 
world of New Testament scholarship has suffered severe loss through the 
death on March 15 of Professor W. Bousset of Gottingen, on May 25 
of Dr. E. Preuschen, and on September 16 of Professor W. Sanday of 
Oxford. Sanday had reached the ripe age of seventy-seven, while 
Bousset was only fifty-four, and Preuschen fifty-three. 

Professor Sanday won distinction in 1872 by a volume entitled 
The Authorship and Historical Character of the Fourth Gospel. But 
perhaps of even more scientific value was his book on The Gospels in the 
Second Century, published in 1876. Among New Testament students 
he will be remembered especially as the author of the article in Hastings' 
Dictionary on "Jesus Christ," and his excellent Commentary on Romans 
in the series of "International Critical Commentaries." 

English readers are acquainted with Bousset in two popular books 
under the titles respectively of What Is Religion ? and Jesus. His place 
in the world of scholarship has been made secure especially through 
the publication of Die Religion des Judentums, Hauptprobleme der 
Gnosis and Kyrios Christos. 

Preuschen was the founder and editor of the Zeilschrifl fur die 
neutestamentlicke Wissenschaft, and he also rendered excellent service 
through the publication of his Griechisch-Deutsches Handwbrterbuch zu 
den Schriflen des Neuen Testaments. 

Principal W. H. Bennett of Lancashire Independent College, Man- 
chester, England, died in the latter part of August, and a few days later 
his predecessor, W. F. Adeney, also passed away. The work of these 
English scholars covered both the Old and the New Testament fields, 



204 THE JOURNAL OF RELIGION 

and they will probably be remembered chiefly through the Biblical 
Introduction which they published jointly, and Adeney's Greek and 
Eastern Churches in the "International Theological Library." 

Village Education in India. — An article by Sir Michael E. Sadler, in 
The International Review of Missions (IX [Oct., 1920], 495-516) reports 
the findings of a commission appointed last year by the Conference in 
Missionary Societies of Great Britain and Ireland, in co-operation with 
the Foreign Missions Conference of North America to study educational 
conditions in the villages of India, methods of meeting these needs, and 
ways in which the Missions may co-operate. The Commission made its 
study of Indian problems in the light of a previous survey of education 
in the United States, Japan, the Philippines, and Ceylon. Their attitude 
of approach was one which considered education as one phase of the 
whole complex social life in India, and all recommendations were made 
with this strictly in mind. 

A very instructive section of the report deals with the relation of 
the Missions to the government under the new laws which place education 
under the control of Indian ministers. Several practical methods of 
co-operation were suggested, especially with reference to movements for 
social reform, and in the work of the rural co-operative credit societies. 
The need for more local compulsory education laws and for Indian 
Christians trained for educational and social leadership in village life 
are also stressed. The plea for a larger and more responsible place for 
Indian Christians in all movements for social welfare is another indication 
of the keen understanding and balanced judgment of the Commission. 
These all tend to bring out the latent initiative of the Indian and furnish 
channels for the development and expression of his personality; in which 
we shall find the key to a great deal of India's progress. 

The chief ideas in the report centered around making the village 
school an organized center for promoting all of the physical, economic, 
social and moral interests of the community. Thus it would include 
adults as well as children. The teachers should be trained for this 
social leadership, if possible by a year or more in some good socialized 
rural schools in the United States. Missionary organizations could aid 
in this by supporting promising teachers during their period of training. 
For higher education, vocational middle schools are recommended. 
There would be but one of these for each district of several villages. 
In these the students would earn some money by manual labor. This 
would do much to dignify labor as well as to train the people for greater 
industrial efficiency. The schools of a large district would be under 



CURRENT EVENTS AND DISCUSSIONS 205 

supervisors, in a system very much like that in the Philippines. These 
men would be well trained, and would receive a salary and occupy a 
position commanding the respect of all. It is suggested that the 
missionary societies can do much to inaugurate this system and show 
its possibilities for extending and socializing Indian education. The 
results of the commission's report will be watched with the keenest 
interest by all who are keeping in touch with missionary progress. 

The full report is published under the title Village Education in 
India (London and New York: Oxford University Press). 

How Can the Church Promote Wholesome Recreation? — Many 
suggestions are found in a plea entitled, The Justification of Play by 
0. F. Lewis, War Camp Community Service. The new application of 
an old element — that of play — was greatly stimulated during the war. 
The movement continues to challenge attention. While play or recrea- 
tion is not the most important thing in life but, along with religion, 
family, and work, is one of four essentials to human happiness. Those 
who are dealing seriously with this subject include in the idea of play 
not only physical sports and games, but play also through diversions, 
hobbies, and cultural satisfactions. It has been thought that play is 
largely for the child, but we are seeing with the increase in leisure time 
its place in adult life. It is exceedingly important that the churches 
make a contribution toward enriching and ennobling the leisure time 
of the men and women of the nation. The fact that there is going to 
be much more leisure time for most people than there used to be is 
in itself a challenge to us. Will this time be spent destructively or will 
it be utilized in behalf of better citizenship and finer life ? 

The church will help to answer that question by helping to provide 
means whereby people may profitably spend their leisure time. This 
means not only study classes but also profitable amusements, recreational 
games, and sports. We see that fun cannot be eradicated from the 
human heart, for commercialized amusements form, perhaps, the largest 
single industry in the country. As communities we should be able to 
create for ourselves many simple, interesting amusements that will 
increase neighborliness and community spirit and make for a more 
wholesome life. 

Many of the churches did this kind of work during the war. A 
number of the churches are making ample provision for it in their 
budgets and programs at the present time. It has been started by the 
churches in Bridgeport, Connecticut. At a joint meeting of the govern- 
ing bodies of two churches in Buffalo, a budget of $13,000 for moving 



206 THE JOURNAL OF RELIGION 

pictures and other activities was voted. In Salt Lake City ; Seattle ; Flint, 
Michigan; Fredericksburg, Virginia, and in many other places the move- 
ment is making real headway, and is powerfully affecting the neighbor- 
hoods. The Community Service, Incorporated, which has had a splendid 
experience in this field stands ready to assist and give counsel to the 
church organizations in vigorously attacking the problems of leisure 
time by means of a constructive recreational program. 

The Psychology of Propaganda is discussed in an article by 
Raymond Dodge, in Religious Education (XV, 241-52). Propaganda 
is the art of making up the other man's mind for him by capitalizing 
his prejudices. An antipathy for a thing can be derived by subtly 
associating it with a prejudice that the other is known to possess. By 
the mechanism of emotional transfer there is the tendency to suffuse 
all the field of immediate association with the strong emotion of the 
prejudice. Thus the bond is emotional rather than logical. In much 
propaganda the prejudices to which one is appealing are so hidden that 
they cannot be proved. Through this medium facts are distorted 
consciously or unconsciously. The unscrupulous use of this suggesti- 
bility has brought most of the present indignation against propaganda. 

The emotional factors exploited include the self-preservative, social, 
and racial instincts; outstanding racial traditions and tendencies such 
as Germany's consciousness of racial superiority and the Yankee's 
moral superiority consciousness; and every phase of individual experi- 
ence, bias, and prejudice. The mechanisms of emotional transfer are 
primarily laws of the mental life which propaganda exploits for its own 
ends. 

The processes of propaganda have three limitations: emotional 
recoil or the overloading of the association; the exhaustion of the motive 
force by too frequent appeals ; and the development of internal resistance 
or negativism which is the aim of counter propaganda. 

Propaganda contains two great social dangers: its great destructive 
power may be unscrupulously used and there is little protection that 
does not imperil free speech; the second danger is the tendency to 
overload and level down great incentives in behalf of trivial ends. These 
great springs of action must be protected from destructive exploitation 
for selfish, commercial, or trivial ends. Properly disciplined by noble 
motives there is a legitimate place for this mode of appeal. While 
systematic moral education lacks much of the speed and picturesqueness 
of propaganda it is a necessary pre-condition for the effectiveness of 
the latter and is a far more dependable social instrument. 



CURRENT EVENTS AND DISCUSSIONS 207 

The Future of Liberal Judaism. — "Has Judaism a Future?" is 
the title of an article by C. G. Montefiore (Hibbert Journal, XIV, 
[Oct., 1920], 28-41). The following considerations favorable to the 
future of Liberal Judaism are urged: 

1. Its life is not impaired by the results of criticism and history. 
It is free to accept the good and reject the bad. 

2. It is capable of expansion and absorption, being able and will- 
ing to learn from Christian, Greek, Indian, or other sources, whatever 
is not inconsistent with the Jewish fundamentals. 

3. It adopts a more intelligent attitude than does orthodox Judaism 
toward Jesus, Paul, and the New Testament, recognizing that the proper 
evaluation of the founders of Christianity does not disqualify for the 
name "Jew." 

4. Though a liberal Judaism, it has a historical past, and is the heir 
of many ancestors. 

5. This historical connection is interpreted by faith. In possession 
of this faith the person is a Jew, while without it, though entertaining 
other Jewish doctrines, one can hardly be a Jew. This faith, illuminating 
the past, sanctifying the present, and guaranteeing the future, is the 
belief that God has intrusted Israel with a commission which has never 
been canceled: "Thou, Israel, art my servant. Ye are my witnesses." 

6. It is able to universalize and spiritualize its particularistic and 
nationalistic elements. From being a race or people, Israel is broadened 
out into a human, religious community, the bond of union being mem- 
bership in the common faith. 

Thus alongside of liberal Christianity liberal Judaism may find a 
place, if only a modest one. Perhaps, also, liberal Christianity and 
liberal Judaism may influence each other and gradually converge with- 
out actually meeting. Each may emphasize its own special values 
without onesidedness. Liberal Jews and others will need to bear their 
witness of truth as they see it. 

A New Beginning of International Missionary Co-operation. — In the 

International Review of Missions (IX [Oct., 1920], 481-94), J. H. Oldham 
reports the doings of the most significant gathering, in its relation to 
the international missionary situation, held since the World Missionary 
Conference at Edinburgh. This Conference convened last June at 
Crans, near Geneva, Switzerland. Representatives were present 
from Canada, the United States, Great Britain, France, Belgium, 
Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, Holland, Finland, Germany 
(unofficially) South Africa, India, China, Japan, Egypt, and Pretoria. 



208 THE JOURNAL OF RELIGION 

The purpose of the Conference was a review of the missionary situation 
throughout the world and the adjustment of mission policies on a 
large scale to the new international conditions in the period of world- 
reconstruction. 

Many new problems have arisen which require consideration from 
the international point of view. The establishment of the League 
of Nations with its system of mandates raises problems of missionary 
co-operation. The inauguration of new policies of government, such as 
in India, where many of the functions formerly under the control of 
the missionary societies are now to be administered by popularly elected 
legislatures, requires some far-reaching changes in missionary programs. 
The question of religious toleration in China, and of the relationship 
of missionary societies to one another and to governments in China, 
Korea, and Japan presents another critical issue. The whole problem 
of the relation of missionary organizations toward political questions is 
especially acute in India where there is an ever-growing national con- 
sciousness and desire for self-government. In America and other 
countries the immigration of alien peoples raises another important 
issue. Probably the most delicate problem to receive consideration was 
with reference to the continuation of German missions in allied territory. 

The chief task accomplished by the Conference was that of making 
provision for a careful study of these various questions. The following 
plan was adopted for carrying this into effect. Each national missionary 
conference and committee, in addition to its own specific task, is to make 
every possible effort to develop more of the international outlook through 
keeping closely in touch with the International Committee. They 
can, through this organization, establish a vital contact with the other 
national conferences and come to a fuller appreciation of international 
problems. Supplementing this form of co-operation, there is to be an 
international meeting either annually or every two years for further 
conference and united action. Further forms and methods of organi- 
zations will be left to grow up as the changing situation demands. 

With reference to the German missions the difficulties were frankly 
recognized and the issues of the present squarely faced. It was agreed 
that no general, immediate solution of this complex problem is possible. 
However, a few suggestions were made with reference to a modus 
operandi, (i) That missionary societies taking over (or that have 
taken over) German missions get in touch with the German societies 
which established them and confer regarding their administration. 
(2) That, as far as practicable, the denominational character of each 
mission be retained. (3) Several questions raised by the German 



CURRENT EVENTS AND DISCUSSIONS 209 

representatives at the Conference were referred to the national mis- 
sionary organizations concerned. 

The chief contributions of the Conference to missionary progress 
he in the spirit of mutual understanding, brotherhood, and co-operation 
which characterized all sessions, in the possibilities which it presents for 
facing the task of world-missions with a unified purpose and a world- 
outlook, and in the provisions made for common study of the common 
problems. If the ideals and purposes of this gathering can capture 
the imagination and enlist the loyalty of the national missionary societies, 
a new era of international missionary co-operation and progress should 
result. 

An Unexplored Religious Literature at Our Doors. — In an article, 
"The Two Mexicos," by Charles Johnston in the Atlantic Monthly, 
for December, 1920, attention is called to the culture of ancient Mexico, 
which is still a closed book to the world. Only a few pioneers have even 
realized its presence. This is the Mexico of the obscure districts, 
populated by aborigines, the seat of ancient civilization and learning. 
Scholars have but recently brought to light the existence of the Popol 
Vuh, the ancient scripture of the Guatemalans, which shows striking 
resemblances to the Puranas of India. Karl Lumholtz, the Norwegian 
explorer, has discovered another series of wonderful books which contain 
hymns addressed to the very deities of the Rig Veda, the Sun-God, 
the Rain-God, Father Heaven, and Mother Earth. Many other such 
treasures are waiting to be deciphered and used for the enrichment of 
our knowledge of the life, government, language, institutions, religion, 
and races of the aboriginal inhabitants. Here may be found materials 
of inestimable value to the student of religion. 

Who Was Anathyahu? — A. Lemmonyer has an article in the Revue 
des Sciences Philosophiques et Thtologiques, DC (Oct. 1920), 581-88, 
on "La Deesse Anath d' Elephantine," pointing out that Anath 
is of fairly common occurrence in Old Testament names of places 
and persons, and further that it is the name of a well-known god- 
dess among the Semites, not however to be identified with the Baby- 
lonian Antu, nor with Jeremiah's Queen of Heaven, but apparently 
a warrior-goddess. There is no profound or ancient connection between 
Anath and Yahweh such as might be suggested by the coupling of their 
names in the Elephantine Papyri; such a relation is wholly adventitious 
and a matter of cultus, and thus represents a deviation from Yahwism.