“Enq: I must admit you are right there.
Theo: And what are these examinations – the terror of modern boyhood and youth? They are simply a method of classification by which the results of your school teaching are tabulated. In other words, they form the practical application of the modern science method to the genus homo, qua intellection.
Now “science” teaches that intellect is a result of the mechanical interaction of the brain-stuff; therefore it is only logical that modern education should be almost entirely mechanical – a sort of automatic machine for the fabrication of intellect by the ton.
Very little experience of examinations is enough to show that the education they produce is simply a training of the physical memory, and sooner or later, all your schools will sink to this level.
As to any real, sound cultivation of the thinking and reasoning power, it is simply impossible while everything has to be judged by the results as tested by competitive examinations.
Again, school training is of the very greatest importance in forming character, especially in its moral bearing.
Now, from first to last, your modern system is based on the so-called scientific revelations: “The struggle for existence” and the “survival of the fittest.”
All through his early life, every man has these driven into him by practical example and experience, as well as by direct teaching, till it is impossible to eradicate from his mind the idea that “self”, the lower, personal, animal self, is the end-all, and be-all, of life.
Here you get the great source of all the after-misery, crime, and heartless selfishness, which you admit as much as I do.
Selfishness, as said over and over again, is the curse of humanity, and the prolific parent of all the evils and crimes in this life; and it is your schools which are the hotbeds of such selfishness.”
H. P. Blavatsky