Stoical, taciturn, proud of his physical
prowess, he found all these qualities incarnated in his white companion.
I assert that a state of public feeling which does practically place physical training, in its estimation, above moral and mental training, is a positively bad and dangerous state of feeling in this, that it encourages the inbred reluctance in humanity to submit to the demands which moral and mental cultivation must inevitably make on it.
I said," admitted Sir Patrick, "that a man will go all the better to his books for his healthy physical exercise.
Take the example which we have now in view," pursued Sir Patrick--"the example of an average young gentleman of our time, blest with every advantage that physical cultivation can bestow on him.
There is a Physical objection to the present rage for muscular exercises of all sorts, which is quite as strong, in its way, as the Moral objection.
There are households in England--miserable households, to be counted, Sir Patrick, by more than ones and twos--in which there are young men who have to thank the strain laid on their constitutions by the popular physical displays of the present time, for being broken men, and invalided men, for the rest of their lives.
We shall best understand the probable course of natural selection by taking the case of a country undergoing some physical change, for instance, of climate.
Nor do I believe that any great physical change, as of climate, or any unusual degree of isolation to check immigration, is actually necessary to produce new and unoccupied places for natural selection to fill up by modifying and improving some of the varying inhabitants.
Travelling, whether in the mental or the physical world, is a joy, and it is good to know that, in the mental world at least, there are vast countries still very imperfectly explored.
The object may be something past or future; it may be physical, not mental; it may be something abstract, like equality for example; it may be something imaginary, like a golden mountain; or it may even be something self-contradictory, like a round square.
On the other hand, in seeing or hearing it would be less misleading to say that you have object without content, since what you see or hear is actually part of the physical world, though not matter in the sense of physics.
I shall return to it in a later lecture, and will only observe, for the present, that there seem to me no valid grounds for regarding what we see and hear as not part of the physical world.