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begin to provide and support its own ministry, and branch off into self-contained communities. It will then take its place among the creeds and peoples of India; and though now but “ the least of all seeds,” please God ! it will yet be “the greatest among herbs.”
Summing up, then, this part of our inquiry, and taking English influence on India as a whole, without distinction of government or individual efforts, I would thankfully say that we have abolished much, and done much. Honestly and sorrowfully I would add, that we have omitted much in our career of Indian Empire.
III.—How IT WILL END ?
And now, how is it to end? We are such creatures of habit, such thorough mill-horses, with all our boasted reason, that we go plodding on in the same round of ideas, and expect, as a matter of course, to-morrow to be the same as to-day, and “all things to continue as they were from the beginning of the world.” And yet, if we would but think of it a bit, is not our Indian Empire just the most abnormal and unnatural thing in all this topsy-turvy, fallen world of ours ? And is it not, then, the most unreasonable thing to take it so easy as we do, and assume that it will go on for ever? Surely it would be no great wonder if India, now so topsy-turvy, were to go turvy-topsy some fine day, and right itself, as it were, in the creation! Why don't we think of it more? Let us think of it a little now !
It seems to divide itself into possibilities and probabilities. The possibilities are plain. India can either be kept, or lost, or given up. The probabilities are a darker and a deeper thing; a thing that we may well shade our eyes to look into.
I take it as quite certain, to begin with, that if India
is to be kept for ever by England, it can be only by willing, prosperous, and continuous submission. We are proud of having got safe over 1857, more proud indeed than thankful. And truly, it was a goodly spectacle of heroic self-defence, the triumph of the superior few. But we should remember that it was the Native Army which rose in anger
and was defeated-not the Nation! If ever the day should come that the Indian people should be weary
of our rule, it will not be 80,000 or 100,000 Europeans that will preserve it. Nor let us hope would England wish it, if they could. Consider, then, what the proposition is before
To keep 200 millions of Hindoos and Mahommedans under a foreign yoke, of which the seat is on the other side of the world; which is represented only by the presence of a small governing body, in the ratio of one to two thousand; of which the blood, language, and religion are alike alien, and which, with noble venture, feels itself bound to educate its subjects,-generously to instil into them that knowledge which is the twin of freedom, and to wing all their thoughts and hopes with a free Native Press. That is the proposition! What make you of it? For my own part, I confess I think the probabilities are against it. But if I were called on to work out that proposition and prevent that empire from being ultimately lost by internal rebellion, I know well what I should do. I should immediately apply myself to modifying the conditions ; to diminishing the moral distance between the governors and the governed, and drawing them together; to lessening public danger by elevating individual morality; and, instead of unmooring the principle of religious faith in the masses, seek to anchor it to the real Governor of the World, who placed them and us in our relative positions. In short, I should open the Bible wide, and do what in me lay to teach that subject-people Christian views of life. As far as I can see, I think that policy would
defer the danger of internal rebellion, and lengthen our tenure of the Empire.*
There is, however, another way of losing India beside internal rebellion. It may be externally attacked, and unsuccessfully defended. The event, I believe, would depend mainly on the proposition we last considered. For whether some Jungez Khan or Timour Lung should again arise with force of character enough to bind the jealous tribes of Central Asia together, and lead them down to the invasion of Hindostan; or rival European powers,t uniting to
This is the view taken by Russia, the most astute Court in Europe, and the only one which (helped doubtless, by its semi-Asiatic character) has shown itself capable of incorporating Asiatic races in its Empire. “The Times” of August 14, 1860, gives an account of a remarkable rescript, dated June 20, 1860, which the Emperor of Russia had addressed to the Lieutenant-Governor of the Caucasus, calling upon “all those who have the Orthodox cause at heart to cooperate in the great work” of re-establishing it in the Caucasus, where it “once prevailed.” It therefore “institutes a special association, under the name of the Society for the re-establishment of the Orthodox Christian Faith in the Caucasus,” under the special protection of Her Majesty the Empress. Without knowing the details of this association, we cannot tell whether it be good or bad ; simply missionary and educational, or akin to persecution. But the point for Englishmen to note, is the Emperor's keen perception of the political safeguard of Christianity among a conquered Asiatic race. The politicians of England regard the spread of Christianity as the means of losing India. Russia regards it as the means of keeping the bold and rugged Caucasus ! The people of England will do well to consider which is right, and then speak out.
+ As this lecture is meant to be suggestive upon some important points of Indian policy, I would here add a few words about Russia as a rival. Her geographical position, and her civilization combined, make her weigh heavily upon every contiguous native state in Asia, Turkey, Persia, Turkistan, and China ; and even Afghanistan, which is not contiguous with Russia, feels her weight. More remotely India feels it too. Of Turkey, Persia, and China, which do not come within our present subject, I will say no more than this, that the same thing is going on in all; England trying to support the effete And so
trouble us in the East, should swell their own costly divisions by subsidizing the warlike tribes beyond our borders ;-in either case, by God's blessing, I feel sure the victory would be ours, provided the people of India were content behind us.
come to the probabilities of giving up our Indian Empire. Now, there are two ways of doing this. First, splenetically. Contemplating the horrid mess into which we have lately got it ; the mutual exasperation of the conquerors and the conquered in the recent struggle; the Exchequer bankrupt by wars; the land taxed to the uttermost; and the commercial classes gorged with the spoils of a paying government, yet “ignorantly impatient” of feeding their own golden goose; the native population (educated by ourselves to revolution, not to order,) year
Native Governments, and Russia to supplant them, while often the Native Governments are seen playing the game of Russia, by forcing England to strike heavy blows—as at Navarino, as in the Persian wars, as in the wars with China. In India and Afghanistan there is this spectacle : English civilization rolling up like a wave from the south, and Russian civilization rolling down like a wave from the north. If the world lasts long enough, the two waves must meet; and the only question is where? Let nothing induce England to rush again into the solution of this point, as she did in the Afghan war of 1838-41. She has no call to do so. Morally, the substitution of Russian government for that of any of the states of Central Asia, would be a gain to humanity. Politically, and assuming Russia to have designs on British India, England's policy is, to leave to her enemy the whole and undivided difficulty of the rugged countries still between them ;not to share those difficulties, and march into Afghanistan to meet her half way, at a countless sacrifice of life, treasure, and material. If a man had a castle surrounded by a morass, and saw an enemy coming to besiege him, would he march out and meet him in the middle of the morass, or wait quietly within, husbanding his resources, till the foe was floundering in the mud below his walls, and then fall on him and finish him ? The simile is worth remembering as a compendious abstract of the argument.
by year becoming more difficult to rule; the Anglo-Saxon community, military, civil, and commercial, ill content to be taxed and governed, but not represented; and statesmen able and willing to deal with these discordant elements, few and far between ;-contemplating, I say, this serious array of difficulties ahead, what wonder if that party in the State which brings all questions down to a money standard, and looks on empire as only a branch of trade, should some day impatiently demand that India be abandoned
“a concern that does not pay ?” But it is not probable that such a demand will ever be conceded. India, no doubt, is “ a very great bore” in Parliament. It is so very far off, and so very hard to understand. And there is such a deal of home business to be done. * But after wresting India
* When India was under the East India Company, Parliament took little or no interest in its affairs; and the Company, carrying into its imperial era the exclusiveness of a commercial body, most unwisely kept back from the English public all knowledge of its acts; though probably no Government in the world could better have borne inspection. The evil was aggravated by the Board of Control, which having the power to overrule the Company, sometimes did so with disastrous effect (as in making war with Cabul); and then when publicity, in or out of Parliament, would have done justice to the Company, imposed an oath of secresy. The consequence was that the Company's Government, ith good or evil, could not be reached by the public opinion of this country. Many to whom the Court of Directors (a body caring sincerely for India, and exclusively devoted to its administration) seemed a better machinery for governing India than a single Secretary of State (often strange to Indian affairs, and detached temporarily from a Cabinet absorbed in English or European questions), nevertheless hoped that good would arise from the direct Government of the Crown: firstly, because public opinion would now be able to bear upon Indian questions; and, secondly, because the indispensable element of local experience was theoretically preserved in the Secretary of State and Indian Council. But the last Session of Parliament has much damped these hopes. A question of vital importance to India, the reorganisation of its army, came up. The sense of the country, out of doors, and in both Houses, was decidedly in favour of a Local