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What Is An Educated Filipino? Francisco Benitez 1.

Great changes have taken place in the nature of our social life during the last twenty years. The contact with Americans and their civilization has modified many of our old social customs, traditions, and practices, some for the worse and many for the better.The means of communication have improved, and therefore better understanding existsamong the different sections in our country. Religious freedom has developed religioustolerance in our people. The growth of the public schools and the establishment ofdemocratic institutions have developed our national consciousness both in strength and insolidarity. 2. With this growth of national consciousness and national spirit among our people, we witness the corresponding rise of a new conception of education the training of the individual for the duties and privileges of a citizen not only for his own happiness andefficiency, but for national service and welfare as well. In the old days, education wasmatter of private concern; now it is public function, and the state not only has the duty buthas the right as well to educate every member of the community as well as the young,women as well as men not only for the good of the individual bat also for the self-preservation and self-protection of the state itself. Our modern public school system hasbeen established as a safeguard against the shortcomings and dangers of a democraticgovernment and democratic institutions. 3. In the light of social changes, we come to the question: What qualities should distinguish the educated Filipino of today? I venture to suggest that the educated Filipino should first be distinguished by the power to do. The Oriental excels in reflectivethinking; he is a philosopher. The Occidental is a doer; he manages things, men, and affairs.The Filipino of today needs more of this power to translate reflection into action, I believethat we are coming more and more to the conviction that no Filipino has the right to beconsidered educated unless he is prepared to take an active and useful part in the work,life, and progress of our country as well as in the progress of the world. 4. The power to do embraces the ability to produce enough to support oneself and to contribute to the economic development of the Philippines. Undoubtedly, a man may be, and often is, an efficient producer of economic goods and at the same time hemay not be educated. But should we consider a man who is utterly unable to supporthimself and is an economic burden to the society in which he lives educated merelybecause he possesses the superficial graces of culture? I hope that no one will understandme as saying that the only sign of economic efficiency is the ability to produce materialgoods, for useful social participation may take the form of any of the valuable servicesrendered to society through such institutions as the home, the school, the church, and thegovernment. The mother, for example, who prepares wholesome meals, takes good care ofher children, and trains them in moral and right conduct at home she renders efficientservice to the country as well as does the statesman or the captain of industry. I would notmake the power to do the final and only test of the educated Filipino: but I believe that inour present situation, it is fundamental and basic. 5. The educated Filipino, in the second place, should be distinguished not only by hisknowledge of the past and of current events in the world's progress but also especially byhis knowledge of his race, his people, and his country, and his love of the truths and idealsthat our people have learned to cherish. Our character, our culture, and our national historyare the core of our national life and, consequently, of our education. I would not have theeducated Filipino ignore the culture and history of other lands, but can he afford to beignorant of the history and culture of his own country and yet call himself educated? 6. The educated Filipino, in third place, must have ingrained in his speech and conductthose elements that are everywhere recognized as accompaniments of culture andmorality, so that, possessing the capacity for self-entertainment and study, he may not beat the mercy of the pleasure of the senses or a burden to himself when alone.

7. There are, then, at least three characteristics which I believe to be the evidence of the educated Filipino (1) the power to do, to support himself, and

contribute to the wealth of our people; (2) acquaintance with the world's progress,especially with that of his race, people, and community, together with love of our bestideals and traditions; and (3) refined manners and moral conduct, as well as the power of growth

WHAT IS AN EDUCATED FILIPINO?--- By Francisco Benitez What is an educated Filipino and what qualities should distinguish him today? The conception of education and of what an educated man is varies in response to fundamental changes inthe details and aims of society. In our country and during this transition stage in our national life, what arethe qualities which an educated man should possess? Great changes have taken place in the nature of our social life during the last forty years. The contact withAmericans and their civilization has modified many of our own social customs, traditions, and practices,some for the worse and many for the better. The means of communication have improved and thereforebetter understanding exists among the different sections of our country. Religious freedom has developedreligious tolerance in our people. The growth of public schools and the establishment of democraticinstitutions have developed our national consciousness both in strength and in solidarity. With this growth in national consciousness and national spirit among our people, we witness thecorresponding rise of a new conception of education - the training of the individual for the duties andprivileges of citizenship, not only for his own happiness and efficiency but also for national service andwelfare. In the old days, education was a matter of private concern; now it is a public function, and the statenot only has the duty but it has the right as well to educate every member of the community - the old aswell as the young, women as well as men - not only for the good of the individual but also for the self-preservation and protection of the State itself. Our modern public school system has been established as asafeguard against the shortcomings and dangers of a democratic government and democratic institutions. In the light of social changes, we come again to the question: What qualities should distinguish theeducated Filipino of today? I venture to suggest that the educated Filipino should first be distinguished bythe power to do. The Oriental excels in reflective thinking; he is a philosopher. The Occidental is the doer;he manages things, men and affairs. The Filipino of today needs more of his power to translate reflectioninto action. I believe that we are coming more and more to the conviction that no Filipino has the right tobe considered educated unless he is prepared and ready to take an active and useful part in the work, life,and progress of our country as well as in the progress of the world. The power to do embraces the ability to produce enough to support oneself and to contribute to theeconomic development of the Philippines. Undoubtedly, a man may be, and often is, an efficient producerof economic goods and at the same time he may not be educated. But should we consider a man who isutterly unable to support himself and is an economic burden to the society in which he lives as educatedmerely because he possesses the superficial graces of culture? I hope that no one will understand me assaying that, the only sign of economic efficiency is the ability to produce material goods, for useful socialparticipation may take the form of any of any of the valuable services rendered to society trough suchinstitutions as the home, the school, the church and the government. The mother, for example, who prepareswholesome meals, takes good care of her children and trains them in morals and right conduct at home,renders efficient service to the country as well as the statesman or the captain of industry. I would not make the power to do the final and only test of the educated Filipino; but I believe that in our present situation, it is fundamental and basic. The educated Filipino, in the third place, must have ingrained in his speech and conduct those elements thatare everywhere recognized as accompaniments of culture and morality; so that, possessing the capacity forself - entertainment and study, he may not be at the mercy of the pleasure of the senses only or a burden tohimself when alone. There are, then, at least three characteristics which I believe to be the evidence of the educated Filipino -the power to do, to support himself and contribute to the wealth of our people; acquaintance with theworld's progress, especially with that of his race, people, and the community, together with love of our bestideals and traditions; and refined manners and moral conduct as well as the power of growth. -------- (end of the essay)