National Geographic : 1899 Feb
MANILA AND THE PHILIPPINES The chronic want of money and perhaps also of energy, the influence of the monks and friars, who may have been jealous of seeing another influence than their own established in the interior of all these islands, gives explanation enough of the fact that the Spanish rule has never been powerful in that country; but a stronger, more energetic, and more gifted race, with un limited financial resources, may do in the future all that the former masters failed to do in three centuries. If the Spanish government was weak from the military point of view, it was not less so from the standpoint of diplomacy, in the conciliation and real pacification of the Filipino natives. Only one religious order succeeded, with its incomparable knowledge of the human heart, with its fine psychological and diplomatic means, in being loved and esteemed by native and government alike. If the friars and the various orders of monks were hated with all the energy of a long-oppressed race, the refined padres and monsignores of the famous society of the Jesuits, remained immune from all these savage feelings. They had understood that it was not the priest in his religious capa city, but the priestly lord, the priestly landowner, who ex cited the Filipinos, and so the Jesuits never tried to accumulate property in the interior. They built up a magnificent scientific observatory, with the most valuable instruments of astronomy, seismology, magnetism, and meteorology. They connected their observatory with all the other meteorological stations in the far east, and saved by their prompt warnings hundreds of lives and millions of dollars. When war times came over the coun try thousands of poor, homeless, and sick Tagale men, women, and children. found a home in the wide courts and arcades of the Jesuits' colleges. They had formed a safeguard of mis erables for their own safety with this praiseworthy mercy. They could be sure that they would remain undisturbed in their scientific work, although between the fighting lines. The same men that lived in the refined atmosphere of the highest intel lectuality understood the necessity of mercy. The same scruti nizing eyes that read every morning the tales of the self-regis tering instruments understood also human nature and human hearts, and they have given to the former rulers of the islands a noble lesson. They have taught them that there are things in the world other than guns; they have taught them the eter nal truth that science, knowledge, is and shall be power.