Quoted from pages 251-252 in the text. "If a revolutionary social movement prevailed, led by men inspired by faith in formulas (like the men of the French Revolution) and resolved to impose their creed, experience shows that coercion would almost inevitably be resorted to. Nevertheless, while it would be silly to suppose that attempts may not be made in the future
to put back the clock, liberty is in a far more favourable position now than under the Roman Empire. For at that time the social importance of freedom of opinion was not appreciated, whereas now, in consequence of the long conflict which was necessary in order to re-establish it, men consciously realize its value. Perhaps this conviction will be strong enough to resist all conspiracies against liberty. Meanwhile, nothing should be left undone to impress upon the young that freedom of thought is an axiom of human progress. It may be feared, however, that this is not likely to be done for a long time to come. For our methods of early education are founded on authority. It is true that children are sometimes exhorted to think for
themselves. But the parent or instructor who gives this excellent advice is confident that the results of the child's thinking for himself will agree with the opinions which his elders consider desirable. It is assumed that he will reason from principles which have already been instilled into him by authority. But if his thinking for himself takes the form of questioning these principles, whether moral or religious, his parents and teachers, unless they are very exceptional persons, will be extremely displeased, and will certainly discourage him. It is, of course, only singularly promising children whose freedom of thought will go so far. In this sense it might be said that "distrust thy father and mother" is the first commandment with promise. It should be a part of education to explain to children, as soon as they are old enough to understand, when it is reasonable, and when it is not, to accept what they are told, on authority."