Our current populace is the healthiest, best educated and most prosperous of any that has come before. With that status regrettably comes an arrogance when speaking about or reflecting upon our ancestors. How often have you heard something like–“well, you know that was the way they thought back then”,,,,or “they just weren’t as progressed as we are or as sophisticated”; as some explanation for why the older generations just didn’t measure up to our standards. (What our standards are will be a topic for another day)
Those who don’t know history are not only doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past, but deny themselves a most valuable tool for evaluating recent events and circumstances in all areas of personal life, politics, economics, social mores and causes and effects of human endeavor. Those who deny the wisdom of the ages deny only themselves. There exist an inherent bigotry of each generation that belittles the thinking and actions of our past. Each generation seems to think it is the best and brightest.
Do they really believe they are better than Aristotle, Euclid, Ptolemy, Newton, Einstein, Locke, Homer, and an endless list of achievers, thinkers. Even more sadly, how many have ever read anything of substance about them or studied their works. Does the modern geometry student really believe he is superior to Euclid, or what modern man has achieved the eternal worth of DaVinci.
Be careful when you look down your nose at the thinking or ideas of your ancestors, especially when you are only prating psychobabel from the Metro section of your newspaper. Having gadgets and wealth is not the equivalent of superiority of ideas.
More upon this in due course. Were those old guys so wrong about so much? If they were, I wonder how we got to where we are.