There is a large group of our population that seems to look down upon those that came before us as being lesser in terms of their wisdom and their morality. You even see this mindset among the younger generation in how they think of the older generation. You’ll see the Logan Paul fan club type kids say, “Ok Boomer,” to anyone they disagree with over the age of about 35, as if age somehow decreases wisdom. This is a dangerous mindset to have, and it is highly dismissive and arrogant.
There are certainly things that are forefathers believed and did that are considered immoral by todays standards, just like there will be things we think are moral now that will be seen as highly immoral by future generations. There are also ways in which we are less moral now than those that came before us. The generational moral scoresheets tend to be about even. We can’t get so focused on one particular morality issue that we let that make us believe that past generations were somehow less moral or less wise.
It is without question that we have never been as technologically advanced and we’ve never had more information at our finger-tips. Though, this does not lead to us being wiser than past generations. They are advantages we have and they do help nurture our wisdom, but past generations had some advantages over us. Past generations spent more time thinking, reading, journaling and writing. Past generations had fewer distractions. Past generations, though they had significantly fewer relationships, had deeper relationships and deeper conversations.
Past generations my not have been as technologically advanced and they may have believed some things we find to be immoral, but they weren’t fools, and they were wise. Nothing that we have today would be possible without them. We have much to learn from them.
I would not go to past generations for wisdom about astrophysics or quantum computing, but I might value their wisdom on topics such as loyalty and love more so than that of the wisdom of people in our times.
Don’t dismiss past generations as immoral fools; if you do so, you limit your own wisdom.
For my Christian friends: Remember that true wisdom comes form the Word, and the Word does not change (translations aside). It is not how modern that informs as to how wise one is, but how well do they know the Word, and more importantly, how close do they walk with Jesus.
“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.”
– James 3:17