There is a subject that has been churning in my head for a long time. It bothers me because the pieces do not fall into place as an acceptable pattern for declaring a fact.
The subject is the disconnection that we are told exists between the older and the younger generations. Will I argue that there is not a disconnection between those age groups? No.
No, I realize that it does exist. The problem is that we who are older, and the younger generation as well, are viewing it from the wrong end.
It does not fit the facts to view it from the wrong end, and worse than that, viewing it incorrectly makes both generations less effective and somewhat dysfunctional.
I became sharply aware of this “problem” when I was teaching in a Youthful Offender Facility.
As I presented my subjects, and especially the subject on “How To Start A Small Business,” the young men in every class would correct my presentations on some of the points by saying, “But, Ms Cook, you don’t understand, things are different today than they were in your day.”
That did not compute. I began to think about it. We do say that all the time don’t we?
Well, things have changed, haven’t they? So I began to make a list of all the things that affect our lives each day to discover, “What is new after all?”
I came up with the answer, “Not very much!”
Today we do have many things that are new to us such as airplanes and cars and telephones and many of the mechanical devices that we have today did not exist in Adam’s and Eve’s Day, but all of the items we have now, could have been made then. The stuff with which to make them was already here.
However, the functions that really make or lives work and which are common to all men everywhere haven’t changed.
The younger generation of today was conceived in the same way it has always happened. Yes, we do test tube fertilization, but it continues to require an ovum and a spermatozoa. Lungs are the same as always, so is blood, and bones, and skin, hair and eyes. Trees still grow toward the sun and the moon and stars are still there, just as they have always been. Human emotions have not changed, we cry and love and hate and fight wars. The consumption of food remains one of mans most rudimentary desires. Our bodies continue to require water.
So what’s new? What is so new that the communication lines are broken between the two generations? Why does the younger generation think that the world is a whole new world in which the older generation no longer lives? I guess that is the thought since they say “back in your day.”
There are two canopies of thought going on in that statement. One is that the world exists for the young and is propelled by the young; the second is that after one has grown to what is called “old,” they become unaware of and uninvolved in happenings going on in the “today.”
However, both generations buy into the fallacy of the thought, and so create a barrier between themselves which is totally man made, it is fictional, and is one that needs to come down.
I’d ask my classes to look at me and then I would ask them, “Am I dead?” “Do I not share this day today with you?” “Is this no longer my World since you arrived?”
Young people are very willing to look for and recognize truth when it is presented.
My classes would logically deduce to the basic fact that the only thing that is new today is some technical inventions, but otherwise we are the same as we have always been.
All the changes are in external things. However, if we do not realize that, both the older and the younger generations, then we will think there is a wide divide between us and that we have no common ground on which to communicate.
Is that not convenient for the Devil?
The Bible instructs us to train the youth, and instructs the youth to listen and be trained in God’s principles, and those principles are eternal. But with our cultural divide that disconnects us, and the impression that there is a difference in us Beings, we do not then give nor receive instruction.
The older generation is also an offender. They have sayings such as, “these kids of today,” and you wonder if they don’t or won’t recall their own youth.
I can remember thinking at the age of 16 that my elders just did not understand that I was as smart as I was ever going to be, after all, people are smarter “in my day” than they were when you were 16. I thought it. I would have not lived to write this had I said it.
The devastating thing for us as a Christian culture and as a Nation with a national culture is that our youth of each new generation are always reinventing the wheel. They can never learn from us what we had to learn by experience, which we had to learn from experience because we did not listen to wisdom either. We muddled around and reinvented the wheel also. The muddling around needs to cease.
We must not say, “Oh well, that is just the way it is.” No.
We need to educate both the older and the younger of our people to understand that the youth can teach the older people things, like how to use a computer, and keep us abreast of things going on around us; and we can teach them, by conversation, the things that will and will not work as they apply themselves to living.
But we all must understand that not much has changed with us as people on this earth. We re just like our Father Adam and our Mother Eve.
We’ve heard that saying that says, “History repeats itself.” It sounds true, but we wonder why it must be so.
I was thinking about that and for my information and I have discovered why.
If I am baking a cake, and I put the right things into the mixture and place it in the oven, I will get a cake. That is the same thing I got the last time I did it that way, and it will happen again if I do it the same way again. If I should decide that the eggs don’t belong, or that I should use more milk, or if I alter it in anyway it will come out of the oven a different cake than I baked before.
My point is one that confirms the saying that we have, “If you keep doing the same old things, you will keep getting the same ole results.” Thus, history repeats itself.
The wisdom that the least perceptive among us learns from the living of life is valuable knowledge.
When you haven’t been here that long, called “young person,” you don’t have the road mileage to know the maneuvers around the problem points and you must search it out and make a lot of mistakes.
If the older ones are not talking and the younger ones aren’t listening, then reinvention of the wheel continues and much of life is wasted and ruined and wrecked by the time spent learning those things that should have been related in instruction.
I guess I have to wonder why we accept the delusion that has been flung out across our vision of generational relationships. I do know this; it does not benefit the Kingdom of God.
If we will view this from the proper perspective, which I will call the right end, then we will be the wiser and the happier for it.
We, the people of God; we, the culture of our Nation, and God’s Kingdom will grow and flourish by the better usage of time and the wisdom applied.
So what is the proper perspective? What is the fact? The fact is as Solomon said in Ecclesiastes, “There is nothing new under the sun.”
Yes, we live in what man dubs as TIME. Some have left here and they know more than we do. They know the Here and the There.
We who are older know more than the younger about life, because we have more road history and yet we are still here in today. This is the History of Continuation.
We must begin to communicate and learn from each other. We must know that we are no different than those before us, nor those after us.
Let the good repeat itself; and let us be made wiser about what does and does not work, because we talk and we listen.