I know "why?" is supposed to be a favorite question of the 2-3 year old set, but it is starting to become my favorite. In addition I am loving asking "why not?" For one thing it really unsettles people and forces them to be real and face life, which I am learning is not something many people enjoy. You'll be glad to know that since my last posting I have still been plugging through the fourth turning and now I am on page 233 of 335. So I am making progress, I am just not understanding 90% of what I read. As far as "society" goes, I am an infant. Not yet thirty and not having any experience in the real world, or politics. I hardly even keep up on what's going on, partly for lack of time and partly for lack of feeling like it matters. Yes, yes, I know if everyone had that attitude we would live in anarchy, yada, yada, I know! That doesn't make it any easier to feel like my opinion matters. Besides I am so young, and uninformed, I hardly understand why one certain law is bad and what the long term effects are going to be.
Still, all that aside, I have a deep love of trying to understand Why things are. Why people behave the way they do and why history has played out the way it has. Enter The Fourth Turning. This is the book to see the connections between how national and world events have shaped people, who in turn shape national and world events. So here are a few quotes from this book referring to the baby boomer generation, which is anyone born during the years 1946-1964.
"To galvanize the community to save itself against the darkness of human evil, Boomers will continue to allude to cleansing catastrophes, like the impending birthing pains predicted by the Earth Changes movement. Back in the Awakening (years 1964-1984), any bout of unusual weather prompted Boomers to predict the new Ice Age; today, it prompts them to predict global warming. Charles Krauthammer asks, "Is there a primitive religion that can match 'environmentalism' for attributing natural calamity to the transgressions of man?"
Love it! This may or may not make any sense to any of you, but here is how I get it. Those people born from 46-64, simply because of when they were born, grew up under a certain set of circumstances which through no fault of their own shaped these people as a whole to believe and behave in a certain way. Boomers began life during a High, when things are generally going very well, people are prospering and everyone is feeling great. Because of that when they start coming of age 20-40, they become cynical and disenfranchised about they way things are and starting looking to lay blame and complain about problems without really wanting to work hard enough to fix them. Now bear in mind that this is a very generalized description and obviously not every person fits the mold, this is generally how those of this generation work. I am not trying to knock boomers, and just for the record they have lots of good qualities too.
The beauty of understanding the why of the past is in grasping at the potential of the future. History repeats itself, and in quite a recognizable pattern if you know what to look for. We have been where we are before. However, I personally believe that what is coming will be different than before. My religious belief is that we are nearing the time when Christ will return to the earth. And well it kind of works out. If the years 1964 to 1984 were an Awakening, then the next cycle which is an Unraveling covered 1985 to 2001, next on the agenda is the Crisis, which would run from 2001 to maybe 2020? After that begins another High era, what better way to usher in the beginning of the good times than with the best that ever were? Once again my opinion and no I really don't have much to support it. That's why it is an opinion and not a hypothesis. I do know that time can be divided into sections of 20-25 years based on event dates and that we are cycling through history they way we cycle through a year or a day.
I gotta say I am really getting eager for the end of the book, which covers the authors predictions for the future,which happens to be the time in which I am now living, since the book was written in 1997. The more we understand about our past and our world the better we can prepare for what is coming.