I long for the simple days; when people were what they appeared to be, right and wrong were always shown in black and white, and the path before you was easily marked and known. As I listen to commentators wax eloquently about the good old days of yesterday they often go on to mention the golden years. Sometimes it is the fifties but it seems the sixties are getting more and more mention.
I was there in the sixties. Kids were confused, parents angry, and life full of twists and turns. The hypocrisy of the times was out on display for everyone to grabble with; what to do about it was not so obvious. Do you throw out the very system that got you to the current situation? Do you try to work from within? Is there a way to do something radical without saying that everyone older than the age of thirty is a has-been?
I am not convinced anything was answered other than finding a path that led many to destruction. It is easy to say that “mixed motives twist life into tangles; pure motives take you straight down the road.” (Proverbs 21.8) However I am not so sure that anyone was innocent in those days. Leaders wanted to preserve the status quo and their way of life. They liked the power, status, and reward. This was all they knew.
In contrast there were some emerging leaders that wanted a society cleansed of the dual standards. Emboldened by the ability to survive outside of the normal boundaries they challenged all that had been held as a “given”. Fueled by the gratification that came with indulgence they pushed the boundaries out even farther. The cycle created another group of leaders obsessed with power, status, and reward.
It is perfectly clear; don’t you see it?
Nothing is clear except that life yesterday was as complex in its way as today. Simple motives are made and kept at the individual level. Do you want to get down the road? Look at the mirror; the obstacle is there.