“‘We live in a decadent age. Young people no longer respect their parents. They are rude and impatient. They inhabit taverns and have no self-control.’ This sounds very contemporary. It was inscribed on an Egyptian tomb six thousand years ago.”
Rabbi Olan delivered this sermon on December 8, 1968 – a time of great turmoil. His thesis was that we can respond appropriately to our time only if we have a sense of history.
Today we live in a time of growing despair about the future. Perhaps with a sense of history, we can build a future about which we need not despair.
“Our times are like all times, only more so. This ought not to discourage us. It should teach us to learn from the generations of all yesterdays. We can acquire some perspective about ourselves and avoid the panic of doom. We can learn from the mistakes of the past and from those experiments which succeeded. And we can hitch our wagon to a faith which will lead us into a future with realistic hope.”
**Written by Joshua F. Hirsch**