The difficulties, disappointments and failures were attributed to God's will and people bowed without much questioning. But now those spiritual beliefs have more or less gone. We now ask if life has any purpose at all. We now feel confused and perplexed.
The decline in religious faith has led also to the loss of the spiritual values of life. Our forefathers had the ideal of charity, sympathy, fellow-feeling, brotherhood of man, etc. Now people have become utterly materialistic and pleasure minded. Everyone wants to make as much money as possible by fair means or foul.
Honesty and integrity are things of the past. Now there is a mad scramble for money and power.
In a way, however, we are happier than our forefathers. Our forefathers were the victims of illiteracy, ignorance and superstitions. Ignorance might mean bliss, but this is the bliss of intellectual non-existence or mental blankness. We today are literate and educated. We now know many secrets of nature which were unknown to our forefathers. We experience an intellectual thrill when we acquire more and more knowledge. We have not more or less got rid of superstitions and imaginary fears, nor are we any more victims of a sense of fatalism.
Our forefathers used to attribute everything to the will of fate. But we now feel that our fate is in our own hands. We experience a sort of liberation from the restrictive influence of fate.
If we talk of wealth, it is today more equitably distributed than before. Socialistic trends all over the world have narrowed the gap between the rich and the poor. In the days of our forefathers, poverty was regarded as part of the divine scheme of things and was passively accepted by the people.
Now the attitude...