“In the Dark Ages, ancient statutes were broken and melted by unfeeling avarice,” noted Gibbon. “The soul of the geniuses who had shaped them evaporated in smoke. The cost and labour of centuries were consumed in a moment. Of the writings of Antiquity that still existed at that time, many were lost forever.”
During hundreds of years, injustice and evil took over the world. There was little that individuals could undertake against a tidal wave of ignorance and violence. Those who tried to resist the trend were wiped out. The economies of major countries were reduced to shambles and life expectancy sharply decreased.
The good news is that, despite all difficulties, many men and women survived and thrived in the Dark Ages:
- New agricultural methods were developed and land productivity doubled.
- The idea of using cork stoppers in bottles enabled the creation of a mass-market for wine.
- In the quietness of monasteries, Greek and Latin books were translated into modern languages.
The passage of time does not guarantee that knowledge will be accumulated. Through centuries, skills and techniques have often been lost and forgotten. Mistakes of the past are likely to be repeated. Linear History is a myth, a pleasant fantasy based on deceitful patterns derived from a faulty interpretation of facts.
Believing in myths never yields good practical results because it inhibits individuals from taking rational action to improve their situation. If you reside in a country where conditions are rapidly deteriorating, you owe to yourself to make an effort to distinguish reality from wishful thinking.
When danger is lurking between sick trees, closing your eyes and hoping for the best is not going to protect your future. Ignore the myth of linear History. Instead, check facts, ask tough questions, and find out what things are really like. If prospects don't look good, then it's time for you to move.
“The restoration of the past is a most generous wish,” observed Gibbon, “but the false application of maxims of Antiquity is the source of many disappointments. One should never overlook differences of time and characters.”
Look ahead and decide if you like what you see. If you don't, you may want to take action to improve your personal situation. Make sound choices and play your cards wisely. There are plenty of things that you can do to make your future brighter. Unlike the Dark Ages, present times offer individuals countless opportunities. Take them.
[Image by Kivanç under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]