Our ideas will fall short of describing our full experience and surroundings. But maybe my main message to readers (to the future people?) is to remind them of our ideas’ limits.
What’s it like to be alive in 2018? I could talk about my concerns over national politics or local institutions, or my personal problems with health and money— but no doubt the 1874 people could’ve listed their own problems that would be equivalently concerning/important for them. I’m presuming here that they weren’t all that different from us—for all their particular technology and circumstances, they created us and shaped the world into which we were born. It’s frankly arrogant of us to think they don’t matter (though, I mean, if one’s starving, one needs food more than one needs a story). Yet to say they created conditions that later came about (technological and scholarly innovation of then shaped what came later) is also to generalize.
I said to Mom Thursday that I try not to complain—though then I complained about those who complain! Ha!
It’s easy to get wrapped up in our ideas (M came in the room singing “This is America” song) of now—but it’s useful to know these contemporary ideas aren’t the whole realm of ideas, either—dethroning contemporary ideas.
[From journal of Sat., 9 June 2018, Journal 277, page 201-3]