Our society is running perilously toward the end of times and along the way we are following a path toward the innevitable extinction that many great societies before have gone. This road begins at a place when a group of people have high moral standards/convictions and a definite feeling of identity and ends at a place where people are bound only by name. What’s amazing is that this phenomenon happens in all societies where people at one point join together for a common reason and over the generations those reasons fade or are washed out.
In America, we are reaping the consequences of moral erosion. The things that the Founders of this country believed wihtout wavering we no longer believe. The exclusiveness of training and thought are labeled antique, outdated, and quaint. We are more tolerant now, more accepting of societal abberations. We are expected to embrace and except things that we should find repugnant. The high moral standard and the sewer are looking more and more the same now so that it is hard to tell the difference.
We can see one of the results in the number of people with mental problems. In my readings this week in the Psalms, a commentator had this to say about an expirament that illustrates my point:
This kind of behavior and consequence has been demonstrated in controlled laboratory expiraments. White rats are placed in wire cages having two openings, one at each end. One opening is square, the other round. When the rat becomes hungry he larns that when he pushes against the square hole he receives food, but when he pushes against the round hold he receives an electric shock. Naturally he goes for the square hole. So far so good. But then the experimenter gradually rounds out the square, food-rewarding hole. It begins to look more and more like the hole which administers the unpleasent experience. Before long, the rat’s powers of discrimination fail. The hard, squared edges of the food-rewarding hole become increasingly blurred and the rat no longer knows what to expect when he pushes against a hole, whether he will be rewarded with pleasure or punishment with pain for the choice he makes. His entire organism becomes unbalanced and out of control. In the end he dashes madly around his cage, biting and clawing, completely disoriented and upset. He has a nervous breakdown.
As we continue to redefine sin as something acceptable, we blur the lines. Just like, I feel, the effect sheer amount of laws out there would make just about everything either illegal or taxable, the redefinition of sin is making everything ok and that doesn’t work for human beings. Children are good examples of this. They need structure, they need boundaries. They test them, but they need them. A child with no boundaries set is a mess: they’re spoiled, they misbehave, and they take out whatever they will on others. Same thing with adults. With no (or shifting) moral boundaries we can no longer know what to expect from our neighbors and friends.
It used to be that our parents could trust people enough that we could leave a baby in the stroller outside of a supermarket and the child would still be there when they returned. Now I won’t even have a package delievered to my house because I’m afraid it will be stolen. It used to be that divorce was wrong and that people would get married and go their entire lifetime married. Now we not only have rampant divorce, but cohabitation and the cries for same sex marriage. I once thought there was a stigma about cheating in a marriage, but even that’s been challenged by websites and television shows advertising and glamorizing “desparate housewives.”
The moral boundaries that should be there to guide us and keep us doing right are being attacked and we hail those attacks as progress. Meanwhile we leave behind people that are being destroyed physically, mentally, and emotionally and leave a terrible example on our children.