Once upon a time, life was simple. Days were long and it seemed they would never end. People around the world valued virtue. Today we have lost our inherent innocence. We are influenced by the material things in our society today that leads us to have fixed understandings about the world.
These understandings gradually create a standard way of life for many people. Since these concepts originate from the moral standards of the modern day, much of the essence contained within traditional culture has long been unknowingly forgotten.
It’s known from literature and art that traditional culture was bestowed upon humankind from above as a way for us to understand our environment and ourselves. These ways of ancients contain standards to guide people’s thinking, ideology, and behavior.
The lives of the ancients followed the laws of a greater force. Humanity followed the course of nature. Men had integrity and were masculine, while women were ladylike and gentle.
Buildings like pavilions and pagodas were designed to harmonize with the natural environment.
People valued skill in poetry, calligraphy, painting, and playing board games. The clothes they wore and the wares they used were in line with the rules of the universe and had special meanings behind them.
People in all professions focused on bettering themselves and in the East people cultivated purity of mind and paid attention to posture and regulating their breathing, which recycled their energy.
These standards of human behavior not only helped them maintain good health, but also laid a foundation for people to cultivate themselves, elevate their morality, and return to the nature of their truest selves in the end.
Modern science and technology have changed people’s lives utterly. The pursuit of comfort and convenience has become today’s norm. Unfortunately, it has interfered with people’ natural thought processes and natural affection. Thus, morality is going on a big downslide. This is reflected in every aspect of human society in our manner of dress, behavior, and social environment.
Take music as an example. Classical music derives much of its content from praising Divines and focuses on elevating the spirit. Because of this, classical music still pulls peoples’ heartstrings, even after hundreds of years.
Much of today’s contemporary music, however, focuses on venting the individual’s emotions and it aims at stimulating people’s senses in order to attract people. This is what people admire in modern life – pursuing material things, indulging one’s desires, and becoming more impulsive.
People who live by these modern concepts usually don’t respect Divines and have no moral baseline. They use rude language, are often impolite, and their interpersonal relationships are messy.
The popularity of electronic games and various apps on the Internet spread and promote this modern ideology. Vulgar language, bad jokes, indecent photos, and “funny” videos are all over the Internet. People are marinating in all sorts of garbage all the time.
On the surface, it looks like people’s lives today are richer, more colorful, and more exciting, but, in reality, those electronic games and entertainment programs numb people’s true selves and use up all their time and energy. This “numbing” effect has been integrated into society, such as its culture, arts, politics, law, and education.
Traditional economics encouraged entities to do business fairly without harming others’ interests. But the current economic system is focused on how to make more profits and ignores human morality completely. It runs contrary to traditional society, whose principles guided people, to be honest with goodwill.
Modern technological development ignores human morality. It just leads people to pursue their endless desires. Cloning technology, head replacement surgery, and genetic modification destroy the laws of nature and violate the basic tenets of being human. It is very dangerous for human beings to develop this technology further.
People today have been disconnected from the ways to improve morality and to self-cultivate that Divines has endowed us with. It divorces humanity from the traditional culture that has been systematically arranged for the greater good.
People who have lost their cultural roots cannot understand the people of ancient times or reach their realms of thought and interpretation of history.
People who are slaves to modern ideology lack cultural connotations and moral restraints.
In fact, this so-called “modernization” and modern fashion are closer to a dark path and only leads us further and further away from true human nature and our origins.
A return to traditional culture is a return to the way, given to all of humanity as a free gift.