A dirty little outcome of Postmodernism has been its effect on the generation known as the Millennials. This experiment in social reconstruction has had a devastating effect on this group of young adults; and by extension, the Craft itself. This short essay will attempt to give further insight into the topic of Postmodernism, an issue I have been writing about since January of this year; feel free to look at my blog for further writings.
Let me first define the term Millennials:
Millennials (also known as the Millennial Generation or Generation Y, abbreviated to Gen Y) are the demographic cohort between Generation X and Generation Z. There are no precise dates for when the generation starts and ends. Demographers and researchers typically use the early 1980s as starting birth years and use the mid-1990s to the early 2000s as final birth years for the Millennial Generation.
Interestingly, the Millennials are by far the most studied generation in American history; in fact, the United States Census Bureau claimed there are over 80 million of them. In terms of their strengths, they are by far the most savvy technological generation to date; however, as good as this might first sound, look closer. This generation that grew up with computers, cell phones, television and the Internet, also lacks certain social skills. In fact, they have also become known as the loner generation. Sadly, I have even witnessed this crisis first hand. I have gone to many social events where this generation would rather look into their cell phone than talk to their peers, let alone older adults. In a word, they have become “detached” from reality.
Moreover, Millennials are less caring, concerned little with community affairs and are less politically active than past generations, as Jean Twenge claimed, “today’s youth are more interested in extrinsic life goals and less concerned for others and civic engagement. They are described as overly self-confident and self-absorbed.” This social media generation is more likely to be active on social networking sites, posting videos of themselves online and taunting their tattoos, and body piercing, to public display. The concepts of self-branding and self-promotions are an almost constant concern as well.
Recently, Gallop released a study, where it “found Millennials to be disengaged, aloof and completely incapable of prioritizing their own workload all while requiring constant pats on the back from management.”
Here are some generalities of a Millennial:
- Less likely to own a car before a phone.
- More likely to live at home after graduating from High School and College.
- Less likely to work a full-time job. Although, this may not be their fault due to economic conditions; however, lack of employment opportunities has certainly contributed to their selfish condition by becoming more reliant on family and the state.
- Dating and marrying much later in life. This also may be due to economic conditions?
- Have less interpersonal skills, which may lead to problems with relationships and employers, etc.
- High self-esteem and high-expectations, but lack a work ethic; this is a byproduct of the “everyone gets a trophy” attitude that pervaded the era of their youth.
- More likely to get sexual satisfaction from the Internet than seeking a relationship.
- More likely to be overweight and docile.
- More likely to sleep with their cell phones next to them.
- More likely to be educated beyond High School; but have less interest in local, national or international affairs.
- And perhaps one of the most interesting topic to us in Freemasonry, Millennials demonstrate little to no interest in faith related activities.
You see, it is this group of 80 million Americans that will eventually control this country’s future. Not only this nation, but also the Craft itself. Again, Postmodernism teaches relativism – that there are no absolute truths, 74% of those surveyed believed, “Whatever is right for your life or works best for you is the only truth you can know.” Honestly, they really believe that. This too is a byproduct of not reading history, especially the history of religion; or in our case, the mysteries of ancient beliefs. In short, the majority of Millennials believes there is NO MORAL TRUE!
Simply stated, I am certainly glad to read that most creditable academics are now coming out against this destructive experiment of social control, i.e. Postmodernism. No, we will never fully go back to Modernism, nor should we. There were some good things that came out of Postmodernism as well, some of which we should certainly keep.
But, what next? What will the next generation give our civilization? Only time will tell! In the meantime, the Craft should hold fast to its values and traditions. We need to stop lowering the bar for entry into the Craft. And if this means closing some Lodges, so be it. Albert Pike was quite clear when he wrote about the great Masonic purge in 1826,
WE often profit more by our enemies than by our friends. “We support ourselves only on that which resists,” and owe our success to opposition. The best friends of Masonry in America were the Anti-Masons of 1826, and at the same time they were its worst enemies. Men are but the automata of Providence, and it uses the demagogue, the fanatic, and the knave, a common trinity in Republics, as its tools and instruments to effect that of which they do not dream, and which they imagine themselves commissioned to prevent.
The Anti-Masons, traitors and perjurors some, and some mere political knaves, purified Masonry by persecution, and so proved to be its benefactors; for that which is persecuted, grows. To them its present popularity is due, the cheapening of its Degrees, the invasion of its Lodges, that are no longer Sanctuaries, by the multitude; its pomp and pageantry and overdone display.
Yes, sadly, we may in fact have to wait for the next generation to solve are declining numbers; but, as mentioned above, this is not the first time this has happened in Masonic history, nor perhaps will it be the last.
So Mote It Be!!!