“Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.”
― Edmund Burke
Open any world history book to feast on the evolution of the cultures of mankind from about 8000 B.C.to the present. World History immediately has the power to fascinate and make you think. The subsets of world history (i.e., American History, European History, Asian History, etc.) are also interesting in their own ways, but they do not intrigue in quite the same way world history does. I did not understand until just recently why this is so.
It is so because it allows the reader to look down on the Earth from the 10,000 foot view and compress all the facts and fictions that make up human existence, while at the same time, discovering the repeatable patterns and cycles that drive history over long periods of time. That is why world history is very important. World history has the power to predict. You have heard it said that unless you know history, you are doomed to repeat it. And in the consternation that is our modern life, being able to predict could be a very valuable coping skill or planning strategy. In particular, for America, the life-death-life cycle of empires can be an eye-opening study in the present day.
Reading in Atlantis and the Coming Ice Age, by Frank Joseph, I discovered more about the Mayan prophecy revealed in their calendar, predicting an eternal cycle of global creation, destruction, and renewal. I’d reached a point where political internet hysteria pieces were just not doing anything for me in terms of comprehending present circumstances looming over our world. Joseph explains in his book how this cycle correlates precisely with scientific studies on glacial ice cores and predictions from the Hopi, The Inca, and the Norse as well as the visions of Edgar Cayce. In a nutshell, every few thousand years, the Earth and Mother Nature has to press the RESET BUTTON to right the balance lost by human interference in the natural environment. We haven’t gotten it right yet.
Most students have learned at least something about the life-death-life cycle of human cultures and empires. Time has its way with everything. From the Tigris and Euphrates, to the Indus in India, the great rivers of China, and the Nile of Africa – we learned about how agrarian cultures sprung from the hunter/gatherer lifestyle when tiny clans or tribes of 50 or so people populated the vast expanse of the Earth. It was hunter gatherers who birthed farming that birthed city-states that birthed empires.
How many times might an asteroid or a series of violent earthquakes and volcanoes have wiped the Earth clean? Did mankind have to start over repeatedly to rebuild these destroyed cultures and civilizations? For how long might some of these existed before the cycle repeated again? How advanced were the civilizations before they were destroyed? How many of them destroyed themselves by the misuse of war technologies? Was the human civilization rebuild cycle exactly the same as the one we study in world history today – hunter/gatherer to farmer to city-state to empire? Or was it different (i.e., shorter rebuild time) because of small groups of people who may have survived the cataclysms to bring knowledge to bear to a new environment and purified Earth?
Given the age of the planet and the fact the Earth is always changing, some have speculated there have been multiple births and deaths in cultural world history well before 8000 B.C. where man has been a participant- Atlantis comes to mind. So, for example, if the Earth has experienced multiple ice ages and other geologic and cosmic calamities, might it not be possible multiple world histories and cultures have presented before the 8,000 year marker where current world history courses typically begin the story? If so, the students are being shortchanged by the current narrative, which is what Paul Rosenberg believes.
Paul Rosenberg is re-writing world history through a series of articles for The Daily Bell. He is calling it“Production vs. Plunder (history leading to the destruction of the western way of life)” The title resonated with my own concerns for the decline of the American/western way of life and influence in the world. In Part 8 of Paul’s series, he offers a graph for the “General Cycle of Production and Plunder” where the attributes charted are Virtue, Centralization, Decentralization, Golden Age, and Dark Age. The series is useful in that it does not try to explain what’s happening from a purely political standpoint. He approaches it more from a systematic, historic cyclical point of view. This approach shifts much of the editorializing of history through whatever media to the realm of insignificance. If what’s happening is the normal turn of events, what does it matter whether liberals or conservatives are in charge and losing or winning based on their particular philosophy of governing? Maybe that’s not the point.
Thinking about it, you have to then wonder where we are, the American empire, in terms of the repetition of the cycle today? I would propose that we are rounding the curve somewhere near the “Centralized Virtue Faded Golden Age” and fast approaching the “Decentralized Virtue Rejected as Useless Dark Ages.” No matter how hard the liberal left tries to create the collectivist progressive state across the world, I believe the majority of the world’s people are individually straining hard to pull out altogether from having any kind of centralized government heavy with stifling regulation, systematized corruption and crony capitalism, militarized policing, and NSA spying/prying into every aspect of their personal lives. Living through this part of the cycle gives new meaning to the words “carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders.” How much can one wo/man change over a single life time?
Will we be undone by climate change as most liberals would have us believe? Or will we die off more slowly from a nuclear terrorist attack or solar event that takes out the grid? How much of the death side of the cycle can be blamed on mankind, and how much can be blamed on the nonnegotiable ravages of Time? Does religion help or hinder the process? Can we stop any of it? Does it matter if the whole cycle will renew again, and the empire be established in yet some other location on the planet, only to be destroyed at some future date unbeknownst to us? I have questions! I want answers.
This from Frank Joseph’s book:
For now, our species hesitates on the brink of something impending and momentous we sense but cannot yet clearly identify. At worst, we are collectively experiencing an instinctive anxiety attack in response to one of several lethal threats moving invisibly, if irrepressibly, toward us from the future. Indeed, we are not exempt from the same kind of natural process that has erased so many other obsolete creatures before our relatively recent appearance. The real tragedy lies not in our passing away, however well deserved, but in our squandered potential for becoming something better. On that slim excuse, we have reason to hope that our descendants, as survivors, may yet live to achieve it. One thing is certain: The present age and all its works cannot long endure; they must vanish, one way or another. The triumph of universal mediocrity and mendacity will end. And whatever is to come – final annihilation or unprecedented greatness — cannot be avoided. The prophecy of the Mayan calendar will be fulfilled.” (Atlantis and the Coming Ice Age, Joseph, p.236.)
Using 21st Century technology and know-how, if we discover this is where life has taken us to this point in time, how do we cope with the everyday experience of just living our lives? I don’t know about you, but I don’t see anyone living on the Earth past or present day I’d rather follow or believe than the Prince of Peace who appeared on the scene some 2,000 years ago now. Regardless of what happens in whatever cycles we are born or reborn into, very little makes as much sense as the recommendations of Jesus. I think I’ll set my sail in that direction no matter what else happens.