History: The Importance of More than Just a Backward Glance

One good thing about history, is that we can look back at it. And in looking back we can reflect, analyze and learn. Its distance from us, its safe proximity in memory and on the page, as opposed to our immediate moment, affords us a calmer head and a more objective eye; a group discussion, even, amongst experts. Who cannot spot the warning signs now? It is so obvious. Why were we taken by surprise?

In looking back at historically catastrophic events, or the inverse, that of successful endeavors, we must stop and take time to stay turned around, view that particular and significant spot on the historical axis for a long while, like when taking in a sunset. Then we can learn principles of application to present and future; all history, whether global or personal, can serve us and be worthy of our consideration.

The Great Recession, as an example, is still too close for complete calm and contemplation, the pocket book still lighter from the crash, but more recent history, has its advantages too. The wounds are still new enough, not yet scarred over, and the sting a motivator, for us to act upon what has been learned, and to do so quickly.

History, unlike surgery or astrophysics, can be learned at an every person’s level; accessible to the scholar and novice alike, but we must take the time for examination. To review history is a responsibility that weighs heavier on some, i.e. policy makers and military leaders, than others, but if the responsibility is taken on, regardless of what sphere of influence God has granted you, there will be a benefit, at the very least, for you the individual, if not a more vast influence, to that of a country, or the entire world.