September 12, 2012
As part of a lead up to his upcoming tour of India (September 14th – 23rd), Andrew was interviewed by Speaking Tree, one of India’s largest spiritual publications. Here is the second installment in this five-part series:
Question: Today’s generation is viewed by the older generation as being extremely selfish — the ‘I, Me, Myself’ generation. If this is so, how did this happen?
Answer: The cultural revolution that flowered in the 1960s in Europe and America is called “postmodernism.” Postmodern culture extols the values of freedom and individuality. As a ‘baby boomer,’ I am of that generation. When I was growing up, my parents repeatedly told me that I should do whatever it was that was going to make me happy. The children of postmodernity — we baby boomers and our children — tend to be intensely self-focused and generally self-obsessed individuals. We are, after all, members of the ‘me’ generation. ‘Me’ means ‘me first’ — what I think, what I want, what I feel, for me.
There have also been many great gifts from this cultural revolution, including the Civil Rights movement that started in America and ultimately spread throughout the world. The postmodern revolution also led to the explosion of feminism and the demand for women to have equal rights. Two of the greatest pioneers of this cultural movement were M K Gandhi and Martin Luther King; through their life and death, human beings would recognize that we are all inherently equal and that no religious, ethnic, or national distinctions give any individuals inherent moral, cognitive, or spiritual superiority.
So the answer to your question is yes, in many ways we tend to be more selfish than our parents’ generation was. But in other ways, many of us have the capacity to be able to see and understand the world with greater complexity and often with more compassion.
You can follow Andrew’s journey to India, September 14th-23rd, by clicking here to see his full schedule.
Image: © Thomas Pajot – Fotolia.com