Modern Americans Vs. Puritans Essay, Research Paper
Are We or Are We Not?
Are we or are we not? That is the question. Does the current generation of Americans have the same values and morals of the Puritans of the 1600 s? Some would say yes and others would say no. This paper will show both sides of the argument. It will discuss whether or not we share the values of self-reliance and honesty like the Puritans treasured. This essay will discuss the importance of the family and home to the Puritans and compare that to today s standards. It will also discuss other issues not listed above.
Honesty was an important value of the Puritans. They were a very religious people and it was a sin to lie. Honesty was stressed to children as they were growing up. In today s society, that is not so true.
Parents do not care that much about honesty. They would like their children to live an honest life but they do not stress it as much as the Puritans did. This world is made up of lies. It was once said, History is a set of lies agreed upon. That could very well be true. Many of today s infamous jobs are known for their lying skills. A lawyer in today s society is taught to lie. Lying is a big part of today s society, and the Puritans would not have liked that very much. They would have been rather upset.
The Puritans believed that self-reliance was a key to a successful life. They believed that if everyone took care of themselves, there would be no problems. Relying on someone else is very risky. What if they do not pull through? What if they leave you high and dry? What are you going to do now? If they relied on themselves, their life would be in their own hands and they would be in control. In modern America, though, people are not taught to rely on themselves. Many people are homeless and they rely on the government for money, food, clothes, and homes. They do not go out and take their life into their own hands. They live their whole life relying on someone else to do the work for them. It is not fair to the rest of the people that are self-reliant and can take care of themselves.
The family and home were probably one of the biggest values of the Puritans. The Puritans stressed togetherness within the family. They wanted families to be tight. As religious as the Puritans were, family came before religion. Family life is also important in modern times. People are urged to spend more time with their families and try to bring them closer together. Children grow up wanting to have a family of their own they can take care off. It is one of the pleasures of adulthood. Family life has a key role in today s society, but it definitely does not have the biggest role.
Attending church regularly was very important to the Puritans. They based their lives around their religion. The entire reason the Puritans came to America was to escape the Catholic Church of England. They believed that if you did not go to church on a regular basis, you were siding with the devil. It was practically a sin not to go to church. In modern America, however, attending church regularly is not of such great importance. Now, you are not condemned for not going to church. People are not forced to go to church all the time. It is each person s choice whether or not they want to attend church on a regular basis.
The Puritans also strived for simplicity. They did not believe in being materialistic. They believed that materials did not make the person. The person made the person. They liked having things simple because that made everything easier for them. It is the exact opposite here in modern America. Everyone strives for the biggest and best things they can buy. Then, they judge each other by what they own. That is the definition of materialistic.
As one can tell from the writing above, we live very different lives than the Puritans. Modern Americans may have a little in common, but for the most part, they are much different than the Puritans. Many people, today, would say that the Puritans are the better type of society. Those same people would say that modern Americans have little respect for morals or values. If the Puritans were so much better, how come they are not around right now?