something if we listen very carefully? In other words, cannwe reach the past through a heightened awareness? Donworlds linger? Certainly, the modern mind is not inclinednto believe any such thing. The modern mind lacks historicalnconsciousness or a sense of what lies beyond history. Innmuch of the modern world, the folkchain of memory isnbroken. People don’t live in one place any more, as thenpopular song of the early 1970’s rightly said. There arendiscontinuities of time and place. With the discontinuitiesncomes loss of what has been called transcendent memory.nI am speaking here of something more than historicalnconsciousness which comes out of living in a traditionalncommunity, but which also can emerge from a reading ofnhistory, and the understanding gained from books. Thenlinks between the present and the past may be more thannthe historical clues we have discovered in libraries orndiggings. These may be mystical, that is, beyond rationalnexplanation and analysis. The anonymous contributor tonThe New Yorker whom I quoted earlier certainly is someonenwho derived understanding in ways unacceptable to anhistorian or social scientist. She was hearing, or trying tonhear, sounds that weren’t heard by others. She was listeningnfor nature’s clock in a way that wouldn’t occur to mostnpeople in our time. She stretched her imagination, commentingnthat “The score of nature within which we listen tonour history is enormous and complex in a way completelynbeyond the imagination of our ancestors.”nWe now are able to see nature in terms of our knowledgenof evolution, geology, and galaxies. To be sure, even a verynshort while ago people thought of the world as young—nperhaps of 6,000 years duration—and lacked all understandingnof the forces in nature—from the atom to outernspace. But the anonymous contributor to The New Yorkernfailed to note that modern man has lost an awareness ofnnature—something more than an awareness of history—nthat people 5,000 or 6,000 years ago were keenly alive to.nThe great stone monuments of Western Europe—40,000nIn the forthcoming issue of Chronicles:nA Latin American”The conflict of 1846-1848 was one in which the UnitednStates was clearly justified in its actions. It was a conflictnin which our armed forces performed brilliantiy and innwhich we exacted the just fruits of our victory. This alsonwas a conflict which the Mexican government deliberatelynsought, one which it confidently expected to win. Thisnwar, most properly, should be recalled as ‘the War ofnMexican Aggression.'”n12 / CHRONICLESn—from “The War of Mexican Aggression”nby Odie B. Faulknnnor 50,000 of them—are silent witnesses to a lost understanding.nThey put our understanding to a test. We aren’tnsure how a scanty population, without technology, was ablento put the Stonehenges and Carnacs in place. Morenimportanfly, we don’t understand why they did so. Whatndrove them to use their resources in this manner? Whatntheories or conceptions lay behind the arrangements andnrelationship of the megaliths? Theirs was not a haphazardndisposition of monumental stones but a great design, thenfeatures of which we can’t fathom.nEndless questions arise from the megalithic monuments,nsuch as what were these stone structures for, in the ancientnsocieties which constructed them? These and other queriesnmake us realize that we have no idea of the builders’nmotivation, or insight into the content of their beliefs. It’snhumbling for us, modern men and women, to realize thatnour knowledge of science may have cost us the understandingnpossessed by our forebears in ancient times. Yet we mustnuse intuition to rediscover it, at least as much as archaeologicalnanalysis.nArchaeological analysis is not to be discounted, ofncourse. Modern times have produced the most extraordinaryntools for reconstructing the life of hundreds andnthousands of years ago. By examining carvings, pollen,nremnants of food, the wear and tear on human bones, asnwell as patterns cut in or painted on rock, we can retell thenvery ancient past. The future offers an exciting promise thatnwe shall know a great deal more about our past. Undoubtedly,nwe shall discover what caused human groups long agoneither to survive or to perish.nIn an electronic world it seems all the more important tonattempt to rediscover our mystical bond with the past. Tonlive only in and for the moment, or in anticipation of thenfuture, is to be deprived in life. To emphasize the pastnshould not mean failing to savor the present. A balancednview of life certainly involves what Richard Magruderncalled an “appreciation of smaller increments” of existence.nThose who are ill and thus aware of their mortality oftenndevelop a heightened appreciation of the present. Theyntreasure every moment left to them, truly grateful for eachnadditional day.nThe person with both a transcendent memory and annappreciation of the present, however, has not exhausted thenpotential of the human consciousness. For those with anmystical awareness, the religious, there is the present, thenpast—the world of transcendent memory—and, finally,nthat which lies beyond history—eternity, where human lifenis conjoined with the divine plan of existence. Not everyonenis capable of developing a sense of eternity. Only the saintsnmay do so to the fullest, though untold multitudes acrossnthe globe strain to know what lies beyond history, life, andncivilization. My own sense of what lies beyond is verynlimited, an article of faith imparted to me in my childhood.nMy personal sense of mystery is much more closely associatednwith the past of our race, and with the illuminatingnmemory that reaches that past.nIn contemplating time and searching for its meaning, wenattempt to answer one of the largest questions we cannaddress: What is a human being? We can’t get a completenanswer to that by studying the behavior of only ourncontemporaries. We have to review the human record in itsn