Why to study History?
Why to study History? It is a very popular question. Really, why should we learn by heart plenty of dates, names of historical personalities and so on? Especially nowadays when we are surrounded by modern technologies, when science makes much progress day after day and the whole those stories from our past seem to be just unpleasant fairy tales.
One of the Russian historians once said: “History doesn’t teach. It punishes for unlearned lessons”. It isn’t a secret that all the being of human society from ancient times to our days looks like a snake biting its own tale. History is cyclical and every event, every person and every mistake took place one day in the past. The thing is that we should use this knowledge as à diligent student uses his draft. There is no sense in doing the same mistakes our ancestors did. For instance, everyone in the world knows what is hidden beyond Victory Day. Blood, tears and millions of deaths. On this day we must remember not only the fallen in battles of the Second World War soldiers, but the reasons and results of that war. Not a very single person feels happier on this day if he isn’t insane. Because everyone understands that wars don’t bring anything besides grief and death. This is a simple idea that should be driven into the heads of persons who dared to give a Nobel Peace Prize to a man bombing other countries “for the love of global happiness”. And if you didn’t sleep at your History lessons you can easy name a dozen of characters of this kind.
Scientists say that we shouldn’t think of History as of something global only. It seems ridiculous but the History of the world is similar to a life of a man. And it helps us to understand ourselves better. The main lesson of History is to remember that we can’t change our past but we can change our future. This day in history, in history of a man, is for sure a repetition of that day in history of his father or grandfather. Characters of science fiction used to wish a book with the description of the events in future. However, we have such a book. It is a book of History. If you look it through from a different point of view you will understand what a treasure you have got. There is no fate and no magic balls. But a book of History for a sensible person can substitute a camp of soothsayers. Just a little bit of logic and tactic to turn an obscurity into a well-planned future.
Studying History is necessary for everybody. It helps politicians to avoid repeating global misdoings, it teaches businessmen to build their companies hanging upon the experience of their forerunners, it inspires people of art who know better than others how fleeting this day in history is. Even scientists being the most advanced people whose lives depend on their view not upon only this day but upon the whole future can’t work without realizing the most primitive and basic knowledge of yore. Because if you don’t know primitives it’s easy to come down to it.
Studying History isn’t just a mechanic learning by rote what has happened on this day in history or that one. It is rethinking of the whole volume of people’s activity. Without this we would stay mammoth hunters who don’t perceive why their lives goes worse and worse.
They say that those who will throw a stone at the past will be shot with a gun by the future. We live in a technical world, we are surrounded by ultramodern devices and history of ancient days seems to be a too far and insignificant thing to worry about. But when “that day in history” turns suddenly into “this day in history” people understand that it was a mistake to escape from our bygone heritage and leave mistakes behind.