I highly recommend you check out “The Descent of Power”, a 22-page essay by Robert Greene which can be viewed for free on Scribd. The following excerpt was especially poignant in my opinion:
I wanted to tell you about a dream I had a couple of months ago—I mean the kind of dream you have in your sleep. I dreamt that it was the year 2070 and that I was walking on the crowded streets of some city. People seemed oddly happy and there was a feeling of lightness in the air, as if something had really changed in the world and we had figured out a better way to live. What was most strange about this dream was that in the midst of it I was conscious of thinking back to the year 2010, so long ago. For some reason it occurred to me that that moment in time was some kind of turning point. That was when things began to right themselves, I told myself, but few people saw or understood this. If only we could have realized back then what was happening, where we were headed. How sad.
In the middle of this strange thought, I woke up. The dream and its intense mood stayed with me for quite some time. It made me think—this is clearly how it is in history. People never appreciate the moment they are living in. We can look back at all of the tumultuous, exciting periods in history with an air of nostalgia, but it’s an illusion. Those in that moment have no such perspective and no such appreciation. If only we could now have that perspective and realize that we are living through one of the great transformational moments and that the old is finally dying away.