Perhaps the past Century will not be known for the World Wars, for the atom bomb, for the rapid growth of scientific technology leading to IT, nor for even the Holocaust and a new awareness of crimes against humanity. In the long eye of history, perhaps the past Century will be known for fatherlessness. As such it will also be known for “Atyahiány”, Our Father’s absence, a most bitter and embittering fatherlessness: For Hitler was fatherless, Stalin was fatherless, Sceuicescu, the tyrant of Romania, was a bastard, Sadam Hussein of Iraq had no father, the ruler of Libya, Khadaffi was fatherless, Castro was a bastard.
Psychology in all of the last Century focused almost entirely on the role of the mother. We know little about the role of the father in child development. But we have certainly experienced the role of fatherlessness in our lives and in wars and in loss. Much of the world has embraced nihilism, a nothingness that emanated from the past Century as a precursor for the First World War, the Modernism from Nietchze’s anti-Christ, only to be revived by Hitler in the mandala of the broken cross, the swastika of the Nazi. Our epoch may become known, in its own way, as the time when Our Father was absent. What we are coming to know is that the father is critical to the development of the child, especially in later childhood and in the teen years.