This indeterminate or open-ended future and the lack of a binding past mean that the souls of young people are in a condition like that of the first men in the state of nature—spiritually unclad, unconnected, isolated, with no inherited or unconditional connection with anything or anyone.
They can be anything they want to be, but they have no particular reason to want to be anything in particular.
Not only are they free to decide their place, but
- they are also free to decide whether they will believe in God or be atheists, or leave their options open by being agnostic;
- whether they will be straight or gay, or, again, keep their options open;
- whether they will marry and whether they will stay married;
- whether they will have children—
- and so on endlessly.
There is no necessity, no morality, no social pressure, no sacrifice to be made that militates going in or turning away from any of these directions.
(Allan Bloom, The closing of the American mind)