"Thus a situation has developed which is quite paradoxical in human terms: The barriers of the past have been pushed back as never before; our knowledge of the history of man and the universe has been enlarged on a scale and to a degree not dreamed of by previous generations. At the same time, the sense of identity and continuity with the past, whether our own or history's, has gradually and steadily declined. Previous generations knew much less about the past than we do, but perhaps felt a much greater sense of identity and continuity with it."
Hans Meyerhoff, Time in Literature. Quoted in Zachor: Jewish History and Jewish Memory, p 79 by Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi
"When I sit down to learn, the giants of the masorah are with me. Our relationship is personal. The Rambam sits to my right, Rabbenu Tam to my left. Rashi sits at the head and explains, Rabbenu Tam asks, the Rambam decides the halakhah, and the Rabad objects. All of them are with me in my small room, sitting around the table…. Learning Torah is the intense experience of uniting many generations together, the joining of spirit to spirit, the connecting of soul to soul. Those who transmit the Torah and those who receive the Torah are invited to meet one another at the same historic juncture."
Rav Soloveitchik, U-vikashtem Mi-Sham, p. 232