I love chatting with my Grandpa(naanaji) he has always been a very scientific man and talking with him at any point of time is very much a pleasure :) we discuss anything under the sun from physics to genetics, from history to huts, from food to fatigue anything. Many young men and women of todays generation are deprived of this feeling may be because they donot find a platform to talk or discuss things or may be because when they sit down to talk they dont have a common topic on which their opinions are same.
Its not always that easy to talk to him without bringing the past and present comparision. Just today i had a chat with my Grandfather who felt sad on the thought that today no one cares about old things , new generation does not value a thing of the past and that religious things which were done for a particular meaning in the past are now done in ostentate & meaningless fashion. I knew where the track was going and i knew within a few seconds he'd recall everything of the past and be upset about it for another 1 hr after the phone call. This is something that frightens us or disturbs us while talking to elders because we know we want to explain and we do have an explaination but someho cannot convince them. So to avoid this we avoid interacting at all.
Every man and woman in this world has a right to have different opinions. Comparision of the past and present is inevitable. Neither past nor present is completely correct, we live in a frame of time where past merges with present every second. As the concept of time machine in physics said to view the past you have to catch the reflected light of the present that spreads into the universe and replay it.. similarly every action that we do now Right NOW is as much past as actions done a day ago or 100 days ago because they cannot be repeated in exact fashion in that exact frame of time. :) So there is no difference between past and present it is the same only the duration shorter or longer makes us say its past and its presnt. (oops !! That was too much physics & philosophy :P i'd come back to some normal language)
What i wanted to say is we cannot push our grandparents to understanding that they were past and we are present. Instead we should accept the difference that they are stateing and expand our vision to see why they hold that difference. In my case i asked him a number of questions as to why he felt reading religious books and saving the past was important. His actions directed me to the feeling that "the old has knowledge and experience that is capable of keeping the young safe and happy, the old wants to save us and the young avoids that". This non transfer of valuable knowledge perturbed him & not the non following of rituals which intially seemed to be the situation . :) So calmly i was able to explain him my way, which did not get into the hussels and bussels of rituals rather it was good talk about knowledge transfer from old to young. He calmed down and i knew he wont think about it later on.
Avoiding this situation could have been easier to avoid the friction but it would have also kept me unaware of the feelings that an elderly goes through that even i would go through sometime later on, it would have kept me unaware of the happiness that i felt after solving his thoughts and it would have kept me unaware from a Learning today that past and present is lovely there honestly is no difference in them but only in our thoughts.
Please dont ignore Grandparents they are a lovely blessing to us. You need not heed to every word they say but you can slowly learn to explain things to them if you really see why and for whom they say things.