If you are asking, "What is the difference between how people of the past and people of present think about things?" you are asking a very complicated cognitive question. According to James R. Flynn, author of Are We Getting Smarter? Rising IQ in the Twenty-First Century, the dominant difference is that in the past, people dominantly thought in concrete terms, not in abstract terms (exceptions were the few philosophers, poets, theologians, and mathematicians). Today, people think in abstract concepts more often than in past times. Flynn posits this is because what we do now requires abstract thought more than what we did in the past. In the past most people did things that were concrete in nature (farming, carpentry etc) while today, people do things that are more abstract in nature (video games, using computers etc).
If what you are asking is, "What is the difference between how people of the past and people of present think about themselves and life?" you are asking a very complicated sociological question. One great difference between thinking then and now is that then, the majority of people thought of themselves and of others as bound by moral strictures whereas people today don't think themselves bound in the same way.
As a small example, in the past, generally speaking, having the door of a home closed was enough to keep intruders out (generally speaking) while today even a bolted door won't keep them out since they feel no hesitation in breaking windows or anything else to gain their goals. The fear of going out of moral and legal bounds that kept a certain kind of order in Western society has dissipated and declined throughout present day society (think of mass school shootings and mass shopping mall shootings).