"What is the cause that the former days were better than these? " (*)
"Nowadays, yes. But, interestingly, not in the 1800s.... They were MUCH more interested in ethics, honour and the proper way to behave then."_____Dodgy Geezer
The dissatisfaction with the present compared to the past has been observed for thousands of years.
"Possibly it's because religion played a bigger part in everyday life then?"
Probably not. Maybe this.
"Victorian morality is a distillation of the moral views of people living at the time of Queen Victoria's reign (1837–1901) and of the moral climate of the United Kingdom throughout the 19th century in general, which contrasted greatly with the morality of the previous Georgian period. Victorian morality can describe any set of values that espouse sexual restraint, low tolerance of crime and a strict social code of conduct (Matt Bryant to a tee). Due to the prominence of the British Empire, many of these values were spread across the world. (snip) "Victorian values were developed in all facets of Victorian living. The morality and values of the Victorians can be classed under Religion, Morality, Elitism, Industrialism and Improvement. These values take root in Victorian morality, creating an overall change in the British Empire."
If by religion you mean putting on clean clothes once a week and doing, saying and singing the same things that scores of other coreligionists are. Or that you know where God was born, what his plan for the Universe is, and where He lives (not the fashionable side of Belgrave Square), you're better off starting your own religion. I did.
Remember, Dodgy Geezer, you're never too old for a religious experience. Although you probably should avoid one that involves several broken bones.