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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

What We See

A quick look at any society or culture sees its members as the same. Whether we are looking at Americans, Brazilians, British, Malaysians, Italians or Canadians, outsiders see members of  a particular society as "all the same." We often see stereotypes, not individuals. 
cormorants (photo by Jeff Howard)
Societies or cultural groups do tend to head in the same direction. We all see similar news, advertisements, fashions.  We tend to look and go in the direction we are lead - Offer me food I like and I will eat it. Offer me cute clothes and I will wear them.  Tell me "Everyone wants it," and I'll want it too. We often grab the latest trend without little thought of the consequences. We seldom ask, "Who will it hurt?" Do I really need it?" "Does it offend someone?" "Will it affect our health?"
We see whatever light is offered by our friends or the media whether it is advertising media or news media.  We listen as if there is only one voice and we turn left or right as we are directed.
Floating along with the crowd. 
But not always.
Sometimes individuals or small groups ignore the surrounding crowd . . .  listen to other sounds . . . see other lights . . .
. . . change direction, change their clothes and change their ideas. If we pay attention, look very closely, suddenly we see someone different. We see an individual, not a society. Perhaps it is you that is different.  Maybe me. One of us might be the one who thinks for ourselves, considers more than what the crowd is doing. Maybe you are that independent thinker . . . choosing the way you want to look-the way you want to be.
Knowing that you are part of the culture in which you live but taking time to listen . . . to pause . . . to consider looking in a different direction.
Cormorants (photo by Jeff Howard)



Marvin said...

A thoughtful post. Sometimes it hard deciding whether a different direction is better, worse or simply different.

FlowerLady said...

What a GREAT post! Following is not always the best option. Blind leading the blind, etc.

Thanks for this reminder.

Enjoy every moment.


John's Island said...

This is such a wonderful post. Wish it could be required reading at some early age level. The older I get, the more I'm aware of what you're saying here. It is so true, and I'm as guilty as anyone of putting people in neat little boxes. I wonder if you would agree that part of the problem in America is our media. We are constantly bombarded with advertisements telling us what we should like and what we should buy. I'm at the point where I mute almost every ad on TV. Well, I best not go on and on, but just wanted to say how much I appreciated this post. Also, Thank you kindly for your welcome comments on my blog!

Nutty Gnome said...

What a very thought provoking post and some wonderful photos too. Thank you :)

Simone said...

Great post matched by the perfect images!Thoroughly enjoyed reading it.