14 September 2016

In the Name of Culture

There are many aspects of our individual identities that are shaped by the cultural environments in which we live, and have lived.  Examples include how we speak, the vowel sounds we make, the words we choose to use, and even how we spell those words when writing, whether accurately or not.

When looking at the multitude of interests of bloggers and social media users, do you ever think about how each person might have gained the tastes and interests they list as expressions of themselves? How did you acquire your tastes and interests, and your sense of identity?

Perceptions of culture may sometimes lead to mistaken identity and identity confusion.  Are you sometimes confused about your own identity and your own culture?

In 21st century culture, there is much confusion about menial roles, higher goals and social enterprise.  Are you sometimes confused about the meaning and purpose of your life in relation to culture?

The way people pronounce words, and whether they speak the same language, has much bearing on the way they interact.  What does Via Veeya Vyah mean to you?

Culture involves patterned ways of dealing with the world.  It is partly shaped by geography and psychology.  Culture involves images, half-truths and reality in various proportions.  What is your own patterned way of dealing with the world, and how did that pattern develop?

When thinking of culture and psychology, in some societies introverts are cool and in other societies they are treated as if they are not quite normal.  I am an introvert myself.  I cope best with one person at a time rather than a group or crowd.

As a researcher, I work best in a quiet, private space, without interruptions or intrusions, mostly because I do a great deal of reading and writing.  Quietness and privacy are part of my identity.  They may even be part of my preferred culture.  What do you prefer, and why?

If you think all the world's a stage and you are constantly expected to play to a crowd as a star performer, why is that?  Do you think of yourself as only having a bit part, or a supporting role or an existence as an extra?  Would you prefer to see yourself as a director or a playwright for the world stage?

When cultures mix, there can be a great feast of languages, with or without much understanding.  If you travel to areas where most people speak a language you do not understand, how does that make you feel about yourself and your culture?

And how does your name fit in with your cultural identity?  Those of us with inconsistent names can cause a great deal of confusion in the minds of anyone with inaccurate expectations of us.

Cultural compatibility usually involves having accurate expectations.  How do you prefer to behave in the name of culture?

09 July 2016

In the Name of Meaning

What is your identity?

What does it mean to be you?

What should it mean to be me?

What does it mean to be mean?

What does it mean to be meaningful?

Is this meaningless?

Does meaningfulness change with age

Are some meanings delightfully surprising?

Are names meaningful or meaningless?

Is there any connection between meaning and popularity?

Can any meaning be taken at face value?

Do popular given names have more or less meaning than less popular names?

Does giving something or somewhere or someone a name add meaning or meaningfulness or anything at all?

Is meaning mostly found though the pursuit of truth?

01 July 2016

In the Name of Peace

Being comfortable with our own sense of identity is a key factor in feeling at peace with ourselves.  In other words, it is experienced as having inner peace.

The other factor to consider is the identity of other people.

You may have visited my peace blog, Quieter Living, where you will have seen many reflective articles about aspects of peace in both the inner and outer worlds.

Wishing you peace...

08 June 2016

In the Name of Thoughtfulness

I am interested in hearing from thoughtful people who are interested in the way people think.

Are you interested in the perceptions, emotions, values, attitudes, beliefs, approaches to problems and challenges, motivations, social behaviour, cultural behaviour, tastes and hopes of other people?  If so, why?

Thoughtfully reflecting on perceptions

Reflecting thoughtfully on emotions

Perceptions and emotions relating to values

Thoughts, values and attitudes

Thoughtfulness about beliefs

Identifying thoughtful approaches to problems

Reflecting on challenges with thoughtfulness

Thoughts about motivations

Behaving thoughtfully

Thoughts on taste

Thinking about hope

16 April 2016

In the Name of Reality

Does your view of reality use all of your senses? This is the question I often ask myself when I am doing social and cultural research.

I find that many people perceive the world primarily through one sense whereas I try to use all of them!

How do you tell the difference between images and reality - and filter reality in a useful way?

12 March 2016

In the Name of Humanity

Sometimes, I find it difficult to comprehend that other people have minds and thoughts and histories and relationships.  This especially occurs when I find myself in a crowd or in the anonymous and sometimes alienating environment of a concrete city landscape. 

Crowding and alienation can affect the way I respond to the minds and identities of other people.  Yet there are additional difficulties I face when trying to imagine other people's minds. 

When people think and communicate in languages different from my own, I usually expect to experience misunderstandings.  My communication difficulties happen, even in English, when people have grown up with social expectations that are different from my own values and experiences.  

This confusion does not necessarily happen across generations but it does occur in relation to the level of education a person has reached, and their sense of purpose in life.

What are your views on these issues in relation to understanding humanity and human rights?

09 February 2016

In the Name of Justice

If you are a survivor of an abusive relationship, whether as a child or an adult, here are two links that may be of assistance to you:

Adults surviving child abuse

Surviving trauma - a guide for young (and not so young) adults

If you would like to know how to prevent other people from suffering abuse, perhaps these links will be useful:

Recognising child abuse

Signs of abuse and neglect

It is important to remember that many parents and guardians have never had any scientifically-valid training in how to bring up children. Few young people know the basics of developmental psychology, or even basic hygiene.

 Developmental psychology

Most people learn about adult roles from the settings in which they were children, for good or ill.  Without accurate knowledge of human experiences, how is it possible to act in the name of justice?

20 January 2016

In the Name of Consciousness

What does it mean to be self conscious?

How conscious are you of the way you think?

Why is it important to think about the logic of your thinking?

About logic and fallacies

More about logic and fallacies

11 January 2016

In the Name of Democracy

Does democracy have any meaning to you in the 21st century? 

Is it about relationships and the way we express aspects of ourselves, freely and fairly? 

Is it about showing understanding and respect for others along the way where due?

Is democracy like all relationships in that it takes time to develop into an enduring part of our social existence?

Is respect for democracy an essential part of your identity?

How do you usually express democracy in the name of freedom?

How do you usually think of democracy in terms of being popular or unpopular?

How do you reflect upon democracy through your creativity in society?

When is democracy a topic upon which you are required to mind your language?

08 January 2016

In the Name of Popularism

Like the other irrational paths to power that should have been eroded permanently in the 20th century (prejudice, dictatorship, violence, ostentation, waste and greed), the pursuit of widespread popularity through populism can be a danger to the well being of everyone.

What does populism mean to you?

06 January 2016

In the Name of Friendship

Do you spend most of your time in a process of change - in yourself, your environment, your activities and/or in your relationships - or do you devote most of your time to preservation in one form or another?  Are your friendships mainly about change or mainly about preservation?

Making new friends and connections has not been a high priority for me in recent years.  My life has been so busy over the past decade or so, and my social activities are already as pleasant - and as time consuming - as I would like them to be.

I am mainly interested in people's minds and that is why I enjoy tasting the fruits of their mental activities, through their writings and other expressions of creativity.  This year I intend to continue my explorations of history and heritage.  From the achievements of Wedgwood and Darwin to explorations about and in the name of freedom, history and heritage shape the relationship between changes and preservation.