We are all culturally designed by the initial foundation of our existence in accordance with our environment. Our environment is determined by our parent’s circumstances and their environment, which we do not choose and to an extent was probably chosen by someone else, perhaps their parents. Even if they decided to change their environment or circumstances, they decided you just influenced their decision and was born into it. Where we are born has much more influence on us than who we were born to. This environmental influence has an inverted effect, as we get older the influence of our environment expands to adjust to changes while the parental influence declines. The parental influence remains strong because it is part of our experience and our experiences shape our perspectives, but still it declines in a substantially active manner over time.
The status and cultural vindication among your self-identifying group or the norms of your geographical location is the measurement that you mostly judge yourself by and which others probably judge you by as the collective standard of that place and time. The goal is to assimilate to your environment and the subgroup that you aspire to become a part of or have found yourself to be a member of. If you not choosing then someone has chosen for you, your environment has made the choice. Your subgroup has many different levels, developed preferences, and motivations that constantly changes with time. What is permitted, tolerated, encouraged, or prohibited changes constantly which requires your adaptation? As the circumstances change so must you adjust for the present and future as opposed to functioning in a time long past.
The cultural pull to cling to the past as tradition can create illusions of a present constructed of the past without consideration for the reality of changes and practical application outside your subgroup. To stay contained within your subgroup is a norm of that group but not for interaction with those outside your subgroup. There is never an argument when everyone is in agreement, but any deviation and some fraction is dissatisfied and exploiting a distinction solely based upon opposition to their preference or choice. When dealing with those outside your subgroup, cultural, environmental, and geographical approval; you must allow to some degree of your dissatisfaction, for them to allow the same degree of their dissatisfaction.
When in Rome you do not have to do what the Romans do but practices that do not infringe upon you are of consequence to only those who practice them. The problem becomes when a perspective or tradition is imposed upon a different environment other than those in agreement with them or one that is designed to harm them. This is not currently in step with time as the world has become global and movement is not confined to our little piece of real estate or experiences. There needs to be a respect for others’ differences and geographical influences without abuse of others rights as a human being and resident of the universe. Assimilation is not to become identical to some subgroup or environment at the expense of your culture but to reflect the collective commonality of coexistence.
Assimilation is more of an idea than action because control of what someone self-defines themselves as is strictly subjective. Suppose you are categorically opposed to someone for whatever reason, can you stop them from feeling the opposite for you if that is what they choose? What about a sport’s fan-favorite team, can you stop a person from cheering for that team despite your disapproval or knowledge by claiming it as yours? It becomes an illusion of a perspective projected outward without the distance to travel outside yourself, so it remains within you having no effect on other’s shared preferences. You are a member of many groups that without your consent you do not sanction the membership of. What about a song you like, can you control who else likes it, or a certain flavor of ice cream whose favorite it also may be?
What you share cross-culturally is far more when examined in a humanistic perspective than from a cultural or geographical perspective, just as everywhere people want the best for their children and if you do then why can’t others be allowed to want the same as well. Geography limits the human imagination and acceptance because it restricts the definition of your commonality to a location, nationality, or race. This restriction is reinforced, diluted, and distorted according to who has conquered who at what point in history and what external challenges are to be confronted. When in times of crisis, danger, and the need for solidarity the division within these subgroups is expanded beyond these allegiances to the maximum group affected. In other words, it grows exponentially from your home to your neighborhood, to your city or state, to your country, and finally the whole world; in addition to every other subgroup such as gender, race, wealth, poverty, religion, and so forth when faced with a common threat.
When the shoes get tight and the rubber meets the road, need seems to be the overwhelming uniting factor across all cultural and geographic boundaries. As language can travel without a passport and across all boundaries then commonality of interest travels even further, is more understood, and universally embraced within that common interest or need. If a global threat from an invading celestial force descended upon earth, then we would all suddenly become earthlings and not of our identifying subgroup but binding together for the greater good and our common survival against a shared threat.
To assemble under certain affiliations is essentially an act of comparison of preferences to an outside group having established your group’s criteria and beliefs with various hierarchy within the group as far as levels of deeds, acceptance, and dedication. There are levels to everything, and the corresponding judgments or values assigned. Validation from an external source that confirms your group identity robs you of your individuality because you must submit your self-identification to that of the group’s external projection. Reinforcing your externally validated self-identity to belong becomes the goal instead of adapting to changes within yourself and your environment. Stubbornness leads to foolishly suffering and necessary extinction as time moves on and new realities emerge replacing faulty practices.
Justifying our preferences in accordance with our reality within a larger reality that interacts and encompasses our’s only functions within our smaller reality. The larger reality functions outside the limitations of our acceptance and understanding creating a mental resistance forming a paralysis in time and mind. The denial of a culture you reject often have foods and products that you accept but not the people or culture that produces it. Rather illogical when you think about how often you put it in or on your body. Cultural differences should be embraced as the variety of life that stimulates life’s experiences. It is only a part of that which comprises the whole of you and your experiences while allowing for all that is beyond your culture and experience to expand your completeness.
That which threatens your identity is a byproduct of your lack of self-acceptance and dissatisfaction of your circumstances projected upon another group justifying a convenient lie over the uncomfortable truth. The conscious mind convinces and deceives you of what the subconscious mind knows to be painfully true. A group’s assimilation into their predominate self-identity and values that validates their worthiness based upon others’ perceived deficiencies thereby increasing their own value in comparison to feeling better about themselves is an illusion. The dishonor that validates them is insignificant compared to the acceptance of the group, not their culture. It then becomes their group culture to conceal their fear of change, tolerance, and acceptance to maintain group acceptance.
It is upon you to celebrate your experiences as respect to your parents, culture, and traditions that formed your identity as a cultural foundation but it is not for everyone who does not share the same influences but has their own influences to observe. These references should not be discredited and cheapened by the practices that serve to further an insult to the dignity of others, celebrate discrimination, or are widely associated with reminders of atrocities. It is wrong to celebrate an injustice against someone whether that injustice is performed by you or someone else. The perpetrator cannot determine the impact upon the afflicted, the afflicted must determine their own grievances and the impact of the injustice.
Celebrate and be proud of your individual spirit to be self-determined since there is only one of you in your uniqueness and embrace acceptance of your diversity from everyone else who walks the earth. What the eyes see is outwardly focused as a projection of you into your environment where there is still only one of you to be celebrated and cultivated. Embrace your uniqueness and accept other’s uniqueness because there is only one of them. In the end, we all share the same uniqueness and commonality; there is only one of us.
Moral of the story < The threat to our common survival is not of a celestial adversary but one that has been engineered on earth that threatens our children’s future and our co–existence as a species. If you want to exist, then you must allow others to exist including plants, animals, and humans, all equitably. We are all citizens of the universe whether we like it or not. Let’s make the best of it and bring cultural differences and socially engineered deceptions to examination and adapt from the past so that there can be a future. The greatest empires and civilizations the world has ever known have had an exploration date for one reason or the other. We should at least make our demise something out of our control instead of protecting a global threat or festering our inability to denounce past atrocities and exploitations. Everyone must make at least a little sacrifice, the world has change dimensionally and so should we. It is not always where you are from but where you are that you must adapt to.
Thurston K. Atlas
Creating A Buzz