Thursday, 30 August 2012

How big is your world?

It often amazes me how small-minded people can be. How uncurious. How indifferent.

As somebody who grew up asking questions about the world, wanting to explore and have answers for everything, it seems only natural for me to think about the huge scale of the planet that we live on and the vast amount and variety of people who we share the world with. In the eyes of some, their world is no bigger than the town they live in; the life they lead. They don't think about the fact that there are whole other cultures which are completely different from us, with tribes who don't have spoken language or customs which we might find completely bizarre. It's not that they don't care, or aren't interested. It just doesn't cross their mind. They don't think about the starving masses, the disease-riddled nations and the evil nature of humanity. They just don't see it. For them, life might not be blooms and roses, but the hardships don't get harder than maybe not having the money to buy the object they want. And it doesn't occur to them how lucky we are to even have food, or to sleep in a house which is subject to forest fire, attack, or terrible weather conditions.

To an extent we're all like this. Nobody can ever truly grasp the scale of the world we live in, because it's just too huge for our minds to truly fathom. But some people grasp the concept a little more than others. Which I simply don't understand - why would you not want to know about or explore other countries and cultures? How could you escape knowing about the situations in other places? Ignorance may be bliss, but there are definitely disadvantages too. I think people whose mindset of the world is too small miss out on a lot of beauty. Because the world is beautiful. Culture is beautiful. People are beautiful. Maybe not all the time, and maybe not when they develop into groups and gang culture, but they're certainly interesting.

I'm constantly striving to match my view of the world with how the world actually is. I'll never achieve it, but it certainly opens my eyes.

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