P.O. Box 3913 • Urbandale, IA • 50323 explore@cultureall.org 515-273-8569

You and culture

I think that you would agree with me when I say that Culture is not a product.  What I mean is, you can not go into a store and purchase a CD or a book that tells you all you need to know about culture.  It is not a product which can be purchased, understood, used and recycled/thrown away.  Instead, it is a personal, evolving, mysterious and influential word.  It is a state of mind which we use to understand ourselves and those around us; it is how we understand our environment and our role within it.  It is a story created from our beliefs and values which in turn are shaped by our experiences.  Experiences that include interaction with people and interaction with our environment.  Is there more?

So if culture is part of us, and it is not so obvious to us, how do we become aware of it?  Is it by traveling?  Is it by meeting new people?  What happens when we do meet someone from a different culture?  Now, that someone does not have to be a citizen of another country; they can be someone of our age and within the same country but from a different culture within a culture.  As we begin to think about, talk about and discover this mysterious, evolving, personal and influential word, we realize just how complex it is.

However, this complexity is not impossible to discover and begin to be curious about.  The challenge does not lie in the so-called complexity of culture, but in time and connection.  It takes time to reflect and ask questions.  It takes building relationships with others to test our reflections, discover other’s experiences and learn.  Time and connection can bring what seems evolving, personal, mysterious and influential into curious understanding.  But, it seems like time is becoming more and more difficult to find; even in the education system.  What about connection?  Is it harder and harder to find?

How do you approach understand something?  The video below is of an amazing women sharing how she explores what she does not know.

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