Perspective

“You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.” – Nietzsche

Everyone has a perspective. We all know what’s said about opinions, and an opinion is really a perspective. Every day changes how we look at life, and every time we open our mouths, tap something out on our keyboards, or place brush to canvas, we are sharing our perspective with the world.

One of the amazing things about perspectives is how memetic they can be. When you pass on you opinion on something, that colors the opinion of the people who heard you. They pass it on to others, and the idea spreads. Others come up with their own opinions, and spread them as well. So it is that our ideas about the world, how to interact with it, and how to interact with each other spread.

The internet, of course, is a fantastic communication tool. It allows perspective to be shared faster than any other medium humans have ever had access to. Twitter is fascinating for this purpose, as the messages are so compact, and you can receive them from so many people at once. Firing up a Twitter feed is like taking what’s inside the heads of a bunch of people and quickly riffling through them and seeing what catches your eye.

Nothing has more quickly conveyed the differences in culture and opinion to large groups of people on a daily basis. Perspectives are being shared, and therefore folded into each other, more than ever. Globalization is taking place on a fantastic scale. Some fear this, stating that it will remove cultures from all of us, leaving one giant melting pot.

I disagree. I think this will lead to a better understanding of foreign cultures and perspectives without sacrificing our own. This may lead to more global cooperation, and hopefully less war overall. Meanwhile we will stay true to our cultural heritage through ritual and story. When people see us celebrating those rituals and hear us telling those stories, they’ll seem familiar to them as well. An understanding will be reached.

Of course, that’s just my perspective.

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~ by Benjamin Kenneally on February 2, 2010.

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