I went to college at one of the most liberal liberal arts schools in the nation, in Caldwell, ID - and afterwards moved back to Washington State. Two
months ago, I returned to Caldwell, but not the college - I am now living in Idaho with conservative room-mates.
There is definitely paralyzing culture shock when moving from one of the most liberal areas in the country to one of the most conservative with the
intention of being part of that society. Luckily, my life started out rather conservative, but I am so glad for the liberal experience I had from
middle-school through college.
I think a lot of people don't realize that there are different ways of thinking out there, whole societies that exist on different levels, and if you
are part of that society, it is fairly impossible to even comprehend what another society is like.
It often goes beyond the realm of facts and into the realm of societal structure - which has fairly little to do with facts, but more to do with how
things like energy and resources flow through the system, what perceptions people have of different objects, people, events, etc, what roles people
play, what is considered successful, and what is held as valuable.
Just like a Democratic government gets its power from the population (if our government stops working this way, it is technically not a Democracy) the
values a culture holds important get their power from the shared (and probably coerced or otherwise manipulated) vision of the members in the
At the moment, liberals value science and ethics based on cause-and-effect principles, and basic human dignity. Conservatives, on the other hand, seem
to value the freedom to pursue a vision or goal while disregarding others who they are not on familiar terms with.
There are a lot of differences between the two societies, enough that when I first moved to Idaho, I was constantly making "social mistakes" just
because I was used to being from Washington.
The main point of this post is to show how crazy it is - I think that everyone should experience living in a different culture than they are used to
at some point, fully immersed, to understand just how screwed up it is that there are complete societies out there with different perspectives on the
I mean, when everyone around you believes certain things, it has a way of making you think that this
is reality, this
is how everyone
thinks - to surpass the limitations put on you by whatever society you are in, a great way to start is by going through culture shock.
24-2-2013 by darkbake because: (no reason given)