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Culture, do we truly understand what it is?

Most of us tend to think culture as arts, music, literature, etc. What I propose is to say that it is this and much more. Boye Lafayette DeMente speaks of culture as also the way people think, talk, and behave. He also included the way the people work and what they create.

As I have posted on the brain and how it works is now clear to me also an intricate explanation, generally, on culture. The many mental perceptions and beliefs that people have as to their own existence, to all forms of life and to the "universe" contributes to the culture of a person and peoples. Culture of peoples contribute to the culture of the person and the creativity, etc. of the person contributes to the growing culture of the peoples.

Our brains are thus programmed and that programming influences our view and reactions to the world in ways as to cultural influences. It is the survival instincts of the group, tribe, society that along with culture, beliefs and growth that unifies us into our individual worlds or civilizations.

When I read posts regarding culture I always hear about this ceremony, this type of specific adherence to things that other than relate to a celebration by a peoples seldom do I see inferences to the actual people as stated above.

Shimabuku-san spoke to the early Isshinryu pioneers about the importance of learning Okinawan customs, culture and beliefs but few took up the task. Those who did may have limited that study to such things as those ceremonies that speak to the unique way they live but only when studied at a much deeper level speak to the culture, etc. We hear of the o-bon celebration but do we know the how, when, where, what and why of its inception centuries past? We express the meaning of terms and say, "ah-ha culture." Do we truly know and can we truly know?

Knowing the ceremonies of the people is a first step. Take the second and find out more about their creativity, how do they communicate and why they do it that way and how do they behave  then and now. All these and many more will give us a better understanding of those who came before and maybe answer questions as to why it was done that way and why it is being done a certain way today.

"Each cultural world operates according to its own internal dynamic, its own principles, and its own laws - written and unwritten. Even the dimensions of time and space are unique to each culture." - Edward T. and Mildred D. Hall

DeMente, Boye LaFayette. "Etiquette Guide to China: Know the Rules that Make the Difference!" Tuttle Publishing. New York. 2008.

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