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Old 12 December 2005   #46
Does touching oneself count as being open to contact?
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Old 12 December 2005   #47
Originally Posted by Stahlberg: What evidence?
Yes different populations have small differences in their average outward appearance. But raise a child in a different culture from its own and it will speak and behave indistinguishably similar to what is expected in that culture.


You know very well that parenting has the most impact on child behaviour. But things are not as clear cut as your example. Say, you have both parents from two different races and cultures, and they live in a 3rd different culture. The child will pick up not only that local culture, evidently the cultural background of the more influential parent will prevail. Having said that, there will always be that unique natural behaviour of that child that can be distinguished as different. Cause and effect theory cannot explain the complexity of our behaviour. This is not an input/out device that will be expected to give certain outcome. The individuality is something that cannot be ignored.

Take an example of two brothers living in the same household, same parents, play together, go to same school together, yet they are so much different. How do you explain this? On the other hand, with identical twins, from what I've read and heard, they tend to be very similar regardless of their upbringing.

At family level, I have also noticed that certain families share common characteristics that are so different from the average/common family of that locale.

I cannot prove it when I said there are evidences, yet I don't dismiss it either for the same reason. I will leave this issue to the experts who studied in depth anthropology, sociology, psychology, and genetics. Let's not construct theories based on non-scientific proofs.
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Last edited by ashakarc : 12 December 2005 at 08:24 AM.
 
Old 12 December 2005   #48
I'm convinced that some races have different internal methods of dealing with the environment, this is imho a good example of natural selection, makes perfect sense to me actually.


How does it make sense? Population A in a warm climate is very touchy-feely. Population B in a cold climate is not. You're saying they evolved that way because there was some survival advantage to both respective behaviours. Where is the advantage?

Take an example of two brothers living in the same household, same parents, play together, go to same school together, yet they are so much different.


Now you're talking about genetics on an individual level. The original comment was on a population-level - saying population A consistently shows different genetic markers from population B. When you start applying this to behaviour, eugenics and value-judgements are only a very short step away.
 
Old 12 December 2005   #49
Originally Posted by Stahlberg: How does it make sense? Population A in a warm climate is very touchy-feely. Population B in a cold climate is not. You're saying they evolved that way because there was some survival advantage to both respective behaviours. Where is the advantage?



Now you're talking about genetics on an individual level. The original comment was on a population-level - saying population A consistently shows different genetic markers from population B. When you start applying this to behaviour, eugenics and value-judgements are only a very short step away.


Regarding your first point, I think you are pointing out to certain population, by assuming this. From what I know for example, Russian culture is very warm and passionate, yet it's grown in a freezer climate. Irish culture is the same, very close and friendly.

There has been very interesting points raised by Jean Jacques Rousseau, in a paper about the origin of languages. He attributed the evolution of languages to climate too. I will look for it and let you know.

The original post is not related to general culture at all. In Freudian terms, it's about homophobia. That's the essence of this discussion IMO.

Personally, I can understand the influence of climate and culture through architecture, but human societies are more complex to pin down.
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Old 12 December 2005   #50
I don't think culture lies in the genes.

Scandinavians were barbarians, hugs and body contact was frowned upon... They could kill you for trying to hug one. We are still raised to look down on people who "needs a hug" or greets someone in a warmer way in shools.. I know in Norway, having a cold attitude is far more "respectable".
I think that for example Italians, who greets you whit a kiss on eatch side, respects a warmer attitude more. Being seen as cold would be an offence there I think.

Personally, I'm raised the more Italian way by my parents (havin an italian father and a norwegian mother) and the TV, but knowing that the society I live in will slaughter me if I dare tutch them, I'd never ever hug or greet warmly (whit kisses) a Norwegian in public.

Take an example of two brothers living in the same household, same parents, play together, go to same school together, yet they are so much different.

They could be picked on by different people and therfore by different reasons, giving them different traumas and fobias.
It's not possible to test this out. The parents would have to give them the same toys, they would have to have the same bully beating them up, they would bouth have to sit next to the same asshole. Eventually one would whant something the other doesnt have or feel like he is supposed to be a copy and therfore gets less love.. You can't test it.


I don't think that inflicts my art in any way though.
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Old 12 December 2005   #51


You are looking at the world through glasses colored by your upbringing, and now you're doing the judging. If people don't behave the way people did where you grew up, it doesn't mean there's something wrong with them. Everyone has emotions; they just go through a lot of trouble to hide them in certain cultures.





You touched the wound with a hand full of salt. Yes, I agree, I may be judging, but this is my pure point of view. If you visited the region, you’ll be stunned by the amount of emotions flying in the air. Sometimes people over react, and that goes back to the cultural factor as I believe. Isn’t unhealthy to put your emotions in shoes’ box and hide it under your bed, sucking the pain and sleeping over a living volcano if black emotions without giving your lonely self the opportunity to revealing you worst fears, the fear of being caught crying. In our culture, emotions are seen in the streets walking naked. If a guy’s friend died, he will not close his eyes trying to stop his tears, believe me he will explode, cry like a kid, weep, people will comfort him, his friends will huge him, even they will cry with him. We saw it in the movies; “other culture” will do nothing for the man, nothing at all. In conclusion, in my culture, hiding your emotions is a sin.



But I believe now people in my culture tend to hide behind those ugly sun glasses of cold emotions, it seems that we eventually caught the cold flow from you guys.









The type of person who becomes a child abuser exists in equal percentage in every culture and country, it's just that their activities are more hidden, or there's less of an opportunity for them to manifest, in certain places and situations.





Partially agree.

We are no angels; do you know what I mean?



But in here, the religion plays a vital role, am not trying to judge, but the western media show you guys as disbelievers in general, its fine with me, but lows are not every thing, I mean if the low will guarantee the you’ll get the punishment you deserve for being a child abuser, here the religion will guarantee that you’ll not be a freak and molest kids. Believe it or not, in our culture think hundred of times before committing a crime due to religion. I don’t mean that we are winged angels, but this will reduce the process of committing crimes in general.







Another point, do you know that comforting a person who had a disaster in his life is a must in our religion, even if the person was stranger… know tell me, can you help a stranger in the States, I don’t think so, you’ll think that he is holding a gun and trying to kidnap you or something.





I believe fear is the only factor preventing other cultures from showing their emotions.

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Old 12 December 2005   #52
A point accrued to my mind



People in the past where warmer and emotional, but now they are not…



I think the reason is the population level, I mean in the past people where few, so they where friendly with each other.



You can observe that people in big cities are colder, more official with each others, and closed to them self, but in villages, you may receive a dish of your favorite food just because you are a neighbor.



Talking about my country, in here we send and receive yummy food dishes as a way of expressing warm emotions of respect and love, they think in here that food will strengthen the relations between the neighbors. Easy math (food + love = good relations)



Believe me, its so much fun, you’ll never go hungry







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Old 12 December 2005   #53
It seems A LOT of people eventually come to me for counseling / advice, and I’ve seen this (what’s written below) numerous numerous times...

Depression Cycle
A trend I’ve noticed in depression is that some people seek depression. More precisely, people find comfort in sadness and it blankets them like a hug. People become addicted and seek this sadness or self-inflicted sadness to achieve this feeling. The problem is that sadness is a short-term relief mechanism, but long-term result is further depression. I think sympathy relates to this on some level, but that’s another discussion. As one is hurt emotionally in one way, they in turn hurt themselves in other ways, always focusing on / seeking the negative. A cycle develops as people become depressed, seek sadness, become more depressed, seek more sadness, etc – essentially a downward spiral of depression.

Dark Artist Correlation
It seems the strongest exhibition of this behavior is in ‘Goth’ or ‘Dark Artist’ communities. They’re often recognizable by their illogical philosophical ideas, rebellion, drug use, (increased likelihood of) homosexuality, and depressing / dark art forms (music, clothing, pictures, poetry, etc). [Note: IT might be interesting to compare this to the more light-hearted hippies] I seems that the creation of these culture occurs through the cyclical behavior I mentioned above, combined with like-minded peers supporting each-other’s unusual obsession with depressing thoughts. Dark-artists or Goths are a more obvious (extreme) example of this as they surround themselves (environment) with darkness, depression, death, etc – which encourages depression.

My personal observation is that such behavior is extremely psychologically destructive.
 
Old 12 December 2005   #54
Originally Posted by s_sbaa: Isn’t unhealthy to put your emotions in shoes’ box and hide it under your bed, sucking the pain and sleeping over a living volcano if black emotions without giving your lonely self the opportunity to revealing you worst fears, the fear of being caught crying.


(I take that you meant to point out the unhealthiness of internalizing emotions, though I might've read you wrong.)

Sure you might end up with a slew of interesting conditions, e.g. ulcers, cancer and whatnot. But the way I see it, a peaceful society is worth a few ulcers. It just seems to me that a warmer, more active society will end up in a heated crisis more easily than, say, any group of introverted Finns. If alcohol is taken out of the equation.

...

I must admit this subject is starting to get on my nerves. I probably ought to drop it entirely but I can't help myself. On one side there's y'all hippies and touchy feely southern types feeling all sorry for us miserably cold northeners, and on the other, there's e.g. me, teetering dangerously close to saying things like... Well, giving statements about cultures that I really don't know jack about.

Just thinking about y'all touchy-feely folks out there gives me a rash.

But it seems to me that many of you don't get this internalized culture thing. Sure enough I don't get hugged on a daily basis, but I don't need to. And I'd be exhausted if I did. That's right, getting hugged is stressful. It doesn't belong to my culture, or more exactly, in my culture, hugs are reserved for parents, siblings and very close friends - though I will not go so far as to say my culture is exactly the same as Finnish mainstream culture.

And another thing: every culture has it's own kind of wordless communication, but judging by what a foreign friend told me, the Finnish kind seems to be quite hard to detect. Thing is, over here you can just shut up and sit somewhere with a friend, and both of you know that this is only because there's nothing much to say. Or you can just "not see" someone you'd prefer not to talk to, and both of you'd just slide past each other, avoiding all unnecessary awkwardness. Very handy, and saves a lot of energy.

I'd be tempted to say that the amount of communication in a culture is constant. Seems to me like the density of the population and maybe the living standards (purely in the material sense) have something to do with how introverted or extroverted a direction this communication appears to take. So making value judgements of your own - or someone else's - culture based on how other people have it somewhere else just feels like such a pointless excercise.

Though this is all derived from operating on the premise that people are essentially the same, no matter where you go. Scrap that notion, and this little construct of mine falls apart. But so do a good few premises of Western humanism.

Last edited by Kargokultti : 12 December 2005 at 12:53 PM.
 
Old 12 December 2005   #55
to: PhantomDesign

hmm do you think homosexuality is a reason for a psychologically destructive behavior?

or did i missunderstood you, sry my english is not that good
 
Old 12 December 2005   #56
Originally Posted by ashakarc: ....The original post is not related to general culture at all. In Freudian terms, it's about homophobia. That's the essence of this discussion IMO.....


i suppose homophobia could be an immediate explaination but somehow i feel it runs deeper.

about 10 years ago i was sitting in a bar and there was a fellow from iran sitting next to me. we were talking about nothing in particular. we had chatted before a couple of times. suddenly he took my hand in both of his and looked me straight in the eye and started to talk about his country.

i got a real shock. my first reaction was to wip my hand away but as i have travelled quite a bit (with a bag over my shoulder not the holiday inn kind of travel) my curiosity got the best of me. culturally things can change very quickly and if you can adapt there is often alot to learn. my second shock was the impulse i had to take distance.

i suddenly remembered seeing old men sitting side by side at street cafes in the market streets of cairo, puffing on great hookah pipes talking in a relaxed fashion but holding each other's hands.

there was absolutly nothing sexual about this fellows actions although i am sure the other people in the bar would have been certain there was. it was a very interesting and at once disturbing experience. my initial reaction may have been a homophobic one but the real rift was a deep cultural one. it felt more profound that just a reaction triggered by fear.

it was indeed an extremely intense way to communicate. you can test this out by seeing how long you actually hold eye contact with someone you are talking to, it's surprisingly short.

wierd.

i feel all art really is is communication. does the way we interact with each other affect the things we create? can we use these anomolies to increase the quality of what we create?

technology has been blamed for equalising cultures globally but i don't see evidence of this if you function within a culture instead of just travelling through it. once you get down to the nitty gritty the differences are fairly great.

cheers chris
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Last edited by Kanga : 12 December 2005 at 01:37 PM.
 
Old 12 December 2005   #57
Originally Posted by PhantomDesign: It seems A LOT of people eventually come to me for counseling / advice, and I’ve seen this (what’s written below) numerous numerous times...

Depression Cycle
A trend I’ve noticed in depression is that some people seek depression. More precisely, people find comfort in sadness and it blankets them like a hug. People become addicted and seek this sadness or self-inflicted sadness to achieve this feeling. The problem is that sadness is a short-term relief mechanism, but long-term result is further depression. I think sympathy relates to this on some level, but that’s another discussion. As one is hurt emotionally in one way, they in turn hurt themselves in other ways, always focusing on / seeking the negative. A cycle develops as people become depressed, seek sadness, become more depressed, seek more sadness, etc – essentially a downward spiral of depression.

Dark Artist Correlation
It seems the strongest exhibition of this behavior is in ‘Goth’ or ‘Dark Artist’ communities. They’re often recognizable by their illogical philosophical ideas, rebellion, drug use, (increased likelihood of) homosexuality, and depressing / dark art forms (music, clothing, pictures, poetry, etc). [Note: IT might be interesting to compare this to the more light-hearted hippies] I seems that the creation of these culture occurs through the cyclical behavior I mentioned above, combined with like-minded peers supporting each-other’s unusual obsession with depressing thoughts. Dark-artists or Goths are a more obvious (extreme) example of this as they surround themselves (environment) with darkness, depression, death, etc – which encourages depression.

My personal observation is that such behavior is extremely psychologically destructive.


Quite insightful, I recognised this as a kid, but simply went ahead to indulge in similar behavior.
Simply for the fact that the rest of the world was shrouding itself in normality in my eyes. The comments overall and anywhere were mostly 'ah well, that's just life... you gotta go on'. I mean, doh... Could be an answer but I don't believe that.

Originally Posted by Stahlberg: How does it make sense? Population A in a warm climate is very touchy-feely. Population B in a cold climate is not. You're saying they evolved that way because there was some survival advantage to both respective behaviours. Where is the advantage?


the theory doesn't work on advantages alone. It owrks no the fact that nature selects certain things because they happen more 'fluidly'. As in they work.
For instance in this case, warm climate is everybody outside their caves mingling, obviously this leads to fights and mini wars. Well now, the ones that are less inclined to want all those fights and go fishing for a hug instead would be quite more likely to make close contact and on top have friends for surviving some ordeals.

I suspect in colder regions it would take similar paths but there's less likelihood for that path to develop. Since hogging food is still better if there isn't much of it in long winters.
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Old 12 December 2005   #58
Where I live, standing on your own, not showing emotion and dealing with your own business all seems to be applauded. Someone bursting into tears in public is an embarrassment. I suppose we suffer in silence, behind locked doors, or rather – with people we love and trust. I don't think we love or feel less, up here, just that the emotions might be focused more on certain individuals and hidden underneath the surface.

There aren't any 'huge' families here, or at least very few. I don't know anyone who grew up with more than one or at the most two siblings, and usually people only seem to have a handful of cousins. We're few, here, in Sweden. It seems to me that we care intensely and greatly for the few people we do include into our small families (in my case, my family and my closest friends) but we might not show it as much to the outside world as they do in other cultures. To me, that doesn't make the love less. It's beautiful and very vibrant the way people hug and kiss and love each other with shouts and hollers in other cultures, but I don't envy them. It's different but not better.

Maybe I'll be uncomfortable if someone I don't know very well forces a hug on me, but that's because I find hugs to be a more genuine gesture and I'd prefer to save mine and heap them on the people I love. I don't want to lessen the value of the gesture the way you'd make a candy taste less sweet if you had a hundred of them every day rather than one every second week, you know? I love the quiet way we have. Up here, in the north part of Sweden, people speak more slowly and respect silences – if you don't want to talk about how you feel, you don't.

As for the why... well, I'll agree what most of what's been discussed here, save for this way of being having anything to do with genetics. I just can't bring myself to thinking that I'm genetically wired to feel this way, when I know how much I change my behaviour as I grow up, get to know new people and learn new ways.

And yes, all of this is reflected in what I paint.
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Old 12 December 2005   #59
Originally Posted by Enayla: Where I live....*stuff*... what I paint.



yea what she said


.
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Old 12 December 2005   #60
Most truth is a speculation on reality, reality being such a grand weave intertwining multitudes of truths together makes it hard to isolate anything. no doubt multiple facets come to play. Simply put I think the body is only a means/vessel for expressing, but nonetheless it has a certain way of processing or doing things. Which has it's influence on everything else I suspect.

What I was trying to say was more in an inclination to want to deal with something in a way that has proven valuable to the body. For instance the way a crow might bury his food but completely forget about it later on. It just clicks to store and hide it. Maybe not to actually come back and fetch it. So there might be a switch in there to first get it all together and then if possible, say gather a communion after that. The body will try to make sense of things as good as it can.

Crying in public is looked away from in our society as well, while on the other hand exhuberant joy is something we like(or maybe that's just me too). I have the notion that it's wrong to dismiss such feelings as a flaw. It's just part of being who you are as a human being. I for one have some difficulty in hiding it all constantly, up to the point of slamming myself shut and not talking at all. That's not healthy for me is what I know. In the end it's kind of degrading for me to have to hide parts of myself, nonetheless I don't demand others to be like me though. But admittedly I am going through a tough phase right now, might be overreacting or some such.
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