I grew up in the country. I’m talking no stoplights, no grocery stores, got stuck behind tractors on the way to school – country. Given that I’ve found few people in my city circles that can relate to my childhood, I thought I might have some stories worth sharing.
To be cultured means to be “characterized by refined taste and manners and good education.” The city isn’t the only place to become cultured. I have learned just as much from picking vegetables in the hot sun as I have from studying Brahms’s 4th Symphony at Jefferson’s University. I have learned just as many lessons from hard working folks that never earned a college degree as I have from honored professors.
But we don’t associate “cultured” with “country” – at least in the U.S. Note a southern twang when reading “country” this blog.
I’m not writing this blog to claim or prove that I’m a cultured person. I think I’m constantly in the process of “refining my taste” or getting a “good education,” but that process involves time in hick towns just as much as it involves city life.
I have come to appreciate my experience of knowing both worlds well, and I want to share these two worlds with you. The transition from country life to city life created an internal dissonance that ultimately taught me – that continues to teach me – the importance of understanding various perspectives.
How does yoga fit into this? I began practicing yoga a year ago. Since that time, it has been a way for me to take care of my body while developing healthy mental habits. You can cultivate strong mental habits on your mat that you carry with you off your mat. Your mental habits shape your perspective and interaction with the world. I believe that becoming “educated” can come from time alone. It can come from turning inward.
I hope you enjoy these stories of my cultural development.
“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” Anaïs Nin