A healthy mix of philosophical awe and ridiculous humor~This blog contains the following (Click each for the link!):
James, 22, Pennsylvania, Part-Time Panda
One of my all-time personal goals is to always search for knowledge, and in doing so, become well-rounded. Sure, there are certain things that I enjoy more than others, but I still throw myself out there to see if there’s more. I figure that if I haven’t tried or experienced it, I don’t actually know if I enjoy it or not. Obviously, logic can lead me to judge something that I might like or dislike, but I don’t usually arrive at such a conclusion without more evidence. So, I dive into something unexpected. Sometimes I get all anxious and nervous about it, but I force myself to see past it most of the time, ‘cause I know it could be something potentially awesome in the long run.
And so, I meander through life finding people to connect with in a more meaningful manner. And because I can grasp all the basics of most subject matters and I am generally interested in obtaining more knowledge, that I’m awesome at holding random conversations with people. I love people’s reactions when I ask them about their interests and how they are doing, and I’m able to contribute to the conversation in an enthusiastic sort of way. I’m also great at utilizing logic and reason to either infer the next logical pattern or to even go a step further and deduce the next leap in the process. It always seems to completely surprise people when they ask what my major is and it’s completely different from the current subject matter of talk. That’s something that I particularly enjoy. I want to be able to expand my horizons and meet as many people as possible.
And yet… the more I gain knowledge and meet more people, the more hopeless I feel in meeting people who share the same ideals as myself. It seems, I’m able to hold some wonderful and awe-inspiring conversations with people and gain basic acquaintances easily, but when it comes to something more, talking about anything and everything, it falls short. The conversation stifles over time. While I’m all for talking about a particular subject matter in depth with someone, it seems they’re less likely to take any interest in whatever it is that I fancy or that they know less about. Is it wrong of me to expect something more? Are people generally so self-absorbed that they’ll gladly talk about their own interests all day only to disregard anything they’re less knowledgeable about? I find it incredibly disheartening that people either throw themselves entirely into whatever they’re skilled at because it’s what’s natural to them or to only devote themselves to one field of interest.
For instance, I absolutely love art, and artists for that matter. They’re able to see life, interpret, and transform it in ways that are completely and astoundingly unique - pure expression. I can love such a thing and yet, I am completely rubbish at drawing. And not in the sense of discouragement, but simply that I don’t have what some may call “natural talent” nor have I even tried to put forth the time and effort into making art. I know it’s something that takes a great deal of dedication to perfect and evolve, and such a path has not been one that I have chosen. So, despite my own inadequacy in art, I love discussing it with others and seeing what they can do with it. Perhaps it’s my own realization that I don’t make great art that I see merit in the wonder of others’ artistic abilities, whether they think it’s good or not.
In such a sense, I’m able to contribute whole-heartedly into the other person’s skills and interests. But what happens when I talk about something that’s completely different, and they sit there silent? It’s one thing not being able to contribute expertise on a matter to a conversation and to simply ask questions and see how the other person lights up when he or she speaks about it. Simply seeing that passion in a person can be reason enough to do as such. But to do neither, to sit in silence, or worse scoff it away as something uninteresting? That is irreconcilable. That’s not to say I haven’t been where the social anxietist has been or to pass over in silence what I haven’t been able to say conclusively or with clarity. I still have moments when I can’t always follow my advice, but I try my hardest to do so. Sometimes I come off the fool, but it’s usually not so bad because I know in my heart that I’m trying.
And don’t get me wrong; I have met the occasional person that understands the pursuit of knowledge, and chances are that if you’ve read this far into the text, you are one of them. And I’m so thankful that you have, that you care enough to do so - for knowledge’s sake, for your own sake, and for my own sake. No matter if you agree with me or not, but that you read and digest it for what it is. I relish any debate that comes my way ‘cause I can have the chance to learn something new or teach someone else. But personally? I wish someone knew where I was coming from and could share its glory with me, as any hopeless romantic would.