I have always had a little different view on other cultures. I think it was my realizing I did not fit in with the rest of the 'normal' crowd that allowed me to have this different view. But as I grew older so did my world view. So many people are raised with one single world view and never really break out of that.
So with my world view being rather wide already, becoming a Druid helped me to widen it even further. As I learned more about what constituted an Indo-European culture I began to realize that no matter what differences there were in the world there were things that most people had in common with one another.
This really hit home for me when I started working at my current job. My company is own by, and about 98% populated by, Indians. They are a global company that spans a variety of fields. What I learned was rather stagger to me. The belief I had developed all these years about how most people had many commonalities despite their culture really was questioned.
Please do not think I dislike my job, the people I work with or for, nor do I have any issues with people and their beliefs as I write about this. But I really was not sure that the Indian culture really had any commonalities at all. One of the things I noticed is even when they are mad at one another they are extremely polite about it. They can be telling each other to go to hell, not really as they do not have a hell, and still be courteous.
The other very strange thing for me was the idea that I could be of such a 'lower class' that I was looked down upon, doing with the greatest of courteous manners. There were many other things that struck me but these were enough to really get me thinking about cultural differences even within our own country.
I was raised in the mountains of north Georgia. I lived in a small town that hasn't changed much even to this day. I took for granted my up bringing. When I moved here to Arkansas many things changed in my life. I started seeing someone new. He is a great guy but through him I started to see that even as a fellow 'southerner', which I am still not convinced people from Arkansas qualify as, he seemed to be from a different world than myself. One of the things I was taught as a child was, "if something doesn't directly concern you then it is none of your business." I hold very dear to this as it was something my grandmother taught me. And it pretty much holds true in most of the areas of north Georgia. Well it appears that is a tragic flaw here in Arkansas. Though I am not a cold person it is viewed as being cold because I just feel that someone things are none of my business and in turn something in my life are no one else's business.
But this was just yet another example