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What We’re Following Today February 24, 2020

How Children From Large Families Change Eating Habits

This article on walks through how a blogger Jesse Duggar is changing the diet of her family versus what she ate as a child growing up in a house of 19 kids. Yes. 19 kids (I guess they had a TLC TV show called 19 and counting or something).

Clearly her parents had to make some extraordinary adjustments in order to feed such and army. That would obviously mean using more bulk purchase items and canned foods etc. This article catches one interest though as you look at how habits form based on lived experience - competition for food, etc. The subject, Jesse, is simply deciding to cook with more fresh ingredients and items that can provide a more unique flavor.

Today I am a bit more reflective for some reason and my mind is enjoying its play around topics like what was life like...? I wonder what a life with 18 siblings would be like. Life was likely crazy, and there’s probably a lot of family drama, but I also wonder where the positives reveal themselves ... hard to say. I am sure we could investigate the family more, but it sure seems like an interesting study to hear what each child might think of the positives and negatives...and their journey’s to carve out their own families.

Ways to Be Less Dismissive of The Past

I was listening to some passages the Gospel of John today and it started to get me thinking about how much has changed in the last 100 years let alone the last 2000 years. Today’s culture seems to want to tear down the cultures of the past along so many lines, but we don’t seem quick to consider the some of the things we have forgotten that could be to our detriment. I started to think what must John the Baptist have felt when he saw Jesus coming towards him and then I started to wonder, what must any person at that time have felt when they saw a loved one who they had not seen in a long time walking towards them? How it might have been different than today because today we have so many ways to communicate and access each other - we still feel joy when we come together, but is it the same?

Many things have been done in the name of religion or nationalism that deserve criticism, but one area of criticism that I don’t often “like” is when we dismiss something with a sentiment that we are simply more intelligent today versus our ancestors. I think we need to reframe this in our minds to think more along the lines of comparative intelligence so that we appreciate how people from the past were more intelligent than we are today. Perhaps this stems from a conversation my wife and I recently had about IQ and what that means...

Personally, I don’t like a standardized definition of intelligence because I think intelligence and wisdom come in many different forms and within a huge array of people, backgrounds and cultures. Some people are numbers smart, some people are emotions smart, some people are agriculturally smart, some people are smart for sports and athletics, some are smart in war, etc.

The fact is that you could place the person with the highest IQ into certain situations and they would likely appear “dumb.” So much so that someone else who lived in that situation daily may look at them as a hindrance or burden...but if the two worked together as equals then you never know what could happen as they could collaborate to leverage the intelligence of one to augment the intelligence of the other and then new and better things “could” happen. But often the designation of being more “intelligent” carries with it some sort of righteous designation that is simply not always the case.

We have had great advancements we’ve made over time in food preservation, etc. We have been able to reduce so much of the world’s hunger. Not eradicate, but reduce. Things like freezing food, new chemicals that help preserve food longer, new ways to protect grains from spoiling, new production techniques and more.

But what have we collectively “forgotten.” 100 years ago you could ask the world how would you preserve tomatoes at the harvest and most people wouldn’t just have 1 response, but multiple responses. But ask people today and that knowledge is known by fewer people - but today we can lean on a great thing called google and we can look it up. But in reality, I’m the past, things like canning, or making preserves, or knowing how to store food for it to last longer we’re basically muscle memory - everyone knew how to do it (today the people that do it become YouTube stars).

But the fun exercise in this is to say, how would I survive if I was transported back 200 years? Not how would I have survived if I grew up then, but if I was simply transplanted to then? Not only would we be talking about needing to make some serious strides in understanding the systems by which people live, but also in how they interact and function with each other - in other words, it would simply be so “different” that we can see how to passing judgment on a time period or culture as a whole is not completely “fair”. It doesn’t mean we can’t be critical of actions, but as with anything, we need to be careful about painting a picture with too broad a brush.

Here’s what I’ll leave this rant on; can we ever know what it would be like to see one’s son walk through the doors after not having seen them for years and years? Sure, some people may be able to today, but think about all the families that separated during the western expansion in the US, or go back further to biblical times and think just how separated we could be from family and friends. Have we lost some of that emotional intelligence because of how convenient connecting with everyone around the globe is today. We gain SO much with today’s tech, but have we lost something as well? Not, is one better than another, but how the change can negatively impact us even if the overall positive is likely greater.

That feeling of pure joy when a mother sees her son or daughter walk through the door unannounced. Perhaps that didn’t happen all the time, but imagine if you can how “good” that feeling would be, and how sad you might be to say goodbye when you don’t know the next time you will see or hear from someone you’s an emotional intelligence we may never fully understand again until perhaps space exploration becomes a thing.

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