Perspective changes reality

map

What’s going on here?

This map is the Hobo-Dyer Equal Area Projection map. It shows the globe from a different perspective than what we’re used to seeing, especially in our northern-hemisphere-centric view.

North and south are arbitrary, man-made designations. We’ve decided that north is up, but that’s not how our planet actually operates. Satellite videos of our globe show the reality. Without the usual map guideposts and orientation, you might not even recognize the countries you’re looking at.

The Hobo-Dyer map flips the hemispheres. Similarly the land mass shown on this map more accurately reflects actual area, with shapes towards the poles becoming flattened where our globe is smaller.

It’s the exact same world. It’s the exact same information we’ve always had. But by changing the perspective, we literally have a new worldview.

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Just wonder

“Nicht ärgern, nur wundern.” My mother kept a plaque in the kitchen with that phrase on it.  It translates from German to Don’t be angry, just be amazed ” according to Google Translate.

Let’s ignore the creepy fact that this phrase was also the message left by German soldiers on the destroyed town hall of Péronne during World War I. I just found that out while researching this blog post. Eeeeesh.

No, no. I will assume that my mother, born well after WWI and a peace-loving and curious person by nature, was not harbouring any dark, pugilistic patriotism for the country where she was born.

NichtArgernIndeed, when I asked her as a child what the plaque meant, she translated it as “Don’t get angry. Just wonder.”

Wonder at what’s going on with the people involved in a conflict.

Wonder at the differing points of view.

Wonder what each person’s “truth” about the situation is.

Wonder if there’s another way to view the problem.

Wonder if you can find an alternate solution.

Wonder why you are upset. What’s pushing your buttons? What are you really afraid of? Anger is rooted in fear of something: fear of rejection, fear of betrayal, fear of loss, fear of pain, fear of being misunderstood.

Stopping and asking “I wonder….” is a simple but effective way to increase your self-awareness and empathy for others and keep an angry situation from escalating.