“We must unlearn the constellations to see the stars.”
If you love Science and especially Astronomy then you already know what constellations are. For those that do not they are a group of stars forming a recognizable pattern that is traditionally named after its apparent form or identified with a mythological figure. Examples of these figures are but are not limited to Ursa major, Orion, Leo, Draco, Cancer, etc. I look at the constellations as being that football stadium viewpoint that you see from a helicopter and with that holistic viewpoint the specifics of who is actually in that stadium is less defined. It is only when you get closer to being inside that stadium that you actually see the individual people that make up that particular crowd. American poet Jack Gilbert’s quote is one that I believe encourages us to become more socially aware when he says we must unlearn the constellations to see the stars.
When we knowingly or unknowingly create our own biases and group people into certain categories based on race, gender, creed or even based on opinions/beliefs we truly lose sight of the big picture. More specifically we lose the beauty of each individual and who they are. It is then we truly become less socially aware. We need to unlearn our biases that have created over time by breaking down whatever barriers have been built by us in order to truly gain insight and perspective into each individual. The stars in the sky are those individual people that are in front of this. We need to strip away the layers that I believe are unnecessary and are a hinder on our own personal growth. It is only when we dig deep, take the time to learn more about the things we do not understand and view the world through the lens of not just one group but each individual then it is there we can truly become more socially aware.
What does this quote mean to you and how can you apply today’s message towards becoming more socially aware?