“Every man’s ability may be strengthened or increased by culture.”- John Abbott

“The acquiring of culture is the development of an avid hunger for knowledge and beauty”-Jesse Lee Bennett

Have you ever been in the middle of a conversation and someone refers to someone who died in the Civil War or discussed a famous painting and you were just plain confused? Did you have any clue what he/she was talking about and you make a complete fool of yourself trying to pretend like you knew exactly what they meant? Well my friend, you need to get cultured.

To be the best person that you can be, you must learn to be cultured in every area of life. People need to realize the importance of being cultured. Many have lived in their norm without experiencing all that life has to offer. Because of this, the next generations will become more illiterate and ignorant of their world.  Some don’t care about anything that is not in their bubble that they’ve created and they do not take life to their full advantage.

What is being cultured?

Maria Costadini says, “My definition of cultured is two fold. First I think of it as being refined in the area of the arts, such as music of all kinds, ballet, theater, Broadway musicals, art museums or exhibitions, literature and ethnic foods. I also think that a person who is cultured is well traveled. They have been to different countries and observed or experienced how others live. Also a cultured person knows what is happening in the world economically and politically.”

We must culturally enlighten ourselves.  People need to experience more things that are outside their median: museums, opera, new foods, learn about different cultures, broaden vocabulary, travel, read, listen to different music. You will feel more accomplished and well rounded as a human being.  By becoming cultured, you can enter any conversation with ease, and give your opinion on the topic because you have had an encounter with it. Yet if you do not want to becoming cultured, then you will not give yourself the best life that you could have.

Costadini says, “I do feel it is important to be cultured. A person who is not cultured usually has a very narrow mind or point of view. They could also have prejudices against anything or anyone who has a different way of life or different views, and tastes in entertainment or foods. It is important to get outside of our own little world and experience different things in life. It helps to gain an appreciation for life, and other people.”

John Kazaklis says, “Traveling is definitely my favorite because you can reap so many benefits and at the same time, you’re forced to deal with another culture and with their people.”

Start small steps of gaining knowledge and keep persevering.  Here is a list of tips on how to become more cultured:

  • Visit a local gallery or museum
  • Volunteer at a shelter or hospital
  • Read or watch the news
  • Watch classic movies: get a list of the 100 greatest movies of all time and watch a few
  • Try different cultural cuisines
  • Listen to classical music or jazz every once in a while, change your radio station constantly
  • Read. Go to Barnes & Noble and get a beginners reading list and pick a few that interest you the most i.e. travel books, cooking books, the classics
  • Study abroad: If you are in a position to, study in a country that interests you for a semester
  • ·             Broaden your vocabulary: Try to use a new word per week or per day and put it into your everyday vocabulary.  Word of the day on dictionary.com is pastiche \pas-TEESH; pahs-\ noun:

A work of art that imitates the style of some previous work.

A musical, literary, or artistic composition consisting of selections from various works.

A hodgepodge; an incongruous combination of different styles and ingredients.

  • Go to the opera, a play, or a ballet: the experience is worth your while
  • Take ballroom dancing lessons: or if that is too much maybe salsa
  • Start a hobby: ex. gardening
  • Travel: Go explore the world! Pick a country you would love to visit and plan a vacation.  If it’s too expensive visit different states in the U.S.

Remember: Don’t put yourself on overload or you will have a cultural meltdown.  Just try a few of the things lists and start leading a cultural enlightened life!