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Connections Between Truth and Belief

Essay by   •  March 31, 2013  •  Essay  •  1,225 Words (5 Pages)  •  957 Views

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Culture is the set of rules and norms, both written and spoken, in which build an individual's way of living. It affects mostly all parts of our life, as it shapes a person's way of thinking. Culture has given a major role in our actions and it is likely to determine the basic intellectual settings. In short, culture teaches us the principle of life. On the other hand, belief is what an individual perceive to be true. Belief can be said to be subjective since everyone has different perspective of 'truth'. Culture and belief do have strong correlation. They both affect each other, and in some ways, culture can further develop to belief and vice versa. Culture is a ramification of individual's belief by the indigenous knowledge and self-efficacy, yet belief is able to form culture by interacting in a group of people with the same belief on something.

Before deeply examines the definition of indigenous knowledge, first, it needs to be understand that indigenous literally means local. Therefore, derived from the basic definition, indigenous knowledge means the knowledge that local community passes through generations in specific environment. The word 'knowledge' in indigenous knowledge covers all forms of it, such as: skills, practices, technologies, medication, and belief. Related to the fact that different society has uniquely different culture, the different society also has different indigenous knowledge. Indigenous knowledge differs from every society because it originated from local experiences and also history of people who live in the communities.

For instance, Indonesia has more than 18,000 islands, which some islands may have several tribes. This allows Indonesia tribes to have their own indigenous knowledge. One of the most famous Indonesia tribes is Asmat tribe. It has a unique tradition, in which Asmat people practice cannibalism. They hunted for the skulls and some put the skulls under their head when they go to sleep instead of using pillows. Therefore, Asmat peole is known for 'head-hunters'. Furthermore, Asmat also worshipped the human skulls they killed. Eyes and nasal parts of the skulls were covered up to prevent any evil spirits that either enter or exit the body. The skulls were later modified and decorated, and then displayed in any honorable place in their houses. This contrasted with the tradition of other tribes that don't practice cannibalism and think hanging skulls is not an appropriate thing. The example proves the fact that indigenous knowledge only works on a specific area. It is specialized and the beliefs are not accepted in the other area, but only work for the region.

Indigenous knowledge can also differs by countries. Sometimes, a country has different habit with the other country due to their beliefs. In this case, there will be no right or wrong habit, as they are built with cultures and perception of the citizens, in which they mostly already stand for centuries. A Japanese person will eats his/her food vigorously and making sounds while chewing. He or she believes making sounds during eating means respecting the person who cook the food. However, a British person will not agree with the culture that a Japanese person has. He or she instead eats his/her food quietly without making any single sounds, along with complicated table manner, since it is perceived to be the proper way of eating.

The existence of self-efficacy can also affect the culture. Self-efficacy is the basic that a person has in order to develop into culture and belief. It relates closely with the sociocultural theory that is proposed by Vgotsky and social cognitive theory. Sociocultural theory and social cognitive theory explains how a child is affected on his/her early ages due to several factors, including the culture of place he/she lives in, and develop belief. According to the paper written by Bandura, the factor structure of children's self-efficacy beliefs was similar and basically was replicated, even though the societies represent different sociocultural systems.

However, the different forms of perceived self-efficacy give different cultural environment. Italian think themselves are more socially efficacious rather than the other Eastern European countries, for instance: Poland and Hungary. These three countries are all agree that girls have higher sense of efficacy in academic activities and more able to deny peer pressures that converge to things they resist on. As a result, female in those three countries have a higher individualism

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