Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler

Reflections: Dividing laterally

It is in the shadows of some worlds that we seek the light in others. If there is anything that I could say most exchange students are guilty of it is comparison, the noxious juxtaposition of things which makes two lives into those  puzzles where the player sees two nearly identical pictures and must seek out the differences. In some sense this is natural to the human experience, language traps us in needing a starting point of communication, a locus of reference that the frame can move outward from. Or rather, we tell ourselves this. Things are easier when they are natural, subjugated to the chains of biology or culture; inherent-ness is a clever refuge.

“This campus is like Hogwarts,”

The guide shifted in place at the expression of the student’s collective imagination; it was a sentiment he was familiar with but the echos of the past always remained, it were always as if hundreds of students were telling him what this place was like, and each year that number grew.

As we continued the tour of the campus, beautiful as it certainly was, enjoy comparison to several universities throughout the continental US; it was a beautiful gem on the hills of Valparaíso, truly an amazing piece of architecture in that Harry Potter sort of way. What we have to ask ourselves is why? What did sitting among the gnarled trees on the main quad lack? What reflections remained obscured in the courtyard pool? Why did many need to reach down inside themselves to find out what worth lived in this place they had come to?

We want a visceral incorporation in our lives. It is not enough to live nor even live well, we must, through ourselves, live vicariously. This act of double living is what actually builds an acceptable foundation for the initial life, which will still be lost and subsumed in the falir of the second’s fantasy. Our first life is structured by the wood we gather, the pit we put it in, and as we ignite the flames of our life with energy the coals formed sustain it. It will be squelched one day, the remaining cinders disappearing into a burned and rotted ash.

 

 

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