“If you were given the chance, what are the changes you would implement in this 21st century to make our world a better place to live? Discuss a few changes in not less than 250 words.”
The question above is one of writing tasks in IELTS. Since I declared that I’m fully motivated in the previous posts, I’d better stop looking for even more motivation and begin the real practice. Otherwise, I’ll be the most pathetic case: fully motivated and failed. There is no salvation for that.
My tiny mind craves for big issues "like a pig loves shit”. Please excuse my untameable, anti-Victorian tongue and forgive me for I’ve been waiting for a good opportunity to use this expression of Julie Powell's. In her book "Julie and Julia", she wrote: “I love my husband like a pig loves shit.” I was reading the book on the train and had an awfully tough time not to laugh out loud - so tough I had to pinch myself.
It turned out to be a most embarrassing experience in public: some mysterious gooey liquid came out of all the holes in my face. I’ve been distinctly more cautious of the contents of my reading on public transport ever since.
What's that you are muttering under your breath? “Get your bloody point across, mate!”? I’ve heard you. Don’t you know that “Patience is a virtue”? In Othello, Shakespeare, the genius of geniuses, says: “How poor are they that have not patience!” I’d better stop kidding around and get to work before all of you start suspecting that I’m a total loser.
Ok. Here we go.
The change I’d like to implement for the next generation is a change in our mindset concerning all conventional beliefs. What is good or bad, conventional and unconventional, moral and immoral and so on, for it may differ from society to society. It would be better if we acknowledged the differences first and then worked together, hand in hand, to rebuild a new mindset or sets of beliefs based on common ground. Otherwise, international relations everywhere may suffer.
For instance, in my country, the group-oriented mind is extolled as the way to make harmonious society whereas the U.S.A. emphasizes individuality more. There is no perfect ideology. Japan has succeeded in making one of the safest countries in the world, but the cost has been the loss of the critical and individual mind in order to over-promote a group-oriented attitude. We are taught to be cooperative and humble as soon as we enter nursery school. Order and harmony are more important than creativity and unique individuality. These complementary values must be integrated somehow. All of us can find an unique harmony in society if each individual is respected because of his or her uniqueness.
Although it may look impossible or seem like a long way to go yet, we won’t be able to survive without such a radical mind revolution. I don’t think I’m paranoid or exaggerating the risk of extinction of the human race, considering the environmental problems we face today. In fact, it is always our minds that have provoked the necessary changes; it is not at all unrealistic to consider the need for a radical change in mindset.
Perhaps walking backwards or going upside down from time to time is not such a ridiculous way to behave in order to break the mould.