Jan 22, 2011
THE LUCKY GENERATION, OR 20 YEARS TOO LATE..
I have been repeating for years that the greatest luck of my generation was to live the Millennium passage, not for the numerical factor of course (having this value only for Christians), but rather for the possibility of having had a foot in the world of cultural differences and the other in the beginning of the globalized culture. The decision I took when I was eighteen, to dedicate my life to explore human and geographical differences on earth, would have much less sense today, if any at all. From the photography point of view this was even more true: if it had a sense and worthiness to show the beauty and differences on the globe twenty years ago, we can now only search for contemporary matters that are common to the largest part of humanity. Photography became my way to analyze things, to offer my interpretation, and, ultimately, to make a living out of my continuous traveling.
Coming to Sri Lanka now is confirming this view of mine. I wanted to come here long time ago, attracted by tales and images. I wanted to come when I was working on the book on Buddhism. And again I wanted to come when I was in Tamil Nadu, just across the sea. But for several reasons it never happened. What I found nowadays, finally here, is what I expected: a nice country, a great natural environment, a historical heritage well protected by UNESCO. All within a modern nation of proud people, with poverty and problems of course, but who doesn't at this latitude? But original culture is gone, dresses are modern, cars are increasing in number and cellphones are for everybody. My iPhone is well connected to the net, Internet cafe are closing because obsolete. That's good for the people living standard, much worse for their culture and identity. But how can we criticize, us who were the first to be globalized?
Only in religion I still see a peculiar identity, and this probably why I have concentrated on this anthropological subject in the past ten years. Here Buddhism is a national matter, non just a belief. A Buddhism that has very close, obvious but still strange interconnections with Hinduism. A faith that is deeply embedded in the social structure.
This is the new world we live in, the glimpse to the future. We are definitely on the second foot on our life walk. Still an interesting journey, don't you agree?
(See a gallery of iPhone images from Sri Lanka on this facebook gallery)
at 7:19 AM