According to Jeffrey Mcpeanne’s definition of a civilized person, I am a civilized person! 🙂
A civilized person is one who respects others, treat others as s/he would expect of others, and have an open mind. Civilized doesn’t mean to be only educated, because many educated people are not respectful of others or have an open mind. However, if one is educated in disciplines of Archeology, Anthropology and Sociology one would have a broad perspective on what it means to be civilized. These disciplines focus on the understanding that different cultures have their own means of how one is civilized. Broadly speaking each nation and subcultures within nations have their own methods of defining and teaching what it means to be civilized. There is the old saying when in Rome do as the Romans do. This truism applies to all cultures world wide and it puts into perspective what civilized means, not just the West version of civilized.
Historically, in Western nations it was assumed that if one was cultured meaning: educated, well off, fine clothing, move in the right circles, and attend the classic concerts or read the classics were civilized. Presently, people who respects others, understands the different cultures, and classes know that we are all the same human beings. It is also, how one wants to be treated, with dignity and respect. Thus, one must give dignity and respect to others in order to receive such honor. Lastly, having an open mind to the possibility of learning from others gives the learner the opportunity to learn the various ways of doing things and understanding different ways of perception. Therefore, to be civilized is to learn about the various cultures that exist in our neighbors and the world. This is where understanding and respect flourishes to the point that discussions on the various ways cultural significants are attached to the word civilized.
Civilized doesn’t mean advanced technology or the best medical hospitals or robust economy,or more televisions, radios, computers, or libraries. These are things that people have as they live in an advanced society. However, as we all notice that advanced societies doesn’t respect other cultures, and ways of perception. Hence, animosities, fear and ideas of superiority prevails as one society believes that it is more advanced due to its economy and technology. Being civilized is more than technology it is the human side of technology that brings about the change from the sharing of knowledge from various cultures.
Humans are creative and inventive when the right circumstances are present. The knowledge that we gain from other civilizations can only make everyone more of a well rounded human being. We only gain knowledge through the study of other cultures and their ways of perception. So what does it mean to be civilized? Respect or other cultures, treat others as you would be expected to be treated, have an open mind to possibilities of new learning, and different ways of perceiving the world. Being civilized is determined by ones cultural identity.