Man is a social being that lives in a sociable environment (Andersen& Taylor 2006). Just like everyone else, I have encountered different people and things that have positively and negatively impacted my life as I go about life. One thing is for sure that this has also changed my feelings, attitude and reasoning towards life in general. Some of these sociological factors that have had an impact in me include race and ethnicity, religion, social class and sexual orientation just to name a few.
Race and ethnicity is an integral part that to a huge extent plays a very important role in the life of all human beings. It helps one identify his or her identity at an individual level or a collective set up. In my case, I have seen both the brunt side as well as the good side of race and ethnicity. To a huge extent, the positive influence of ethnicity has touched me and does so in a positive way. By just interacting with people from different backgrounds, I have been able to understand their traditions and how they view life and even me from their perspectives and this has also helped me understand myself. My response to it as a social influence has therefore helped me in how I act to different situations where people from different backgrounds are involved.
Another area of social being that has influenced my feelings and attitude towards life is the issue of sexual orientation. The freedom of anyone getting attracted to other people of the same sex or the opposite sex is one area that has made me view this subject as one is weighty in regard to how people live with one another. I have come to appreciate all the types of sexual orientations which are heterosexual, homosexual and bisexual. People have the freedom to choose to which they incline themselves to. Whichever way one goes it is a matter of choice and I strongly belief that whether morally acceptable or not, this area of human life defines what freedom of choice is. I therefore have come to appreciate everyone in regard to their sexual inclinations because this has been an eye opener to me as I have come to understand that different people in society including me view life differently.
On the other hand, religion has also had me think long and hard about different people appreciate their beliefs in supernatural beings.
When people of different religious backgrounds integrate, one is left to wonder how they all could be so sure about what they believe in. Islam is one of those religions that have had me think long and hard on why they do the things they do. Through the suicide bombs that have seen them attack Christians and other groups that do not share their faith; I have reached a conclusion that they are a group of people that do not have the interests of other people at heart. This has negatively influenced me on how I view them and how I relate with them. If Muslims can confidently claim that it is a divine calling to carry out suicide bombing, then I feel they are not subscribed to a faith but to a cult.
I am not any different from other people that I encounter as I go about my life. Just like them, there are things that happen around us that I agree with and those that I don’t. This has greatly shaped who I am in regard to my ideals and beliefs in the social context of life. One thing I greatly appreciate is the fact that I have learnt from them as I go through different experiences of life.
Andersen, M. & Taylor, H. F. (2006). Sociology: Understanding a Diverse Society. Belmont: Cengage Learning