Recognize the Unfamiliar

Source: Recognize

At first glance, to be familiar with something or someone is a prerequisite for recognition. We recognize those who are familiar to us. After all, how can we recognize something when we do not have a reference to our prior knowledge? At the same time, we do not really recognize normality do we? We are not aware when things are well and normal, but we are very conscious when things deviate from the norm. We recognize our body when there is something wrong with it. For example, I am not really conscious about my teeth when they do not hurt. When I have a tooth ache, that is the only time I can feel my teeth and recognize not only the pain itself, but also where the pain is coming from.

All anomalies are also recognizable. We recognize them because they are not like everybody else or everything. They stand out. It is precisely because they are different that we tend to recognize them. We tend to look at them in such a way that they become the object of our gaze and reduced them to preconceived stereotypes we have ascribed to them.

To recognize those who do not fit the pattern is easy. It is even an impulse some might say. We recognize those who deviates from the pattern without even trying or thinking about it. While it is easy to recognize those who are outside the orthodox straight forward structure, it is quite difficult to acknowledge their existence. To be tolerated is absolutely not the same with acceptance. To be recognized does not really equate with being acknowledged.