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When you look at Japanese traditional architecture, you have to look at Japanese culture and its relationship with nature. You can actually live in a harmonious, close contact with nature - this very unique to Japan.
One of the things that first attracted me to chess is that it brings you into contact with intelligent, civilized people - men of the stature of Garry Kasparov, the former world champion, who was my part-time coach.
Sometimes you have to disconnect to stay connected. Remember the old days when you had eye contact during a conversation? When everyone wasn't looking down at a device in their hands? We've become so focused on that tiny screen that we forget the big picture, the people right in front of us.
When the farmer can sell directly to the consumer, it is a more active process. There's more contact. The consumer can know, who am I buying this from? What's their name? Do they have a face? Is the food they are selling coming out of Mexico with pesticides?
The last four or five hundred years of European contact with Africa produced a body of literature that presented Africa in a very bad light and Africans in very lurid terms. The reason for this had to do with the need to justify the slave trade and slavery.