Economic Development and Personal Development

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Greening the Boom
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I suddenly felt that after 1995, there were a lot of steel-reinforced concrete things.

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<p>It is a change from nature to the concrete, a cement-like feeling of change. How do I describe it? Maybe that feeling is my visceral reaction to the material. I used to live alongside nature. When I was small, I grew up in an area where the city and countryside met, so I did have a feeling of the city, however the city was a village/township type of city, the type you find in Jiangnan (a region in the lower Yangtze Valley). There were a lot of traditional and very beautiful cities and towns. And at that time, the children were not as coddled as they are today, you could boldly, with peace of mind, just let them run loose in the fields and play in groups and allow them to become closely intertwined with nature. So, I'll tell you why 1995 had such a big impact on me. I suddenly felt that after 1995, there were a lot of steel-reinforced concrete things. Before, our buildings were primarily wooden, with a few made of concrete. Afterwards, I discovered that the materials being used in buildings were changing. It was a very easily perceived change. It has a very direct impact on the individual development of children. I feel that before, there were a lot of things that you could become one with but, from 1995 onwards, or after modernization started, you can feel a distance between the materials and people. The thing that you are facing is probably your object, but it isn't a thing of your own. Using a philosophical phrase, in the beginning, humans and nature were almost one, however, later on, there developed a feeling of &quot;objects&quot;. You have a feeling that, &quot;The world is like this and I am like this, I need to get to know the world.&quot; This type of process develops. So, the memories that are transferred from childhood to adolescence to youth are totally different. In some aspects, the feeling is very directly perceivable. And later, this permeates into the heart, resulting in a special experience and understanding.</p>
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Yu Jinghui describes how economic development has changed the way that the Chinese interact with nature and how this has affected their personal development.