There is a difference between knowing the name of something and knowing something. The movie Good Will Hunting illustrates it well. In a scene, the psychologist (Robin Williams) talks to Will (Matt Damon) about how even though he is book smart and can hold vast quantities of information, none of it matters because he won't know what that information is like until he experiences it for himself.

The map is not the territory. A topographic map may show elevation change and differing terrains but you will never know what that area is truly like until you go there. You won't be aware of the effect it has on you until you're experiencing it. Just like how what an art book says about a painting or an artist is not representative of how that art or artist makes you feel. That is what's important to recognize.

Far too many people are getting caught up in logic or emotion instead of considering them together. Stalin said “One death is a tragedy, millions is a statistic”. A family suffering from that one death will feel pain strongly yet we feel the death of millions with weak emotion. People can look at statistics and see the number of deaths from any possible cause but they cannot grasp the emotional aspect of it, until they experience it or something like it themselves. This phenomenon clouds judgement. The extremes of emotion and logic do not offer helpful solutions. The solution is found in the divide between yin and yang.

What Stalin's quote can help us understand about modern society is the lack of minutia we experience. Everything is focused on scale, growing bigger and better than ever before. While growth is not necessarily bad, maybe it shouldn't be pursued at all costs. The single, caring bakery is left to die in favor of a large multinational that offers low prices and extreme efficiency. What people don't realize is those small-town bakeries are where memories are forged. Bonds between the customers and the owner and worker are built around a common interest. Change is more noticeable on a smaller scale.

Humans lived a specific lifestyle for thousands of years and it has suddenly changed within the last 100 to 120 years. There has certainly been a disconnection from the old way of living. It's why new diseases have been popping up, stemming from the modern way of life. Billions of people can be accessed almost instantaneously, something we weren't able to do even twenty years ago.

The finer things in life seem to be found in the little details. Humans went from opening physical mail once per day to checking emails and social media notifications multiple times per hour. The internet has certainly been a good thing but it doesn't mean everything done before should be heavily discounted. There is tremendous value in old things. They have withstood the test of time.