This is the thirteenth in a series of guest posts written by some of my favorite bloggers. To understand what this is about, you can read this post: 

This one in particular was written by the talented John Cruice. He is a Penn State alum, FT web analyst, architecture student at Drexel, Philly sports fan, aspiring renaissance manJohn may also be found on Twitter @phi162 .

Like many others that were asked to post here, I was honored when Ana asked me to write about my thoughts regarding the word “harmony.” I have been thinking about my take on the topic and was starting to get worried that if I waited too long to write it, someone would have already covered my slant. The funny thing is that each one is a very unique take on a very common word. Why is that? The reason lies in what the beauty of harmony really is.

Many of us relate harmony back to its musical roots. That makes sense. Music has played an important part in civilizations since the beginning of time. Music often tells us more about an era than history books if we choose to listen closely. Because of that, we have a fairly good interpretation of what musical harmony is.

Perfect harmony isn’t about everyone singing or playing the same note; that would just be loud noise. Perfect harmony is everyone singing or playing the same song simultaneously, but at a different chord or octave. This adds depth to a song. The same could be said for how we are as a civilization. If we applied what we desire in music to life, we would add much needed depth that is still lacking in many parts of our world.

The world is getting smaller. Not physically of course, that would be devastating, but virtually. The internet has allowed each of us to reach almost every part of the globe in seconds. I’m constantly amazed by the different types of people I connect with on a regular basis. (Related side note: I’m writing a guest blog post for an architect in Venezuela. How cool is that?!)

Conversations always begin with a shared topic, but it’s the diversity of our backgrounds and how that shapes our point of view that adds the depth needed to make the conversation interesting. It’s not about surrounding yourself with only people that think they way you do. If everyone said the same thing, at the same time, we would only need to talk to ourselves. That’s what crazy people do. It’s by learning from each other, embracing the things that make people different, that allows us to grow. That’s what harmony is to me, and it’s beautiful music.

What Ana has done here is taken the single word harmony, made it a song, and each of us posting here is singing in a different octave. The entire series has become a metaphor for the word itself. I’m thankful for the opportunity to share my thoughts, even if everyone doesn’t agree with them.