Voices, with Andrés Ruzo

National Geographic Explorer and Scientist, Andrés Ruzo, explains the value of understanding multiple perspectives.



My name is Andres Ruzo and I'm a geothermal scientist and a National Geographic Explorer. The project that I've really dedicated most of my life to is called the Boiling River Project. Long story short, in 2011, I became the first geo scientist granted the Shamanic blessing to study this amazing sacred site. It's the largest documented thermal river in the world. It can be up to 100 feet wide at its widest point, up to 15 feet deep at its deepest point, and it flows hot for just under four miles. And it's not associated with any active volcanoes. Science, in my opinion, has a moral responsibility. We are the eyes of humanity. We help people understand what is truth. That truth is the basis of how we live our lives. In this case, we're working together with our Shamans and our local collaborators, the Amazonians, to help them tell their stories while they help us tell our story. Not knowing how to speak English is a handicap in getting your message out to a global audience. Even now, I'm working with a brilliant Shamanist, she's Shipibo. She speaks Shipibo. She speaks Spanish. But right now we're trying to get her to learn English so that she can tell her story herself. English opens a whole new world of opportunities. It's amazing. It is the language of our planet. We need to include all of the perspectives we can. A local perspective; a foreign perspective; coming together to give something great. I think if students, I think if teachers could understand, could take a step back from themselves and say: What is my local perspective? What is my foreign perspective? ANYWHERE you are in the world, you will find something amazing, because that's how incredible this planet is.

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