Sociologists have been divided between explaining individual thought and action in terms of factors internal and external to any given individual. In this chapter, I argue that while these two explanations may often be complementary, they do not amount to a complete account of how people actually think or act due to assumptions made by many sociologists about how individuals use culture. Using secondary interviews conducted with individuals tasked to think about death and dying, I demonstrate how individuals actively interpret their surroundings, using complex mixtures of both the environment that they have internalized and the environment(s) that they are currently in. Using the terms automatic deliberation and cognitive path to describe this process of meaning-making, I assert that existing sociological explanations could benefit from taking into consideration both the emergent nature of individuals’ perception of the worlds they live in and the iterative nature of the interview process.