Here' s an exercise: Go outside and point to Japan. Done? Yes; Japan is azimuth 330 degrees from CNY, just 30 degrees West of North. A flight from NYC to Tokyo -almost- flies over the North Pole.
Living on a sphere complicates matters. I was pondering this while looking at a Azimuthal Equidistant Projection provided by a Dxpedition to a remote island.