Different people have different deliberations, beliefs and mindsets. It seems very easy to cope with different mindsets but it actually isn’t that easy. Culture has its own meaning. It’s beautiful, pure and attractive. I found in some ways that our culture is becoming our comfort zone since that’s how we have been living our life since we were small, that’s how we have been raised by our parents, and that’s what we have seen in our surrounding the whole time. Many of you may not agree with some of other’s particular ways of living or the way they behave because everyone loves their culture and customs and think that’s the best one. Believe me, I do as well. Therefore, I think living outside your community can teach you more. Experiencing different cultures makes you more open-minded and then you can make the world a better place. You understand better of how others think and why they behave in such different ways than yours. By understanding more and more, we can create peace and make the world a better place to live. Accepting different cultures will not harm you. It will bring the best out of you.
For example, I like Indian culture because I have seen several movies which show their culture very beautifully. I like the way they celebrate Holi, Diwali, and the way they dress up. Luckily, one of my housemates is a beautiful Indian girl named Nilofar. I started talking about Indian culture with her since I wanted to know more and even to experience their beautiful ceremonies. After one month she came to me and said “I don’t like Pakistani people because they are immoral and cruel people, but I found you totally different”. Then she asked me about my country and my culture, she was very eager to know about my culture because whatever was in her mind was not the true picture of my country. I told her the things I know and I showed her several documentaries about my country. I talked about my people and our way of living. We found that media is actually saying different things about our countries that create conflicts between us.
We break the barrier of hatred and fear because now we know each other better. We share stories, food, laughter, and even sometimes tears. I respect her culture and I experienced more of it by joining her celebrating Durga Puja, Diwali, and Holi.
I also learn how much Indonesians love spicy food, I get to know how Colombians can’t eat spicy food at all, I witness how well African people dance, I love the way Turkish dress so fashionably, I become close friend with my roommate from Bangladesh as well. The more I know them, the more I feel peace and strength in me. It’s not bad to experience different culture and change is a positive thing not negative. Some people see only the outer shell and they never try to give others chance to show the true picture of their life. Life is beautiful and we can make it more beautiful by understanding each other and respect each other no matter what it is the difference whether in culture, or different religion even different skin color. It’s all about humanity which makes us all alike.
Post written by Meher Sultana, CCI Participant at NOVA 2016-2017, Pakistan