“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” –Mark Twain
Following up from the reblog I posted yesterday, I would like to talk more about embracing different cultures and the importance of doing so. Whether you are traveling or right in your own hometown, learning to be open to other cultures and their differences is one of the best skills you could have. You may be surprised to learn that you are not so different after all, and may even find numerous similarities.
When you do find vast differences, be careful not to dismiss them as strange or wrong. Many times it is difficult not to judge those who seem very unlike ourselves, as it is almost an instinct to human beings. Therefore, it can become a struggle to have such an open mindset of embracing other cultures, but it will develop over time and become more natural. Differences should be seen as an opportunity to engage in conversation and find out why they do what they do, wear what they wear, speak how they speak, etc. You will learn more then you ever could reading out of a history book.
Some traditions are very popular in some cultures and nonexistent in others, but being unfamiliar with a certain cultural custom should be seen as an opportunity to learn something new about the way people do things in different parts of the world. So I will leave this as a challenge for you. Next time you cross paths with someone who seems different than you, build up that courage and start a conversation with them. You may find some similarities hidden in the differences.