Have you ever thought about how narrow your worldview is?
Through this fellowship, I interacted with various fellows from different countries.
Then, I have learned about myself better than ever in my life.
I did not realize how narrow my worldview and mind are. As being exposed to Canadian culture for awhile and various countries, I thought I was open enough than any other people in my country and also other countries. However, I was WRONG.
Listening and sharing different perspectives from and with fellows wakened me to see the world differently. We shared various topics such as human rights, development, governments and etc.
As having shared the different ideas, I have learned how grateful my life has been and still now. I did not know how thankful my nationality and the citizen’s right are.
I was able to pass the customs at the airports without any difficulties most of times because I hold such a great passport which I did not know at all.
Plus, my Africans fellows friends were telling me how privileged my life is as being born in such a developed country which I have never thought about.
It was just natural for me that I enjoyed all the rights such as free education, health care, freedom of expression and movement. Because I was born and raised in such a setting like this, I did not appreciate the fact that I can do anything I want.
Later on, talking with the fellows really awakened me so much every time I talk to them.
For example, I was asked
“Does your country have a village or town which has no lights?”
“Have you ever gone to the school by walking miles and miles?”
“We, some people give a birth at home.” and so on.
All the answers are ‘No’.
I have not walked to schools on foot for miles and miles.
I have not seen any villages or towns without lights.
I have been seen anyone giving a birth at home. Of course, there are few people who do it at home, but it is very rare.
Because the opportunity is not distributed to everyone equally (as Atlas Corps’ motto), many people have to go through all the efforts which I have not gone as much as they have.
Did I pay for schools in my country? No. I received free education until my high school.
How is the education in my country? It is well-known to have a great education.
Have I learned a lot? Well, I am Asian, I must be good at math haha. I think I am quite average in Math since the schools made us study a lot. Also, the teachers are so smart as well. Teachers never say “I don’t know.” so.. haha
How much did I pay to see a doctor in my country? I paid only 3 dollars because of the universal health care and I asked so many questions to him.
Have I criticized my government on the social media and in public freely? Yes. I have and all of my friends can do it as well without any fears.
All these rights, I obtained them without my efforts. The reason why I can enjoy the rights is because. I WAS BORN THERE. This is it.
In a famous saying, there are two things you can’t get them by your efforts.
They are Nationality and Parents. (Well, if you live for a certain period in some countries, yeah, you can get their nationality , but I am talking about in general)
I just got the nationality for free without any efforts. I just received the privilege because I was born there. Isn’t that so funny? It is not fair for everyone. This is not fair.
As being born in the country, I receive more opportunities for these advantages (education, health care, etc). This is literally not fair for everyone.
Despite of these great privileges I have, of course my country and all the developed countries deal with lots issues in their countries as well.
My country, many people have been suffering depression so much because of the serious social pressure which asks the society to be perfect. It made the country has the highest number of committing suicides in the world.
In my life, my two high school friends have committed suicide and lots of friends suffered depression although they don’t think it is such a big deal. They think depression happens commonly. Of course it is just an extreme example. However, it is also the reality of my country.
At the end of the day, I just concluded that there is always pros and cons in every country. And, what I need to do is change the way I see the world.
Appreciate what I have and keep interacting with various people to broaden my worldview and mindset, so then I can at least try to influence the society better by contributing the positive experiences and insights from the interaction.
This is my lesson learn through the fellowship.