Growing up in a country known for its “Unity in Diversity,” an essential experience was that of celebration. India is always celebrating. In its numerous festivals and rituals and events, it is continuously celebrating its diversity. Whenever I looked up from books that talked about the various differences amongst humans, I was able to actually see them around me. At the same time, however, I saw a strange similarity, a common thread, that bound everyone in their unique identities and habits together. In our differences, beauty finds its way in. A beauty that makes the world a piece of abstract art, with so many parts coming together, and with each part having a significant role to play.
It is this beauty that humans must celebrate. By understanding, exchanging, conversing and learning, humans must celebrate their differences and their commonalities. Through dialogue and collaboration between very distinct, and perhaps, even contradictory, opinions and ideas, there will arise an opportunity to pave our way towards a path of peace, harmony and love. It would allow us to overcome our fear of the unknown and leave behind the ignorance that we tend to live in and with.
In its various cultures, ethnicities, religions, and in its various art forms, the world around us gives us plenty to celebrate. And thus, we must celebrate our diversity.
Celebration finds itself in smiles. Passing on those smiles to everyone we know, learning what the same smile could mean something entirely different to a person who comes from a background different from our own. In that same vein, celebration finds itself in learning. Taking the time to learn about the little things you seem to not understand about your friend. Celebration also finds itself in unlearning – for you have misunderstood what wasn’t familiar, and it is now time to correct yourself. Perhaps, this celebration will bring about a bigger cause for celebration – it may lead to a mosaic of cultures and ideas – making us all one, and yet letting us shine in the glory of our differences.
In a world where everyone seems to be becoming increasingly intolerant towards everything that seems “different,” let us come together and celebrate these differences. It is only when we celebrate the multiplicity of ideas and values that come together to make the world what it is, that we truly celebrate the essence of being human.