Today I was lucky enough to go and speak to a group of year 6/7 students about a recent study tour to Turkey which I participated in recently. The main goal of working with these students was to share with them some of the insights which I gained into the Turkish culture.
The most eye opening thing which I learned was the Turkish people have a huge amount of respect and affection for Australians.
I guess that this shouldn’t have been too much of a surprise- but it worried me that I feel as if here in Australia, we don’t feel the same toward the Turkish people. In fact, as Australians we seem to feel pretty resentful toward other cultures and I think we can learn a lot from a country – like Turkey who have been invaded for hundreds- even thousands- of years and feel little to no resent toward the invaders- but that’s another thing all together!
The thing about today was that, after telling the kids a bit about Turkey and then telling them about the affection they feel for us, the students said that they wanted to learn more. We came up with the idea to try and start an e-pal program (like pen pals for the tech-savvy new gen) and I was so delighted! I got my message though (and the kids helped me mange to come up with a great idea for my uni project…)
It’s a small start- but maybe, like one of the students suggested when I was in Turkey we can start with a small drop in the ocean and begin to create waves!
P.S I just want to share what is my favourite quote at the moment;
Leave your country in search of enlightenment
Travel, for in travelling there are five benefits;
Dissipation of worry, the gaining of enlightenment,
Science, literature and the company of the honorable.
– Imam Ali