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Friday, November 22, 2013

The Real Reason Why People Should Travel

There are, you know, other countries. Ones with different rules and cultures and food, ones with different laws and norms. And you might missed them. You might missed them if you just sit around in front of your computer, or living your life without ever going anywhere. You might missed them if you did get around but too busy admiring the scenery or communicate with your inner-self (or social media) instead of observing the people around you. You might missed them if you choose to close your eyes and block your mind from anything "new".

I found a post about a modern-day slavery in US that intrigued me. A few people commented that the victim should just go to the police and reported them. As one person stated:
"NO ONE "lives a slave life" unless your stupid enough AND want to do it. Look at every instance that's made it into the press...IF your stupid enough to believe that walking out that door is bad then you deserve to be where your at and should be an economic unit." 
To me this sounded like a very good example of living inside your shell, and why you should travel even if it's a virtual travel through the internet.

My sister and son. 
There is more story in this to admire than just her elegant traditional dress

As painful as it is for me to admit, law in Indonesia are shaky at its best. If you were up against someone who had more money/power or a more 'respected member' of the society you might find yourself at the deep end instead. Take Prita's case, who was sued for libel defamation just because she posted her complaints about a hospital in her mailing group. Authorities are not really fond of helping you out too, it's easier to just slip an extra Rp 20,000 to an office clerk that you know at the police station when renewing your vehicle's license than to do the whole shenanigans by yourself (which will end up costing you both time and money). Even though not all authority/government staff are like this, the overall situation conditioned us to distrust and become very reluctant in dealing with authorities. I can't imagine how the slavery victim can just go and report to the police, because even with my husband constant assurance and complete documentation I still found myself nervous and reluctant when I have to deal with US authority. He kept on saying that they couldn't harm me, yet it was not easy to just change my mindset. 

This fact is mind baffling for country citizens where laws are upheld and their authority/government are set to help them in every part of the way. But as I said: different countries, different rules. And this is why travelling is important for you, because ignorance and indifference could hurt. 

So many people returned home from their travel with only pictures and videos on their SD cards, or the story of that excellent night of rave partying, or about their new-found conscience and re-uniting with God. But travelling should be more than that. It wasn't always about what you experienced, but it's also about what you learned. It's not about 'visiting' a place, it's about 'learning' that place. It's about discovering and understanding another part of the world, and realizing that that's what make the world is so awesome. Travelling should be about humanity in general, because even in the most desolate deserts or the highest mountain top you would need to interact with human to be there. 

Indonesian's carnival game: Duck ring toss. 
Because tossing a ring to a bottle would be too easy :p

In a world where hate and destructing 'criticism' are freely given through the mask of internet, travelling might be a way to world's peace. Understanding is basically accepting, and if we learned to accept that there are things 'different' than what we know we wouldn't be in constant "you offend me! No, YOU offend me!" situation. This is basically a cheat sheet for those who couldn't (or didn't have to patience to) find the great karmic peace within them. And it sure is nice to get more peace and have less people complains about getting pissed off from other people's pure indifference and ignorance

Do the world a favor. When you travel, even if it's just cross-country for the thanksgiving, observe the people around you and how they live their life. Places where people live shaped their character and their view in life, and you might surprised on how refreshing it is to see a new point of view. Some you will disagree with and some you will hate, but remember that you are not there to judge. You are to observe and (hopefully) to understand, but never to judge; and to realize what a vast, diversified, and beautiful world we have. This appreciation would be a valuable memento of the trip, and the real reason why people should travel. 

1 comment:

  1. the most importan thing is by traveling you 'learned' about yourself. coz i did hahahaaa


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