"If it’s different, is it wrong?"

Jovana Jovanovska - Senegal


November 30, 2018

Hey,

My blog hasn’t been published yet even though it says it has. Can you check
it out please?

Best,
Jovana

On Wed, 28 Nov 2018 at 04:22, Jovana Jovanovska <
jovanovskajovana99@gmail.com> wrote:

> I was born in a multi ethnic community. At an early age I was exposed to
> different cultures, languages and religions. Amongst that, many times I’ve
> also experienced tensions and a lack of tolerance for “the other groups”. I
> was born in a region where schools are still divided in terms of different
> ethnicities and where many times what is different from your own belief is
> regarded as wrong. Hence, even though I was raised to respect differences,
> that clashed with the way that they were presented to me.
>
> By coming to Senegal, I was aware of the challenges I might face. I have
> heard about the strict gender roles, men being able to have 4 wives, a
> conservative dressing code for women and a very strong religious community.
> I would say I was very self conscious about how I wanted to approach these
> challenges. I didn’t want my views on what is right and wrong to shape my
> experience here. I wanted to learn, to experience and then consequently
> understand rather than to judge.
>
> The hospitality and openness of people here allowed me to learn a lot
> about the culture of Senegal. I have to admit that it is very different
> from what I’m used to, but because of all those differences it has become a
> place I call home right now.
>
> Now, there are many aspects of the Senegalese culture that I cherish and
> hope to use in the future. I appreciate the passion with which people speak
> whenever I ask them questions. I enjoy the long greetings I have with
> people on the way to work. I love how time is not a strict concept and that
> many times when I would ask when should I come, the answer would be “in the
> morning” or “in the evening”. I particularly appreciate the culture of
> sharing because even if people don’t have much to give, they share it
> wholeheartedly. I enjoy the calmness and the peace of my everyday life here.
>
> Senegal has showed me the beauty of a different part of the world. By
> doing that, it has also answered my question. For me, differences are
> significant. Without them, our lives would be more monotone. They bring a
> variety of views and new ideas.
>
> If something is different, it’s not wrong, it’s just another way of doing
> things.
>

Jovana Jovanovska