WHEN CULTURES SPEAK FOR PEACE
Forgotten Diaries Blogger Arevik Hayrapetyan shares w/CV her experience at the International Youth Camp Dialogue 2012
From 11-July 15, “Forgotten Diaries” was represented in the International Youth Camp Dialogue 2012, organized by Youth Department of the Council of Europe. This event gathered at one place more than 100 volunteers, youth activists and youth leaders. They all came from different national, cultural, religious backgrounds; they represented different organizations and had different interests and walks of life. But what was really common for all the participants was that each of them, without any exception, does strongly believe in the importance of intercultural dialogue for the better world we want to create.
From the very start of our Camp what the essence of real Intercultural Dialogue was present. The presence of so many cultures and nationalities, people with different ways of thinking was not at all a reason for any kind of clashes or disputes. On the contrary it was a vivid example on how people can live and coexist together happily and learn from each other so many wonderful things. These four unforgettable days made me realize what Intercultural Dialogue is all about. I am happy to share my insights with you.
Intercultural dialogue is…
When you meet a person from another country and try to remember how to greet him/her on their own language or say something which is typical to their country or culture, thus making them feel really happy about it.
When people from different nationalities dine around one table and at the beginning they communicate through one common language, but after a few minutes the table transforms into a unique language center where each tries to learn as many languages as possible. The same was during our meals in “Dialogue” camp and of course the first multilingual expression was “I LOVE YOU” in more than 10 languages.
When you take part in a cultural evening and present your own culture, people from other nationalities and cultures surround you and give you dozens of questions about your country and culture, then you go to the representatives of other cultures and strive to get to knwo as many new things as possible and take photos so that later on show your friends and make them part of intercultural dialogue.
When on the stage plays guitar, western music follows eastern one and national dances hit the ground.
Of course, this list can be continued, but I would like to finish my article with the conclusion that I came to while writing this very artcile: ”Intercultural dialogue occurs when ... cultures speak for peace”.
Find more examples of intercultural dialogue @ www.forgottendiaries.org