A very novel idea has been presented in this TED Talk. Something that runs even deeper than just tourism. Accepting other cultures is impossible to do when you do not experience them or see what the real people of the world are like. More often than not we rely on media to form our opinions. It's quite easy to forget that the experiences we read about could very easily be misinterpreted.
It's not difficult to apply a scientific mindset even to how we perceive other cultures. Should we not seek to replicate results on our own before we form opinions of who or what a people are? Should we not experience first hand what all of these cultures we may have poor perceptions of before we judge them? If there's one thing I've learned it's that the world is not as black and white as we make it out to be.
Sometimes things are not as they seem, especially when we're talking about news media and their focus on leadership in governments around the world. I think everyone in America especially at this point feels that the government does not accurately represent what the people in America are actually like. Couldn't the same be said for governments around the world?
While yes, I am an anarchist in philosophy, I do not buy into the paranoia of conspiracy theory or that everyone in government is out to screw the people. I believe there are plenty within the government who do have those intentions, but the best weapon for the people to topple that power is to travel and get to know their neighbors. To trust those around them to help in time of need, and to help those in their time of need.
Would we know our neighbors were in need if we did not know who they were? Would our neighbors help us if they did not know who they were? There are plenty of charities and help groups that are doing just that. However, in the face of international struggle and cultural differences, there is very little of this going on. There is a surprising lack of even desire to get to know other cultures before we judge them, and that's not an American only problem.
I have a very good friend who is touring Europe at the moment and I have been very glad to know that she is safe and making good friends with people of different cultures. In fact, I'm rather envious of her ability to have that experience in her life and am now trying to work towards making that a reality for myself as well. Staying at home in my comfort zone leaves me feeling sad and depressed because I have no idea how much my life and ideas could mean to others and I never will know unless I get out there and expand my horizons.
The same can be said for everyone. I believe Travel should be the most abundant resource the human race should have, and should be as available as possible. We all benefit from the free flow of knowledge and ideas. Maybe there are some people out there who are looking for the inspiration to invent something that could help everyone around the world. Maybe the only thing that could inspire them is to really see what people around the world are like and what they need.
There are many great minds out there that are stuck in a rut of life that does not speak to their true potential. I feel like I am one of those people having to be a working stiff every day in a place I really don't want to be, not because I think the area itself isn't worth anything to me, but because I can't leave the area due to debt and other obligations. Freedom includes the freedom to travel the world, and the more people travel the more understanding of other cultures is bred.
No amount of reading blogs or watching documentaries can truly lend you the experience of knowing other people. That understanding is bred only through true life experience and that is exactly what sir Aziz in the TED Talk wanted to get across. So if you have the capability to travel across the world I highly urge you to! You never know the kind of people you can meet or the ideas you can gain from it!