Sunday, 15 May 2011

MY CULTURE - WHAT IS YOUR CULTURE?

With transglobe and inter continental migration as well as the increase in "mixed marriages" either via different races, cultures, religions or a combination of all three and possibly other factors too there stems a new breed of human being having their ancestral roots in far flung places and possibly not even knowing anything about them. The need today for "ancestral" understanding is almost becoming a fad, it can enrich one's life from a personal point of view but for those around you it makes no difference whatsoever as all they see is "you, here , now" and for them that's more than enough. What is culture and what has ancestory got to do with anything pertaining to the here and now? After all if your mother was Nigerian and your father was an Australian born of French parentage and you were born in the UK what does it mean to you?  The short answer is nothing, your culture starts where you were born, that is reality, that is what affects you from the word "GO", nothing more. You know of nothing else and you are affected by nothing other than the circumstances in which you are brought up. Do you have a heritage, yes, where you live, you live and presumably have a British passport so that's your culture, everything else is purely second hand or third party or even heresay. You are definitely not Nigerian, definitely not Australian and definitely not French either, and unless you ever visit any of these places you know no more of them than anyone else who hasn't any connection with them, even if there are traits and sayings and some furnishings at home depicting such places.

It's always interesting that people feel they have an affinity to where their parents emenate from and talk about their culture or heritage, like many Indians do in the UK, "Our culture" and yet they are third or fourth generation Brirtish and often haven't even set foot outside the UK. Just because those children living in families of mixed origin eat or partake of certain foods endemic to where their parents came from still means nothing. Half the UK dine out in Indian, Chinese, French, Italian, Spanish, Greek, Thai, Mexican, Turkish, Lebanese, Vietnemese, Moroccan, Polish, German, Scandinavian, restaurants, etc, etc, etc, and think nothing of it, moreover all the supermarkets sell ready made meals and ingredients for making all the dishes at home also.  The emotive actions that some people go to yet at the same time have the most tenuious connections beggars belief, feeling either pride or disgust at what their alternative homeland is doing or been done to. Many Arabs who have left their homelands have that attitude of how marvelous it was, so why did they leave when no one wanted them in their host country if it was so good, stay there. The bottom line about culture is your OWN culture starts where you are, and if you move on then the continuation of your culture starts where you reside thereafter, so you may have a number of influences such is life today for many people, but you can't have an honest culture passed down as heresay because it doesn't gel, much of it is your parents sentimentality to see it carried on in their children, no more than that.

There are groups of people who seem to want to drag up the past for some atrocity done years ago in another time and another era of understanding, yet have nothing in common other than lineage at a distance smacks of both personal instibility,an emply belonging where they are now for their own social reasons and lacking in foresight as to life itself, in short pathetic and worthless people. There is but one way in life and that is forward, even saying "sorry" for the past other than appeasing some edgo's makes no difference whatsoever to the subject matter or circumstances.  There's much said today about "resolution" or "completence" or "closure" of a subject, but that's purely an emotional state and rests on people harbouring anger, hatred and unrest deliberately, which of course smacks of a lack of self esteem and self value, as again it changes nothing other than fuels inner discontent and says something about those that choose to harbour such feelings. If love and REAL LOVE is within then resolution will have been accepted and life will have moved on, although one can't forget one can uderstand the bigger picture and embrace the living both from a culturally accepted perspective and those around you. If you believe in God then to hold grudges and carry on hatred within is a sin, so you are on your own if that's what you are doing. Whatever you feel you have to do by holding on to cultural or event past you are wrong, but then it's your life and you'll die with that feeling no one else will.

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©John Rushton / The Life Alchemist 2011