It took travelling to South of the Equator to ‘find myself’.
Apart from myself, many people have said this or something similar to it but is the meaning behind this statement really understood?
What does it mean to find oneself?
Last summer, I visited Indonesia. One of the most beautiful yet most complicated places I have ever visited. I had never experienced something so alien to me and it changed me.
It wasn’t just the different lifestyle, culture or poverty but it was the geography and the landscape that truly captivated me. I was shown a snippet of the world’s beauty but juxtaposed to this magnificience there was so much destruction.
How could I have been so ignorant? With unlimited ways to access so much information, no one can be excused to being oblivious to such a widespread problem. Yes we all know that poverty exists, but how many of us actually read about it?
I feel humiliated and ashamed. Humiliated and ashamed at the lifestyle that so many of us lead. True poverty is fortunately a rarity in our daily lives but in some places it is the norm and the standard which people find acceptable. Such poverty should never be classed as ‘acceptable’.
It took me nearly three weeks to finally brush my teeth with tap water. These three weeks paralleled my ignorance.
Realising how ungrateful I can be, even for the simple things made me re-evaluate priorities in my own life. Life is too short and I do believe that God has given us this life as gift but also as an ‘amanah’. This gift is a responsibility.
Pasar in Banda Aceh, Indonesia.