Recently, I was watching a YouTube channel with content produced by a young Iranian woman named Anaieta. She’s been living in Ghana for a couple of years. She fell in love with young Ghanaian man. They’re married now, and they are happy in their relationship. Of course, I draw this conclusion from a video on which they express some warm emotions about how long they’ve known each other, the quality of their life in Ghana, and things they do to make a living and so on.
Interestingly, as I watched Anaieta’s video, the obvious differences in her and her husband faded into the universality of humankind. Of course, the differences that commanded my immediate attention were the same ones that we humans always notice right away: skin color, hair texture, language accents, those externals that don’t tell the whole story about the quality of one’s character. Beyond that are the invaluable elements that connect them as two human beings who had a social encounter at some point that began their journey in life together. They both have thick accents, as they communicate in the king’s English. Not being a linguist, all I hear are two accents that sound similar; however, I’m confident the differences are strident.
I watched several of Anaieta’s videos, including the one where she introduced her channel. Here, she mentions the similarities in Ghanaian culture and Iranian culture. I found that fascinating, since I too have been noticing similarities in cultures that have old roots. I like watching YouTube videos where someone walks through the streets or a marketplace of a city. I’ve noticed how similar things look in comparing people moving about in Ghana and India. People are often dressed in traditional attire (similar in appearance), balancing things on their heads, riding motorbikes, doing what they must do to sustain life.
Anaieta did a series of videos where she took her husband home to Tehran. I was surprised by this because I, for some reason, thought leisurely travel to Iran was out of the question. I was even more surprised when I saw footage, she shot of them strolling through the Iran Shopping Mall in Tehran. The architecture of the structure was beautiful. The people meandering about inside the mall reminded me of the many malls I’ve been in the United States, the two malls I’ve been in the Ghana, West Africa, malls I’ve been in Canada, as well as other places on God’s green earth. People are just people wherever I go.
As I consider the commonality of us all, I can’t help but venture into what’s occurring in the Ukraine. The people of Ukraine, the butchers, bakers, and candlestick makers weren’t the least bit concerned about geopolitical affairs. They simply wanted to live their lives and live them abundantly by enjoying familial relationships, working daily to provide for themselves, worshipping their God, resting when the need arrived, and doing what was natural for them to live out the rest of their days.
It’s the people of the world who bring the good, common offerings to the table; offerings that can often allow us to reach across borders with open hands of friendship. It’s the governments that make an absolute mess of things, enlisting the wills of our young to wage war about things of which they have no knowledge.
Remember the people. They’re the unwilling sacrifices.
I’m old and blessed…hope you will be too.
It always is the leaders of a nation that start the wars — but they never are the ones that actually go out and fight them. I’m reminded of the pacifist quote from the Vietnam War era: “Suppose they gave a war and nobody came?” How I wish it could be true….
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Great post. I know it’s not an original idea, but I so wish we could put world leaders into a stadium and have them duke out their differences, instead of letting them use their countrypeople as expendable pawns on a chessboard.
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People are people wherever you go … some are fast and some are slow …