At the Zoo

Imagine that you go to a zoo with your children. Your children are fascinated to see all these different animals. At one enclosure you meet a guy who is complaining the whole time, loud and angry and short before nervous breakdown. You ask him what has happened. He says “It is too much. I cannot take it. Why must the giraffes be taller than me. Why are the penguins smaller? Why do all these animals behave in different ways? Why do they not behave like me, like humans? Why do they look so strange? What is wrong with them? It makes me angry to see how these apes behave. Where is their culture? Where are their good manners? Why do they shout so loud at each other? And the flamingos, – why are they pink? It hurts my eyes.”

You step back and think for yourself “This is exactly how human beings behave when they meet other people who are not from the same community, culture, religion, etc. Humans enjoy working themselves up when they see something which is different to them, which they do not know or not understand. They even start to fear these things and perceive them as a threat. Why are humans not able to enjoy the diversity in life? Why is it so hard to appreciate the differences, to be fascinated and to stay relaxed? Humans are all different. If all were equal, it would be more than boring. Diversity is a natural-divine principle, not only in the animal kingdom but simply everywhere.”

Imagine when you meet a strange person or a person which is different, that you are fascinated and interested about his or her story. Imagine that you learn to know this person with its special characteristics, interests and abilities. Imagine that you learn something new, that the person shows you new ways in many different aspects. New points of view. Indeed, you enjoy the chance to expand your consciousness, your understanding of the world, your perception, your way of life.

Although all people are humans, all are different like the animals in nature or in a zoo where you can compare them easily. We live in a fascinating world with fascinating creatures. We just need to open ourselves to this perception. Otherwise we do not see the wonders. Otherwise we are lost in complaining and in stereotypes.