“I don’t believe in very much any more,” said Simon Reeve in his current documentary about pilgrimages. “Before I started doing TV I used to write books about terrorism, and it has made me cynical about anyone who believe too much of anything.”
This is a sentiment I feel quite strongly about, as it was only today that I was having a discussion with the husband that all these travel has made us indifferent. It’s not just us too. I know many travellers out there who also feel indifferent about many things. Indifferent to religion, indifferent to hygiene, indifferent to first world comfort and indifferent to third world hungers. Most of all, indifferent to what we ‘hear’ about places. Most of the time, we’d rather see it for ourselves.
Too many times have we been told to be careful of this, watch out for that, and warned of the poverty that await us at our destination, only to find that our trips are often just like any other, filled with friendly people, delicious cuisines, and life long memories.
The indifference we feel now comes from having met and travelled with people of many backgrounds, various religions and believes and different levels of social status – to find that we all share many things in common: we all love, we all fear, we all cry and we all bleed. Through sharing food, stories and laughter, I’ve learned not to focus on our differences, but our similarities.
We may all have different faiths, but we all pray for the same things: to be sheltered, to be safe, to be healthy, to be loved and most of all, to have the ability to survive this crazy mad world.
Hence, religion no longer play a part in my life. I’d be happy to join any religious festivals on my travels, to experience how others experience their faith. I am happy to read and learn about the religions too, for I know by understanding them is the only way to eliminate cultural misunderstandings and to understand those around me.
Travel has taught me compassion, acceptance and tolerance.
Travel is my religion.
Read more on this: A reflection of my travelling self