Becoming a global citizen, what does that entail? After getting my second passport, a friend on Facebook played with the idea of having passports for “citizens of the world” – how good would that be?
I imagine it would mean free entry to all countries, honorary dinners at the “citizens of the world club” and a fascinating Facebook community sharing key insights to living truly globally. Of course, you would have to pass a test to get this citizenship, maybe with language tests on at least 3 fluent languages and showcasing experiences from at least 5 different cultures?
Speaking different languages is such a gift. Because you really get to understand a culture when you understand the structure of the language and the thinking behind it.
I must admit my benchmark went to another level on a flight to Europe, sitting next to a former correspondent speaking 17 languages, including currently having a go at Vietnamese – his first ever attempt at a Tone language.
How fascinating is that?? I may be nerdy, but it got me very excited learning about the principles of a Tone language, and my number of spoken languages suddenly felt a bit average. It’s always good getting new benchmarks?!!
Anyway, regarding the global citizenship: some of us may already be a member without knowing. I recently heard about “Third Culture Kids”, which is children who have lived in several countries, bringing their parents’ culture, the new culture of their current home country (countries in plural if they have moved several times) into their personal, self-created Third culture – which mixes and takes the best from all of above. So, they are not without roots, but instead using their diverse roots to create their own tapestry and setting new benchmarks of cultural understanding.
Just like the family structures have developed over the last decades, maybe our view on nationality and where home is could do with some development?
The key goal of global citizens would for me be the deeper understanding and respect for each other. Realising deeply that even if we have obvious external differences, we are all the same on the inside. With hopes, fears, lack and love.
So a cheer to the adventurous global citizens this week – thanks for expanding our horizons!