I consider myself a traveler, a citizen of the world, one that belongs everywhere and nowhere.
I don’t know whether it is my DNA picking up on years and years (hundreds? THOUSANDS?) living in the diaspora in different parts of the world, or whether it is something in my nature that always was just THERE, knowing that I am part of a big world, and that all boundaries are meaningless. I don’t know, and it doesn’t matter. Boundaries ARE meaningless, and even though cultures and specific difference add value and distinction and richness to our lives - separation of any kind leads to hate, suffering, wars and so on.
Historians, activists, thinkers and politicians smarter than me have talked about finding the balance between a global one-ness world, and the recognition of uniqueness between nations. The European experiment in many ways is promising in achieving that desired balance, but there is so much more needed to do on that front.
Living in the US for nearly twenty years - I have almost normalized the mentality that many Americans have of not traveling overseas but rather traveling within the country. Many Americans don’t even have passports to travel overseas. Over the years, I have garnered some understanding to some Americans’ desire to visit their own vast beautiful country, BEFORE visiting other places, but a part of me feels so disappointed of that mindset:
If we are one - and we ARE, one race, one specie, one world - then the world is ours to see as well, no? Not only the backyard. And I think... how easy it is to miss on so much, and to be culturally limited when NOT being exposed to other cultures.
It’s a loss of possibility. A loss of connection. A loss of community.
Our world does so much to protect ignorance.
I’d like to be an advocate of knowledge, of understating, of empathy and connection.
Travel, education, and the arts are the best ways I know how those can be achieved.
When I look at my passport - it is filled with stamps. Every stamp is a step towards living as a citizen of the world. Every stamp is an openness to possibility, for connection, for richness of identity. What does YOUR passport look like? Is it full of open pages...? Take the invitation, fill those pages with possibilities. Fill it with the world.
In April 2020, while experiencing her first ever global pandemic, Tamar Pelzig pledged to write something every day, even if it's only a word, so she welcomed to the world a daily blog to keep her creative writing wheels rolling.
Header Art: Daniel Landerman