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Share and grow

Sailosi Batiratu
Sunday, January 28, 2018

WE carry today several reports that really must be brought closer to our attention.

Two articles on page five are about two countries, one far and the other near — Australia and India — which celebrated their national days on Friday.

While both are much bigger than Fiji in physical size and resources, the two have seen it fit to have ties with us at several levels whether it be at the state to state level or right down to dealings and contact between private individual.

This of course presents both countries the opportunities to learn from each other, to manipulate avenues which exist for their mutual benefit.

Watching the Sydney 7s on TV this weekend, one would have witnessed the number of Fijian flags flying proudly in that arena when our national team was on the field.

The majority, it would be safe to assume, left our shores to pursue chances for a better life in Australia. Some would have been there as students and some just for the weekend to watch the rugby tournament.

India, while it will not host a rugby union of that nature any time soon, presents unique opportunities for Fijians, among them access to quality and affordable medical care.

This all come about because of the cordial relations between the concerned governments.

The other article which we must subject to closer attention is on page four where the Chief Justice talks about the desecration of Hindu temples.

While on the surface there is no link to the two articles on page five, do not be mistaken, there is one — opportunity.

Those who carry out such acts give us the rest of the population the opportunity to talk to those who listen to us, those who are in our sphere of influence — our children, nieces and nephews, other family members, friends and workmates — that there can be no place for such actions in a country which has embraced religion, a country which prides itself on being multicultural, on being friendly.

The existence among us of people who are different from us allows us to learn about a culture other than our own and the language which enables its transmission from generation to generation, and of course vice versa.

That does not mean that we dilute our own culture, definitely not. It just means that you have given yourself an insight into why another community does things the way they do. It allows understanding to take root, to grow and from that, hopefully, tolerance will be a natural offshoot which in time will be a sturdy growth supporting other desirable characteristics of a civilised society, among them true peace.

That is what should happen when we become a community that shares, we grow in ways we could not have imagined.

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