In recent times, we have witnessed a significant rise in religious, ethnic, and political tensions that have led to divisions and conflicts within our communities. We have seen how Manipur witnessed violence and still not out of its ambit and then the recent communal clashes in Nuh, Haryana and in Gurugram. With time, divisions among society seem to increase. Our blame to different ideologies or political motives may serve us a purpose of self-satisfaction, but at large, what is true for an ideal society is that people create the social culture which then influence to ideologies and political interests and hence our efforts should not be solely towards finding political fault lines, but to introspection and to find ways to improve ourselves, our society and community to come out as better human being than we are at present.
It is essential that we come together to promote unity and understanding among diverse groups. We need to know different aspects of harmony. Few among these are here:-
Shape the future with positive aspects of history
History is history and should be learned for studies, to find out narratives and different aspects of time, but as a civilised society, we should also accept that changes happen over a course of history. No community, religion, caste, linguistic and ideological groups were present since birth of Earth and all religions, caste, languages came into existence much later over a period of time as per need, curiosity, inventions and imaginations of human community. History should not be used to take ‘revenge’. If there are different religions or communities or ideologies, it is the beauty of the human community and the freedom of thoughts, imagination and curiosity that it has.
Trust and Respect to lead Shared Vision
Communal harmony is not just about tolerating or coexisting with one another. It goes beyond that; it is about embracing our differences, respecting each other’s beliefs, and creating an environment where everyone feels valued and accepted. It is about finding common ground and working towards a shared vision of peace, prosperity, and cooperation.
Living in a diverse society enriches our lives in countless ways. Different religions, cultures, and traditions contribute to the diversity that makes our communities vibrant. When we build bridges of mutual understanding and respect, we create an atmosphere of trust and cooperation that benefits all. It is only through communal harmony that we can tap into the full potential of our diverse talents and perspectives.
Sense of belonging
Communal harmony is not an abstract concept; it has tangible benefits for each one of us. When we live in harmony, we experience a sense of security, knowing that our neighbors and fellow citizens stand by us. It nurtures a sense of belonging and creates a supportive community where everyone can thrive. Moreover, communal harmony fosters creativity, innovation, and economic development as people from diverse backgrounds come together to exchange ideas and learn from one another.
Actions to be taken as a personal responsibility
To achieve communal harmony, we need to actively promote interfaith dialogues, cultural exchanges, and events that celebrate diversity. These activities will help us foster a sense of unity and appreciation for various backgrounds. It is crucial to create safe spaces for open discussions, where different viewpoints can be heard and respected. Education plays a vital role in this process as well; by imparting knowledge about various religions, cultures, and traditions, we can develop understanding, empathy, and appreciation for diversity from a young age.
We should embrace communal harmony as a personal responsibility. Let us make a conscious effort to interact with people from different backgrounds, step out of our comfort zones, and challenge our own biases and assumptions. Let us stand up against hate speech, discrimination, and prejudice, and strive to create a society where everyone feels equally valued and respected.
Together, we can promote a culture of communal harmony and build stronger, more inclusive communities. Let us work hand in hand to safeguard our rich heritage of diversity and create a brighter future for generations to come.
Remember, “In diversity, there is beauty and strength.”
Ravi Nitesh is a social activist and tweets @ravinitesh