Originally posted on FindingIsvara.com on May 11th, 2017
I enjoy traveling and having the opportunity to live in different countries. Malaysia is the sixth country which we will call home until we move somewhere else.
We have lived in three different Muslim countries. Malaysia is different because it is so diverse; food, culture, language, ethnicities and religious beliefs. What makes living here so easy is that Malaysians are very tolerant of the blunders of foreigners, which is something we can all learn from.
Malaysia has approximately 15 public holidays a year and maybe more depending on which state you live in because some holidays are regional. We have been here for almost three months and we have seen seven holidays, five of which were religious: two Christian, one Muslim, one Hindu and one Buddhist.
Nearly all the world's religions, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Christianity are present in Malaysia. From my short experience here, it seems that locals and foreigners accept and respect each other's beliefs and traditions.
The most recent holiday was Wesak Day. It is also known as Buddha’s Birthday, Buddha Day or Buddha Purnima. This holiday is one of the most important festivals in the Buddhist calendar. It commemorates three significant events in Gautama Buddha’s life – his birthday, his enlightenment and his death.
Living in a new country, or even in a different city, exposes you to new cultures and traditions. Learning to accept the beliefs and traditions of others gives you a better understanding of how they live and why they do the things they do. Instead of focusing on our differences, we should try to learn from each other. Don't turn away, put down or criticize that which you don’t comprehend, seek to understand, even if in the end you still disagree.
I look forward to learning and exploring more about our host country over the next couple of years.