Finland turns 101 years today

I’m not known to be very nationalistic, in fact I feel like I’m somehow connected to all nations and people more than to any single geographical location. And to be honest nationalism, imaginary borders and how this is being weaponized so as to polarize identities, is something I believe is extremely counterproductive in creating a more positive future for ourselves and this planet.

Nevertheless there are aspects to the idea of nationalism that allwo us to celebrate diversity in culture and traditions, that which makes humankind so rich and beautiful. So this is why I am proud of my Finnish roots, the language, the way of interacting with people and how we treat our surroundings. All of which I want to preserve, not for selfish reasons or to exclude others but because I want to keep sharing the positive sides of Finnish-“ness” with others, to include and allow others to understand this heritage.

There is a symphonic poem (below) composed by a Finn (Jean Sibelius) which I find very beautiful and reminds me of all the positive aspects of this Finnish heritage. It is not the “happiest” of compositions but it gives me the chills and strangely enough, hope.

In any case happy independence day to Finland, its people and everyone else. Because if Finland has become a year older, it means that the entire world has as well. We are still alive, able to change and make a positive impact, no matter how small or big that may be.

-mm


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