Cross Cultural & Diversity Quotes

Posted by: Priya Senroy on July 21, 2011 3:09 pm

In this blog I would like to share quotes about cross culture and diversity. As a counselor and practitioner working with diverse population, these quotes have become ‘teachable moments’ for me whenever I face challenges, roadblocks or dilemmas while interacting with my clients.

Here are some quotes that I found that are both inspirational as well as eye openers for me.

 “A Senegalese poet said ‘In the end we will conserve only what we love. We love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught.’ We must learn about other cultures in order to understand, in order to love, and in order to preserve our common world heritage.”
–Yo Yo Ma, White House Conference on Culture and Diplomacy

“Strangers in a new culture see only what they know.”

“We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty, some are dull, some have weird names, and all are different colors. But, they all fit nicely into the same box.”

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it solely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”
-Mark Twain

“Every view of the world that becomes extinct, every culture that disappears, diminishes a possibility of life.”
-Octavio Paz

“With all the diversity in the world, people of different religious groups, color, race, education, development, and maturity, there is one thing in common among all of us. One thing that ties each one of us to every other one, we are all moving into the future, at the same speed, simultaneously on this journey.”

“Knowing yourself is not so much about introspection and interaction. To know yourself is to realize that you are more than the little self that has been given to you by your history — the pattern that others made — that your true self is, in truth, much larger and includes other people, other cultures, other species even. That life is less about being and more about interbeing. We come to know ourselves, then, through coming to know each other. And the deeper that knowledge, the richer and more creative the world we build together ”
-Danny Martin, Director of ICRE (International Communities for the Renewal of the Earth)

“It was during those long and lonely years that my hunger for the freedom of our own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. A man who takes away another man’s freedom is a prisoner of hatred, he is locked behind bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. I am not truly free if I am taking away someone else’s freedom, just as surely as I am not free when my freedom is taken from me. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity.”
-Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom’

“Sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul.”
-Edward Abbey

“Even when we interact daily with people of other ethnic groups, we rarely talk about racial issues. It seems too scary to people. But we must start doing it! We have to break down the barriers between us and talk openly, honestly, and with respect. The rewards far outweigh any concerns we may have.”
-Sue Alperin

“Understand the differences; act on the commonalities.”
-Andrew Masondo, African National Congress

“Without mutual knowledge there can be no mutual understanding; without understanding, there can be no trust and respect; without trust, there can be no peace, only the danger of conflict. This means we have to be willing and able to familiarize ourselves with the way people of other cultures think and perceive the world around them, but without losing our own standpoint in the process.”
-Roman Herzog, President of Germany

“Diversity…is not casual liberal tolerance of anything not yourself. It is not polite accommodation. Instead, diversity is, in action, the sometimes painful awareness that other people, other races, other voices, other habits of mind have as much integrity of being, as much claim on the world as you do… And I urge you, amid all the differences present to the eye and mind, to reach out to create the bond that…will protect us all. We are all meant to be here together.”
-William M. Chase, “The Language of Action”

“I do not wish my house to be walled on all sides and my windows stuffed. I want the cultures of all lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible.”
-Mahatma Gandhi

“A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.”
-Lao Tzu (780 – 490 B.C.)

“Men hate each other because they fear each other, and they fear each other because they don’t know each other, and they don’t know each other because they are often separated from each other.”
-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“I used to think that anyone doing something weird was weird. Now I know that it is the people who call others weird who are weird.”
-Paul McCartney

” We have become not a melting pot but a beautiful mosaic. Different people, different beliefs, different yearnings, different hopes, different dreams.”
-Jimmy Carter

“Embracing diversity is one adventure after another, opening new paths of discovery that connect an understanding to caring, listening, and sharing with others who are different than ourselves.”
-April Holland

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

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