Whether it is a journey from Nottingham to Edinburgh, Finchley Road to Ruislip or just from A to B, train travel is something that we use regularly. Yet, in the UK, most notably in London it is almost a heinous crime of British tradition to talk to another person on the train, especially to someone you don’t know! Striking up a conversation with the stranger sat next to you is just something that doesn’t happen on a regular basis.
However, on my way home from a fabulous J-Soc, this got me thinking. The train brings together so many different walks of life all from different backgrounds and different cultures and faiths. All coming from different parts of the country, all with a different family history. These different characters sit together on one cramped train carriage at rush hour. Standing so close to these people that you can hardly move, but never knowing a thing about them.
Travelling to different universities across the country you meet such a range of people, not only on your travels but also on your campuses. Most universities have so many people from around the country and the world and talking to every single person is almost impossible. What’s so interesting is that no one has the same background as you. Much like on a train, everyone is so different. Yet, different to a train you have all these opportunities at university to learn and talk to these people, without fear of judgement from the other commuters.
Universities are the best places to interact with people. The best time to do this is coming up this week, as this week is interfaith week. This is a great time to understand and talk to people that are different from you. Instead of wondering... why not be proactive and do something great for your interfaith week?
Whilst I am not suggesting that you must now start talking to strangers on a train, taking the opportunity to talk to people you may not have spoken to before and understand their way of life is an opportunity not many other social situations provide you.
Interfaith this year is the 10th-17th of November. Get Involved.
Contact Georgia for more information on how to get involved this Interfaith Week, and how to host interfaith events all year round.
Written by Lauren Lethbridge, Sabbatical Officer 2019-2020