Thursday, August 1, 2013

Building the Tower of Babel

By Fernando Venegas Traba (Chile)

Most of you remembers the story of the Tower of Babel. Is a passage of the Bible, specifically the Genesis. It´s about a group of people, of different parts of the World, that came together at Shinar after the Great Flood, and decided that they will build a Tower that will reach heaven, and around it they were going to establish a city that was going to be known everywhere. When God saw this, he punished the human for their presumptuosness by giving them different languages, wich lead to confussion and the eventual destruction of the edification.

Tower of Babel (Artist Unknown)
It is certain that is a metaphore for humility, but also we can associate it to science, and the pursue of knwoledge beyond religious or spiritual means. How a superior being is offended, and maybe a little afraid of the potential of this insignificant humans and their desire of power and wisdom. And his solution, miscommunication, "the langauge creates reality" saids the chilean Echeverría, when there is no language, there is no communication and everything falls apart.

Well, when we first arrived we had a welcome dinner for all of us, the SUSI scholars of Journalims and Media, at Ohio University; and I couldn´t stop thinking about this story, and how we are in the same path of this visionaries, but with a much better chance of succes.

Why you will ask. It´s simple, we are altogether in one place, from all over the world, reaching for knowledge, and specially for understanding. It was an amazing view, people of every latitude in one place, sharing, talking, eating (wich is always a common aspect between nations), laughing and sharing their experiencies, their vision, without any other goal than to know more about the other, more about life itself.

It´s only a matter of looking at the countries represented by the scholars, Azerbaijan, Zambia, Lebanon, Ukraine, Romania, Ecuador, Honduras, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Malaysia, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, India, Bangladesh, Mongolia and Chile. When I would ever dream to meet such a diverse group. But it doesn´t stop there, because between the faculty and staff of the program, we met persons from Zambia, Guyana, China, Rhuanda, the UK and Ethiopia, certainly I am leaving some countries behind.

Only in my table we had natives of two continentes, none of them from North America, actually there was one from Africa and four LatinAmerican. Two scholars (Beatriz Lovo and me), and three faculty members, Brook Hailu Beshah, borned in Ethiopia, and Patricia Cambridge with her husband Vibert Cambridge from the Guyana. At first it was a slow conversation, but after a few minutes we were very openly talking about different subjects, visions and ideas, with one common ground, the Journalism.

For me it has been an amazing experience, I have known people from all over the world and share with them ideas, discussions, memories and feelings,and that get me to my conclusion:

We are in an amazing position, and we have aqcuired a huge responsability. We can build the tower, and now there is no vengeful God that can stop us.



Dear Friend,

Personally speaking, this program has broken the Tower of Babel and made us the flowers of a same bouquet.



United we stand (y)

Fernando said...

You are a poet, Eak.