I grew up in a perfect home, my parents were always there for my brother and me, and they made sure that we attended worship service and Sunday school. My grandmother was the best Christian in my eyes, she knew who God was, and I admired her, as she always had a smile on her face. As I got older and was around her all the time, I wondered how she could be so cheerful all the time. I could not understand all the injustices and prejudices, being called the “n” word so much. She said that she was used to it now. She would tell us that it is God that gave her the strength over all these years and that she was so thankful because God is faithful to His word.
The skills that I exercise in my life towards others are understanding, awareness, communication, respect, and cultural competence. Human beings find comfort and trust in people that are like them. We, as human beings, look for spending time with the people that are the most like us. It can be the same race, age, ethnicity or the same gender. These characteristics are human nature and in no way mean that the humans, as a species, are cruel or mean in essence. Instead, these are the very characteristics that make us humans. However, these facts might play the role of hurdles in dealing with diversities.
These principles, I see, at present are coming to terms with my attitude, beliefs. I am becoming more understanding and patient and have begun to grow more comfortable with the difference in other cultures. I have learned that diversity goes beyond merely race and gender. The term, diversity, covers all the aspects of differences among human beings. All people are different in various terms, as they may be either old or young, may be dwelling in urban or rural settlements or maybe the native citizens of the country or immigrant. All people are equal, and therefore, no one should be targeted for their inequities of present or past. All of us behave in a specific manner depending on our socialization. Consequently, it can efficiently be said that we all may be both, the victims and the perpetrators of stereotyping and discrimination at times. What matters is that we strive for the creation of increasing opportunities for people by moving forward.
We, as Christians, should look for ways to work efficiently with the people of diverse backgrounds. Cultural awareness is the need of the hour, coupled with the skills needed to interact in the same place that these injustices and disrespectful behaviors come from. Hogan’s four skills of cultural diversity provided me with the tools to help me become a culturally competent person. This book is helpful for developing the awareness, the understanding and the skills required for dealing with diverse peoples. It provides a comprehensive approach towards the learning and practicing of cultural competence. After describing the background of the four skills in chapter 1 and chapter 2, it greatly helped me understand what “culture” looks like in the absence of any reservation.
Perception is the byproduct so to speak, which is the result of the organization and the interpretation of input information by a person to create a meaningful image of the world. The most important aspect to consider regarding perception is that it may greatly vary among different individuals being exposed to the same reality. Culture affects how one hears and sees. Contrary to popular belief, what you see is not always what you get. The key to demonstrating cultural sensitivity is to be aware of the variations that exist in every culture.