Monday October 24, 2016

Senegal Reflection Questions

By Alexandria Erin

Senegal Reflection Questions:

 

Question #1: What stood out to you as you traveled in Senegal?

Something that really stood out to me and I didn’t realize would be something I paid so much attention to was the skin color of the Senegalese people. I think this had something to do with the fact that as we are traveling the skin color has been getting darker and darker. I do believe Morocco prepared me for Senegal. I think it was something I paid so much attention to because of how much more white it made me feel and how it made me stand out so much more.

Question #2: How have you been able to see the world in a different way from before? What have been the most influential moment where you’ve seen changes in yourself?

So far on this journey I have begun to see religion differently. Before my religion was really the only religion I knew a whole lot about. Yes I had read about other religions, and yes I’ve talked about other religions to my friends who are not the same religion as me, however, this was different, I was immersed in different religions. I’m not saying I was never open to other religions, I just all of a sudden started to view religion as less important and the end meaning as more important. This allowed for me to understand the Muslim religion. I was able to look past their practices and see that all who believe in God have this common theme that allows us to be brothers and sisters and the practices become less and less important when it comes to understanding someone and finding a way to connect to them!

Question #3: What is stopping you from immersing yourself more in the cultures we have visited?

My fear to be honest. At first I was very afraid to immerse myself because of knowing myself and knowing I can either come off over confident, or easily taken advantage of especially being a young white American. It’s not that I don’t think I can take care of myself, quite the opposite, it’s that these people in these countries don’t know me, so therefore, I might not get the respect I deserve and people may try to take advantage of me due to not only stereotypes but also because it’s apart of their job. I also had a bit of fear of someone stealing from me. The reason for this fear is mostly due to the idea of having to get things replaced and the difficulty I would face doing that. For example, if my camera got taken I would be devastated because that is the one thing I am using the most on this voyage. I’m not really getting many souvenirs, I’m focusing most of my energy on the photographs I can have for the memories I want to keep and be able to look back on. My camera also means so much to me, I’ve had it since 2009 and I’ve become attached to it, so I wouldn’t just have lost a camera, I would have lost something I treasure! 

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