I know, I know. I know that you’re looking at me like I’m completely crazy, wondering why I have brought up the topic of pen pals in an era where the concept of writing letters itself is dying. But wait, before you throw this idea out of the window, think about it for once. What would it be like to have pen pals from different pockets of the world? You don’t necessarily have to converse through letters, although letters are an enriching means of communication. In this day and age, there is no dearth of mediums of communication. You can choose to converse through emails, text messages, video calls – it doesn’t matter which medium you choose as long as you talk to someone. Still skeptical? Read on to find out why you SHOULD have a penal.
The first and the most obvious benefit of making a pen pal is that you get to know someone who comes from a different society, culture, language or way of life. You understand the realities of someone who lives a different story, which in turn might change the plot of your story forever. In course of time, you get to learn about how things that are a norm for you might be something unimaginable for them. You get to know about different festivals, rituals, customs and traditions that people have around the globe.
In this process you will experience different shades of diversities, which will make it easier for you to accept differences of opinions. There are no rights and wrongs in this world, everything is just a shade of grey. And more you internalize this belief, the less likely you are to hold on to your baseless prejudices.
Although conversing with pen pals is a great source of learning for you, it is not the only end. Some conversations might fade out with time, but some might go on forever. And contrary to what you (might) think pen pals can become best friends with you. Just because they are a few (thousand) miles away from you, they don’t necessarily have to be away from your heart. It is entirely possible that somewhere down the line, some zillion miles away, you might find a heart that beats to the same rhythm as yours.
People believe that it is difficult to maintain friendships over a few words. I believe, on the contrary, that these few words are exactly what make your friendship stronger. There are many people in this world to whom the prospect of face-to-face conversations is somewhat daunting. Conversing over words, on the other hand, gives you more courage and allows you to literally bleed your heart on paper (or on whichever medium you’re using). You might find yourself being more frank and confiding than you usually are with other friends, which is a great step to strong friendships.
So, today, as we move towards a global village, let’s not hide behind our “the world is a bad place” facades. Let’s not let our mistrust of the world in general prevent us from wonderful experiences like these. Believe me, if you open yourself completely to the universe, the universe will take care of you.