Food for thought on Customs and Culture

Customs and culture are like herbs, they deliver a distinctive flavour and colour to life, and can have healing and health-giving properties. 

We all have a “culture” - a set of beliefs, values, stories, traditions and customs that we feel most comfortable with. Most of us function quite happily in other cultures, but our own is where we feel ‘at home’, where we understand others and they understand us, where we can truly be ourselves.

Acknowledging the culture we come from and honouring its customs gives us strength, comfort, healing, sharing and meaning. 

Don’t spare the herbs in your recipe for life:
Tune in to your culture: respect it, celebrate it, cultivate it and pass it on.
Preserve your memories of ‘home’ – and tell stories that pass them on.
Take part in the ceremonies and rituals that you enjoy.
Keep your language alive.  Speak it whenever you can - and pass it on.
Cook the dishes you love - and pass the recipes on.
Immerse yourself in the words, wisdom and stories that give your life meaning. 
Open yourself to cultures other than your own.

E mamae le tava'e i ona fulu
The tava'e bird takes pride in its feathers
 - Samoan proverb expressing the significance of Samoan values to its people