Individuals and Community!!!

Communities are often formed based on proximity. The neighborhood can be considered a community because everyone who lives in the area shares the same geographical location. However, it is also likely that they have other things in common – perhaps they share similar lifestyles, hobbies, or cultures. In this sense, the boundaries of a community can be blurry and overlapping. In my own story, I was born in Vietnam, and my parents are Vietnamese, so I unavoidably belong to the “Vietnamese people” community. I was born in the arms of my parents and grandparents, so obviously I had a “family” community. When I reached school age, my parents took me to school, so I definitely had another group of “classmates” at that time. I also have a lot of “Barbie” community and, “Disney Princess” community. Even before I was conscious of the world around me, I was already a member of several communities. It didn’t seem difficult for a child to integrate and connect in a community, so I got to know a lot of people.

However, one aspect that is crucial in building a strong community is the willingness of the members to be open and welcoming to newcomers. After all, communities cannot thrive if they are closed off and exclusive. The situation becomes different when people become adults because they are fully aware and have the power to make their own decisions. As a result, people are free to accept or reject the invitation to join a community.  I am an introvert. I used to work alone and handle things on my own. I don’t want to be a part of any community since I believe it is superfluous and I’m afraid to interact with people. But after a number of situations, I came to understand the value of community. I then altered my mind. Therefore, each person’s perception and decision determine how individuals and communities are related.

In terms of international relations, a nation has the right to actively pursue diplomatic contacts, actively apply to join international organizations, and actively develop connections with other nations. However, that country also has the right to go in the direction of self-sufficiency, close the country, and not interact with the outside world. Specifically, I am referring to the Open Door Policy, which is typically associated with free trade and open borders, which can bring economic opportunities and cultural exchange. Along with that is The Closed Door Policy, which by contrast, is typically associated with protectionism and national sovereignty. These two policies were chosen depending on the ideology, thinking, and situation of each country and have made certain marks in world history in terms of international relations.

In conclusion, as individuals, we all have a role to play in creating and maintaining such communities – by being open to others, participating in community activities, and building meaningful connections with those around us. By achieving these goals, we can not only make our lives better but also help to make the world better.






3 responses to “Individuals and Community!!!”

  1. Muna Avatar

    I totally resonate with what you said about being part of multiple communities from either family, friends and classmates. Individuals should be willing to accept others with different cultural norms into their communities because humans cannot progress if they are closed off. I have found out that through international relations countries can perpetuate the idea of outsider groups through exercising certain discriminatory policies which can cause conflicts among the population. Therefore, countries have to cooperate with certain groups that have been continuously undermined in order to remove the prejudice that has been prevalent in society. My question is: Do you think that due to certain ideologies or beliefs that people have they perpetuate the concept of us vs them?

  2. greenlem Avatar

    Hi Thao! I love your emphasis on the fact that people need to be open-minded about other people and welcoming to new people joining established communities. I believe every person should recognize the importance that it’s possible for a person to exist outside on of the communities you belong to and still be able to have a friendship, respect, or just any kind of positive relationship with them. By fostering this environment of open-mindedness and welcoming that you described, we can hopefully promote more positive interactions between different groups and help each other grow.

  3. nguyengh Avatar

    Hi! Firstly, I just want to say “Wow” because this writing is perfectly done. I especially love your first paragraph, how you introduce yourself belong to different groups, from the very simple thing like family, classmate, to specific communities like Barbie or Disney Princesses. I also think it’s really awesome how you link from your personal situation to a broader scope which is International Relations. Having the Open Door Policy and the Closed Door Policy as your examples, you showed the contrast of how belong to a group/organization/community can affect the connection between nations. My question is: In order to fit in a community, should one force themself to change their personality/identity?

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