I grew up in a land of freedom and
democracy, Sudan. Sudan consists of many ethnicities and religions.
This variety of people created my trustful charisma. My education
from pre-school through university was marked by this diversity,
which allowed me to interact with people from various backgrounds
and to gain knowledge about new cultures. I have an honest Jewish
friend and a role-model Christian friend, both of whom supported and
stood by me in difficult situations. The most important cultural
values that I would want pass on to another generation are the
values of equality, mercy, and kindness.
I am a civilized man who believes
in equality. I was born in the capital of a large country, Khartoum,
Sudan. The city laws have strict regulations which keep most people
from breaking them. Because God created people equal, I believe that
all people belong to one class and should be treated equally.
Khartoum is also a unique city with great diversity. Khartoum taught
me to be more open and accepting of others. Sudanese refer to
Khartoum as ďan elephant stomach,Ē because itís made up of different
ethnicities and religious groups from all over the world, and they
share equally and openly their schools, residential areas, and
cultures. Khartoum is also an exceptional capital because it freed
itself from the racism that was caused by British colonization. The
construct of the city taught me that equality among people is the
wide gate to a civilized society.
I am Muslim; Islam taught me that
mercy between people is the most important value. My parents
overwhelmed me with daily advice about mercy. I realized early in
life that mercy is the link that can bring people closer with no
consideration of race or religion. One day on my way back home from
elementary school, I found an old man lying in the middle of the
street and he was exhausted. I knew immediately what to do. I picked
him up and escorted him to his house, just as my parents had taught
me. Finally, we reached his desolate house, which had no neighbors
nearby, and I was welcomed warmly by his family members. After that
I felt pleased with what I had done. From that time on, mercy has
become second nature to me.
I am Arab-African. Another significant value among Arabs is kindness. Hospitality is practiced frequently in Arab homes by offering tea, coffee, and food to visitors and new people in the neighborhood. Arabs are also generous. They donate 2.5% of their incomes at the end of each year to help poor families. The Arabs' heritage of generosity and hospitality comes from the story of the Prophet Mohammed, who shared his food with his neighbor. From that time on, Arabs have been following his example of generosity.
As a Sudanese- American, I hope I can pass on my values of equality, mercy, and kindness to the next generation. If we share our precious principles and believe in and encourage the goodness in humanity, we will create a more perfect society.