In a podcast some time ago… I have listened to the phrase that the world would be a much better place if all the people knew how to dance Tango. Well, it’s obviously an exaggeration, but these days I can’t help thinking how trivial differences that lead to wars become when we embrace each other.
I mean it. As a Greek, our history books taught us to unconsciously dislike certain other cultures. Turkish and Germans were amongst them. However, I was lucky to grow up in a city where there were already people with Turkish backgrounds and soon realize how wrong this history-cultivated dislike was. Later, I had the chance to live and work in other multicultural environments like during my Master’s degree in Scotland or during my years as a researcher for different EU research projects and recently living in one of the most multicultural cities in Europe.
Tango came as an addition to all this. During my short trip to the Tango world, I have danced some of my best tandas with ladies from Turkey and Germany. The beauty of this dance is that you might start a tanda with a person you never knew before and manage to feel and exchange so many emotions with each other, even before you exchange basic information like names and nationalities. This means that in most cases there are no preconceptions or prejudices when you enter the tanda with a new dancer. When the tanda ends, sometimes even this basic information seems so trivial and unimportant.
Think about it. This experience really affects your brain and your soul in a fundamental way. You start realizing unconsciously, that despite all the differences of the past we are all the same. Same people… with same emotions… same feelings… same troubles… same worries… same needs… same successes… same failures etc. You also realize that the things that keep us apart are just so trivial and that any difference between us is what makes the world actually more interesting! And all this happens so naturally and in the background until you sometimes look at yourself and wonder what happened.
So, through Tango (as of course through travel, living abroad, and many other activities that bring you in real and deep contact with different people, from other cultures) you change to become more tolerant of those differences until, in the end, you learn to appreciate them. So… please… make Tango, not war!
As much as I would like to accompany this post with a Tango I could not! Tonight’s Goodnight Tango could not be anything else than… “Imagine”.