Cultural diversity is what makes the world a wonderful place to be in. The beauty brought about by the difference in culture among many societies indeed make the earth to be an affectionate place. Different societies have different unique cultures which define them. They vary depending on the grounds of race, social status, and religion of the particular group.

An Elderly Maasai in one of the remaining Maasai Village

Culture has different related definitions from different scholars and authors. According to Cambridge dictionary, culture is a noun which means the way of life, especially the general customs and beliefs of a particular group of people at a particular time. According to (Marshall, 2002), she defines it as the consistent ways in which people experience, interpret and respond to the world around. Banks (1984), defines culture as the behavior, patterns, symbols, and institutions.

It is no doubt that every country has its own culture of which in it, the different language groups too have their unique cultures. Culture plays a pivotal role in almost every aspect of human life starting from the mode of dressing, the type of foods, systems of land use, interactions between communities, rites of passage and many others.

An elderly Maasai woman dressed in beads. She represents the beauty of the Maasai culture

The role of culture in the past was of great importance. It enhanced responsibility and promoted good morals in societies especially in the African countries. Over time, everything has changed. With the new dawn of the so-called ‘digital era’, we have completely abandoned our cultures. If you look at the current generation, you will agree with me that a majority of we, the youth,know little or nothing about our cultures. We (Africans) tend to adopt the western cultures instead of promoting our own rich cultures, some of which are of great benefit to us  for instance the new mode of learning using technology.

It’s true that some of the cultural practices such as the female genital mutilation that in some cultures is still being practiced are outdated and of no value. Even in those communities where some practices are highly condemned, there are still the positive practices which should be retained. What am I implying then? The thing is crystal clear, there is a need for us to re-adopt them eliminating all evil practices in them.

Maasai warriors

Many vices experienced today in our societies such as sexual immorality, criminal activities, early pregnancies are as a result of the absence of these cultures. Its role in advocating for morals enhanced responsibility, discipline, dignity, and respect for our communities. Am of the opinion that, there is a need for us to bring back our cultures and preserve them if we need to extol virtues and dignity in our societies and eliminate evil and unacceptable behaviors. Indeed, there is a need for all the stakeholders in different countries to cooperate to promote culture in our communities. If we have a solution to the ever unending bad morals in our societies, then, no doubt we have to bring back our cultures.

A cultural calabash
Bull Fighting a cultural practice by the Luhya community in Kenya

Join me next time as we will be exploring the place of culture in our modern societies.

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