Language barriers have been a nuisance since the beginning of history. Misunderstandings due to false interpretation have started wars, ruined lives, and created long-lasting tensions. Some people say that a universal language could solve many of the modern day problems that arise due to confusion over the spoken word; I think otherwise. The savior that could end hostility and create new alliances is present, and it is constantly at work around the world. I believe in laughter. I believe that mutual agreement is always present in cases of humor, and often times disputes and turmoil can be avoided by sharing a hearty guffaw or even a small chuckle with whom you disagree.
Laughing relieves stress and takes you away from whatever obstacles you may be attempting to overcome at that moment. Not only is laughing a good escape from the hardships of everyday life, it is also good for your health. Laughing is linked with the brain’s release of endorphins which promote a sense of well being and contentment. Moreover, laughter actually decreases the amount of stress hormone released by the body. However, the power of laughter does not stop with well-being.
I have strong ties with several Israelis and Arabs and I am continuously aware of the surreal and horrific situation in the mid-east. I constantly hear about the hardships faced by all the inhabitants of territories that are in conflict. The only way to deal with such extreme loads of desperation and pain without driving yourself crazy from worrying is to laugh about it. Sketch comedies, cartoons, movies, and all other such forms of entertainment are the keys to creating contentment and diverting attention from violence to the more important things in life like family and relationships. Even the film industry has acknowledged the power of laughter by awarding best short film to the middle-east parody “West Bank Story”. If only the nations could laugh together and realize their similarities, then, I believe, a long awaited era of peace would ensue.
I believe that the world is in a laughter crisis. The countries of the world must acknowledge their laughter shortages and start an immediate reformation of their daily routines. Donations should be made to traveling comedians who could go to developing nations or areas of conflict and provide a much needed distraction for children and adults who are faced with crisis everyday. Food drops should include balloon animals and tapes of “The Three Stooges” so that Moe, Larry, and Curly may be remembered for their humanitarian ways as well as their clowning days.
Laughter ???? Risas Lachen Rires ?????
No matter the language, spread the word.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.