Pluralism is a positive result of people’s relationships with different cultures, languages, and religions, who happen to share the land because of one or other circumstances (Pluralism papers No.1, 2012). The history of Kazakhstan as a state is mostly considered to begin in 1465. Its history as a pluralistic state has probably begun at the same time. There are many stories of people, regardless whether they migrated by force or by their own will, who have been leaving in the country in peace and unity for many years. One of the stories written further in this post demonstrates that human factor plays a pivotal role in the development of pluralism in our country.
The story was narrated for the first time in 1990, when the former prisoner of Akmola camp of traitors’ wives (ALZHIR) – Gertruda Platais came to Kazakhstan after many years. This touching narrative brings to tears. The women were evicted by the regime from different parts of the USSR in the camp surrounded by Kazakh villages. Gertruda shared her impressions when she met Kazakh people for the first time. It happened on the way back from the lake Zhalansh to the camp. Kazakh children and old men were throwing stones on the women. The officers of the camp laughed and explained their behavior as the reaction towards the women who were traitors; that the women were hated by everyone, even the children. The women suffered from the awful morality of the reaction which was transmitted to young generation by the old men. However, the stones turned out to be small pieces of hard cheese- kurt, since everyone in the villages knew that women in the camp were hungry and were about to die. The people of the villages constantly hid food for the women in different places by putting signs. This saved many women’s lives in such devastating conditions in the camp. Later on, the story laid as a base on a touching poem named “Kurt – a precious stone ”. The poem portrays how the German woman prayed to Kazakh people’s God, not for saving her but for saving the people and giving their children a bright future. Indeed, the story is a great example of humanity which was stronger than the regime of that time.
Today, children in Kazakhstan are generally aware of being a part of the ethnically diversified state. At homes they are taught eternal values, which teach to be kind to anyone, regardless the ethnicity of people. Importantly, the special respect is given to mothers, which is put on the highest rank. Beside their homes, children are inculcated the friendship and unity ideologies in kindergartens since their early years.
We have a very old proverb which says “kind deeds give award”. I think as far as people of our country keep carrying the profound meaning of this proverb, they will always have peace and happiness as awards.
Defining pluralism. Pluraism papers No.1, (2012). Global center for pluralism.