In this blog post I will reflect what Finnishness may mean to me.

Honestly, it is hard to write what Finnishness actually means to me. I have been living in Finland for all my life, and most of my friends and relatives too. As a child, Finnish culture was all around me. When I started to know more about the other places of the world, I realized how small country Finland actually is and how all things can be done very differently. But still at times Finnishness is like glasses for me: I might only realize something is very “Finnish” after I see something that is not.

Finnish nature and climate have shaped many things here. For example the way buildings are built, what clothes we use outdoors, what is traditional Finnish food and how roads are taken care in different seasons. There are four distinct seasons and especially winter can be long, cold and dark. Weather can have effect in one’s mood. How much it has had effect on the Finns as a nation, can only be imagined.


Welfare state is also a topic I want to write about. It definetly is not perfect in Finland but still interesting to think about. I won’t be politically analysing current situation or a future of it. Instead I want to admire previous generations willingness and work towards it. I think Finland recovered socially and culturally from civil war in 1918 almost unexpectedly fast. I also think “common enemy” in World War II can not be the only thing that got Finns together after it. Maybe religious heritage was part of Finns hope for steady and safe country more than getting justice for events in 1918. Maybe it also made the sacrifices of reconstruction the society after the wars more bearable. I think many Finns even today still appreciate uniformity, safety and survival more than joy or delightness.


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