- When from an independent and private position I find it imperative upon and within incumbent South African President Jacob Zuma’s prerogative to now step down and resign, that way preserving whatever little honour as a leader and noble citizen of the land left, and saving the country much international diplomacy and business ridicule and embarrassment, I do so inconsequential of whether I like him or not. Manifestation of any lack of respect for an elder and leader in accordance with “… it’s our African culture!” is of no relevance here as well. My stand is based on impersonal well-thought out critical thinking leadership principles and philosophy.
- Watching how the once most revered African National Congress/ ANC and its loyal structures defend the indefensible in President Zuma’s already long tarnished beyond repair image and reputation as a national leader is like hopelessly watching a woman I dearly love slowly drugging herself to death on a daily basis. With every new temporary abstinence killing shoot, she has gone beyond believing; she deliberately defies logic and reason, ever irrationally convincing herself in vain that the new shot would be the very last and most decisive to fix and put everything back in place again once and for all, on and on till she drops dead.
Perhaps with death comes freedom from self-deception. If only death could clean up messes caused, destructions effected, and crimes committed in the living. A misguided ship’s captain dead in his sunken ship in the middle of the ocean will never bring the machine back to surface; neither can he bring back to life the dead, not to mention coming back to console the bereaved. The ANC is like a sinking ship which can no doubt easily be rescued by simply plugging up the hole letting in water in the hull. But the amazingly dedicated and hardworking, loyal structures personnel would rather use as badly porous buckets to throw out, instead of attending to the cause of the ship’s taking in the water causing it to sink. The problem is that if at all, very few will be good swimmers. So, when the ship finally sinks, all shall be lost. I might as well bid the ANC farewell. My heart is sore. Buya, Mandela, izwe se li khathele!
- So, the State President has publicly apologized and shown remorse for having “… failed to uphold, defend, and respect the Constitution as supreme law of the land.” Cool. Magnanimous. But the beef is that apology and remorse are meant to enliven the conscience of the offender, reminding them of a thing called humility, as well as their own humanity with its strengths and fallibilities like everyone else.
We are found guilty in the face of the law of the land because we have caused somebody, or some common societal value held high and sacred to hurt. When we are asked to, and do indeed commit ourselves to apologizing, it’s our acknowledgement of the fact that we are after all only human, and that our undesirable and offensive acts have indeed caused others harm. We want to be forgiven essentially for the easing of our own sense of guilt; but, above all, also to acknowledge the humanity of other people. That’s called empathy. Acknowledgement of the offender’s empathy outreach does not, and cannot nullify the wrongful act/ -s committed. In the free world, the law is by design, purpose, and intent cold and impersonal for that reason. We apologise to offended people hoping to receive forgiveness and understanding. We show remorse in front of the law, its institutions, and agents hoping only for leniency in the face of the impending and non-avoidable due and relevant punitive action. A blatant disregard for the law, and in this regard, the highest law of the land, ought to deprive the offender of certain privileges and rights which in the first place may have facilitated the desire and/ or inclinations to break the law with blind and arrogant impunity. The Constitutional Court ruling clearly demonstrates that the presidential incumbency has been abused. This ought to be enough grounds for the ANC to disown President Zuma, without being personal about it. But then again, if the President is the organization itself, then when he goes down he goes down with it. Makes perfect sense. Farewell my lovely ANC.
- In my forthcoming new and second novel, the story narrator explains a special Black South African attitudinal phenomenon which could help explain the intricacies of organizational/ political leadership and power as manifest not only in the ANC, but across the board in the country, perhaps even beyond the South African borders:
EXCERPT – “Kassie mentality … espouses and epitomizes the most base of manifestations of arrogance, disrespectfulness, and cantankerousness towards, as well as undermining of others perceived to be inferior and worthless as human beings. It also includes boundless pig-headedness, narrow one-track mindedness, and acute levels of unreasonableness, including tribalism, and regionalism defining the basis of manifestations of extreme levels of defiance against, among other things, authority, often culminating in self-destructive tendencies more than helping to achieve any meaningful, life-supportive goals for the self and/ or others. This cuts across the strata of Black South African society, from the ordinary man or woman on the street to top politician, through academia to business. It would come out more glaringly in the actually relatively more culturally sophisticated and more personal, as well as national identity aware and secure Zambia. Instead of showing humility and gratitude to the country and its people, the kassie mentality South Africans would play out all their degenerate township life attributes to their hosts, calling them …”
NOTE: Continued in the book soon to be released. Watch this space.
In the meantime, buy my debut novel on Amazon: WHEN THE MIGHTY FALL – Rise Again Mindgames.
- Now that spoken have I, if I die I die. However, I’m just not ready to be a martyr yet. I live in pure preference of earthly maidens and virgins, although any active pursuance of them is not a favourite pastime of mine. So, I speak because I want to live in peace and harmony in the great and beautiful land South Africa is; a beacon of Democracy and freedom in Africa.
Tel.: +27 717 454 115
April 07, 2015
I am in love with myself, deeply so. I love myself more than I love anybody or any other thing else, much more than I love my women, my Rolexes, and my Mercedeses.
My parents, my siblings, my children from other fathers, my brothers and sisters from other mothers, my teachers, and my God do not come into the picture here; for them the love is supreme. It is because of the great love I have for me that I can have the awesome capacity to love I happen to posses. In my private moments, I thoroughly convince myself that I am the greatest thing called man to ever walk the face of the earth; for all times. I am the best there is anywhere on planet earth. Beyond planet earth I really do not care much about. Spielberg tried with ET, The Extra Terrific. It didn’t work. What a most unhandsome guy! He still charms the world, though. #SIAFA-Secretly I am a Fan™. But I’m still the best. Nevertheless, could I have chosen, I know for sure that I would have come out a totally different man. Perhaps still as overly narcissistic and with the same love I have for my people, as well as my opulent life-style play things, but very different all the same.
Given the hard realities of life as a Black man in a hard world, a Black man born and raised in the hot bed of anti-Black racism Apartheid South Africa, if prior to my conception I could have chosen my parents, they most certainly would have been of White aristocracy class in, say, England. And I would have been born in North London somewhere, say, Chorleywood. That would have been real cool. I would have chosen to be tall and slender, say, 2m. My body would have been one of those which respond well to physical exercise training, such that I would go strutting around with the neatest and perfectly ribbed sex-pack, above which would be the finest sculptured chest and the most perfect squared broadest shoulders. My hair would be David Bowie blond, of course. Never mind he hailed from South London. London is London. Blond is blond, and we have more fun. That’s just the way it is. It would have been real nice to have been White by choice and became part of the most powerful people on earth, both for the bad and the good. But then again, I became, I am Black. How it would turn out to be that my parents would be Black and African in Africa I have no idea of; and I really do not care much about that. For I am Black, I am. I did not, I never, not that I could ever, choose to be Black. Black is the nature of me, the nature of my being, with all my bad and good attributes, as well as my strengths. I have no time for weaknesses. I remain the proudest Black man I know. But, to be honest, I could have been spared the Black curse.
I am short, chubby with a pot belly, and black as coal. I have a flat nose, have a roundish face, have short curly black hair, I have small ears, have little body hairs, have a sickeningly inflated ego. I have loads of physical and mental endurance. I have a huge appetite for food and the good life. I am independent, I am creative, I am emotional, I am my parents’ first child together, and, oh, I am a heterosexual man with profound love for women. These qualities of and about me I do not recall ever choosing, or making a conscious pre-order of, they were pre-packaged in my parents’ sexual reproductive cells. It’s called genetics work, through which a thing called DNA will be understood to be, and contains the intrinsic truth about me, where I come from, and where I am likely to end up as a consequence of my all-round inherent personal attributes. I popped out of my mother’s birthing organ predestined to be the kind of man and person I am today. It’s all in my DNA. I can, of course, if and when necessary, with relative ease make and learn to live with cosmetic and behavioural changes to suit, and adapt to changing and changed circumstances, but that can never change the real essence of my being; who I am, and what I am. Once the reproductive cells fusion is done, the DNA is signed, sealed, and delivered; that’s me in full from cradle to the grave. So is everyone else, really. That’s being human for you.
Because I am educated, I have gone to school, I have read all kinds of books, I have had quality social intelligence, academic education, and professional training, I have an open mind, and, most importantly, I think. My lifelong education and training have taught, and continue to teach me how to think critically, philosophically, and, fundamentally, scientifically. Because I am a whole and rounded intellectual being, I do allow myself to think and feel spiritually too. That way, the dreamer and visionary in me is kept alive. Imperfections allowed, of course, science is about factual knowledge within certain generally agreed upon parameters in given epochal paradigms. Spirituality is about intangible concepts of hope and faith, although that for which hope and faith are, or may be inspired may be tangible. For example, all things remaining equal, under given atmospheric conditions, when two bodies the material compositions, strength and stress tolerance, mass, and velocity of which are known are on a definite collision course, it can with precision to the finest detail be predicted the outcomes and effects of their impending crash. Ever played snooker? However, ignorance about the mentioned factors would lead to random outcomes speculations based on the observer’s expectations as conditioned by their hopes and faith. Spiritually speaking, hope kindles visions and expectations; faith sets these in motion without any guarantees that the expected outcomes would be attained, leaving it all in the mechanizations of intangible forces beyond the observer’s control. Oh, my God! So, when we die, it is hoped we shall go to heaven, with faith activating certain rituals, practices, and rules meant to consolidate the hope carried out. But no one really knows where heaven really is, or what it really looks like. From a scientific point of view, heaven, and/ or its anti-thesis, hell, are speculative human fantasy creations. When misses are recorded in spirituality thinking and practice domains, which is more often than not, all kinds of implausible explanations and excuses will then be made and given. This is bad faith; faith abused and misunderstood.
Not far from religious spiritualism with God as the supreme deity representing perfection, and holding humanity’s fate in his/ her hands, is the philosophy of denial characteristic of African thinkers and intellectuals whose goal and mission is the praiseworthy pursuit of regaining, restoring, and preserving in a sustainable way lost African sense of identity and integrity in relation to the generations long White supremacist imperialistic domination and exploitation across the board. They lose it when they reason with strong emotions and sentiments based on non-scientifically verifiable and testable cultural and traditional oral traditions fairytales of our ancestors’ so-called glorious past before the arrival of the barbaric White man.
It is understandable that, in the absence of previous knowledge or precedence, an unexpected manifestation of a break from the norm, or norms of things, could and would lead to all kinds of speculations as to the causalities and implications when the tools of scientific research, analysis, and explanation are either non-available, or simply not known. Ignorance is the mother, reinforcer, and sustainer of paranoia, almost, if not totally incurable traumas, and taboos.
The power and value of language to and for humanity is in its ability to enable humanity to give sensible explanations and meanings to observable phenomena, even speculative ones for that matter. Language complexity and sophistication grow exponentially the more it dares to seek to find out ever more about both its immediate and distant environments. Ever observed how growing up children learn how to speak? This is how names, the order of things and events can be made. This is how knowledge can be preserved, passed on, and can be tested and refined on and on for generations upon generations as long as humanity walks this earth. This is how knowledge has been, and continues to improve the overall human condition on earth, making humanity the most powerful of creatures in the universe, until language, through scientific observations of phenomenon across the universe via the numerous outer space research and exploratory missions of all kinds and magnitudes, reveals something else.
Much as language can be expository and revelatory in enlightenment environments and epochs, it can also be secretive and denialistic, as well as conspiratory in environments and ages of darkness and ignorance, as well as fear of the unknown consequent upon the latter. So, in the darkest Africa of the past and the present, what is an exception rather than the rule is observed when men are seen not only showing amorous attraction towards one another, but actually having active sexual intercourse with one another. Not knowing how to relate to this unusual phenomenon, terrified ancient and contemporary Africans allow their minds to narrow up in perspective in fear and panic, inhibiting their normal and natural language development to seek to look deeper into this happening between natural people expressing and living one of the most fundamental aspects of being human, love and its making among people who are romantically fond of one another.
When language habitually shies away from, or denies the existence of a phenomenon, it is natural that in time the phenomenon’s description will not be part of the language vocabulary, or if it once were before, it will wear off and be discarded, that as an escapist, self-preservation, or self-annihilation measure. In contemporary Africa, by denying the right to exist for homosexuals, Africans are well in the process of self-annihilation because among these persecuted and murdered same-sex people in love are some of the most gifted, most intelligent, most able, most creative, most dependable, most compassionate, most productive people perpetually developmentally backwards Africa needs. Very angry African homosexuality denialist, ‘Now you have just shown your true colours as an Uncle Tom, Mr Chilembo. You have played right into the hands of Whiteman’s clutches on the minds of African people. These people have introduced homosexuality and gays in our glorious African societies and cultures as part of their concerted effort to eradicate us from the face of the earth. They even deliberately and systematically created HIV/ AIDS via gays and planted it in Africa, don’t you know? There is no way homosexuality can be African when in my language, for example, we do not have a word for it. Chances are that the first gay man you heard about, or came across was White, not so?’
Mr Chilembo, ‘The first gay man I ever saw was an African, actually. I was not more than ten years old. Everybody knew, but nobody spoke about him because there apparently were no words to describe and relate to him. He led a very miserable and tragic life much to the detriment of the community’s own sense of safety and well-being. Assigning no names to known phenomena and occurrences in nature and reality will never make them disappear. Homosexuality is as human as skin pigmentation defining human diversity, it’ll never go away in Africa, or anywhere else in the world. Deal with it, and have a good life!’
Scientifically speaking, all things remaining equal, when male and female human reproductive cells merge, commencing the complex and sophisticated process of conception, the final outcome will be a child of either the male or female sex. The new born babies will have, just like their perfect parents, perfectly-formed heads, five fingers on each hand, five toes on each foot, relevant sexual organs; beautiful babies. And they will shriek tempestuously upon being clapped on the butt. Normal, healthy babies. When they grow up, they shall repeat the same cycle with their own sexual reproduction partners. And such rolls perfect life cycles in a perfect world. Scientifically verifiable and repeatable with the same precisely predicted outcomes over and over again.
In science, things are true and remain so to the extent that certain pre-defined conditions are fulfilled, and remain constant. Therefore the conditional statement: All things remaining equal. All who have gone to school, can at least read and write their own names, and have read a book or two, have a very comfortable and reassuring relationship with that statement, all things remaining equal to the extent that their intellects and reasoning capacities are not polluted by bad faith and parochial superstition holding their minds in the dark ages of utter ignorance and stupidity. The conditional statement is of utmost importance for the scientific mind of reason, logic, structure, and philosophy because science does acknowledge imperfections and unpredictabilities in, and of nature. That’s just how the world and life are.
So, from the example of two bodies on a collision course above, in the event that a third previously unknown force appears so as to distort the previously known velocity of the one body or the other, the eventual outcome will definitely not be the same as the originally anticipated. It will follow, therefore, that in an ever changing, or ever vulnerable to change nature with its attendant uncertainties, there are ever no guarantees that at conception, the child to develop and grow will be born perfect and whole, both from the point of view of physical attributes and subjective personal qualities unfolding with age and time. Some children may be born with all forms of physical deformities, mental and intellectual deficiencies of varying degrees, hormonal imbalances, twins may be born adjoined, and many other complications and abnormalities when things go wrong for a myriad of reasons. These are normal biological outcomes when biological processes and systems fail to hold true to normal expected outcomes because for one reason or another, all things pertaining to normal foetal development and growth to a child being born did not, or could not remain equal. Ask post-Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bomb explosion children. It goes without saying, therefore, that, to the extent that they are an inherent feature of non-emotional human anatomy and physiological organization and functioning, sexual capacities and preferences later on in life will be normal or abnormal BUT NOT UNNATURAL in so far as all things remain (-ed) equal or not, even long before the merging of the future parents’ reproductive cells. And this is a common human development phenomenon cutting across race, tribe, creed, status, and world continental origin. Simple, straight forward scientific logic making perfect sense to any enlightened minds of the world.
As highly subjective and emotive the concept of human love may be, it is possible to scientifically demonstrate that:
- Love is a natural and basic human needs attribute.
- Love is, and/ or can be specific and selective.
- Love is felt and experienced differentially according to the object it is given to, or directed towards.
- Love is felt and experienced differentially according to its source and origin.
- Romantic love in practice is indiscriminate, regardless of whether it works or not. People will love who they love:
– People will love short/ tall people
– People will love fat/ thin people
– People will love stupid/ clever people
– People will love poor/ wealthy people
– People will love all kinds of people and things: Men, Women, Green, Yellow,
Black, White, Coconut, Purple, Magenta, African, Asian, European, Apes,
Dogs, Cats, Bicycles, Porno, Watches, Cars, you name it
- Romantic love is, all things remaining equal, celebrated, uplifted, and sustained with, through, and by sexual intercourse.
- People will therefore want to have sexual intercourse with whoever they love and/ find sexually attractive.
- If men people love women people, they will want to have sexual intercourse with women people, and the other way round.
- If men people love men people, they will also want to have sexual intercourse with men people.
- If women people want to have sexual intercourse with other women people because they are in love with them as a natural process among humans, no one, nothing can stop them.
- People of all races and colours in the world will have sexual intercourse with one another when they are in love and find one another sexually attractive.
- No laws in the world, no condemnations, no prejudices, no insults, no violence, no ignorance and stupidity, no primitiveness, no imprisonments, no death sentences, no executions, no culture, no traditions, no religion, and not even the king’s horses can stop people who are in love with one another from wanting to have sexual intercourse together, regardless of whether they are of the same sex or not.
Purely from a scientific thought stand point, I hereby crush with the contempt they deserve the myths that homosexuality is non-African and unnatural. As human beings sharing a common genome with other human beings across the globe, what would make Africans biologically sexually different from every one else? And, logically, it cannot hold that the God of non-scientific minds can be the God of love on the one hand, and condemns same-sex people in love on the other. Love is love. Love is the power. Sex is nothing but love’s cherry topping.
‘No, no, no, you got it all wrong, Mr Chilembo! Sex is for making children in the image of God. People of the same sex cannot reproduce, you see. That’s what makes the whole thing wrong and immoral, don’t you understand? What kind of an African man are you? You must be ashamed of yourself!’
Mr Chilembo, ‘As an intrinsic part of insuring the animal kingdom’s continued existence and survival on earth, children will always be born, anyway. No big deal. Children are not essentially a guaranteed natural outcome of the coming together of two or several people in love. People primarily fall in love with one another only. Children, if ever they come at some later point in time, are nothing but a bonus for the love. With or without children, love will always thrive. Who’s better or worse: War soldiers and rebels raping and impregnating women in the jungles of the Congo, the deserts of Syria, as well as other mad war zones in the world today, or two same-sex people in love? On whose side is your God, then?’
As a scientifically thinking African man, I know that Africans are sexual beings with all of human sexuality’s various attributes and manifestations, good and/ or bad, whatever good and/ or bad is in any given context of societal engineering and management, as well as mind control anywhere on planet earth. Moreover, if Africans are indeed the first human beings on earth, it follows, therefore, that Africans are in fact the original homosexuals. And, by extension, Africans and other Black people who hate gays hate their own and themselves in practice. It’s simple, straight forward logic. And I thought family is everything in Africa. Africans unite in love. Jeeezuss, how difficult can that be?
Prove to me that President Barack Obama and Salif Keita chose to be left-handed and albino as their respective life-style choices, and I’ll rest my case. Stephen Hawking is White; he could have turned out Black or Martian, though. Did he also wake up one morning and decide to choose to be multi-handicapped as a life-style choice? Actually, I’m very pleased he chose to be White if that indeed was the case. I shudder to think of what would have happened to him had he chosen to be born in an African equatorial, or some down-beat South African township jungle somewhere; would have been a terrible loss to science and scientific thought development, if you ask me.
Tel.: +27 717 454 115
March 03, 2015
CANNOT BE RIGHT
At this very moment
In Aleppo City of Syria
Have just rained down
In claimed pursuit of Daesh
Little Sarah’s body
Is shred to pieces
Little Abdullah’s body
Is by waves of fire
Charred to ashes
And goes up
With smoke and bloody dusts of war
It’s all hallucinations
If this is his willing
He’s not so great anymore
May the next bomb
Land on us
Please, please, please
They with soundless voices
Wail in agonized helplessness
With tearless ducts like Madiba’s
Wishing there were
Wi-Fi broadband to Allah
At this very moment
In parents’ arms
For Western freedom and peace
At the bed
Of the Mediterranean Sea
The bombs had missed them
Overloaded their escape boat
To breathe under water
More horrified by
The sound of
Tonnes of sea water
Pressing densely into their ears
Than any bombing’s
It’s just as well
Wi-Fi broadband to God
Ever cried under water
At this very moment
I cry with grief
‘Cause I’m broke
As in Bankrupt
Valentine’s Day tomorrow
I’ll lose yet another woman I love
‘Cause I don’t have any money
To call her on the phone
Buy her a romantic present
I don’t have money
To call my mother
To say, ‘I love you!’
For like to Allah
Wi-Fi broadband into my father’s grave
If I had money
I’d call my younger father
To also say, ‘I love you, Dad!’
Old, faded, tattered clothes
On my body
‘Cause I haven’t had any money
To buy new clothes
The start of
The Syrian war
At that time
Somebody said to me
Tsk, tsk, tsk, ignorant you
Conflict is healthy
Conflict is the essence of human progress
And I said to him
Does Assad really think
He’ll ever crush the opposition
The ill-informed wise man
I’m a fool
So, it’s okay
I can stay broke
Till there are
No more people
Till there’s nothing left
To genocide for
For human progress
At this very moment
I cry Europe
Have defied the bombs
Have defied the seas
Have arrived alive
At your shores
Show them what humanity is all about
Independent of what Allah wills
It can’t be right
To deny them
The sweet taste of
Liberty and peace
It can’t be right
That I stand here
And cry for money
For telephones and new clothes
In parents’ arms
Cry for life
At the bottom
Of the sea
At this very moment
I cry for hope
Fuck the money
Fuck the war
©Simon Chilembo, 13/ 02- 2016
Tel.: +27 717 454 115
February 13, 2015
Black Cat rising as Penny Sparrow‘s black monkey. South African racists, you were warned. Time has come …
The humane and spiritual magnanimity of South African people regarding what they have had to give in order to facilitate the creation and sustenance of the relatively peaceful, and prosperous post-1994 democratic South Africa can only be fully understood by those who have felt the venomous bite of the fangs of apartheid in their bodies, minds, and souls. It’s not a thing just read about in books and research reports to comprehend thoroughly.
I guess the apartheid venom was so effective it made us, Black people, into huge, docile sponges you can pee and shit upon ceaselessly, and we’ll keep smiling, ever extending our hands out to evil-minded White supremacists people, begging for love, and peaceful co-existence. But then again, I fear there is a Black Cat in the hearts and souls of many a, if not all, apartheid survivors and their descendents. The Black Cat is on the run…
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HOME AT LAST! Part 32
BETRAYAL IN THE DIASPORA
I do not know José Mourinho. I would be very surprised if he would ever be interested in knowing whether I exist or not. We live in such divergent worlds, miles upon miles apart. I refer to him here only for the one reason that his recent fall from glory and grace finally brought it on home to me that, as leaders, makers, as well as movers of men and women, when the mighty fall, there is one common thread connecting them all, regardless of the relative/ comparative magnitudes and extends of their domains of power and influence anywhere in the world. That common thread is betrayal. Jesus was betrayed to the cross by one of his disciples, Judas. His Chief Disciple, Peter, would disown him three times at the very last minute. But I won’t go there. I want to dwell here on the betrayal of trust and confidence, that from a personal relations perspective.
Betrayal of trust and confidence, both or not as an intended, conscious act or a series of acts works both ways. That is to say, it will lead to the fall of the mighty and special ones as they lose grip of things, lose it, and consequently fail to inspire, motivate, excite, fire up, guide, coach, teach, and mentor those they work with in any relationship, at any level. If and when they do rise again, the formerly mighty and special ones will do so often after a certain spell of time, which could have been lengthy or of relatively short duration, depending on the many variables of given situations and personal circumstances. Whatever the case, in their rise again come-back trails, they will have become new persons or personalities from the point of view of their re-entry strategies, and, not in the least, the personal growth and changes they will have undergone during the lull period in the valley of fallen and broken once upon a time mighty heroes. At the same time, the other relations, hostile or otherwise, left in the world of glory and grace will also have had their own growths and changes taking place. People change all the time. Failure by the rising again fallen mighty to be attuned to, as well as to be sensitive to the latter often has a high potential and risk for betrayal, often unintended, of trust and confidence towards, especially, those left in the world of glory and grace who remained loyal and supportive during the dark days of seeming personal and professional insignificance in the valley of the fallen and broken formerly mighty heroes and special ones. This happens when due regard is not paid to the changed terms of references, as well ways of effectively communicating them both linguistically and functionally, if not behaviourally. Thus arise many mistakes and misunderstandings around, among other things, issues of trust and confidence when previously unknown or disregarded aspects of people’s realities emerge, revealing unexpected and shocking patterns of behaviour and/ or expectations in (certain) interpersonal relations spaces.
The series of long-term personal challenges and crises in my life peaked in 2015, completing a full ten year cycle. During the year, I was let down by a few when I acutely needed them most. But many more continued to reach out with unprecedented generous and much kind material and non-material support to help me make it through this most vulnerable period in my adult years. For that I shall remain eternally humble and grateful. My renewed sense of strength and will to rise again I owe to these most wonderful people in my life. These people have been close family, friends, colleagues, teachers, students, and in one or two cases, total strangers.
I still make my many mistakes, as well as my equally numerous errors of judgement about things, people, and personal relations. I am the first to recognize and acknowledge that I am not perfect, and I am no angel. That said, I am also the first to declare that I will never ever with deliberate intent work at betraying the confidence and trust bestowed upon me by people whose lives I touch by virtue of our mutual interaction at various levels of socialization endeavours and domains. I shall never ever with conscious malicious intent betray the confidence and trust of, and/ or cause harm to the people I adore, love, admire, and respect. I simply do not have the heart for it. In my new rise again strategic mind games, I play on a different turf with different rules, applying different sets of means and resources. In the process I might step on some toes, ruffle many a feather, and make new enemies. If my new enemies will include people I know I will always adore, love, admire, and respect, it will be most tragic and regrettable; all because if I have hurt and upset them by what will be/ has been wrongly misinterpreted as my betraying their confidence and trust in me, violating their sacred human integrity, it has been unintentional on my part. I offer my sincere most apologies for my apparent lack of awareness, ignorance, and insensitivity.
With this I close the 38 YEARS AN EXILE series in this my blog. Could I see into the future, when in 1996 my father asked me when my own exile would end given that South Africa was already a two year old free and democratic state then, I would simply have said, ‘On December 31, 2015, Pappa!’
I have bounced back. I have landed again. On solid ground. All the inevitable mighty battles yet ahead I’ll fight with all the dignity and honour they deserve. Fair play is the name of my game. If ever I fall again, it won’t be tomorrow soon.
Here is to wishing everyone a happy and prosperous New Year 2016. May we all rise again, us the fallen-once-upon-a-time mighty heroes and special ones! Those who have been in good non-stop rising spaces for many a year, keep aiming for the sky, where there really is no limit as to being the best we can be as achieving, successful, as well as serving men and women in our own lifetimes. Do, please, remember to get your safety nets and parachutes in place for the day your own mighty fall comes thumping at your door. There is hell below, we all gonna go someday. On any one day, temptations, trials and tribulations abound for the high and mighty of the world.
Tel.: +27 717 454 115
December 29, 2015
HOME AT LAST! Part 31
FRIENDS IN THE DIASPORA
I have on many different platforms said it without fear or favour many times before: Some of my best friends are Muslims. Much like, within the confines of the laws of my free and democratic lands, and in adherence to the United Nations Human Rights Charter, I’ll do for the unjustly and unfairly discriminated against and marginalised in society, such as homosexuals, I’ll fight for the right of Muslims to exist and practise their religion in peace in my lands. Although I have yet to read the holy Koran, I have from these Muslim people of mine gathered enough knowledge and understanding of, and about what Islam promulgates, and how Muslims think about their religion, Islam, its tenets, goals, and mission. I also do have a well informed, as well as experiential personal idea as to what Muslims, speaking in general terms, think of other people who are not of their religion and faith. The latter is what I will dwell upon is this my brief thought exposition of what I see as a most critical human relations, or Public Relations (PR) crisis for Islam as lived, and ever one track-mindedly continually steadfastly, determined, and most loyally propagated by Muslims in the 21st Century. This with particular reference to conditions in the Western world and its satellite ally states across the globe, as influenced and inspired by ancient, as well as contemporary Western philosophical thought around concepts of religion, belief, faith, God, and principles of Democracy, if not, indeed, basic questions about human existence and implications thereof in the wider universe’s context. My thoughts in this regard are not only sentimental to the extent of my stated close relationship with my Muslim friends; they are also based on critical thinking capacity and ability facilitated and ever inspired by solid academic and intellectual education and training at university level.
Were I to read the holy Koran, it would have to be in classic Arabic as spoken and written in the Saudi Arabian ruling and elite classes circles throughout the generations. I know from my Muslim people that the real and pure message of the holy Koran can only be grasped and thoroughly understood when the scriptures are read in the original classic Arabic literary tradition. According to my Muslim people, some of them highly learned and educated in classic Arabic scholarship from old, respectable institutions of higher learning such as the Alexandria University in Egypt, much of the incongruence contra the proclaimed religion of peace, Islam, as manifest through acts of terrorism the world over by various so-called jihadist groups, are due to the original message of the Holy Koran having been lost in translation, both by accident and deliberate intention. And, besides, given the historical high illiteracy levels among the majority poor and disenfranchised in the Islamic world, millions of Muslims across the world are supposedly ignorant of the intrinsic meanings of the quotes and citations they daily routinely make from the holy Koran. Neither do they have the intellectual/ academic training capacity nor motivation to want to reflect critically on the sayings and the teachings of the holy book on earthly human terms. Classic Arabic is a highly complicated and complex language anchored in mathematical formulation principles and logic, making for expansive rooms for rhetoric intricacies in use and application, including rhetorical training and teaching. Such that for a sophisticated Muslim cleric to have ordinary people dance around his little finger is a piece of cake. Combining that with the stipulated Sharia Law jihadist application of force, violence if need be, to ensure conscription and/ or conversion, as well as non-flinching adherence for life, more or less permanent Islamic domination is guaranteed.
When currently Muslims all over the world are on the defensive, struggling to explain what is and/ or what is not Islam; who is and/ or who is not a real or good Muslim, that which I call Public Relations (PR) crisis for Islam in the 21st Century has its core, in my opinion and direct personal experience as a Black African man, in the extreme levels of ill-conceived arrogance of religious power chauvinism, it being rooted in as irrelevant, archaic racial superiority complex beliefs and manifestations. Muslims, spearheaded by the Arabs, have this generations long belief that they are the first and best children of God; everyone else with their infidel religions, faiths, and beliefs are pieces of shit to be trampled upon at will and with total impunity, without any regard and respect, even in the least, the essence of their humanity and their right to exist as free and right-to-choose-driven individuals in a free world. Muslims see and define it as their own God God-given right, privilege, and power to impose their religion and ways wherever in the world they will find themselves, regardless of the circumstances.
It seems the concept of humility towards non-Islamic people is non-existent to Muslims. Muslims will with impunity demand to have it their way or nothing wherever they are, showing little, if any, willingness for compromise and show respect and recognition for the ways and laws of the non-Islamic lands they will find themselves in as long term residents. This is what I see as the crux of the Public Relations (PR) crisis for Islam in the 21st Century, seen from my joint Western and non-Islamic African society’s perspective. In the 21st Century, and moving forwards with history, Muslims have to tone down their hard line belief that they can change the world to suit themselves at the expense of the freedoms and rights of others who practice different religions and faiths, as well as life-styles considered to be non-conventional according to Islam. The time for successful application of wars and violence to acquire and sustain religious and political domination over others is over. Time of the Islamic Jihad perpetuation is long gone.
We live in an age where everyone can wage and sustain a war for a long time, both conventional and otherwise, as the growth of global terrorism in recent years clearly demonstrates; not to mention big wars in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Burundi, The DRC, and others across the world. This last point does not make Western religious fanatics and right wing populists, as well as war mongers any better. My contention being that non-compromisingly arrogant, rude, chauvinistic, and racist Muslims feed the growth of the likes of Donald Trump on the one hand, while on the other hand, the latter fuels further the hate and determination to destroy anything western by the ever growing radicalised movement of angry western-born Muslim youth driven by the long established negative and destructive attitudes of their forefathers. Muslim fundamentalists and Western right wing war mongers, creating and fronting also each their own kinds of terrorists, will bomb one another to mankind’s extinction on planet earth.
Those Muslims running away from the extreme brutalities of the morally and, indeed, religiously degenerated wars the resolutions of which are nowhere in sight in their lands, such as Syria, seeking and hoping for safety, new good lives of health and prosperity, as well as longevity in the real and perceived relative peace of Western Europe, must honestly revise their Religious PR strategies relative to the Western way of life, while it lasts. There is supposed to be a red button somewhere in Teheran, Moscow, Pyongyang, and Washington somebody can in a spur of anger management crisis moment press by accident, and then we shall all get fried up by a nuclear war fall out catastrophe. If and when that happens, we shall all be charred down to black ash regardless of skin pigmentation in the living; all our religions, faiths, beliefs, politics, philosophies, and Gods will have gone with each one of us. Nullifying, therefore, all the irrationality, madness, and stupidity of religious power arrogance and chauvinism, as well as perceived racial superiority complexes by those who think they are the special chosen children of God. Ultimately, from a purely scientific point of view, religion and God cease to matter from the moment we die medically, and the decomposition process begins. It actually makes sense in this regard that Muslims will bury their dead as quickly after death pronouncement as possible, in accordance with their specified, strictly adhered to religious rites. Therefore, we might as well make, and live in peace and harmony in the world while alive, with each one of us allowed to seek and find the answers to pressing issues of life and existence in accordance with their own preferred ways, methodologies, and systems of beliefs forming the bases of religions and religious thought, as encapsulated in the concept of almighty and divine Gods supreme above anything and everybody else.
In this our time and age of information in knowledge-based societies, as exemplified in the West and other western-oriented parts of the world, people will make informed decisions and choices as to whether they want to follow a certain religion, a certain political doctrine or not. The concept and practice of the Islamic Jihad must for all intents and purposes be declared null and void in our times, therefore. Were that to happen, it could be a major PR boost for Muslims in the Western world and its non-Islamic allies.
Many years ago, a once upon a time Muslim friend from a North African country asks me to prepare and cook a typical South African big boys’ power dinner for the two of us. We together went to the market to buy all the necessary ingredients. Back home, he with a keen eye followed everything I did in my cooking, asking questions and making comments plus suggestions here and there. With the food ready to be served after a while, my friend declined to eat, encouraging me to eat and drink to my fill; he would gladly sit by and keep me company through the meal. Why? Wasn’t the food and everything in this town halal, then?
‘Well, your hands are dirty, my brother. If you are not a believer, if you are not a Muslim, you are no person to me; I can never eat food prepared by your dirty hands. Enjoy the food, it’s all yours. We shall afterwards go out for me to eat at a good Muslim restaurant nearby,’ my ex-friend explained.
With the food tasting like paper, and the wine like dirty water, that remains the most unpleasant dinner I have ever had anywhere.
A few years later, on one of many nights out on the town with another once upon a time Muslim friend and business associate from a Middle Eastern country, we are both drunk and happy, pleased with ourselves after a groovy dance session and things with the most beautiful girls in Oslo, Norway.
Ex-friend-2, ‘You know, my good friend, I have been wanting to tell you something important for a while now. You see, you and I work very well together, as the numbers in our business show. We have a good time with the girls, and that’s very nice. But one thing you have to know is, we can talk about anything, and do anything together as friends and business partners, but you must never touch religion and God, whatever you do. You see, when I look at you through my Muslim eyes, I see not only a lowly Black person who in reality is supposed to be my slave, I also see you as filthy because you are not a Muslim. Looking at you that way, you are as filthy as a pig, not different from these Norwegian whores we fuck everyday. That’s just the way it is, man!’
Shocked, and almost dumbfounded, I respond, ‘Okay, never mind me. But if these Norwegian whores, as you call them, are indeed filthy as pigs, why do you go on fucking them, then?’
Ex-friend-2, ‘Black people and all women are our slaves. As Muslim men, we use and abuse them as we like. By the way, if I catch you fucking a Muslim chick, I’ll kill you. I swear. So, please, don’t even look at Muslim girls when you are with me. Muslim girls also know that we kill them if ever they sleep with filthy, Black non-believers.’
I then hurriedly got into the next taxi to take me home, my good spirits devastated for the night, and for a very long time thereafter.
It goes without saying that my two friendships above wouldn’t last. In both these incidents, there wasn’t any manifestation of sensitivity to my feelings. There aren’t many more incidents I can count where I have ever been exposed to such extremely arrogant personal disrespect with such callous impunity. Whenever a Muslim woman declines to take my hand in polite, social convention hand-shake greeting gesture, I am rudely reminded of how filthy like a pig I am in arrogant, patronising, and pretentious Muslim eyes. However, in my new debut novel, a Muslim woman gets to bang it together with a Black man. A pivotal female character in the novel argues, ‘If God is indeed a God of love, the love has to begin and end with the woman. Any religion that denies a woman the rights and privileges of experiencing, and enjoying love in freedom, dignity, and honour is anti-God.’
Read how the story unfolds by purchasing the novel via Amazon here: WHEN THE MIGHTY FALL.
Tel.: +27 717 454 115
December 11, 2015
HOME AT LAST! Part 30
OWN TURF IN THE DIASPORA
Because I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth, the notion that I must be happy with what I have here and now, no matter how little, was ingrained in my head from a very early age. If I could get more by doing what is acknowledged and recognized as good and acceptable practices, well and good. However, if it doesn’t work, too bad; try something, or go for something else, and/ or simply wait. Waiting never meant for me to just rest on my laurels, hoping for some miracle to happen for the more of that which I want to materialize somehow, without any effort from me, though. If I have to pray, it will be more to introspect and find peace of mind so I can think more clearly, but not for God to deliver it all for free just because I believe in her. It means that I have to, in the meantime, divert my attention to other things that work, even if they are not in any way related to that the more of I want in the first place. The point being that I have to keep myself moving in constant mental, physical, and spiritual shape, such that whenever the opportunity arises that I can now get more of the little I already have, I am ready, alert, and sharp. It may also be that by the time the opportunity for more presents itself, I may have lost the interest and desire. In that case, then, because of my ever alert and ready mental, physical, and spiritual state, making a transition to other areas of more gain and satisfaction potential should come as second nature.
Growing up with time, I also have come to learn and understand that I can only be what I can be, at any one time, wherever I am. That which I want to be, that which I aspire for I may or I may not achieve. But that’s not as important as the help I get to focus my energies and resources in positive, productive, and inspirational activities and ventures, by way of maintaining and sustaining healthy levels of mental, physical, and spiritual sharpness and alertness. To the extent that, although I will or may be terribly disappointed in the face of apparent failure in one area, I am never totally shattered because there is always an almost immediate alternative to channel out my frustrations in the creation of something new and different. There are many great things I have purposely and actively aspired to do and achieve in my life, but all to no avail. Nevertheless, the unexpected alternative opportunities for personal growth and development which have over the years presented themselves from even the most unlikely of sources have given me unimaginable levels of joy and fulfilment. And, that’s all that matters to me; not the could have, might have, or should have been. I am that I am, I have that I have here and now. That’s just the way it is.
Beaten and tired, coming back home from the Diaspora to the motherland in July 2013, it in no time emerged that I wouldn’t get, if at all, on the local professional and business success bandwagon as quickly and as trouble-free as I had earlier envisioned I would. Indeed, shattering reality when a prophet fails in his own land. So, I withdrew, allowed my depression to run its full course, did some special social responsibility/ community work volunteering, did lots of gardening, walked long distances for exercising, read a lot, thought about things a lot, fought a mean insolvency case in Norway, and wrote blog articles on the internet. The latter would build a loyal and critical following, which subsequently brought forth the desire and opportunity to expand my thoughts and creative energy to present them in a book form. A new me is born, tasting my own COOL Coaching’s sweet medicine of Self-Discovery, Self-Knowledge, Self-Renewal, and Self-Reinvention.
My maiden novel will be launched on the e-Books platform in a week’s time. Although the storyline decided to take its own form and direction when I finally got to get going with the writing process for exactly three weeks, starting last week of October to second week of November, 2015, the original idea actually crystallized itself in August, 2001. This was supposed to have been a story of and about the life of my late father, one of the truly most remarkable men who were forced by British colonialism induced poverty and misery to leave their countries in Central-East-Southern Africa to come and work as cheap labour in the then, and still, vibrant South African economy. Without exception, they all came with nothing but an awesome hunger, desire, and need for a better life. With minimal to zero level education, lack of any vocational skills, and not being accustomed to any form of heavy physically demanding work from before, many would sustain permanently debilitating injuries, if not die altogether, in the gold, diamond, coal, and platinum mines, as well as the large commercial farms across the country. Others, as became the case with my father, would end up in the service industry, especially restaurants and hotels, including domestic servant jobs.
It has always been a great source of curiosity and fascination for me as to how people like my father managed, against all the odds facing them, to finally settle down, curve their own spaces, get married to local girls and women, and establish own families in South Africa. If South African Black people were third class citizens during the Colonial to Apartheid eras, people like my father were treated with even lower levels and worse forms of indignities by all the White, Green, Purple, Yellow, and Pink South Africans. Their wives and off-spring were not spared either, especially among fellow Black people, with whom, of course, we had/ have the most immediate contact. Yet, despite all the hassles, many of these people like my father would keep it together, raising children many of whom would grow up to be very prominent in the various fields of human endeavour, contributing to the growth, progress, and development of the country, making South Africa ever so proud. While my father died at a relatively tender age of 65, his remaining friends and former colleagues continue to pass on, many between 80-100 years old, leaving behind as much as 9 generations since they first came to the country in the 1930s, if not earlier. Contrasting issues of violent xenophobia tendencies in post-1994 South Africa, absolutely without exception, the older generations of Black South Africans never cease to talk about how, despite everything else, people like my father were ever so humble, peaceful, tolerant, patient, kind, generous, and inclusive. I guess it may be because as a Diasporant in Europe myself, I see and feel much of my father and people like him in me. I see and identify many parallels with those of my father and people like him in my own life experiences abroad. After at least 20 years in the country, my father, and many other people like him did in the 1970s, at the height of Apartheid’s deadly venomous brutality, return to their countries of origin, Zambia, in my father’s case. Many, including my father, failed to reconnect with their own roots. Much had changed too much for them, they also had changed too much for their own lands of birth themselves. That’s how prophets fail in their own lands. Some came back to South Africa, their new old homeland. Story of my life. I am going back to Norway.
Watch this space for more information regarding the book launch. A recommended reading for those seeking to understand how the minds of immigrants work out in the Diaspora. I especially recommend the reading for those who sadly fail to make it in the Diaspora, thinking that the Diaspora is the place called hell itself. Indeed, hell is a place on earth. But so is heaven. We make what we make, and choose what we choose for ourselves.
Tel.: +27 717 454 115
November 23, 2015 (more…)