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WE ARE WHAT WE ARE
From the outset, our physical and physiological attributes as humans are coded in our DNA. Our unique individual manifestations of our conscious and unconscious socio-cultural traits are directly linked to the workings of our visceral systems as dictated by our respective genetic make ups. Personal genome sequencing can reveal actual or potential states of our physical and mental health.
Our overall health status has a bearing as to how we relate to nature; how we carry and present ourselves to society at any level, at any one time. The potential that we have to execute both physical and mental work necessary for our survival in any setting in nature and society is crucially dependent on our state of health.
We shall be robust and function well, living in peaceful co-existence with others to the extent that we are in good health. Though not absolutely defined, but for purposes of this presentation as a starting point, good health presupposes normal, balanced functioning of the visceral system. Meaning that, for example, the physical and chemical functioning of the digestive system from the intake of food to elimination of waste is normal: homeostasis. That supported by as normal and balanced central nervous system. The latter consists of the brain and the spinal column, through which the body’s necessary internal functional reflex signals are transmitted in response to stimulations from the hormonal system.
The brain’s work is manifest through outward expressions of motoric abilities, sense of orientation, feelings, thoughts, language, and recollection. That in the beginning we are what we are as social beings, and that we can only be what we are presently is a function of how the brain works given the nature of its wiring, or development.
All things remaining equal, the ever-complex interplay of human developmental processes from fertilization to birth to subsequent growth into adulthood, determines how the brain shall interpret for us what it makes of reality in our immediate and distant ecologies. In order that we shall instinctively or consciously respond accordingly in any given context, the brain shall respond and structure our behaviour according to messages conveyed through the central system. These messages are conditioned by specific hormonal responses. The hormonal responses are transported in the bloodstream.
In joyous moments, we shall express happiness through various ways – laughter, dance, storytelling, and much more – because the brain has come under the influence of happiness hormones: dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, endorphins. In moments of fear, the brain is powered by adrenaline. Closely related to the latter is cortisol, the stress hormone.
The brain constantly feeds and reinforces our behavioural attributes, as well as expressions thereof in given situations. It conditions our view of the world. As the brain works, qualitatively developing in sophistication or degenerating depending on circumstances, our world view may stay parochial or variable over time. This defines an individual’s mental disposition.
Things fall apart when, out of a myriad of potential causes, the brain is either not fully developed or it both cognitively and physiologically degenerates with time. Things don’t get any better when the brain serves, or is serviced by a body in obvious pathological disorder. Things get even more interesting when the brain is stimulated by visceral, central nervous, and hormonal systems chronically out of balance. Meaning that the systems either individually or collectively do not work optimally as a synergic functional order to ensure good health for the individual.
The visceral, central nervous, and hormonal systems may be out of balance as an inherent outcome. They may come out of balance as a result of external factors also: diseases, aging, intoxicating substances, electro-magnetic radiations, amongst others.
That we are as we are as individuals is not an accident, therefore. Through our constant or variable behavioural attributes, we are expressions of our mental dispositions as an outcome of, or in reaction to given existential circumstances. As human beings, our personal genomes are a subset of the grander human genome.
The human genome is the key determinant factor that ensures successful sexual reproduction amongst people of the world. That irrespective of race, colour, religion, or creed. This fact essentially crushes racism to pieces because the oneness of humanity is imprinted in the core of, if not in the fundamental building blocks of the human organism.
Humanity’s oneness is not visceral in a manner of speaking; it is visceral for real. It is in our blood. Differentiation in blood types is more an evolutionary response to the body’s ability to resist infectious diseases. It also enables adaptation to durable ecological transformations either in one location, or consequent upon relocations from space to space in search of better and more life-sustaining environments.
Response to hunger, sexual drive, variable climatic conditions, fear, affection, and numerous other survival imperatives sensations are a common factor across humans the world over. Humans are driven by the same needs and wants. Differences occur in the competition for the fulfilment of these needs and wants by way of ownership of resources or circumstances facilitating this. Ownership ensures lasting control of supply and distribution of resources and facilitative circumstances.
Ownership entails power. Power, actual deliberate exertion of effort energized by applicable material and conceptual resources, entails domination. Domination entails suppressive rule over weaker competing parties, unilaterally determining the latter’s often undesired, destructive destinies. Suppression ultimately gives rise to rebellions as the oppressed rise to claim their rights to access resources and circumstances imperative for survival: wealth, liberty.
It is in this competitive environment that external human characteristics and cultural practices are applied to justify domination, laying foundations for imperialism and establishments of colonies over generations all over the world. At the same time the human genome and its intrinsic attributes remain a constant.
In terms of human power relations contra survival imperatives fulfilment or lack of, people of identical mental dispositions attract one another. This attraction cuts across all unnatural power barriers instituted to justify domination and dehumanization of others. Political orientations arising in the organization of society are instituted upon people’s mental dispositions influencing and expressing their value judgements. As such, Conservatives don’t like change to the extent that they rule. Whereas Liberals seek to overturn the status quo inhibiting liberty, justice, and equality in society.
Level-headed people are of calm mental dispositions. They are inclined to reason and conventionally held testable truths in the pursuit of finding life-supporting solutions to the ever-present human life existential questions. These people appeal to the like-minded also. The mind being the encapsulation of our total individual view of life as manifest in how we think and act according to how we relate to our existence in the universe
Overt and private choices and activities we engage in by way of vocation, or simply in response to ever-changing realities of life reflect the workings of our minds. The nature, magnitude, qualitative, and intentional aspects of manifestations of the workings of our minds determine the degree to which we shall impact society, both locally and globally.
Great minds are those which inspire and support sustainable human progress in all life’s endeavours. That may be through political thought and philosophy, science and technology, arts and culture. Great minds are not only sensitive to the suffering of mankind; they strive to eliminate that suffering. Benevolence is a trait that knows no irrational, bigotry boundaries created amongst people of the world in their physical but superficial diversity from the point of view of the right to exist for all.
Small minds are destructive. They are prone to lack of capacity to, or interest in thinking about the big questions of life in a humanity unifying, uplifting manner. They are narrow-one-track-minded. Small minds are self-serving at the expense of others’ wellbeing and right to life worthy of dignity and honour. They ever conspire to create and sustain alternative universes of factually false truths contra mainstream paradigms in society, or against certain individuals, if not certain interest groups.
Small minds thrive on fear, uncertainty, lies, rumour-mongering, deception, manipulation, threats, cruelty, hate, chaos and violence, amongst others. Small minds derange. Small minds are delusional. This mental disposition has its kind of people across the board the world over. It explains how even one of the most blatant, most obnoxious of white supremacists and his white nationalist cohorts have black supporters and apologists. Also Latino supporters. And Asians too.
January 11, 2021
Order, read, and be inspired by my latest book, Covid-19 and I: Killing Conspiracy Theories.
JANUARY 21, 2021: NEWS – Responding to reports that African and Eastern European immigrants in Norway are sceptical to vaccines; and have the highest rates of Coronavirusdisease (Covid-19) infections in the country, particularly Oslo, the capital city. Video response introducing the book and my thinking behind it:
TO HAVE OR NOT TO HAVE A CHILD:
WOMAN’S RIGHT TO CHOOSE
I wouldn’t hesitate to have the pregnancy terminated were I a woman and I found that I was expecting a child that my being was not ready to have and subsequently raise. Reasons for my decision being mine, and mine alone; coming from the deepest recesses of my being, where no one but me alone will ever reach, feel and know.
It’s a natural eventuality that the human race, as with numerous other species, shall propagate itself. But it’s not a given that absolutely all women shall, or must fall pregnant and be perpetual baby-making machines. Furthermore, it’s not a given that all pregnancies shall complete the normal nine-month cycle of foetal development to birth of a wholesome child: stillbirths. Neither is it a given that all children shall be born with perfect physical symmetry and neurophysiological functionality. Pure science.
To begin with, it’s not a given that sexual encounters resulting in pregnancies would have all occurred under ideal conditions. The latter being, amongst others, mutual consent, healthy woman and man, as well as a myriad of other biological and sociological factors. It has to be a woman’s prerogative to choose whether or not she shall carry will-be children in her body. That regardless of her civil status as an adult. Morality.
Especially decisions around minors’ pregnancies need to be attended to with absolute care under the guidance of relevant professional personnel across the board. It goes without saying that the same shall be made available to adult women as a matter of course. It’s only that minors’ and adults’ realities are non-identical, non-comparable. Ethics.
Child bearing is not an obligation. Child rearing is. The latter is primarily an obligatory venture between the parents of the child. The parents’ micro and macro villages shall render their assistance according to their abilities and prevailing social norms and values. It’s worth noting that modern society’s parental constellations are more than just about female-male/ same-sex in all sorts of cohabitation arrangements as married, single-living-together-apart; female or male single parenting. Also, artificial insemination enables pregnancy without direct sexual intercourse. Surrogate parenting and surrogacy options add more complexities to the dynamics of modern society’s parental constellations. Changing times. Inevitable.
A woman’s choice to abort a pregnancy does not have to be independent of the existence of the child-to-be’s father. That assuming earlier or current relationship of one kind or another between the two. Rape and other forms of abuse upon the expectant mother ought to preclude the rapist’s right to claim or seek to influence the sexually abused pregnant victim’s decision to terminate the condition. It’s bad enough for a woman to have to endure the trauma of rape in the first place. Compassion.
I hold the view that, having weighed her options, when of own volition a pregnant woman of normal faculties settles for abortion, she needs all the support and love from the sperm donor above all other relations. That to the extent that there is some form of functional relationship between the two, of course. Rapists and abusers need not have any part in this. Empathy.
Normal birthing is an ever so excruciatingly painful and precarious exercise. In fact, the entire pregnancy-to-birth journey is a high potential death affair. In non-ideal conditions of inadequate or non-existent, if not deliberately instituted limited access to, public or private health services infrastructure, the rate of maternal mortality rises exponentially. As such, it’s one monumental deal for a woman to decide to make the drastic choice of abortion despite the risks and actual attendant physical and mental torment arising. This leaves me in even greater awe of women as bearers of untold physical, emotional, and mental suffering. In this together. Solidarity.
I maintain that for a child-bearing woman to lose a child under any circumstance has to be an all-round tortuous experience no man can ever come close to comprehending. Then, who is any man, or another woman for that matter, to want to get in the way of a woman’s right to choose to keep a pregnancy or not? Justice.
Life to the living first. It’s the living thriving in environments and times of abundant love, wellbeing, liberty, equality, and solidarity that will create conditions for higher standards of living for the yet to be born children when their time, place, and opportunity to be part of humanity present themselves. Realism.
November 17, 2020
Order, read, and be inspired by my latest book, Covid-19 and I: Killing Conspiracy Theories.
To Die or Not to Die For
When I’m dead
As I lived it
It gave me
The sweet life
Wines and roses
The trials and tribulations
It subjected me to
The sour life
Swords and sores
Don’t matter no more
Heaven and hell
The after life
In the living
But little about them
I shall die as I lived
Hooked on freedom
Freedom taught me that
It is like the air
It is love
Love is the
The earth rotates
I can’t breathe
I can’t breathe
Earth axis vanishes
All love lost
Earth rotation stops
All hell breaks loose
Constricts my lungs
Inflames my sinuses
I can’t breathe?
I don’t die?
I go berserk
I go berserk
I feel no pain
Fear evaporates from my body
I am mad
Médecin sans frontières
Line between life and death
Every which way
If I die
I do so
For the living
They’ll call my action
The ultimate sacrifice
If I live
I won’t celebrate
I can shout out
From the depth of my lungs
I’ll call that pure joy
©Simon Chilembo, 07/ 06-2020
NB: I do not trivialize the seriousness of Coronavirusdisease (COVID-19) with this piece. The pandemic deserves the highest respect: we must all follow expert advice from doctors, scientists, and relevant multilateral and state health authorities wherever we are in the world.
June 07, 2020
Not of atmospheric pressure variations
Rage of the people
Turbulences the world
From pole to pole
It is a ferocious storm
It’ll embroil your insides
Your comfort zones
You’ll run into your bunker
You’ll find it full of your shit
If you can breathe now
Were you ever to
Come out of your delirium
You’d find that
There is order
In the heart of
The storm outside
Rage of the people
Has a cause:
With the atmosphere
I can’t breathe
You kill me
I glide into
The valley of death
My body joins
My ancestral spirits
In the soil
In an instant
My soul trajects
Into outer space
There is no peace here
There is no rest here
All souls I find here
Are floating non-stop
Bouncing on to
Where is the love
They say that
We were coerced here
Far too early
When we arrive
The kingdom of God
We land into hell
This is zombie land
This place here
Has no room
For our pains
For our tears
We are far too many
Arriving one after the other
Some souls arrived
Spanning six hundred years
Across the universe
Hold center of
The earth together
Rage outside is
In the eye of the storm
The mother of all storms
If you thought
Was a tough one
Wettest ever seen
Yes, in your words
From the standpoint of water
If hurricane Dorian scared
The wits out of you
In yet another bizarre display
Of your delusional
State of being
You ain’t seen nothing yet
This time around
The storm is called
In this name
Of slain Black lives
In your vain pursuit
Dances with the devil
Over six centuries
George Floyd’s name
The people say
Time has arrived
Enough is enough
Aren’t empty words
When she sang
Daddy changed the world
Either you are with us
Or you perish
The eye of the storm
In there is simple
Valid for all times
We want equality
We want freedom
We want justice
We want peace
We want solidarity
Do you wan’ to pray
On our knees
On the ground
Ever danced in a storm
In the name of love
Hate is subdued
©Simon Chilembo, 05/ 06-2020
In memory of George Floyd, MHSRIP
June 05, 2020
THE UNTHINKABLE – 1
The unthinkable happens
When it happens
And we pay the price
One hundred thousand people
In a spring of
Like a ship
Sinking in icy waters
No, the ship won’t perish
Water shall freeze
It shall keep the vessel together
Iced machines don’t move, see
We’re doing great
We won’t drown
Maybe summer will come
Maybe it won’t
We’ll see what happens
You never know
Maybe ice shall turn into water again
Maybe it won’t
We see what happens
All we got to do is
Move on with our sailing
We were made to sail
The world over as we want
We are the greatest people ever
In the history of mankind
It’s our right
We deserve it
I won the election
It was perfect
The call to Ukraine
Perfect like never before
Don’t be sorry:
The unthinkable happens
The sea thaws in silence
Ferocious as a tornado
In a silent movie
It swallows down the ship
A hundred thousand people die
Right in front of your eyes
But this is fake reality to you
For each dead person
A hundred thousand pairs of eyes cry
They shed tears
Enough to raise the sea level by
A hundred thousand millimeters
A hundred thousand more
People are going to die
We are all going to perish
Your eyes are dry
You are so stupid
Your brains are so dry-iced
You don’t know
How to cry
Your brains cannot see
The solution is
The drawings are here
So are the engineers
There is a bit of time yet
Teach people how to swim
Your brains are so dry-iced
Your hearing capacity
You cannot listen to reason
When you speak
Your speech spews
Sounds of cracking
Dry-ice that forms your brain …
(Continued in the book Covid-19 and I: Killing Conspiracy Theories)
©Simon Chilembo, 01/ 05- 2020
NB: Deadliest day, USA – https://www.cnbc.com/2020/05/02/who-us-just-reported-deadliest-day-for-coronavirus.html (Total, 02/ 05- 2020: 65,173)
See also: “US coronavirus death toll surpasses 100,000,” https://youtu.be/CVLpAMlaoM8
Order, read, and be inspired by my latest book, Covid-19 and I: Killing Conspiracy Theories.
IT IS WHAT YOU SAY
More talk on how to cope with survivor issues around outcomes of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on a personal level. Talk structured around principles of my COOL Coaching (Chilembo Optimal Outcomes Life Coaching) method*.
Pivotal point in awareness of language usage: “Reality manifests itself with impressions that the mind creates as from the language it processes,” Simon Chilembo.
1. Ahmet Altan: “… like all writers, I have magic. I can pass through walls with ease.”
2. Mwamedi Semboja, Twitter account tagline: “You can travel anywhere, just by closing your eyes.”
1. SHOULD I DIE: COVID-19 Reflections
2. CORONA VIRUS DISEASE COVID-19 SHALL FALL: My Reason for Optimism
3. Ode to Manu Dibango: WALK SOUL MAKOSSA
4. SIMON’S KITCHEN IMPROMPTU COVID-19 QUARANTINE VEG STEW
*Subsequently edited and presented in the book Covid-19 and I: Killing Conspiracy Theories)
April 14, 2020
In 1998, my father died solitary in a bachelor quarters in Tshwane, South Africa. My mother followed twenty years later. Pneumonia related complications in both cases.
There were about eleven other fellow patients in my mother’s ward at the hospital in Thabong, Welkom. She had kept everyone awake all night with her moaning in pain, crying out an unknown name all along. Nevertheless, she managed to eat her 0700RS breakfast that fateful Sunday morning; much to everyone’s delight since she hadn’t had much appetite the two previous days. After eating she fell asleep.
When my nephew, Kgosi, and I went to check on her during the morning visit hour between 1000-1100HRS, we found her sleeping peacefully. Apparently. After hearing the report by fellow patients about my mother’s restless night, we thought it wise not to immediately awaken her. She could have her full sleep during the course of the morning, and we’d come back to see her again in the afternoon as per routine.
Fifteen minutes into our arrival in the ward, an impatient family friend found that my mother was cold and lifeless. A few minutes later, a doctor declared her officially dead. She had probably died two hours earlier. No one had taken notice. It was one of those cases of “She died peacefully in her sleep”, I guess. Perhaps the same may be said about my father. He had been dead for about two days by the time his corpse was found in his residence.
I opt to convince myself that, indeed, both my parents died peacefully in their sleep when their respective times to go arrived. Neither was surrounded by their loved ones upon breathing their respective lasts.
The thought of whether or not my own death will pounce on me in solitude has been on my mind since February, 1991. I had for the first time ever gotten ill with what I later understood to have been an acute attack of the flu. Bedridden with high fever and profuse sweating for three days in my single student room, I was so weak that I was unable to lift a telephone sitting beside me on my bed to call my school or doctor in Oslo.
One week later I had recovered without having had received any medical attention. An older, more knowledgeable friend told me that I had actually had a close brush with death. Perhaps I should consider getting myself a wife, he suggested. He argued that many people who live alone tend to die unnecessarily because there is often nobody there to render immediate assistance in times of emergencies.
In the northern hemisphere spring of 1995, I had a first-time mean attack of hay fever. I didn’t know what it was at first. For many days I kept sneezing like what I thought was like a mad man. Then I began to cough as inexplicably madly. What I thought sounded like a small cat soon started mewing in my chest. This made breathing painfully difficult even at the mildest physical exertion. Then I knew I was in trouble.
At great financial cost to me that I could afford regardless, a former lover at that time then finally hastily made it possible for me to acquire an emergency cocktail of various tablets, capsules, and an assortment of asthma medicines. Had I been alone at that critical time, I could have died from pneumonia, the former lover said later.
Today, the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, moving at a frighteningly fast pace is threatening human life across the globe. The United Nations and national governments are taking drastic and, in some cases, Human Rights defying draconian measures in individual and concerted efforts to isolate, treat, control, and eventually effectively manage the disease. The ideal situation would be to eliminate the disease, of course. But it’ll take time to develop necessary relevant curative and preventive medicine. Researchers the world over are currently working at break-neck speeds to achieve the latter.
Millions of people are under various levels of quarantine throughout the world, depending on suspected or actual infections and severity. Much of the industrialized world is under lockdowns. People whose immune systems are compromised from before are dying rapidly. Some people are quarantined in their private homes with their near family units. I am alone in my abode.
I am feeling well and strong. I can’t help, though, but think about my mortality in the event that my health should take a sudden, COVID-19 related downturn. Some other shit could happen too. One never knows when shit will hit the fan. I can’t help but think that were I to die now, I sure would do so peacefully. I’d die with no beloveds of mine surrounding me. If it happened to my parents it might as well be the same with me. Family solidarity. Family tradition. I’m their eldest child after all.
Like my parents, I leave no great fortunes behind. It’s just as well for me that, unlike my parents, I leave no children behind. As to whether or not it’s a good thing to die as my corpse shall be in a cremation oven, I shall find out upon arrival on the other side.
March 15-16, 2020
WHEN I’M HERE
NOTE: Contributing to discussion on UNSTUCK – The Refinition of Manhood
“I live with no doubts. If I have any doubts, I don’t do it. If I do it anyway and get burned as a result, too bad. What’s done is done. If I die, I die. Closed chapter. If I don’t die, no regrets. I pay the price I have to pay, and move on; assuming that I can still breathe, stand, walk, and think,” Simon Chilembo.
It was as a four-and-half-year-old on my first day at school in Lesotho that I first became aware of my hereness. That was as an immediate response to the awareness of my differentness. The latter arose from my consciousness awakening to find me surrounded by many people. I somehow just understood that all were school children of all ages. There were numerous of my age, and others older. My guide, Dineo, was an older girl from the estate where I was staying not so far away from the school.
I found Dineo alternately being aggressively protective of me, and talking proudly about how far smarter I was compared to local children: I was of course tinier and blacker than all the other children because I was not one of them; I was not of their blood since my father came from a land far, far away in the north. In this so distant land, no Lesotho person had ever been. Dineo emphasized.
She went on to remind everyone about how ruthless her father was. So, if anybody was unkind to me, her father would come and destroy their lives the whole lot of them! Also, my father could do terrible things to them using powerful wizardry from his lands. Otherwise I was a sweet and happy child easy to be with, Dineo concluded.
This was a strange and fascinating scenario I could only watch without uttering a word. I did not only not know what to say or do, the atmosphere was also overwhelming in its simultaneous bewilderment and euphoria. The following day my grandmother took me to another school. I recall hearing whispers that word had been going around in the village that it was not safe for me to be at the first school. The alternative Peka Catholic school would be a safer bet for me, therefore.
At Peka Catholic school I recall being initially received by a group of nuns and the parish priest, Father Hemmel. The next thing was that I found myself in a room with several other children. We were singing “I am a tea pot. This is handle. This is mouth. Pour me out! Pour me out!”
Tracking animal pictures pasted up and around the walls of the room, I recall us repeating after the teacher, Mme Blandina, “A baby cow is called a calf. A baby sheep is called a lamb …”
And then, “A cat mews. A bull bellows. A hen cackles …”
Such began my school career. I would be at Peka Catholic school for four years, 1965-69. These remain the happiest years of my school life. This is the time I understood that I somehow grasped lessons faster than the lot of my classmates. I further found out that the teachers were extra fond of me. All nuns. The warmth they afforded me is unforgettable.
My popularity extended to older pupils, especially girls, in higher grades. At the same time, though, there were older boys that were not fond of me at all. They used to engage me into fights almost every day after school. I got my beatings much as I gave my share of the same. It ever infuriated everyone so much because I was unusually strong and stubborn for my age and, especially, body size.
I never thought too much about limitations of my personal attributes. All I knew was that I could never allow anybody to beat me up and get away with it. This was particularly so from age six, after my mother had instilled in my head the warrior heart attitude of learning to fight my own battles and settle scores alone.
I was already a seasoned fighter by the time that in my older youth years, my Karate teacher, in response to a report about a legendary fight that I had put up against some of the most notorious and dreaded street-fighters of Lusaka, Zambia, said, “If you must fight, fight. But don’t lose!”
That ethos drives my survival instincts in all situations to this day.
In the commotion typical around street fighting scenes, I would pick out ludicrous utterances that I was the way that I was as a hard-fighting child because of the strange blood that I carried from my strange, alien father. I was a little wizard that had to be killed whilst I was still a child because I was going to kill everyone else if I was to be allowed to grow up into a man.
These were really not nice things to hear for a child not even eight years old then. Now I’m a grown-up man soon to be sixty-years-old. Not a single person has perished in my hands yet. On the contrary, I have in my work saved more than one lives.
I thus learned how to balance getting unwanted extreme attention very early in my life. That, together with receiving much love on the one hand and buttressing myself against prejudice and hatred on the other, inculcated in me a strong sense of awareness of where I am at any one time.
Therefore, when I’m here, I’m here. What has to be will be. I shall do what I have to do to sustain my hereness for as long as possible, or for as long as it is necessary. If I have to love, I shall love. If I have to fight, I shall fight. The assumption being that my presence is valued here and now, and that my being here is not detrimental to my continued real and conceptual existential imperatives.
It’s not uncommon for me to hear that I take too much space when I’m here. It’s of little interest for me to seek to impose my hereness to personal and conceptual spaces that cannot, or are not willing to accommodate my being here.
If I’m here for a specific reason, I’ll do what I have to do to the best of my ability according to expectations, if not instructions. If it is really fun, I tend to go beyond, though. I’ll perform and deliver to the extent that what has to be done is compatible with my values and defined obligations vis-à-vis the given situation.
If I succeed, I succeed. If I fail, I fail. If the latter is due to factors I can correct, I shall do so accordingly. If it’s beyond my powers to correct, or do anything else in order to attain the original desired outcome, then I let go and move on to next level challenges; paying the price I have to if need be. It is what it is.
I never carry on with regrets. I carry on with new learned experiences that often empower me to perform better in the next level, even if the next level may not be related to the previous fiasco in any way. What matters is the new mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical fortification I’ve attained for the new way forward.
Throughout my life I’ve lived with the consciousness that I’ll meet all kinds of resistance in my endeavours to live my life as I see it, and as I wish to live it within the parameters of established life-supportive societal norms. I learned very early how to exert my presence with all my outward expressive faculties. This was an important skill to develop given the fact that I, as earlier stated, was a tiny child in a partially but grossly cruel world. In my adult years I never grew up to be the physically biggest man around either.
My mind, my intellect is my weapon. I load my mind with knowledge acquisition pursuits. I fire with my words: I write, I speak. I can sing too. My body is my combat machine. In this state of being, self-doubt is a known but non-applicable phenomenon to me. That is how I’ll always rise above negative forces working against me. Indeed, I might fall and lose one thing or another.
Actually, I have lost a lot of tangible and intangible things during the last twelve-to-fifteen-years. If I don’t die, I’ll rise again. It doesn’t matter how long it takes, but I will rise again. I am on the rise again as it is. My death can wait. I ain’t got no time to die as yet.
It happens time and time again: for each knock and fall I get, for each loss, at least tenfold new options for the better present themselves upon my rising again. For that reason, I never cry over spilt milk. When it is clear that the milk loss is inevitable no matter what preventive measures I may apply, I let go without shedding a tear.
No resistance. When change is gonna come, it’s gonna come. If one of the new options emerging after the milk loss will be a dairy cow, I hardly ever get surprised. Nevertheless, I remain ever humble in the face of continuous favours bestowed upon me by nature, my ancestral spirits, and my God. The resilience I put forth in times of trouble, in my darkest hours, does wonders for my ego. But that resilience is of origins far beyond the realms of my ego’s mind games’ current manifest performance and ultimate potential.
Deep down inside of me I know that constant pursuance of being a decent human being is my inclination by default, much as are my human fallibilities. When I get a knock for my own failings, my inadequacies, I shall with dignity take the punishment I get. My sense of dignity gets even more profound in the face of injustice and malice directed upon my person. Always.
I am cognizant of my strengths and vulnerabilities. These two qualities annihilate any sense of self-doubt I might have in any given situation. Because I know, i.e. my personal cognitive and intuitive data bases are adequately supplied with relevant information and energy, I’ll always have options in both good and challenging times.
The phrase Machona Awakening came not only from that moment I finally understood for myself that a place called home can be more a function of thoughts and feelings, contra its being one’s place of birth only. Machona Awakening is also about that moment in time it dawned upon me that I, indeed, am that I am. I am that I am with all the beauty and the ugly that define me in the eye of the beholder. That with respect to the conscious and unconscious display of my deeds as I dance through the intricacies of my life for as long as I live.
Fear I might have. Insecurity I might have. These may arise in times and situations where I lack applicable functional and conceptual knowledge. When and where I don’t know, I’m likely to be invisible; silent. If I’m ignorant relative to a given reality, it may perhaps be because it’s neither interesting nor important for my existential needs here and now, or there and then. Knowledge is power over fear, insecurity, and self-doubt. It’s about knowing what branch of knowledge is relevant where, how, and when.
I’m not a thrill-seeker. As such I’m not given to blind pursuits of the unknown at any cost. So, let it pass. Ain’t no love lost. No regrets. Self-doubt possibilities eliminated. But does that not limit maximal growth potential? Well, all things considered, I can only grow to the level I reach today. The next levels of growth tomorrow and beyond are only dreams with today’s growth experiences as their launch pad; as certain as the sun shall rise tomorrow for all living creatures of the earth. No doubt from the self, neither from nature. Solid knowledge. Self-doubt expunged.
March 02, 2020
If some idiots start a nuclear war, then we are doomed. Good-bye planet earth. The same is bound to happen if climate change is not given the serious attention it calls for. That will be sad because I want to be here in the 23rd Century AD.
Beyond two hundred years from now monoracials, monoethnics will be relics of the past. The future belongs to a new composite race spearheaded by multiracials, multiculturals already treading the world today. In tracing their individual origins these people of the future will have their lineage points dotted all over the globe. These will be the true citizens of the world.
I want to be there then in order to see the true brotherhood, sisterhood of humanity living as one big pluricultural race. Perhaps I’ll have made a direct contribution, or my progeny will have done so. In this new pluricultural race, only the unlikely more intellectually retarded than today’s pure races ideologues, racists, white supremacists, regionalists, and tribalists will still be looking to define skin colours and other physical features to classify and to separate people. A futile exercise. As a collective, people of the future will be a complex set of an infinite extrapolation of possible cross generational genetic permutations. Whether or not they’ll be a coherent mass living harmoniously on the planet only time will tell. I want to be there in order to see this for myself.
The world had better start preparing for the future today. Writings of the future that I predict are already on the wall. The writings are filling up aeroplanes of the world, are on the highways of the world, are guiding footsteps across deserts of the world every day. They are traversing jungles of the world. Seas and oceans of the world are also witness to the pervasiveness of these writings on the wall about the inevitable pluricultural people of the future. No one can stop the tide.
The writings are in refugee camps; in detention centres and prison walls of the world. They are on apartheid walls that are erected on the face of mother earth. Treacherous barbed wire fences cannot dissuade enlivenment of the writings either: calligraphed in blood, torn-off clothing fabrics, pieces of human flesh, if not dead bodies hanging here and there.
Every act of tyranny committed today everywhere on the face of the earth emboldens every letter on the writings about the people of the future. Every international trade deal signed at any level simply shines more light on the writings. International trade in all its forms and components across the board grows exponentially every day. It constantly shrinks the globe, whilst signals of the potential and actual birth and growth of the people of the future are as clearly readable as the brightest night stars. The modern world calls this globalization, baby.
Globalization spreads goods and services across the globe. If globalization is about econo-political might, for good or bad regardless, it is because it is essentially about people with their needs and wants. Globalization draws people to domains of opulence attributable to gains from international trade and geo-political power.
As a tool for continued inequalities obtained from colonialism and earlier epochs, globalization facilitates exploitation of natural resources at the expense of economic development of poorer countries. This tendency continues to cause social unrests often culminating in protracted brutal civil wars. These wars can border on, if not actually lead to genocide of certain categories of people in the affected countries. The latter typically breed some of the worst despots in the world at any one time in human history.
The most resourceful of survivors in these troubled lands shall escape in search for safety havens and greener pastures across the globe. They shall follow routes leading to globalization powerhouses in the western world, or any other place on earth that has the promise of a better life. Any place that helps to keep hope aglow.
Whether in torment or existing on the bright side of life, people will always fall in love and procreate wherever they may find themselves in the world. Indeed, it is not always that procreation shall be an outcome of love. There sadly is a dark side to being human too. I intentionally choose to dwell on love here. Love is the power I aspire for in my looking into the future state and endeavours of humanity. May love forever reign supreme on planet earth.
As the world gets smaller and smaller, people of the world get to interact with one another ever more rapidly in all sorts of spaces and circumstances. All this creates fertile opportunities for cross-racial, cross-ethnic, cross-cultural love and reproduction to thrive over generations. This occurring as rapidly and as infinitely as humanity manifests its diversity as a species on planet earth. In our time, it can only get better and better. With or without globalization, no barriers of any kind can stop this trend.
Driven by magnetism of love and curiosity, and that of need for peace and abundance, human beings will achieve anything; they will go anywhere, including planets many light years away from home. The walls of Jericho fell, as did that of Berlin. The Great Wall of China is but what it is today: a fascinating feat of engineering. China wants to rule the world. Fools keep building walls and fences, they keep digging trenches and canals, they shoot people down, they keep coming up with all sorts of outlandish ideas to curtail people migration across the world. Outrageous. It’ll never work.
What a wonderful world the future has in store for humanity. White supremacists and other racial purists are fighting a losing battle. Wake up and smell the coffee, people!
Of course, where there is love there is the presence or absence of God. I am convinced that it’s God’s plan that monotheism shall allow love to disentangle it in parallel with the imminent major existential transformation and paradigm shift of the state of being human in the future. If religion chooses to remain static, then God is going to be even wearier than she is today. Which could just as well be as annihilatory as a nuclear war, or climate change let loose. Heaven forbid!
If we survive, I’m curious to see the face of God too in the year 2201. Amen.
Tel.: +47 925 25 032
November 14, 2019
REALITY IS I AM HERE, I LIVE, I LOVE, I DANCE.
I AIN’T GOING NOWHERE
“Winter is coming now, Simon. If you have any doubts about coming back to Norway you still have a chance of returning to South Africa, you know,” said Sofia.
“Are you sure you have no regrets about coming back to Norway, Simon? You still have a home in South Africa, not so?” several others remark this way many a time.
I live with no doubts. If I have any doubts, I don’t do it. If I do it anyway and get burned as a result, too bad. What’s done is done. If I die, I die. Closed chapter. If I don’t die, no regrets. I pay the price I have to pay, and move on; assuming that I can still breathe, stand, walk, and think.
If I can think, I can contextualize my feelings. If it feels right to do so because it’s turned out that I’ve really screwed up, I’ll beg for mercy if given a chance to do so. When I’ve been unfairly screwed and the perpetrator is cool about it, exercising their own capacity not to regret unjust screwing up of other souls, I leave them where they are. I never look back. I never go back. I’ll always find new playing spaces.
I’ll always find new playmates. We might play on until our dying days. We might wear each other out in the midst of the golden years of our lives when some shit suddenly happens: somebody gets screwed up somehow, another one bites the dust, whilst the other glosses in new-found glory at the expense of the screwed. It is what it is. That’s how we roll. Falling out of glory is like milk spilling out of a glass. I never cry over either.
Exactly one year ago today, I came back to Norway more shattered than I was when I left for South Africa six years ago. At that time, I watched with dismay as the success empire that I had built came crumbling down. Getting to South Africa soon felt like I had evacuated a sinking ship without any safety equipment to wear or hang on to. Because I’m not a good swimmer, I knew that the only thing I could do was to let go and allow the ocean to take me where it pleased.
If any creature of the oceans came to eat me, I prayed it would be a shark: agile, precise, in perpetual motion straight on ahead. In my naked least-to-no-resistance state of mind in the middle of the waters, I decided to play dead, though. I survived. I marvelled at watching the last vestiges of my extended empire go with the wind to places beyond my fantasy.
By the time my mother died I had been thoroughly humiliated for five years and three months in South Africa. She died a disillusioned mother of a once indomitable son that had come on the verge of falling into the dreaded pit of poverty that is the fate of the vast majority of Black South Africans. On my part, I had long read and understood her despair. I had already long made peace with the fact that her inability to help me to fix my world would slowly but surely kill her. It was not only about me, but my two siblings also. But I had previously been a pillar of strength for the family.
I know that in her old age, my mother’s fear of living in abject poverty ate her soul like cancer did body cells. So, I am convinced that her death released her spirit to a place of lasting peace and abundance. I know that that’s what she aspired to achieve during her life time, anyway. My fourth novel and sixth book, Machona Mother – Shebeen Queen, is inspired by my observation of hers and other mothers’ and wives’ lives in South Africa. Through this I reflect on the challenges of wifehood and parenthood in oppressive societies the world over.
On the eve of my mother’s burial, I was threatened with a bullet in the head. My torment in South Africa had come to a head. I had to leave. Three months earlier, she had in fact finally acknowledged that my future in South Africa was bleak. The only thing she could do was to give me her blessings, and I’d have to find my way back. I should leave whenever I could. She was laid to rest on October 13, 2018.
Eleven days later I landed in Oslo. In grief. Tired. Bankrupt. Homeless. Businessless. Jobless. At total mercy of other people and the state for the first time in my adult life. I received unprecedented overwhelming support and love. This gave me a refreshing new taste of humility in my heart.
Alas, I’m still shocked by the discovery that love has inexplicably diminished, if not vanished altogether in certain quarters. But then again, love is like milk: when it’s spilt it’s gone. No salvage. No cry. Like milk, fresh love abounds. Always. Spilt milk tends to be messy. Post-spillage clean-up is ever so necessary, therefore.
Left unattended to, spilt milk can go stale and stink. Poison. There is a poisonous dark cloud of love lost hanging over my head. Apparently, this cloud is at alarming speed spreading itself throughout the extent of domains that are crucial for my continued existence as a free and happy man of the world.
I now feel that the time has come for me to dissipate the treacherous cloud. Had I lived a hermitic life somewhere oblivious to the real world of real people, I really wouldn’t bother. My imperfections notwithstanding, as an ethically conscious man living in a morally charged world, I have no doubt as to my personal integrity in every step I make every day of my life. It isn’t just about my ego. I respond from a need to protect the honour and legacy of my late parents. Through the latter I reach out to my ancestral spirits throughout the entire Sub-Saharan Africa.
My own legacy matters too. It’s not just about me. It’s all in the name of the living of my people in the afore-mentioned part of the world, particularly my clans in Zambia and South Africa. I have in mind my bosom friends, my godchildren, my teachers, and colleagues all over the world throughout my life’s journey thus far as well. I intend to stay the course until my last breath on earth, which won’t be tomorrow. I’m here for the long haul.
My thoughts also go to all the people the lives of whom I have impacted before, I impact today, and I shall be allowed to impact in the future anywhere in the world: my raison d’être. It is my wish and hope that all the people falling into this broad category shall never feel shame, embarrassment, guilt, or fear at the mention or thoughts of my name, my deeds. My legacy.
I’m proud of my roots. I’m protective of my heritage. I value highly the love and faith of my confidants. I am in awe of the big religious and philosophical thoughts of the world that daily inspire and guide me in my search of liberatory enlightenment in the labyrinth of life. Truth must never shy away from me.
With the poisonous dark cloud of love lost hanging over my head cleared, the following shall be revealed:
- I have been unilaterally charged and convicted without a trial.
- I am not a sexual pervert. I am not a dirty old man. I am not a sexual predator.
- I am not a paedophile. Neither in practice nor by inclination.
- I am not a rapist. I am not into the habit of imposing my sexual power over women. I am not in the habit of taking advantage of sick, weak, and vulnerable women. I am not a sexual manipulator. I am not a philanderer. I shall never engage in sexual intercourse at any price, with anything.
- I love power. But I am not power-hungry. I am not a powermonger. The essence of my being is not defined by the power that I wield as attendant to the things that I do. For example, when I’m revered for being a 6th Dan Black Belt Karate Master, I don’t take it personal. I am nothing more than a conduit between higher knowledge and the people that my position empowers me to serve.
With or without Karate and its inherent existential and functional attributes, I remain the same original Simon Chilembo ever aspiring to be a decent human being each and every day of my life, my fallibilities considered. Karate does not define the essence of my being. It is but one mirror of many that reflect the infinite potential of the essence of me as a human being, a social change force.
I shall never fight for power acquisition and sustenance at any cost. But I shall fight with all of my life against deliberate malicious application of unfairness and injustice as tools and manifestations of power against me, my own, including the values that I stand for.
- I am addicted to love and peace.
- It is preposterous to seek to delete my existence in the historical developments of certain phenomena in my worlds. History never forgets. The wise will always query. Answers will have to be given, no matter how murky.
Having stated the above, I encourage anybody with any compelling evidence to contradict me to come forth and present their cases. This evidence shall be tangible, derived from real-life circumstances. It shall not be derived from ill-founded conclusions obtained from subjective misinterpretations of my literary works. It shall not be derived from malicious rumours about me either. Otherwise, people can just lay their weapons down and move on with their lives. We all deserve happily-ever-after living once love has found new hearts to entice. That’s the way of the world.
Character assassination claims and rumours about my person have been doing the rounds in Oslo and environs especially since the publication of my debut novel, When The Mighty Fall, in November, 2015. I feel strongly about these. Such that, in the unlikely event that it can be objectively proved that I am a molester, I will kill myself. That not as a manifestation of any suicidal vice about my character. Moreover, I will consciously choose to kill myself for my sins to save society resources and troubles of arrests, tedious court cases and all that goes with dealing with issues of crimes against humanity. It ought to be as simple as that, really.
I am not a fan of capital punishment. However, my abhorrence of sexual abuse, especially with respect to children, ignites the most primitive of my human instincts. Were I to be found actually guilty in this case, I wouldn’t hesitate to execute upon myself the ultimate punishment that my primitive instincts see as justifiable against child molestation.
I will publicly nail myself on the cross. I will invite the world to come and practice archery on my body until there’ll be no more flesh and bone left for an arrow to pierce. Then my corpse must be set on fire whilst on the cross. No funeral services. No urns. Let the wind blow the devil’s ashes away to places far away into outer space. No memorial services. Denialism of my place in history will be just fine, then: I was never here. I was an accident of nature. I was a figment of my imagination. I was just an illusion.
I say to my enemies all the time: you don’t know me.
Tel.: +47 925 25 032
October 24, 2019