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38 YEARS AN EXILE: XVIII

HOME AT LAST! Part 18
DEPRESSION IN THE
DIASPORA – It’s Over Now

 SPECIAL NOTES:

  • This article must be understood in the context of the entire ‘38 YEARS AN EXILE’ series thus far. Dedicated with unreserved love to my Dearest Uncle, Family Patriarch, Legend-In-His-Own-Time, Mr OB Chilembo, in Lusaka, Zambia.
  • It is with never so small humility that I emphatically declare that my African culture in the 21st Century is one of the most prolific breeding grounds for Depression in the world. This, for purposes of only this writing, from the point of view of family and social relations dynamics that are outdated, and have remained static since the onset of European domination and subsequent colonialism from towards the close of the Middle Ages in the 14-15th Centuries. Who, for example, is more prone to Depression than an African family patriarch, or matriarch? … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon).

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
South Africa
Telephone: +4792525032
April 05-08, 2015

38 YEARS AN EXILE: XVII

HOME AT LAST! Part 17
WEALTH MANAGEMENT IN THE DIASPORA

Simon Chilembo, Pres/ CEO, Empire Chilembo
For an ordinary Diasporant with humble origins from their motherlands, with no history of family wealth accumulation over time and, therefore, not born with silver spoons in their mouths; as well as not having been raised with soft pillows under their wings by virtue of family status, influence, privileges, and power, the Diaspora can present unprecedentedly huge opportunities to earn money, create, build, and sustain wealth … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon).

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
South Africa
March 24, 2015

38 YEARS AN EXILE: VIII

HOME AT LAST! Part 8
POLITICS OF MURDER: APARTHEID, GANGSTERS, AND DEATH STORY

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

Necropower regimes take rule by fear to the goriest level. You are not their friend, threatening their status quo, they catch you, they torture you; information obtained or not, they kill you. On a good day they may kill you first, then ask questions later. If you are their friends, in the inner or the outer circles, same difference, you trust nobody, nobody trusts you. All go with tight golden turtlenecks of death waiting to squeeze, burn, or blow up at the slightest sign of disloyalty. Staying alive is a loyalty reward enjoyed one day at a time. Rock the boat once, and a day can instantaneously be extremely long, the world can all of a sudden seem very, very small, with nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, smell of death real, and omnipresent, like God … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon’s CreateSpace here).


Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
9459
South Africa
November 03, 2014

SMARTER ZIMBABWEANS, STUPID SOUTH AFRICANS?

IS IT TRUE OR NOT THAT ZIMBABWEANS ARE MORE SMARTER (sic), EDUCATED THAN SOUTH AFRICANS??
Asked somebody on a Facebook group, The SA Political Forum (no longer exists).

A clumsily formulated, but interesting question which has provoked extremely intense debate on the forum in recent days. The latter manifesting more the worst than the better of our views of one another in this part of the world: nationalism, racism, tribalism, bigotry, parochialism, xenophobia, ignorance, primitivity, nauseous arrogance, pettiness, immaturity, insensitivity, paternalism, mental derangement symptoms, lack of imagination, intellectual poverty, academic disorientation, non-culturedness, superstition, spiritual emptiness, insecurity, dumb-headedness, self-destruction tendencies, predator mentality, terribly developed language/ communication skills, cheap rhetoric, thick-headedness, anarchism, mistrust, misinformation, information distortion, history misinterpretation, manipulation, wilful ignorance of facts, e-kassie mentality, ill-defined defiance, profanity, foolish pride, as well as threats; including leadership/ rule by fear.

I do not quite recall how my first year, 1965, at school in Lesotho unfolded. What I do remember well, though, is that it was a hell lot of fun learning how to read and write for the first time. Returning from what I had then understood to have been Christmas holidays, January 1966 I discovered that I had completely new classmates at my school. The others from the previous year were in another class I heard called Padiso/ Sub B.

That didn’t bother me much, however; all I wanted to do was to continue learning how to read and write. It was ever such great fun, at the request of the class teacher, to stand in front of the class reading or counting for my new classmates. Nevertheless, I recall that at some point this whole thing began to bore me half way to death; I kept reading and counting the same things all the time. I felt it was time I went to join my old classmates who were now in Padiso/ Sub B. So, I stated my wish to the class teacher.

The school principal wouldn’t allow that to happen, I was told. Why??? “Because you are just too intelligent for your age, Simon. Boko ba hao bo tla bola …/ Your brains will rot if you go to higher classes while you are still under age. People who get too much education while young get mad, you see. Don’t worry, you shall go to Padiso/ Sub B when you are 8 years old” the teacher resolutely told me. So, I stayed in Grade 1 for three years, 1965-67, to keep my sanity together. Jeeezuz!

During the years 1967-69, the only meaningful school activity I recall are the almost daily after school fights arranged by older boys and girls. The idea was that boys my age should/ would beat the brains out of me because teachers at the school never stopped talking about how intelligent I was. Sadly for the matchmakers and my opponents, I would win absolutely all my fights. There was no way I was going to allow these dumb heads to kill my brains. I was also a street-smart kid.

The thing is, while these age mates of mine were still working around getting the alphabet, and numbers, together, I was already reading to my class teacher and my grandmother some passages from the Lesotho Times newspaper. I am a South African child begotten of a Zambian father. At this formative school of mine in Lesotho, there were many other mixed ethnicity parentage children (representative of the ethnic and racial diversity of the Southern African sub-continent) from relatively more resourceful families in the major South African metropolis, including Lesotho itself.

In 1970, going onto my tenth year of age, I find myself in a South African school classroom for the first time. The academic excellence self-confidence developed in Lesotho got acutely shaken by my failure to understand what the textbook I was given by the new class teacher was about. Reading comprehension, of course. I struggled through the assigned reading passage, and then answered the subsequent 10 questions best I could. I got zero out of ten.

The teacher expressing dismay at my explicit lack of knowledge of Afrikaans, I couldn’t reveal that I had actually started schooling in Lesotho, where there was/ is no Afrikaans spoken or taught in schools. By the time of the mid-year exams in June that year, though, I was scoring the highest all-round grades in class

Upon return from winter holidays, my class teacher called me out to where she and other teachers were apparently discussing something serious together with the school Principal. I was told that all had agreed that I deserved to be promoted to the next class because I was just too intelligent for Grade 3, which I had in fact been forced to repeat in the first place. I declined. Why? I was afraid my brains would rot, and I would thus go mad from too much education while still young. Bummer! I kept scoring the highest grade point averages at school in South Africa till end of 1974.

First quarter of 1975 I am in Lusaka, Zambia. No school that year. Very depressing. I have never felt smaller, and more insignificant. Shattered medical studies dreams. But then again, just under 15 years of age, I discover, and enter into a space called library for the first time in my life: Lusaka City Library, British Council Library, American Library. Book, books, and books everywhere, including my Uncle Oliver’s private library at home, as well as later, the magnificent UNZA library. And there were so many magazines, journals, and other publications of all sorts to read. I became a bookworm that year. A whole new world of thinking and dreaming was opened for me; and thus began my daily English reading and writing journey to this day.

Back to school in 1976. Forced to backtrack again because, my father was told, the then South African Bantu Education Grade 7 academic standards were lower than those of Zambia. But, as soon as I had gotten into the rhythm of things at school, I was topping class grade average points, as usual. I could never understand the Grade 7 failure panic and hysteria characteristic of the time in Zambia. I, of course, passed the final exams with flying colours later in the year.

South African born, Zambian dad begotten man-child would show constant, and predictable, academic excellence throughout the entire Secondary/ High School career to university; crushing class- and schoolmates from many other countries/ nations of the world, including Zimbabwe. This, despite the fact that I didn’t know what a science laboratory was until I was 17 years old at secondary school. That Zambian school children had already been exposed to sophisticated scientific education for years had also greatly intimidated me at first. There was at that time an awesome Zambian youth scientific magazine called Orbit. The story would repeat itself in Norway, both academically and professionally in my adult years.

20 years ago, after failing a Drivers’ Licence theory examination in Norwegian language, a blue-eyed Norwegian young man, upon hearing that I had scored almost 100% in the same test, exasperates, “Fffæææn/ Ssshit, I never knew that there were in fact wise negrer in the world!” Another dick head bites the dust.

The moral of this story is that when you are hot, you are hot. Your origin, or Nationality, due to various objective and subjective factors, may have some, but certainly not, decisive bearing.

My initial response to the question on the forum went as follows:
NOT true! The 5 million or so … in SA should tell a lot about Zimbabweans’ smartness, with their country messed up by (one of) the most educated presidents in Africa. We have our Msholozi, we have our legacy of inferior, for Blacks, apartheid Bantu education. But, for one of many examples, and despite acute imperfections here and there, through SASSA, South Africa effectively distributes at least R 10 BILLION in various social grants a month. 

Ultimately, it’s not so much about how smart or educated Nation(-s/ -nals) are, it’s about how they apply these qualities to meet their people’s needs and aspirations as their nations develop and progress among nations of the world.

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
9459
South Africa
Tel.: +4792525032
October 12, 2014

THE LONE TRAINER

 My Strength, MY Power

COOL Coaching®’s journeys of Self-Discovery, Self-Knowledge, Self-Renewal, and Self-Reinvention are not only about stimulating or rekindling creativity and innovation today for constantly better tomorrows. They are also about retrieving, and applying, from your fundamental life education those experiences that lay the foundation for the SuperStarInYou® that you have grown up to be today.

Thursday morning (22/ 11-2012) I crossed a threshold by unexpectedly overcoming a physical handicap due to a long-standing medical condition impeding execution of certain movements relative to heavy and intensive physical exercise workouts. In my elation, the COOL Coaching® Successful Living Through Magic and Wonder® flash came through. Then I realized that since I embarked on a new training routine at the end of June 2012 after a first ever six months’ pause, the words of my Karate teacher, Professor Stephen Chan, 9 Dan, OBE, have been ringing in my head everyday, “The academic mind is a mind of structure, Semmy … Go and read TS Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions!”(Greece, December 1985)

So were also the words of one of my first ever Karate Sensei, Anver Bey, Sho Dan, a year or two later, “Semmy, you must train with an open mind. You must also read a lot. The more you read the more you’ll find that no one has monopoly on knowledge of how to train, and how to live in general. When you know, nothing and no one can fuck with your training and your life”. During my later years in Lusaka, Anver and I grew to be very close friends, and he taught me a lot of things about life and training. The news of his passing on years ago truly broke my heart. He invariably visits me each time I do power training in the gym though.

I do not recall to have ever trained so patiently and systematically before; paying particular attention to, and respecting, my moods and feelings from day to day. The latter have a bearing as to how strong and enthusiastic I’ll get about things. The structure of my training since I started to train with conscious and clearly defined desirable outcomes since I was 4½ years old has been in relation to three important external factors: Self-protection, Competition, and Leadership (as at age 17 years I started to teach Karate and lead my own groups, and subsequently my own clubs in Norway). Both as practitioner and teacher of Karate I simply had to be stronger and better than anyone else. Nothing else mattered, just I glossed in the glory of my personal victories and successes, as well as those of my students. This was very important for my ego; given my constant struggle against outsider/underdog prejudices directed towards my person everywhere I go.

These days I train alone, for myself, by myself. Renewing my Mind, Body, and Soul according to fundamentals of my teachers’ teachings of my once young, wild, and (still) mad me. It’s a new way to work directing my strength and power first and foremost into myself. The older paradigm by which I worked was to primarily think about how to project my strength and power out to the world as intensely as possible. Waste of time and energy. I’m free. It feels good to know and understand that I own my strength and my power inside. So, I can from the outset do with my Mind, Body, and Soul only the things that make sense to me. My self-reinvention visions have never been more vivid, modelled after what I see and feel inside of me for myself alone. I now know that this is the essence of my education in the fundamentals of life and living by all my teachers so far. Thanks to COOL Coaching®’s journeys of Self-Discovery, Self-Knowledge, Self-Renewal, and Self-Reinvention. My life gets better all the time.

 

SIMON CHILEMBO
November 24, 2012
OSLO
Norway
Tel.: +47 97000488/ +27 717 454 115 (South Africa)

REAL CHAMPIONS DON’T NEED MONEY. HA?!

IF YOU ARE REAL GOOD AND ARE REALLY COMMITTED, YOU’LL BE CHAMPION ANYWAY. JESUS!!!

The Zambian National Karate Team that would meet Zimbabwe in April 1981 went into the country with heads bowed. We checked into a Harare hotel unZambianically hushed up, like sheep entering a slaughterhouse. That was my impression. We had already lost against Zimbabwe, long before we would embark on the goodwill trip to mark Zimbabwe’s first independence anniversary celebrations.

A few weeks earlier on our National Team Coach had told us that, to be honest, we were no match against the Zimbabweans. The latter were rich and were almost exclusively White. This meant that by default they had better terms and conditions of training, with access to training facilities Zambians could only dream of. But we had strong minds, so we’d be fine, he told us. Ok … (Continued in the book: MACHONA BLOGS – As I See It. Order Simon Chilembo books on Amazon)


Simon Chilembo
Oslo
Norway
September 05, 2012 

KILLER INSTINCT, Part 2

1993 I’m still not quite familiar with Norwegian winter sports personalities and Super Stars. A few names were already beginning to ring in my head though: Bjørn Dæhlie; I had asked Vegard Ulvang to sign an autograph for my ex’ son the other day. And another day as I’m running round Holmenkollen grounds I decide to do squat jumps up and down the steps forming part of the spectator sitting area. Not far from me there is a group of late-teenage-early-twenties boys I quickly understood were an organized sporting team of some kind. We were doing more or less the same strength and endurance fitness training routines. However, I was at least 10 years older than them and was working alone. An obviously non-compromising Coach pushed them real hard. I loved this. One of the boys seemed exceptionally fit as he was always the first to reach the highest level decided, and the first to come back to ground level, showing relatively less signs of fatigue than the rest of the group. I later learnt that was Johan Olav Koss. Killer instinct symbols in competition days, still doing it with class years later in civilian life in business and humanitarian ventures.

During the annual World Ski Championships at Holmenkollen that year I’m sitting at home watching the various events on TV. Without exception the cameras zoom onto the ski-flyers’ faces seconds before they begin the roll down. Although I had neither heard of, nor seen him before, there was something immediately distinctive about Espen Bredesen’s demeanour as his face filled the TV screen. I knew instantly, WINNER! And he won. Killer instinct in action!

Killing is unidirectional. It’s final. Death. Punktum. At the most primitive level I will define instinct is an inherent quality in living organisms to behave in certain specific and predictable ways in response to specific stimulus or a series of stimuli. In animals higher up the food chain, instinct can further be strategically trained and fine-tuned towards attainment of specific goals more effectively, and more efficiently. This is how champions are made. This is how leaders are formed; natural awareness of own killer instinct, its constant nurture and sustenance, keep rulers alive and on top of things a very long time.

Functionally, therefore, killer instinct is a state of mind; it’s an attitude. Killer instinct is a function and manifestation of a purposeful, deterministic, and change-oriented mind. As a defensive mechanism though, killer instinct can also be used to maintain the status quo. Wrongly applied for wrong motives, killer instinct can be a most destructive force. This is the making of losers, makers of dark human history. When you know it, you see it; killer instinct, for better or for worse, does have physiological aspects. It can merge fantasy and reality, creating a new unstoppable force to make things happen towards achievement of set goals, or realization of dreams and desires.

So, I had to stop this man. After enduring at least three days of bashing of my person as well as other African Black people by this White Black Man from England, fate would have it that we are drawn against each other in an open class fighting category. We were at a major pan-European Karate Championship in Greece many years ago. He stood head and shoulders above me, and was a heavy weight fighter. I stand at 1.6m, and I weighed 65kg at that time. He was not only big and strong, but he was very supple as well. Any experienced Karate fighter will acknowledge that a big man who can kick is a small man’s nightmare opponent; worse so if the giant is agile, and is good at reach advantage exploitation.

Soon as we squared off after the referee’s HAJIME! command the giant seemed to be everywhere and nowhere at the same time; such that in no time at all he had scored two successive points with kicks to my head. I most certainly felt the hits, but never saw the kicks coming. I think this inflated his ego some more, confirming to himself his assumed superiority over my African Black people and I. He relaxed his guard, danced almost like a butterfly having fun; I woke up. And before he knew it I had equalized with two rapid punches to the body. In sudden death extra time we are both very tired, each aiming for the one deciding point.

Simon Chilembo, 6 Dan Shihan

 I just had to win this fight for African Black people’s honour. At this thought I recall I felt like ceasing to dance. As I stopped, the giant seemed to be taken aback, and I knew I had him. Two images formed in my head simultaneously: A choo-choo train seemed to emerge from my body, moving at awesomely high speed straight onto the giant; at the same time the giant seemed to transform into a pulsating mountain in constant growth at every beat. As I saw the tail of the train I turned and twisted on my left leg to take off and glide onto the side of the mountain, landing with a right leg mawashi geri just under the heart. I heard the thump resonating in the indoor stadium, the referee yelled, YAME! The crowd went wild as I was declared winner; the mountain crumbled to the floor. My honour, my sense of pride and dignity were restored. Afterwards Jake and I became the best of friends. Later on in the evening at the official dinner we ate our fill, got ourselves thoroughly drunk on retsina and ouzo. During my sleep, all of Africa visited me and we danced all night long in joy and glory. We had killed an evil in man. Killer instinct can also save lost souls.

Simon Chilembo
Oslo
Norway
Tel.: +47 97000488/ +27 717454115
August 19, 2012 

KILLER INSTINCT

I’M MOTIVATED BY FEAR:  Will Smith 

A fourteen-year-old boy in love is the most reckless thing. I just had to see my new girlfriend that night. To begin with, it was crazy of me to go for her when she lived in a different section of my township. You wanted to get your balls cut off and fed to the dogs you messed around in Section X, which was notorious for extreme youth gang violence in my time.

My Section Z was a relatively newer part of the township with a vibrant aspiring young middle class by Black South African standards in the 1960s/ ‘70s. This means that, because I had also already begun to make my own money then, I had finer clothes and things; and, of course, attitude. So, I want a girl, I go for her; don’t matter where she stays.

The anticipated creepy feeling engulfed me as I approached and reached the forbidden zone, about 30 minutes’ walk away from my home. It is winter, already very dark and spooky at about 2000HRS that evening. By the time I enter her street I have goose bumps all over my body. I’m breathing fast but quietly, I hear even the smallest irregular sound around me. And then I saw them slowly coming towards me, having emerged like from nowhere in the darkness around. A voice said, “So you think you are smart taking our girls, fool?”

And the boys kept coming towards me in a semi-circle, pressing me against a fence; they could have been 5, they could have been 10, hard to tell. The speaker broke away from the semi-circle to come even closer to me. Leader. I hit the fence in retreat, the gang closes in even more; I make out the face of the leader. A few more faces became familiar. All were carrying striking objects, an invisible knife or two as well most likely. These were a notorious gang that was rumoured to have killed at least one person before. Serious trouble. Fear!

Suddenly dead silence! The leader is within arm’s reach, and I understand he is about to strike. Then things happen very, very fast:

  • Great concern – How am I going to explain to my parents the stupidity of bringing myself to death this way in the name of love? Goodness, they don’t even have an idea that I’ve already started these things! They sure are going to kill me a second time.
  • Then I feel a lightness of my body like I am a feather suspended mid-air; total relaxation. Nice feeling. Something jerks, and a sudden urge to move overwhelms me. I moved like the wind. The leader I give one surprise right hook to the jaws and he tumbles like the earth just moved under his feet. The others freeze. I see an opening. Leapt over the fallen hero, and whirl-winded out of the semi-circle of startled young gangsters. Everybody down! I run.
  • I trip over and almost fall. Only to realize that I had taken such a hazardous romantic trip in a pair of Converses without, as was the in-thing then, shoelaces. I took the shoes in my hands and ran for my life.

I do not recall how I explained to my parents my unusually long absence from home that night. But they never got to know how close to death I had come. I thought it wise to stop seeing the girl, though it would be 28 years later that I would fall out of love.

This is one of the stories of my life which have conditioned my killer instinct development as a tool for personal development, as well as working towards achieving the goals I set for myself. Because I have both in real and metaphorical terms come close to death many times, I have had invaluable training in the ability to detach, relax, let go, as well as dream, in the face of challenges in life. Almost without exception, looking back after having survived a crisis, I’ve found that coming down to zero-level (å nullstille seg: Norwegian/ mushin no shin: Japanese), inducing fear and worry to disappear, allows my subconscious me to harness and organize relevant mental and physical resources. This process enables me to intuitively structure and channel appropriate responses, saving my skin time after time. And this is what made me a fierce competitor in my younger Karate days. Many of my top Karate students have exhibited the same over the years, constantly re-lighting my passion for victory and success fire.

©Simon Chilembo, 2012

In these Olympics 2012 days in London, it is ever fascinating for me to notice how it is those who manifest clearly own killer instincts who take the gold. Of course, each one has own stories to tell. However, the common thread for winners and survivors includes hours upon hours of training and repetitions, discipline, endurance, strength, power, knowledge, skills, routines, responsibility, obligation, duty, loyalty, devotion, trust, ambition, confidence, passion, direction, focus, hope, faith, vision, sacrifice, and patience. All this can be real scary stuff if you ask me. Not for the weak-hearted. If you let fear rule your life, forget it: Only one Life, only one Killer Instinct, and only one Gold Medal position.

 

Simon Chilembo
Oslo
Norway
Tel.: +47 97000488/ +27 717454115
August 05, 2012