Over two years ago I wrote this . A guest commented quiet a bit on it and I felt that I should bring his comment to the forefront for those interested. So take it away Bwana Guest!
Guys, I read with Interest the discussion on “Being African”, quite informative. I would like to highlight to you that Being African is neither a function of one’s skin colour nor is it one’s geographic location…rather, it is about the values and principles that one follows, believes and practices. I will highlight here the ten pathways that define “Being African” as espoused by one great African Scholar, Professor Mandivamba Rukuni:
1. Know where you come from, know and respect your family, relatives and your ancestors.
2. Know where you are going and fulfill the gifts that your God bestowed on you
3. Hold yourself with a long heart and happiness all the time – manage your emotions to keep a positive attitude!
4. Whatever you do, do it wholeheartedly, with all your strength and courage. This is the only way to build a real world.
5. Help others, give to others, receive from others and be thankful in giving and receiving from others.
6. Develop an insatiable curiosity for knowledge in life.
7. All God’s creations are sacred. Celebrate, respect and appreciate nature and all of God’s creations.
8. Have fun and games with others from time to time. This is the way in which your body, mind and spirit come together. Fun and games build your ‘Unhu-Ubuntu-Botho’ spirit.
9. Regularly sit down and have consultative discussions with family, neighbours and relatives. This is the surest way to build functional relationships in life.
10. Follow the Unhu-Ubuntu-Botho spirit. This is the way of life, valued by your ancestors and that unites you with God.
To the participants and those who contributed (and wish to contribute) to this discussion, the challenge is, as Afrikans, do we live by the principles and values of “Being African” as highlighted above, or we just follow the tag “African” either by association, colour or by historical accident. As I see it, “Being African” is a sum-total of the ten pathways, lived and experienced by a people, where colour is the last determinant, and values and principles reign. Is “Being African” the answer? For more information please follow the link: http://connactionzim.com/index.php option=com_fireboard&Itemid=33&func=view&id=7&catid=6. If you have problems with the link, please type: http://www.connactionzim.com, then click on ‘Forums’, then choose the forum ‘Being African’. The discussion in the link is based on the book entitled “Being African” by Prof Mandivamba Rukuni, published 2007.
I found the book challenging and interesting, and the discussion forum enticing!!!