Ubuntu

President Barack Obama said at the funeral of Nelson Mandela :-

There is a word in South Africa – Ubuntu – a word that captures Mandela’s greatest gift: his recognition that we are all bound together in ways that are invisible to the eye; that there is a oneness to humanity; that we achieve ourselves by sharing ourselves with others, and caring for those around us.

We can never know how much of this sense was innate in him, or how much was shaped in a dark and solitary cell. But we remember the gestures, large and small – introducing his jailers as honored guests at his inauguration; taking a pitch in a Springbok uniform; turning his family’s heartbreak into a call to confront HIV/AIDS – that revealed the depth of his empathy and his understanding. He not only embodied Ubuntu, he taught millions to find that truth within themselves.

The term Ubuntu was known in South Africa around the middle of the 19th C.  Reported translations covered the semantic field of “human nature, humanness, humanity; virtue, goodness, kindness”.

The term appears in the Epilogue of the Interim Constitution of South Africa (1993), “there is a need for understanding but not for vengeance, a need for reparation but not for retaliation, a need for ubuntu but not for victimisation”

According to Michael Onyebuchi Eze, the core of ubuntu can best be summarised as follows:

‘A person is a person through other people’ strikes an affirmation of one’s humanity through recognition of an ‘other’ in his or her uniqueness and difference. It is a demand for a creative intersubjective formation in which the ‘other’ becomes a mirror (but only a mirror) for my subjectivity. This idealism suggests to us that humanity is not embedded in my person solely as an individual; my humanity is co-substantively bestowed upon the other and me. Humanity is a quality we owe to each other. We create each other and need to sustain this otherness creation. And if we belong to each other, we participate in our creations: we are because you are, and since you are, definitely I am. The ‘I am’ is not a rigid subject, but a dynamic self-constitution dependent on this otherness creation of relation and distance. (from wikipedia).

Visitors do not need to burden themselves with carrying provisions – all they need is to dress properly and be on the road. All visitors are provided for and protected in every home they pass through without payment being expected. In fact, every individual should try his or her best to make visitors comfortable – and this applies to everyone who is aware of the presence of a visitor within a locality.

Children are never orphans since the roles of mother and father are by definition not vested in a single individual with respect to a single child. Furthermore, a man or a woman with “unhu” will never allow any child around them to be an orphan.  In the Shona language spoken in  Zimbabwe unhu is Ubuntu.

Ubuntu: “I am what I am because of who we all are.” (From a definition offered by Liberian peace activist Leymah Gbowee.)                                                                                Archbishop Desmond Tutu  offered a definition in a 1999 book:[14]                                      A person with Ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able and good, based from a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed.

The African worldview is about living as one family.  It is about kindness to all because all are part of we, part of us. There are opportunities that pass us by every day where we could practice Ubuntu because we don’t feel joined to others, a part of them and their lives.That concern could bring us all closer together and remove the urge to disparage others, and not to shrug off our oneness and revert to the old disdain to wards those of colour or different in some other way. I have touted the benefits of Hugs in my Buthidars Blog          https://lorddavidprosser1.wordpress.com/the-buthidar-hugs/ it sounds like my ideal world is with Hugs and with Ubuntu where we are all One and more or less responsible for the care of those within our reach who need help. Caring for those around us  as Mandela said.

Massive Hugs to all.

 

 

 

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Storm Clouds & Shrouds

It has bothered me for some time now that Donald Trump would not agree to continue the agreement the other powers had in place with Iran. It kept Iran well away from developing nuclear material. Things seemed to be going nicely according to everyone except the American end, in particular John Bolton, who was responsible for troops going into Iraq under the guise of there being WMD which did not exist, during George Bush Jnr’s time. While I’m no fan of the Imams who practise Sharia law against the  people of their country instead of the Iranians deciding for themselves the type of Government they’d prefer, and they may well decide on a Religious Government, it’s none of my business.

photo from the New Yorker. John Bolton.

What is my business however is whether or not either Bolton or Trump or both together have fabricated evidence that Iran is responsible for attacking two ships carrying oil in the Hormuz Straits last week. There is what appears to be a boat of the Revolutionary Guard of Iran by one of the tankers but strangely no revolutionary guard. The Japanese whose ships they are say no-one from the boat could have attached a limpet mine where one blew a hole. If Iran was responsible I think they would have said so. This has the feeling of a manufactured incident and comes at a point when a deflection from the thought of impeachment could impede Trump’s electioneering. While he calls no collusion and states that Mueller’s report exonerated him from trying to bring an end to the investigation by having Mueller sacked, it was exactly the opposite and at least ten examples of obstruction were listed. If Trump is able to declare war on Iran, and he already has warships in the area then the U.S. could soon be making shrouds for it’s dead servicemen. As bad for me is the thought that as allies my Government would be stupid enough to stand with the U.S. instead of with the agreement made with Iran which it would be better to preserve. Far better to go to war with Saudi Arabia for killing the journalist working for an American newspaper Jamal Khashoggi who was well liked and yet Trump has done nothing despite knowing Saudi was responsible, in particular Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The likelihood of Saudi being attacked is nil since Trump has a good relationship with all Dictators and this one is buying billions of dollars worth of weapons from him.

Another war would see the involvement of others with an Interest. Iran has allies in the Middle East, Shiite Muslims but so do those who  follow the Sunni sect like Saudi Arabia. Russia has an interest in the area and would like a bigger one. Things could escalate out of all control and leave us with WW111. Some people would say we are overpopulated and could do with thinning down but we don’t need the deaths of a population of young men and women to leave us mourning for our children.

If you feel there is likely to be a war please bombard your politicians to say No, you don’t want to lose your children. Trump may withdraw his support from the Iran agreement but the others are prepared to carry on. Trump can always use his famous tariffs instead. Keep hugging your neighbour to show you have no warlike tendencies and you could try hugging others too. Let’s hug our way out of war.

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No More The Victim.

I have to say thank you to someone who has taught me a great lesson. I have a collection of watches that I don’t keep on show but three or four watches that I have kept in my bedroom for quite a while because they are special in one way or another. There is one Mike bought me at a car boot sale, by a Danish designer, gold, very slim and great to wear with browns and creams. There was a square faced one with a broad leather strap in brown made by fossil that I bought after the original one was stolen in a burglary. That had been bought as a gift for me by my wife and daughter on a holiday they had. None of them had any great value except perhaps to the sneak thief who came in through my unlocked front door while I was in the house. They must have been very quick and just done the one room. The most annoying part is that if someone really needed help I would have given it gladly.

Now I shall trust a little less and my front door will be locked even when I’m home. I don’t want to be the perpetual victim and lose things that mean a lot to me on a regular basis. The watch collection is out of the way since the burglary but I don’t want to be hiding my things everywhere. I don’t want to stop trusting people, I don’t want to stop hugging people. But the door now stays locked. So thank you little thief for teaching me something I should have learned before. Stay secure.

Hugs.

 

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A Timely Reminder

I had a shock today and it was very unwelcome. At the start of this month I’d gone through my address book and sent out Christmas cards to all my friends. In one or two I’d added a note perhaps regretting I’ve not seen so much of them recently. I must have thought of it as a duty performed. Today as I came home from being with Yvonne I picked up my cards from behind the door. After an urgent trip to the loo for bus journey bladderitis I put some lunch on then opened my cards.

One card had but a single name on it and I couldn’t quite register the fact and I know my eyes scanned the card for the other name, the lead name. It wasn’t there. There was a note which I read carefully. My friend’s wife told me he’d been diagnosed with liver cancer this year and had died peacefully in August. I’d known nothing of it because I’d not seen anything of them this year and the last time I’d written was an Easter card. At one point Mike and I used to see them virtually every Saturday morning as we were finishing our shop as they arrived to start theirs. Then we started and finished a little earlier to satisfy me and that contact, slim as it was, had been broken.

J had been the Senior Officer in an office I used to visit perhaps once a week for benefit surgeries. I’d been going there a few years and he was always pleasant and would always pass the time of day  until the office opened. There were others there that I perhaps I used to talk to more but it was for only about ten minutes until the office officially opened and my work started. Ten minutes, maybe once a week for some years. I could never honestly say we were friends but we were friendly. When I became ill and  went on long term sick very few of my work colleagues visited me (says more about me than about them) but J made the occasional visit. After Ju died he perhaps came a little more often and maybe stayed a bit longer. He and his lovely wife even took me to a concert which had my nerve ends screaming but I managed it. He insisted they were only ever a phone call away. They did not deserve my neglect and just the occasional card. He had become a friend who deserved so much more as did his wife who might have needed some of the support they gave me when I needed it.

OK, the reason for this post is to maybe remind some of you that if you’ve got friends you haven’t seen in a while and have perhaps just dropped the odd card on. It might be a nice idea given the time of year if you can perhaps give them a phone call or maybe even a little visit.  I’m sure they’d appreciate it and hopefully you aren’t met with the shock I was.

Image result for free christmas gifs with sound

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The Coming Christmas.

Here we are mid November and is the world in a happier place for Christmas? Of course not. Half the countries in the World don’t celebrate the same season as the West since they don’t worship the same God as the West. But, that distinction allowed, each set of peoples is happy to watch and share in the joy of another peoples holiday. At least I am, having been happy to share in the joy of Diwali just a couple of weeks ago. India celebrates a national holiday on 25th December so maybe that joy will be reciprocated.

What bothers me more than usual at this time of the year though are divisions within our own countries, pitting one side against another with little give and take. In my Country for instance there is the ever nearing Brexit separating one side from the other instead of the Bremainers just giving in gracefully and saying lets just make the best of it we can. It’s much easier it seems to complain about it right to the last moment and each side to blame the other for not getting the results they wanted.

The American side seems worse. The problem here started in the early days of the 2016 election when one side seemed to concentrate on policies and the other purely on the cult of personality. Tell a lie, big it up and then start a chant. I have no idea whether Hilary Clinton would have made a better President (the odds are with her) than this man who chanted Lock Her Up seemingly from morning to night and never once had to discuss a  programme of reform. No-one who knows me will be in the least surprised to hear me say I HATE Trump, bu it may surprise you to hear that I have no fondness for the Republican Party either. they have since the election ended put forward no policies intended to benefit the Country. Plenty which will benefit themselves by way of tax breaks but no help for businesses, the working man. Trump is not a working man and his businesses relying on Business as Usual seem to be OK.

In the recent mid-term elections Republicans ensured that a large number of votes were removed or hampered from minorities. In Georgia this was done by the man standing as a Republican candidate against a black person. That’s cheating pure and simple yet it’s unlikely to draw much condemnation. Trump never carried out his early promises of building  a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, nor having the Mexicans fund it. He has fallen down on all his election promises to the people yet all he has to do is mention the wall and people cheer. It would be better if he and the Republicans had tried to repair the ACA and found some insurance for health care that carried promises from the previous President.

Before January is upon us and the new Representatives take their seats in the house Maybe the two sides in this war found ways in which they could agree to help the people and put forward legislation to make 2019  a brighter year, not for themselves but to benefit the United States. Let Christmas 2018 be a time of Peace on Earth.

Hugs.

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Modern Day Slavery.

Eritrea is a small African country in the North East or Horn of Africa. It’s Capital is Asmara. After the Second World War Eritrea was taken away from the Italians and administered by the British until 1952. At that time the UN General Assembly voted to make Eritrea self governing but tied to Ethiopia it’s larger neighbour for a period of ten years. In 1962 the Government of Ethiopia annulled the agreement and tried to annexe Eritrea bringing about armed resistance from the Eritreans and they proved to be difficult to defeat. In 1991 after almost 30 years continual warfare Eritrea got it’s wish. Or did it? It became a one party state under the EPLF which later became the People’s Front for Democracy. In itself, if this didn’t make me laugh I’d have to cry. National  legislative elections have been postponed time and again.

The Government of Eritrea has been accused of some of the worst Human Rights abuses in the World with arbitrary arrests and detentions. Freedom of speech and freedom to assemble are limited and the press has been placed at the bottom of a list of 180 countries and there is no private press in Eritrea.I’m sure by now you think I have no point to make, but here it is. A steady flow of Eritreans want to leave the country and head for Europe ( to the countries that pillaged their own in the past). They leave Eritrea after paying smugglers.and get to Rama in Ethiopia then go on from Rama to Omdurman in the Sudan (where Gordon fought the Mahdi ). From Rama to Chad and on to Tripoli in Libya. The journey is fraught with perils as there are plenty of slavers about but for now these people are safe in Tripoli.

Only they’re not safe. Once there they’re handed over to someone else to complete the journey to the West only to find they’ve been sold. More money is demanded to help them complete their journey with torture and severe beatings while the subject is force to make a phone call back to Eritrea for money. Those that can’t get it may be tortured some more then sold on again or may just be murdered. When the ‘lucky’ ones get more money they’re moved on, but very often just to continue the process of being bought and sold. While in the camps they’re very often not fed and when they are it may be a piece of bread.

We know this slavery goes on.My question is this, “Why do we let it?”  Libya has gone to pot since Ghaddafi  fell which had an awful lot to do with the machinations of the Western powers. Satellite imagery should be good enough to spot these slave camps and I’m sure troops could be helicoptered in there from an adjoining friendly nation to rescue the slaves and take the slavers in . It should work provided no money is changing hands between the slavers and members of the Government who know when an operation is happening. Whatever way it could be done and I’m sure there are many other theories of a better way, it should be done rather than leave these already desperate people in the hands of the slavers.

Massive Hugs to all.

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More Tears of Shame …

A heartfelt plea from a dear friend to bring some kind of sanity to the U.S. And some kind of Hope and Love to the poor children separated from their parents and parents separated from their children. The man ultimately responsible for this evil blames everyone but himself for what has happened.

Filosofa's Word

Trump signed an executive order earlier this week that did … nothing.  Nonetheless, that didn’t stop him from preening and patting himself on the back.  While thousands of children remain terrified and separated from their parents, held in old warehouses, tent cities, and wherever the U.S. government can find room to stow them.

Administration officials admit that there is no immediate plan to reunite these children with their families.  Melania Trump visits them wearing a jacket that says, “I don’t care, do U?”  Fox television host Brian Kilmeade says we should not be concerned because “These aren’t our kids … it’s not like he is doing this to the people of Idaho or, uh, or, uh, Texas. These are people from another country.” Members of Congress, congressional candidates, and the press have been denied entry to tour the facilities.  A senator was escorted from the premises by police…

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I’d Scream in Frustration if I thought it would help.

I’m well aware that many Americans thought badly of Obamacare. I’m also aware that many more Americans found it a lifeline. It would have been a whole lot better had the GOP not blocked so much all the way through. As it ended up it still helped a lot of people in dire straits until Trump decided it had to be dismantled along with anything else that bore the signature of President Obama. In fact they couldn’t find anything better to replace Obamacare but it seems not to have mattered as their latest moves have created a crisis anyway. According to the Congressional Budget Office, health insurance premiums will go up by double digit percentages from 2019. Insurers are expected to raise the premiums on benchmark plans by some 15 % over this years.

I’m gritting my teeth and saying this very slowly. Millions of people will be adversely affected and some millions will be out altogether. The projections say 3 million will not be able to be insured in 2019 with another 3 million added over the next two years.That”s on top of those that can’t afford to pay already, The (ACA Affordable Care) Act is now the UCA (Un-affordable Care Act) or who gives a monkey’s for the poor act. It’s certain the politicians don’t.

The GOP have maintained that anyone needing treatment can go straight to the Emergency Room, in that case why not make it the same for everyone and turn it into a National Health Service as I think Obama’s dream went. The vision of all Americans being looked after equally no matter income, from a service paid through taxation.

I’m raging that the GOP went after providing a tax rebate for the rich and placed a huge debt on the country as a whole and now slam the poorest yet again while the Insurance Companies can rub their hands together. Healthcare should not be in the hands of Insurance Companies but in the hands of professionals who know the cost of curing patients even when their illnesses don’t show. Cancer patients don’t have to plead for lifesaving drugs when their insurance money is running out.

The GOP must shoulder a lot of this blame alone but Trump is due his fair share, especially being the one who gets upset when he sees Obama’s name on anything. He is making the world more unstable with his decisions made after ignoring his professional help and asking the tea lady’s opinion instead.

I’m raging that the evangelicals who follow Trump are not devout enough to steer clear of a much married misogynist who touches women without their permission and who tells lies all the time, but are prepared to turn their biblical heads the other way because he’s a Republican and speaks their language. BS. If you’re going to say you believe in God and Jesus then at least try and follow the teachings of the bible and not conveniently ignore things when it suits you.

Make those votes count in November Democrats and all you new voters out there. Move these bottom crawlers away from Congress for as long as you can and hope Trump resigns because you can be sure a Democratic Government won’t listen to him.

Hugs to all, please spread them around.

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Destabilisation.

It was one of those very rare occasions when the majority of the World’s powers came together in agreement. It was not a good idea for Iran to have the capacity and the equipment to build a nuclear weapon. An agreement was made instead of putting sanctions in place, for the agreement to stop their building there would be concessions.

This year, this month sees the renewal of that agreement which will only go ahead if the signatories of the original agreement accept that Iran has honoured it’s side of the bargain. The European powers France, Germany and the UK all agree that Iran has kept to it’s word as do China and Russia. However, Benjamin ‘Bibi’ Netanyahu of Israel has approached the other main signatory, the U.S.A.with a story that Iran has not held up it’s end of the bargain and had been secretly working to continue making a bomb. All the paper that’s been produced confirms the pre-agreement activity but nothing since. It’s in Israel’s interest to have the agreement cancelled and sanction put in place instead which keeps another nuclear power out of the Middle East.

The trouble with this picture is that Donald Trump, who has been saying he’s not going to renew the agreement has accepted Netanyahu’s word that Iran has broken it’s word and wants sanctions instead. He’s threatening to do this despite disagreement from his own people, the experts, and instead is accepting advice from recent appointees to his own cabinet who have no expertise in the matter and who have seen what happens to those who disagree with Trump.

It could be that Trump is just bluffing right up to the last minute….because he can…..and will end up agreeing to renew but it’s not looking that way right now. One very big problem with the scenario of him carrying on his present course is his intended meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un who will see that any agreement made by the U.S.A. is not worth the paper it’s printed on and so would feel no obligation to uphold his end of any bargain made and he already has nuclear weapons. He’s already indicated threats to Japan or other American allies if further sanctions are brought to bear. He has allied himself with both China and to a lesser degree Russia. Food is shipped from China to help feed the North Korean people who have suffered badly under the U.S. sanctions. He won’t want more and nobody knows just what he’s capable of.

We appear to be on the brink of a possible World disaster with various players having nuclear weapons. All down to a President so jealous of his predecessor that he wants to wipe out everything he ever achieved. These are the actions of an overgrown child not a mature adult, as seen by the number of affairs he’s had outside his marriage(s). But his actions should not be allowed to put the world at risk of war again. He’s already done so much damage to the clean air and the rivers of America and another agreement made which he won’t agree to sign. The Paris Agreement. He has people in positions where their expertise is the antithesis of what the job entails. Pruitt in charge of the EPA when he’s a man that disagrees with global warming and the clean air act.                                       https://jilldennison.com/2018/05/03/pruitts-got-to-go/?c=44608#comment-44608

It’s time to ensure your senators and representatives know that  Trump can’t carry on being reckless and that the Iran Nuclear Agreement is renewed. It will also give the World a message that America sticks by it’s agreements. It will hopefully bring the world back from another stupid brink and ensure the safety of another generation.

Keep Hugging the World until friendship is assured.

trump

Picture of the smug bastard thenewdaily.com au

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A day’s thinking

This Friday 30th March 2018 I spent the day almost incapable of speaking to anyone, and I certainly didn’t want too. It’s the 5th anniversary of my wife’s death. Though I seem to have willed the glumness on despite all the happy memories it’s not through choice, it’s just because I miss her. My daughter misses her and no doubt he husband does too as will many nephews and nieces. It made me wonder just how many people throughout the world are feeling as I do today and how many tomorrow and the next day. Multiple thousands of people die each day and they will mostly have someone who mourns them and misses them greatly.

We, the West seem to accept the sales of weapons as being normal.  If we’re involved in the use of those weapons in somebody else’s country then a little collateral damage seems acceptable, some deaths from friendly fire almost inevitable. Where weapons are sold for  use at home in America, not even in war, there are hundreds of deaths a day and also the slaughters of innocents because of the types of weapons freely available to buy. Having said that, it’s disgusting that certain weapons are available to buy when you’re not in the military and it’s equally disgusting that those weapons are freely available to so many people who should never be anywhere near a weapon. The mentally ill for a start. The pressure applied by vested interests to make sure laws are not introduced which will affect their sales is phenomenal. And that’s only for the domestic market. Imagine what pressure would be brought to bear if it was suggested that weapons sales throughout the world was halted. Any yet, consider this, are there not enough weapons already out there to wipe us all out without selling more. What happens to the surplus, the slightly date, the out of fashion? Is there a trade-in deal to be had against new models and the old ones can be offloaded to a tribe of Tuaregs to use against the Kurds who so many Countries seem keen to wipe out. Allies of the West but whom we don’t seem to offer much support in the devastation of their homeland.             It’s time to bring our troops out of Syria since Bashar al Assad has assistance from the Russians and also for President Edogan of Turkey, another enemy of the Kurds. Saddam Hussein committed real atrocities t try and wipe out the Kurds  and others are doing the same.

My rant as such it is, is to suggest we don’t need more weapons in the world, we especially don’t need more weapons like the AR15 in the hands of teens and adults when there’s no practical purpose for them unless you believe in conspiracy theories about the Government attacking you. Be fair, if they did, what use would an AR15 be to you? It’s no good for hunting, you don’t need it or most of the other 10 you’ve gathered for overkill. You have to start thinking logically about just who should be kept away from weapons and how best to do it. The suggestions made so far have been pretty logical. Change the age to 21 for buying  weapon. Makes sense, they;re not in school and less likely to have childish grudges. The mentally ill. Fair enough, no telling if the illness might bring on delusions which seem real enough to clear with a gun. I’d go further, but a start is a start. Now, lets concentrate on the world. Bring our boys home. Not because they’re not good at what they do but because we’re not winning hearts or minds and we’re just making more enemies. Secure some kind of peace for the Kurds before pulling out though. Make sure we bring every weapon we can. No use leaving them to increase the killing. Be happy with what you have and don’t buy any more armaments. I don’t mind if it puts the dealers in death out of business. The world won’t miss them and they can retire on the Kings ransoms already made.

Now concentrate on making friends. No, you stop that, he’s just the same as you just darker.Play nice, now Hug. Remember I’m waiting for votes for the job of Benevolent Dictator of the World and there will be exams on hugging techniques and points for friends made.

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