By Lesego Setou
Dear Black South African,
I write to you from one soul to the next. I would like to know at what point did we forget our divinity that we seek affirmation of our worth from pastors? Could it be that we have things we need to heal within our self? That we rather fight not to be called monkeys than denounce a leadership that dishonours our sense of self-worth? At what point did we feel the desire to direct energy at fighting to be accommodated at hotels that clearly do not want us? Fighting to be accepted is not self-love, it’s a cry to say you are not enough.
What have we created? At what point will we build premium schools that will make a suburban white dad cry to have his son schooled in a township? At what point will we build hospitals that will get people flocking to rural areas for good healthcare? When will we plough or are we just comfortable with eroding the soil with the gluttony that is corruption and the burden that has become lawlessness?
I have painful and beautiful life lessons learned that no man can disrespect you without your permission, we are hurt by that which we allow. At what point did we lose our unbreakable soul? We have at many times displayed self-hate. How many of our own have raped our grandmothers, mothers, wives, sisters and daughters? We have displayed unworthiness. How many of us have discriminated against another be it for their sexuality, gender, language or the simple matter of not pronouncing an English word correctly?
We have disrespected ourselves by consistently endorsing leaders that have no respect for us, for progress, for vision and for development. We are at this present moment entertaining ideas of moving from a man of questionable integrity as Jacob Zuma to another in the form of Julius Malema. Does that not say anything about the low expectations we have of ourselves and others? We have endorsed mediocre in many forms and laughed about issues that deserved tears. Did we not give people permission to think we enjoy low standards and deserve disrespect? How much are we willing to own to some of the perceptions that some white people have of us? Or are we comfortable with being victims?
There is no power in being a victim, you just get swallowed in self-pity. We need to reflect and ask ourselves if it really is empowering to live with such enslaved minds. Minds that believe that the words of another make us, minds that are stuck in a previous pain that we fail to take ownership of the mess we have created. We need to remember our divinity. We can no longer be comfortable with people burning key facilities like libraries, or any building for that matter, we can no longer be comfortable with killing another because he or she is Pakistani but cry foul when one only calls you a monkey.
Are we not in our actions showing how much we too devalue others? Our minds are sources of abundance, we need to feed them with right, positive thoughts. If we choose to dwell in victim mentality, believe that we deserve hand-outs, that we can only enjoy poverty, that there is not enough in the universe for abundance of all, that corruption is a worthy action, that poor service delivery is OK, that a 30% pass is good enough, that killing another is justified, we will remain slaves. There is no greater freedom than a liberated mind, a mind inspired, full of dreams so much that no background or challenges can limit you.
My thoughts are only mine, I might not change the world, but I will choose to do good within my sphere of influence. I will see every soul regardless of their colour, gender, sexuality as the divine soul they inherently are, I will use all my talents and I will speak even if that which I speak about is not popular. For my grade four teacher taught me that a pen is mightier than a sword, I believed it then, I believe it now. God bless!