Ponder This!

This statement is capable of liberating you from yourself!

The issue before us not easy as it looks. I guess all of us are looking at the situation with our colored glasses. Colored by our perception of the other people or by our perceived injustice carried against us depending on our social or ethnical backgrounds. We are all waiting for external events or the other person to act in a certain way in order to release us from our anguish and anger. We have become emotional prisoners of one another, regardless of our education or religion we secretly want blood and destruction. I met someone who seemingly can’t eat since this crises started, why? Because of the way they feel about the situation and that tribe that has caused it.
kenyan FlagWhat we have refused to take is personal responsibility. We must appreciate the fact that true healing starts first with us. Our release from anger is not with the other person, or a summon on the pulpit, it is with us. We must take responsibility of our emotions and feelings towards the other people. This is the only way we can build a civilized society. Without saying it people are looking for revenge and justice. It is said when you take the route of revenge, you then must dig two graves because you also become a victim. We must first find personal freedom by disempowering the other person to be the source of our self esteem or happiness. You disempower the ‘other person’ by first forgiving them in order to realize true peace to enable you to rationally evaluate the cause of the current events and factually deal with it.
Dr Munroe in his book the Burden of Freedom notes that many third world nations have never known what real freedom is. We want freedom both social and economic but we don’t want the responsibility that comes with it. For years we hated the Asians for their prosperity; we even beat them and destroyed their property when we got a chance to. But we remained poor. However over the last 10 years, we have taken responsibility, we have developed our business skills. We have now competed with them in the spare parts business; we have invaded the city shops with our exhibitions stands and killed the ‘Dukawala’. The crusade continues, we soon shall follow them into the industrial area and start manufacturing. We don’t hate or beat them; we must compete with them in a free enterprise and beat them at their own game. In short we have taken responsibility and claimed our freedom from hate and economic need.
Forgiving the other person almost sounds cowardly. But it is the first step towards greatness, it is the path that made Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela great, yet in this perceived weakness they brought lasting freedom to their masses. Your character must be bigger than the issue before hand. You deal with the issue but preserve the core at any cost, you take responsibility. What is a world without your opponent? We are all co dependent on one another. In our different forms we constitute the beauty of Kenya. Imagine a world without the flair of the Luo, the entrepreneurship of a kikuyu and the humor of a Kamba. It is this distinct different cultures that visitors admire about Kenya and want to come back again and again.
Last Saturday my wife and I went to salvage our business that we have built painfully for over five years. A gang of youths were at the gate and ordered us to turn back or burn our car. Some of them were people we had directly helped. They were taking possession of every business premise on that building as their own. They have been made to believe that by freely taking, they will find personal freedom. We turned back and left them to occupy the building and loot the premises. Was I full of hate for them for destroying our investment of five years? Maybe for a moment, it was painful but I took control. I must not become their emotional prisoner through hate. Instead of anger I actually pitied them because they were living in a form of ignorance. I have found personal freedom that they apparently haven’t. I shall start again, I shall build another business. After all this is the spirit of enterprise. I shall find economic freedom through daily effort and the search for a better way. They will never on the other hand find this freedom unless they first seek to understand or someone explains to them.
We look foolish in the eyes of the world as we torch our country in the name of anger. We entertain the west in their cozy living rooms as we chase our brothers with pangas and destroy property. We bring color to their evenings as they enjoy the boredom that comes with tranquil and peace. After all, this is better than watching wrestling. This is Real TV as Africans torch their country and mutilate one another. It is true what they have always believed; the African might actually never find civility.
I have thus made a choice not to be angry with the ‘other tribe’. I will endeavor to forgive where I have been harmed, I will search where I am unjust to the other person so that I can correct. But we must all rise above the hate regardless of the facts and search for the greater common good.
If you find truth in this email, please pass it on to one more person.

HowKE Team

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