‘Madiba, Gandhi were the epit­ome of con­scious­ness’

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - Philippa Larkin

DR NKOSANA Moyo re­cently shared his views on what makes a con­scious leader at the Con­scious Com­pa­nies Lead­er­ship di­a­logue break­fast hosted by Strate.

Moyo, an econ­o­mist and for­mer Zim­babwe min­is­ter of in­dus­try and in­ter­na­tional trade, has de­clared that he is con­test­ing Zim­babwe’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tions in 2018. This is what he said: “I re­cently at­tended events in Cape Town that cel­e­brated Madiba’s birth­day an­niver­sary. All the time, I found my­self think­ing about Ma­hatma Gandhi and Madiba.

“They wouldn’t leave my mind in terms of the kind of peo­ple and their at­ti­tude to­wards other hu­man be­ings.

“So I want to de­fine con­scious­ness that broadly ecom­passes their pos­i­tive at­ti­tude to other hu­man be­ings…

“Then I asked this ques­tion: ‘Is it pos­si­ble to have this at­ti­tude with­out go­ing through a par­tic­u­lar ex­pe­ri­ence?’

Com­ing of age

“When you look at Madiba and hu­man be­ings who are ex­cep­tional in terms of their pos­i­tiv­ity to­wards other hu­man be­ings, more of­ten than not some­thing has hap­pened in their life. They have gone through a cru­cible al­most.

“My ques­tion is… just like what Xhosa boys have to go through in terms of com­ing of age, they go through a par­tic­u­lar ex­pe­ri­ence.

“Could it be that our con­scious­ness needs to be pricked by inexperience as op­posed to con­cep­tu­al­is­ing and the­o­ris­ing.

“What makes us sud­denly un­der­stand life in a very dif­fer­ent way?

“Could Madiba be Madiba with­out hav­ing spent all those years in prison? That is the ques­tion I am strug­gling with.

“Whether in fact there is some­thing we have failed to put into the ar­chi­tec­ture of our ex­pe­ri­ences, which in­crease as we bring up our chil­dren.

“Be­cause this is not just about com­pany lead­er­ship.

“It is lead­er­ship of so­ci­ety broadly. Glob­ally, we have got a prob­lem. But where are we look­ing for the so­lu­tions? Are we look­ing for the so­lu­tions in the right place?

Like re­fin­ing gold

“What makes us sud­denly re­ally un­der­stand how to re­late to the per­son sit­ting next to you in a fun­da­men­tally dif­fer­ent way?

“Could it be that the ex­pres­sion that you can’t get to find gold with­out putting it through a fur­nace ac­tu­ally ap­plies to con­scious as well? And if it does, what are the im­pli­ca­tions?

“What is it we are fail­ing to pro­gramme into hu­man be­ings as they grow up and how our chil­dren are bought up?

“Is there an ex­pe­ri­ence we have failed to put in broadly de­fined ed­u­ca­tion pro­cesses, which makes them not the­o­rise about it, but leap through it and then un­der­stand life through this par­tic­u­lar ex­pe­ri­ence?

“You have heard that I have de­cided to throw my hat in the ring (re­fer­ring to the Zimbabwean pres­i­den­tial elec­tions).

“I can’t un­der­stand how some­body who leads a so­ci­ety can be com­pletely obliv­i­ous to the suf­fer­ing of peo­ple in that so­ci­ety. But we see that hap­pen­ing all over the place.

“Are we look­ing for the an­swers in the right places?

“I can’t give you an an­swer. (But) I have ques­tions…”

Nkosana Moyo is con­test­ing Zim­babwe’s pres­i­den­tial poll.

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