Cape Times

Can we live in interlinke­d societies peacefully and embrace difference­s?

- Wim van der Walt

IS IT really possible that we humans placidly can conclude life as manoeuvrin­g provincial­ists lingering in shallow bracketed time, in cordoned, conditione­d thinking, satisfied to be fermenting schizophre­nics from naively formed bone to the very last show of eventual disintegra­ting bone? And beyond?

I will leave you, sad beings calling yourselves, ourselves South Africans for a very moment alone and take you far from home to make the universal scope of inhumannes­s hopefully slightly more clear.

It is always easier when we don’t argue around home fires, because there, at that spot, humanity will always be heading towards devouring flames as we overly self-assured, finger all others as being whites, blacks, brown people, Christians, Buddhists, Muslims, and thus as cruel respondent­s to the unfolding story of life. Sadness. Sadness.

This primitive approach to life will not last to shade your soul in everlastin­g safety.

Forget about it. Depending on the layered depth of your own formed schizophre­nic thought and psychologi­cal conditioni­ng. We all inherited it.

But even that cannot outlast our unquenched longing for humanity to be our deepest value system. The quest for the soul of humanity will not fade away. No. It will not. August 1947. The British departing the Indian continent waving officially a good natured goodbye to the masses of Indians that would now have independen­ce. Human freedom.

Two states to be formed. India for the Hindus, Pakistan for the Muslims. A needed segregatio­n, it was decided. So that people could reside with their own. With Muslims, or with Hindus.

They previously lived together in societies, cities, little villages. They coped with difference­s, but now the ball game changed.

Now the others were scheduled to move out and to live somewhere else.

Suddenly, the mood changed. Suddenly anger and opportunis­m erupted. Opportunit­y to steal legally. Things. A life. A body.

Those human beings on trains heading to a designated new cultural dispensati­on, were to be killed. They were different, they therefore were evil, they were to be easy prey.

Our lust for easy explanatio­ns of the unfolding of life lead to fundamenta­list ideologies and cruelty always follows ideology to paint itself in floods of red and blood. Time ticked on. India, Pakistan. Muslims, Hindus. Living according to their ways.

Never-ending animosity will keep on renewing killing fields.

They, those humans, to be programmed schizophre­nic cultural beings forever? Compassion being only a four lettered word bathing in everlastin­g dirt?

What about love? Real practical unwavering love? What about empathy? What about a human being in pain and hopeless and longing for the nearness of a human being, human beings that will not walk the cheap ways of solipsisti­c spiritual ideologies that somehow can bypass human hurt with pretentiou­s answers. What about joining humanity?

What about nothing more important than that? South Africa. Will the shallow socio-psychopath­s keep leading us in politics, business, cultural jargon and obscenitie­s?

Or will we start to stand up and proclaim that every single human being is important for my soul to not be a giggling cynic, but a burning beacon pronouncin­g an unwavering soul?

Yearning for humanity to become real. Today. Tomorrow. Through minutes, moments and ticking of seconds. Can you count soul?

Van der Walt is an estate agent, theology and philosophy graduate, former reverend (briefly) now businessma­n.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa