Africans cre­ated civ­i­liza­tion – Egypt is a prime ex­am­ple

They didn’t wait for Euro­peans to civ­i­lize them, writes Sam Dit­shego

The Sunday Independent - - Dispatches - Aus­tralo­p­ithe­cus gracile Homo ha­bilis, Homo erec­tus sapi­ens. Homo sapi­ens ro­busta, Homo Anaca­lyp­sis African Ori­gin of the Ma­jor West­ern Re­li­gions, Egyp­tian Book of the Dead Com­ing Forth by Day, ■ Dit­shego is an in­de­pen­dent re­searcher.

WHETHER one be­lieves in cre­ation or evo­lu­tion, do peo­ple ever won­der what the first peo­ple on Earth thought about life in gen­eral? What they thought about pro­cre­ation, re­li­gion, the en­vi­ron­ment and science? Chris­tians be­lieve, for ex­am­ple, that Adam and Eve were the first peo­ple on Earth. Evo­lu­tion­ists be­lieve in the evo­lu­tion of the ho­minids which are hu­mans and their fos­sil an­ces­tors. They are, in chrono­log­i­cal or­der, and


One of Africa’s fore­most an­thro­pol­o­gists, his­to­rian, lin­guist, sci­en­tist and Egyp­tol­o­gist Dr Cheikh Anta Diop, wrote that hu­man­ity was born on the African con­ti­nent and that

or modern man ap­peared between 200 000 and 150 000 years ago and went to pop­u­late the other con­ti­nents. West­ern his­to­ri­og­ra­phy holds that Africa was a back­ward and un­civilised con­ti­nent with no his­tory and there are peo­ple who still be­lieve in this the­ory.

If it’s true that Africa is the cra­dle of hu­man­ity and the first to be in­hab­ited by hu­man be­ings, did they wait all these years for Euro­peans to civilise them about 500 years ago, as some peo­ple were made to be­lieve, or did they go on with their lives and cre­ated civ­i­liza­tions?

An­cient Egypt is one of the civ­i­liza­tions cre­ated on the con­ti­nent by Africans. There is Nu­bia, Ethiopia and many other civ­i­liza­tions in west, east and south­ern Africa. The Mun­hu­mo­tapa Em­pire whose seat of govern­ment was in Great Zim­babwe and the ad­ja­cent Ma­pun­gubwe are pal­pa­ble ev­i­dence of some of these great African civ­i­liza­tions.

By 4025 Be­fore the Com­mon Era (BCE), Africans had al­ready in­vented the cal­en­dar we are us­ing to­day with mi­nor mod­i­fi­ca­tion; they in­vented time and di­vided the day in 12 equal hours. The Egyp­tian cal­en­dar had 365 and a ¼ days. The four ¼ add up to one, mak­ing 366 days, which ex­plains the idea of a leap year. The Me­sopotamian cal­en­dar had 13 months, it wasn’t as ac­cu­rate as the Egyp­tian cal­en­dar.

When there was an eclipse in Me­sopotamia their king was con­fused and sent emis­saries to Egypt to go and ask what was hap­pen­ing and the Egyp­tian priests gave an ex­pla­na­tion. Yet there are Euro­peans or whites who think Africans had been wait­ing all this time for them to “civilise” Africans.

African women in­vented agri­cul­ture more than 17 000 years ago and the first recorded queens in the world were from Africa. Imhotep is the first recorded physi­cian in the world not Hip­pocrates. Imhotep is an African name whose mean­ing is “He who comes in peace”.

An­cient Egyp­tian lan­guage is an African lan­guage that is ge­net­i­cally, mor­pho­log­i­cally and syn­tac­ti­cally re­lated to the other lan­guages on the con­ti­nent such as Wolof, spo­ken in Sene­gal.

In his book pub­lished in 1836, God­frey Hig­gins wrote that na­tions and re­li­gions de­rive from a great black em­pire. This comes from Hig­gins, a white man. If na­tions and re­li­gions de­rived from a great black em­pire then Euro­peans could not have brought civ­i­liza­tion and Chris­tian­ity to the African con­ti­nent. In the Yosef ben-Jochan­nan demon­strates the source of all the ma­jor West­ern re­li­gions is Africa.

If one looks at Wal­lis E A Budge’s

or the which pre­dates the Bi­ble by 1 500 years, it is clear that the Bi­ble was copied from that book. Chris­tians in­ter­preted an­cient Egyp­tian re­li­gious texts lit­er­ally, for ex­am­ple, the story of im­mac­u­late con­cep­tion, when they are al­le­gor­i­cal. That is why they fail to ex­plain them con­vinc­ingly.

Those who are in­ter­ested in Africa’s med­i­cal his­tory should read about the an­cient Egyp­tian ge­nius Imhotep. The med­i­cal writ­ings of Imhotep, who is known as Egyp­tian God of Medicine, are the old­est med­i­cal doc­u­ments writ­ten. His books were stolen from Africa and are presently at Karl Marx Univer­sity in Leipzig, Ger­many. The work of Imhotep is at­trib­uted to Hip­pocrates.

It was re­ported in the Ed­in­burgh Med­i­cal Jour­nal, vol­ume 20, April 1884, pages 922-930, that in 1879, a Bri­tish trav­eller, R W Felkin, wit­nessed a Cae­sarean sec­tion per­formed by Ugan­dans. The healer used ba­nana wine to semi-in­tox­i­cate the woman and to cleanse his hands and her ab­domen prior to surgery. He used a mid­line in­ci­sion and ap­plied cautery to min­imise haem­or­rhag­ing. He mas­saged the uterus to make it con­tract but did not su­ture it. The ab­dom­i­nal wound was pinned with iron nee­dles and dressed with a paste pre­pared from roots. The pa­tient re­cov­ered well, and Felkin con­cluded that this tech­nique was well-de­vel­oped and had clearly been em­ployed for a long time. Sim­i­lar re­ports come from Rwanda, where botan­i­cal prepa­ra­tions were also used to anaes­thetise the pa­tient and pro­mote wound heal­ing.

When the Arabs came to Egypt in the 7th cen­tury in the Com­mon Era (CE), all the el­e­ments of Egyp­tian civ­i­liza­tion were al­ready in place. There­fore they have noth­ing to do with an­cient Egyp­tian civ­i­liza­tion. More­over, the an­cient Egyp­tian writ­ing is dif­fer­ent from the Ara­bic script and their lan­guages are dif­fer­ent. An­cient Egyp­tian lan­guage, as I have al­ready in­di­cated, is African whereas Ara­bic is an Indo-Euro­pean lan­guage.

Dr Cheikh Diop ex­plains that through­out the trans­for­ma­tions in the African peo­ple’s re­la­tions with the rest of the world, it be­came in­creas­ingly dif­fi­cult each day and even in­ad­mis­si­ble, for those un­aware of his past glory – and for blacks them­selves – to be­lieve that they could have orig­i­nated the first civ­i­liza­tion which flow­ered on Earth, a civ­i­liza­tion to which hu­man­ity owes most of its progress.

Some peo­ple may ask, and rightly so, why are Africans in the sit­u­a­tion they are in to­day if they orig­i­nated the first civ­i­liza­tion on Earth?

Ex­plain­ing cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing slav­ery and the sit­u­a­tion of Africans, Diop wrote that since his­tory had dis­rupted the African’s for­mer equi­lib­rium with the en­vi­ron­ment, the black now found a new equi­lib­rium, dif­fer­ing from the first in the ab­sence of a tech­nique no longer vi­tal to the so­cial, po­lit­i­cal and moral or­gan­i­sa­tion.

With eco­nomic re­sources as­sured by means that did not re­quire per­pet­ual in­ven­tions, the Ne­gro be­came pro­gres­sively in­dif­fer­ent to ma­te­rial progress. Diop said it was un­der these new con­di­tions that the en­counter with Europe took place. The so­cial and moral or­der was on the same level of per­fec­tion. On the other hand, for all the rea­sons Diop cited, tech­ni­cal de­vel­op­ment was less stressed than in Europe. Al­though Africans were the first to dis­cover iron, they had not built can­nons; the se­cret of gun­pow­der was known only to the Egyp­tian priests, who used it solely for re­li­gious pur­poses.

GREET­ING THE PAST: Dr Lee Burger shares a light mo­ment with a replica of the skull of the newly dis­cov­ered at a spe­cial press brief­ing at Maropeng.

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