Wednesday, 19 February 2014

UBUNTU bloghop ~ Nelson Mandela and his fellows

Hi everyone. Today I'm taking part in Michelle Wallace's UBUNTU Blog Hop - a celebration of Michelle's 3 years blogging, and also of the African concept of Ubuntu:

"In Africa, there is a concept known as UBUNTU – the profound sense that we are human only through the humanity of others; that if we are to accomplish anything in this world, it will in equal measure be due to the work and achievement of others." – Nelson Mandela.

In the time since I signed up for this blog hop, I went and saw the movie MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM. For that reason I feel it's quite fitting that we started off this hop off with a quote from the great man himself.

To tell the truth, I'm largely ignorant of South African history, so I really can't vouch for the accuracy or authenticity of the film I saw. But I can say that I thought it was a great film, and a worthy tribute to the amazing Nelson Mandela.

One thing that occurred to me while watching the film was that Mandela didn't do the amazing things he did all on his own. First off, he wasn't jailed on his own. Secondly, he left behind a whole bunch of people who fought on without him.

Don't get me wrong - Mandela was an inspirational, awe-inspiring man, an unforgettable role model even before he went to jail. But when he was first incarcerated, it might've been easier for those he left behind to just give up the fight. Obviously their lives wouldn't have been easy by any means if they had, but surely to them the idea of going on without Mandela there with them must have felt pretty damn terrifying.

But those people, including Winnie Mandela herself, didn't give up. They continued to fight for their freedom and basic rights, and for that reason I think they were pretty amazing human beings as well.

Thanks Michelle for introducing me to Ubuntu, and furthering my cultural education. :)


  1. I really want to see this movie, big fan of Idris Elba. It's interesting to think about the other people involved in Mandela's fight - I guess that is the case with any heroic figure, there are always others working behind them and supporting them. Sounds like a really good movie.

  2. Hi Trisha .. having lived in South Africa learning more about its history, and about Mandela has been very interesting .. I wrote an A-Z type post after his death in December, and I have another to write shortly with further information that I found fascinating ...

    I loved the film too - it brought back so many evocative memories of Africa ... Mandela in prison set examples early on and so when they were released, he wouldn't leave without his other friends - he wasn't perfect, but he was certainly a leader and a learner ... he was always educating himself and thus others ...

    My post gives some further background to Ubuntu, that I was bowled over about ...

    I'm loving everyone's take on Michelle's bloghop .. cheers Hilary

  3. You know, I LOVE the concept of UBUNTU, especially in the writing community. Maybe people really don't believe it, but I get such a thrill seeing the achievement and successes of my fellow writers. When the conquer a draft, see their first publishing credit--you name it. Makes me believe in myself and what we're all trying to achieve.

    So I think it probably applies to all layers of life.

  4. Most great leaders surround themselves with great people. They are the spark that ignites the cause and the passion in others.

  5. I did see the movie with Matt Damon and Morgan Freeman, where they play ruby. Well, Matt Damon does.

    That has nothing to do with anything I guess, except Morgan Freeman played Nelson Mandella.

    But it sounds like a noble thing, UBUNTU.

  6. It's hard to look past Mandela for inspiration, Trish. A worthy inspiration.

  7. From what I've been reading, that is the crux of Ubuntu. Mandella didn't do it himself, he was the leader of a union of people. People relying on each other to succeed.

  8. Sorry I'm so late in getting to your place.
    I'm really enjoying all the varying and wonderful Ubuntu posts.

    QUOTE: "What I've come to learn is that the world is never saved in grand messianic gestures, but in the simple accumulation of gentle, soft, almost invisible acts of compassion--everyday acts of compassion. In South Africa there's a phrase called ubuntu. Ubuntu comes out of a philosophy that says, the only way for me to be human is for you to reflect my humanity back at me." - Chris Abani on TED. (Check it out if you have a chance)

    So it's a collective concept.
    Trisha, thank you for reaching out across cyberspace to share in the spirit of Ubuntu!

  9. This post is truly i just said on Denis Covey's blog, i am really enjoying following the different international contributions to this word...philosophy, which by the way is from my lanuage (XHOSA) and Bishop TuTu who brought it media fame most certainly is from my tribe....
    Greetings from Johannesburg, SA:

    Wendy @ Join This Hop

  10. So true - we really do so little in isolation - most of our acts depend on others in some way or another.

  11. Very good point, Trisha. For twenty-seven+ years, Mandela's followers kept his fight going. I never thought about, or even acknowledged, this. It's truly aligned with ubuntu. Thank you.

    Be well.

  12. Hi, Trish...

    SO true... Excellent point. He set them on the path. Ubuntu at it's finest!

    Perfect example.

  13. Well said! I hadn't a clue about Ubuntu until this celebration pulled me into its world and opened up an amazing ideal that was beyond inspiring. And I got to write about a metal rhino, which was fun:)
    Ubuntu Spirit of the Blue Swallow

  14. It takes a great leader to inspire so many followers. It's amazing how long they kept the fight going during his imprisonment. Great post Trisha!


  15. I've never seen the movie Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, but I want to now. Mandela and the people who supported and helped him really did embody the spirit of Ubuntu.

  16. Hey, Trisha,
    I finally made it over. True that there were many others involved in the South African struggle for freedom. It takes a strong and charismatic leader to rally the troops into action.


Thanks for your words, me hearties! and don't forget to leave a link to your blog somewhere I can find it!