Mar 16, 2018 Belonging in South Africa
South Africa is tame Africa, but just barely. Around the homes the bush still pushes in. There is an ancient rhythm to this land. The sand is white and soft like confection sugar and as my kids play in it they come out looking like dusted sugar cookies. There is the romance of Africa versus the reality. With in this land is a first world that butts right up against a third world. What’s separating these two worlds is a barbed wire fence. The townships (ghettos) appear out of no where in the sand dunes and then fill the land with tin shack after square tin shack. With roofs held down by old tires or the biggest rocks they could heft up. The stadium style lights shoot up at random in the middle of these shanties; to give their dusty narrow lanes dim light at night.
I’m not proud that my planet still has discrimination. I’m not proud of what my own country did some 150 years ago to African Americans or what was done to the Native Americans for hundreds of years. But for some reason these atrocities always felt like they were more in the past and separate from me. I guess nothing clings like the past. The Apartheid – the separateness- is starring me directly in the face here.
In South Africa I am reminded that we all came to Earth to belong.
To belong to a lover
To belong to someone or each other
To belong to a family
To belong to Society
And to belong to the Earth
Where we all eventually will return.
I see our world growing in tolerance and I believe our world is getting better. I hope you see it that way too. It’s a simple feeling of hope. Let’s stop stumbling over each other to be first. This world belongs to all of us and we all belong to each other so let’s go at it hand in hand.