This video (see below)prompted several thoughts as I watched it. In fact, it actually created a kind of paradoxical thinking bordering on conflict of interest. Having been to Africa myself, and having many African friends my thoughts today, in view of the recent Aggression against Africa, West Africa, in particularly due to the Ebola virus that has been around since 1970 and whom some feel has been weaponized…. my thoughts spiraled into this blog post.
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Personally, I think it’s nice to have industry but I also am concerned about what industrialization means to the common people. Does it mean that everyone can reap the benefits? Does it mean that they have taken on the Western Mantle of Capitalism so despite the outward appearance of opulence, there is an insidious gap between the haves and the have-nots.
I also wonder how much devastation had to happen to the pristine lands to create the metropolis.
I wonder is there a middle ground. A way forward to a so called advanced civilization, a cooperation that respects the primitive (first) approach to nature and other human beings and the industrialization of indigenous lands. Can those tall buildings mean less pollution, less aggression, less poverty, and a more holistic lifestyle for all.
Are indigenous people displaced from their home so that huge highways, factories and buildings can be placed there? Are animals rounded up and placed on reserves and zoos so that the land they lived on can be transformed into territory that can be used by big corporations? Or more horrifically, are/were they slaughtered?
Did/does the leadership of these countries consider the original natural habitat of their country and the effect on the planet when they became part of the industrial revolution?
Did/does the Universities, and lower schools teach the youth about their culture, spirituality and ancient history or is their culture and history replace, distorted or demonized with the invasion of Western education, spirituality and religion?
Looking at the current tumbling of the Western economy, will the African economy collapse as well as it has become economically entrenched in the Western style of buying and selling, i.e. Capitalism?
These and many other questions come to mind when I view this video.
There are 53-55 countries that are part of the African continent. Each of these countries have their own way of life, traditional cultures and spirituality. Before colonization, they were thriving within their own borders. The imposition of arbitrary borders, religion, political and educational structures and languages of the colonizers have changed the face of Africa that I am sure would be quite unrecognizable to those who lived there 500 to 600 years ago.
The Western model of civilization has dwarfed the ancient model that these people held. It has caused a schism in beliefs, systems and mental structures among the African people. They are divided in their ability to gather their people under One Banner of Nationhood. Even this idea is antipathetic to the Original African Mindset. The concept of Global reach while admirable, in the Ancient African’s way of thinking it did not mean the destruction of entire civilizations and creating homogenous civilizations in its wake. The unfortunate wars of conquest, and empire building that took place among the Africans still allowed for the intermingling, dissemination and cooperation among different peoples even though there may have been regional Chiefs. This is particularly notable by the fact that Africans tend to be multi-lingual speaking several dialects fluently to communicate among their home tribes and peoples as well as being able to fluently communicate with others in surrounding areas.
The advent of the Western Model of dominance where everyone speaks the same language, has one religions and is politically yoked to the western idea of democracy, is foreign to the African/Indigenous mind. I can only imagine the amount of cultural shock it must/has caused the African who’s family values, appreciation for nature and others in the community is replaced with the competitive nature of the Western World View.
The Western World view is that if every one wears the same garment, they all look alike, while the African World view is that if every one wears the same garment, they create and individuation by the fact that each person brings their own individual essence to the garment. So the difference is what brings uniformity, not uniformity is suppressed by difference. The African World view sees a Higher Power that expresses itself through every blade of grass as a different expression of itself. To the Western Mind, “In My Image.” means an exact replica. There for a One World Government means that everything has to be the same, homogenous, exact replicas. While the African engages in the Creativity of the various streams of expression. No two things need sound alike or be exactly alike.
Looking at the African Industrial structures in this video, you see the modeling and patterning and replication of the concepts of duplication. Over and over, in this model, things are fabricated to “BE” the same. This leads me to see, these industrialized metropolises as replicas of the Western World View. It is as if industrializing Africa has created the Western “Franchise” results. Everything looks the same. Buildings, factories, highways are all build the same so when compared to the Western world they can be said to be comparable. And this is true around the world. Countries that move toward industrialization typically look like Western countries. Meanwhile, the rainforest and pristine lands that preceded the Western Ideology of what “civilization” meant is wiped away from the mental landscape.
Having been born in the Western World, I have my own inner conflicts about this. I appreciate the comforts of running water, sanitation, a flushing toilet, refrigeration and heating. However, I also appreciate the so-called back-to-nature aspect of Indigenous living, before industrialization. I am also aware of how addictive these creature comforts can be when compared to having to use an outhouse to relieve oneself.
I guess my biggest question is, how can industrialization take place without destroying the planet in its wake? Is there a way to make life a little easier to bear without destroying the very planet that gives us this life? Are there other options to building tall structures and creating metropolis that displace humans, animals and nature? Is there a middle ground where man and nature can live harmoniously together without destroying each other?
These and many other questions come to mind when I view this video.