The Ubuntu Meaning - a strong humanist philosophy
Ubuntu is a word in Nguni language (a Bantu language spoken in southern Africa) that is known to be a term for a very strong humanist philosophy, also known as Ubuntuism or Hunhuism (in Shona language).
The ubuntu philosophy appears mentioned in sources dating from the middle of 19th century in southern Africa. It has been translated as: "kindness, human nature, humanness, goodness, humanity".
The ubuntu philosophy basically asserts that the people have meaning only in connection with others. According to ubuntu the society is the one that gives human beings their humanity and not the individual.
An individual can be human only in relation with the society. Someone cannot live by it's own and be considered human.
An anthropologist made a study on some children living in a South African village that used the ubuntu philosophy in their life. He put a basket full with fruits near a tree and ask the children to race to that basket and the winner will get all the fruits. The children did something unexpected: they grabbed each other by their hands and run together to that basket. They reached the basket at the same time and they all shared the prize. That's the essence of the ubuntu meaning.
Here is an interview with Nelson Mandela explaining the ubuntu meaning at the launch of Ubuntu Linux 6.06:
Nelson Mandela explaining Ubuntu meaning
This concept is completely different from what children from so called "civilized nations" are thought in schools. They are thought to compete with each other for the resources. They are thought to compete for good grades, so that they can get a prize at the end of the scholar year. They are thought to compete with each other to get well paid job. Cooperation and teamwork are in fact punished by the schools. They call it cheating.
The reason for this things happening in our schools I believe is the true purpose of schools. I think the purpose of schools in "civilized countries" is to create obedient followers, people that don't have enough trust in themselves to do something different, people that are easy to control because are weak, people that cannot cooperate very well so that they can't organize on their own. That's why school encourages competition. They say competition creates performance but that's only a mask, because competition divides. When people are competing with each other they are not in the same team, they are divided, they don't follow the same plan. In that way they become easy to control. In fact "Divide and Conquer" is a well known strategy used by the army to weaken and conquer new territories.
Applying the Ubuntu Meaning To Our LifeUbuntu meaning is close related with helping each other in a group.
You now probably live according the standards of a capitalist democratic society. In this type of society there is not much synergy between the actions of individuals, even if they work in the same space and they follow the same plan. Companies that are in the same field of activity often are in competition with each other. Despite that they follow the same plan and they have the same goal, people working in the same company often are competing with each other for the best paid positions.
This competition is a major delay in evolution. There will always be fewer winners than losers in such a system and only the winners will push it forward.
Applying the ubuntu philosophy into your life requires in the first place to have a group with the same principles. Ubuntu philosophy has significance only in a group of people, as it's about how people interact and respond to each others needs.
So the first thing to do to apply ubuntu meaning into your life is to find like minded people. You can create a group of people, provide value to each other, provide unconditional help to each other and share resources within the group.
The ubuntu philosophy can be applied to your life and with your group of friends, but it can be also applied to a larger scale. We cna have an "ubuntu economy" or an "ubuntu society" for example. This is also known as a "Resource Based Economy".
In a resource based economy, all the people are sharing all the resources of the planet in a scientifically controlled way. In such an economy, the use of money becomes obsolete. There are no things to buy in such an economy, as people share the objects, tools and resources they need.
There is much to debate on this subject of resource based economy and it's clear that it requires a high level of education and awareness for all the members in such a society. The studies of Jacque Fresco may give you more information about this kind of economy. Just search over Google or YouTube for Jacque Fresco and you will find plenty of sources about "resource based economy system".
I believe that the ubuntu philosophy it's where our world is heading for. The time of competition and wars is over. Competition, fight for resources and wars brought us where we are today but if we want to go further we need to make a big change in our beliefs.
We cannot get more if we continue to fight with each other.