Mmegi Blogs :: A Lesson In Humility
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A Lesson In Humility

Pride, being over-confident or over-bearing is generally shunned. In life, it is better to be humble than to have a superiority complex. Invariably, pride not only brings your downfall, but always makes you look foolish.
By Tumie Modise Mon 25 Sep 2017, 16:43 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Blogs :: A Lesson In Humility








Sadly, people who are proud realise this only when they face grave situations in life, and one thing I know with the utmost certainty is that the experience teaches them valuable lessons. A story is told of a son, a spoilt brat from one rich family who woke up one day then decided on the spot that he now wanted his share of the family’s wealth. 

Perhaps he was just tired of waiting for his own father to die, perhaps afraid that his father may even outlive him. Uncomfortable, and taken aback by his tone and aggression, his parents quickly acceded to his demands. Now an instant millionaire, off he went!

Several years later, having blown his loot, reality and life hit him. It is not explained how he blew off his inheritance. Those were the Biblical times so I am imagining him going off to the fish market, buying a hen here, several dozens of eggs, getting several pairs of leather sandals, buying a donkey or three, whole kernels of wine before embarking on endless trips with the honeys to holy sites on camel backs. There is little or no reference about ‘fun times’ in the Bible, so I am just letting my imagination run wild here.

I was reminded once more of this old story this past week as the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP)’s prodigal son, the notorious Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) hit yet another iceberg, after just seven years since he embarked on an adventurous cruise.

Maybe I should cut him some slack here because seven years in dog years is eternity. Like the prodigal son, this political party was formed in 2010 after a major tantrum.

But unlike the Biblical son, the father in this instance was not moved, so the son still stormed off anyway, empty-handed.  When hunger struck, this son then resorted to coming back at night, to steal stuff from his father’s house.

Go anywhere in the world. Every street and corner is already someone else’s territory. Even ladies of the night own streets, petty thieves own culverts, dark passages and alleys. Like I always caution my own children, if you are going to entertain rebellious ideas and thoughts of mutiny know that it is tough out there. The BDP’s prodigal son soon

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found that out.

It is inevitable that anything that starts in shame always ends in shame. This must have dawned on the BDP’s prodigal son a few days ago, when just after seven years on the rough streets, other tomcats ganged up on him, whipped him blue and black, robbed him of his prized meagre possessions before unceremoniously kicking him out of their alley.

The son, as he later made a teary testimony a day later in the sanctity of a church owned compound ironically named Áve Maria”, narrated a heartbreaking tale of what he had endured at the hands of other street cats. He swears he does not know how that even happened! As he narrated his rough life, his street companions dozed off during the proceedings, seemingly enjoying their first ever decent sleep in seven years!

Now wait for this one, whereas the Biblical prodigal son woke up one day, decided enough was enough, and decided he was going back to his father’s house, this one has decided he is not yet done with the streets! Clearly the adage, once beaten, twice shy, doesn’t apply to this particular son. So the son, battered and wounded, still chooses to soldiers on.

He would rather go on fighting street cats than humble himself in front of his father. One other good lesson I have learnt through the years I have been around is that in life you should never aim to fight ALL battles; rather pick battles that are worth your energy and time, winnable battles. It took me a while to learn this, before that I used to fight with only one thing in mind - to win.

It was only when I realised that some wins could be so shallow that I took a moment back to introspect.  So the prodigal son, although admitting to being battered, humiliated and defeated by the streets, still insists he is soldiering on and moving further down the street! It doesn’t help that other stray cats are cheering him on. And as he continues traversing the length and breadth of the rough political terrain, I would be the first to say I do not see any silver lining of this conundrum. Thunder will definitely strike for the second time.

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