I think we could all agree, at the least abstractly, that we want to live in a world without fear. Let's break it down and go on a run-through of some ideas, principles and practices which are fundamental to overcoming fear. Then maybe you'll see why you should take a closer look at the principle of Ujamaa, and how it's intersection with other principles helps us overcome fear and build friendship through the proper use of reciprocity and gratitude.
The first thing that comes to mind is "Freedom". This is a big word; freedom is our ability to be who we truly are, without being told what to do or how to think by others. Freedom is also tied with autonomy; our ability to control our own destiny and make choices for ourselves. We may not be able to always choose exactly what happens to us, but we can control how we respond. We can choose whether or not we give up or persevere in spite of the situation. Choice is power! In our Gye-Nyame training we go deeper into our discussion of freedom, by using our questions:
What are you on?
*The UnderGround RailRoad
Where are you headed?
*To the east
What's in the east?
Peace of the spirit, mind and body
For us peace is a major component of freedom, and we realize that peace requires all of the principles working together on the foundation of Ujamaa which is rooted in the concept of reciprocity and gratitud. Peace means having healthy relationships with others because you know that your needs matter just as much as theirs do - maybe more so if you're dealing with conflict. It also means knowing who your friends are, where they stand in your life.
By pulling these ideas together and working them within your tribe you develop a shield that protects you from the outside world. Enabling you to move without fear. Ujamaa is fundamentally a system of reciprocity and gratitude, built on the idea of a collective at its core. It is about creating a new community free from fear, suffering and doubt and building our relationships with each other by looking out for each other's best interests as we build and sustain our extended families, or tribes.
No list or questions for you today, but those on the #NguzoSabaChallenge you should be able to find something to write about above! Here is your proverb:
"During a storm you seek shelter under a tree and not the clouds."