Ed’s note: Rouvanne from peakperformance sent me the below post explaining that his mind was reeling and that I should edit it if need be. I haven’t touched a thing. This is really one of the best posts that I have ever published on this site. I love the concepts Rouvanne talks about and I love the way he has constructed the post. Thanks Rouvanne!
There are crises going on all over the world in terms of global warming, fights for or against democracy, religion, economics, medical diseases that threaten humanity, and they seem to be gathering speed at an ever increasing rate as the years fly past.
A few things in the recent media got me thinking. Zimbabwe and dots; Australia and brains; and Nelson Mandela and the Elders – though they might be worlds apart, it started a process of imagining a South Africa looking after its own future and hopefully also inspiring other nations, particularly African, to follow suit.
I think it was firstly Robert Mugabe’s reference to English Prime Minister Gordon Brown just being a “tiny dot” in the world that got me thinking. I am just a dot in the world, and damn proud of being here too. I was born of two dots; I have 3 sibling dots; I am fortunate to have found a sexy dot to spend my life with; and we’ve had so much fun that we even produced another two dots ourselves. So counting all my dots together, we’re getting closer to being a small blob, in this world.
Then secondly this past weekend, Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd co-hosted the Australia 2020 Summit, inviting 1000 (dots) artists, scientists, corporate chief’s, unionists and central bankers, to come up with 10 great ideas that’ll improve life in Australia by 2020.
And thirdly, last year President (dot) Nelson Mandela, with funding from (dots) Peter Gabriel and Sir Richard Branson, created The Elders who, using “their collective experience, their moral courage and their ability to rise above nation, race and creed, … can make our planet a more peaceful and equitable place to live,” said the former South African ‘presidot’. A subtle introduction of ubuntu to the world stage by both Branson and Mandela…
This jumble of ideas led me to realise that in every society there are individuals that are recognised as being the experts in their particular fields. Many are the intellectuals of our day, who have dedicated themselves to the study of specific fields in the sciences, arts, and economics; from the obscure, to the popular. Surely these people have ideas that their valuable education has given them the ability to see and work out, which should be considered seriously in creating viable alternative means of solving the problems we face collectively.
Education is a valuable privilege, but what is the use of these people being ignored while we debate due to political and popular thoughts in what can mostly be considered as a fight for more power or to satisfy our greed? Regardless of how you had the privilege of your education, what is the use of having it if you are not going to benefit society around you, and those that come after? It is your duty as a citizen of this world to share the knowledge that you have gained.
A database should be created (a Muti? a Wiki?) in which these models and ideas could be available for the use of humanity, for the people of South Africa. And it doesn’t have to come from any government – it should be sponsored by big business, by caring philanthropists, organisations and individuals who benefit from society around them – which is basically all of us, isn’t it. It’s taking social and corporate responsibility to a new level; admitting that without all the tiny dots in the world, we all would be nothing.
Over 9000 ideas were submitted to the Aussie summit from the public, defined by PM Kevin Rudd as, “Today we are throwing open the windows to our democracy to let a little bit of fresh air in.” Rudd set 10 themes for discussion: productivity, economy, sustainability and climate change, rural Australia, health, communities and families, indigenous Australia, creativity, governance and Australia’s future in the world.
I think that this could come up with some blobbing great ideas; as a gift to the people, a true and proudly South African “Think to Thank”. Ideas to take us into the future.
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