Babalwa Mhlauli

Lovelight flower Babalwa

Reverence

If you can’t smell the fragrance

Don’t come into the garden of Love.

If you’re unwilling to undress

Don’t enter into the stream of Truth.

Stay where you are.

Don’t come our way.

- Rumi

 

Dear God

 

I read that love demands

"Absolute Non-Compliance with Institutional Evil." When we obey and honor love peace becomes our way of life, effortlessly and we don't prevent anybody from reaching their fullest potential. One would think that South African leaders would want nothing but success for the next generation but, the truth is most of them don't. It is comforting however to know that our forefathers will stop at nothing to see our generation;

"rise and rise and rise again till lambs become lions!" (Movie)

 

Steve Biko once said;

"In time we shall be in a position to bestow on South Africa the greatest possible gift- a more human face."

 

This human face will do and achieve the inconceivable and it will acknowledge boldly that;

 

"I wouldn't be here if, time and again, the torch had not been passed to a new generation." -- President Obama

 

So how do we get to the place of promise Steve Biko?

Through service!

 

"Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?" -- Dr King

 

The answers to this question depend upon the work that is done continually to heal oneself, to heal the nation thus human kind. For only healthy human beings can give and serve from pure places of love in their heart of hearts. President Mandela had a deeper understanding of how one builds a broken nation, thus the entire world, because he reflected upon these issues while he was in prison. He personally went through the process of forgiveness and reconciliation. He could therefore bestow this gift to others worldwide.

 

He said;

"I saw my mission as one of preaching reconciliation, of binding the wounds of the country, of engendering trust and confidence.

 

I will pass through this world but once, and I do not want to divert my attention from my task, which is to unite the people."

 

Climate change is a clear reminder that we and our planet are in need of love much more than we realize.

This moment is calling for a people who honor service for the sake of love, of goodwill and cooperation.

 

We must remember that true worthiness has absolutely nothing to do with external possessions.

You are worthy because you are a child of the Most High first and foremost. Its impossible to cause others harm deliberately and to begrudge others of their success when you understand that God intended for you to be here regardless of how you came to be here. When you are aware of your worthiness life becomes joyous, an endless celebration of love and light.

Mahatma Gandhi reminds us that;

"You assist an evil system most effectively by obeying its orders and decrees. An evil system never deserves such allegiance. Allegiance to it means partaking of evil. A good person will resist an evil system with his or her whole soul."

 

So what do you do when you are bullied and violated? You simply don't give up. You keep on doing what you feel you have been called to do and you stand upright and fight for your rights. God will not leave you nor forsake you because you are His most prized possession. You don't only fight for your own rights, you must fight for the rights of the weak, the poor and marginalised encouraged by grandfather Madiba who once said,

 

"We fought injustice wherever we found it, no matter how large, or how small, and we fought injustice to preserve our own humanity!"

 

So this leads me to why I'm here, why we are here.

 

What I've always known is that God gave me a name,  like the name of the great ones on earth in order to be a blessing. Therefore my work has always been a continuation of what my ancestors have sought to achieve. The most beautiful thing though is that they have ushered me forth to do even more, to discover far greater things than they were able to do in their lifetime.

 

"Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do, and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father!" -- Jesus.

 

On Pan Africa Radio I was introduced as Babalwa the Unifier, because of my God given role during the first hearings of

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission held in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. I didn't know much about the TRC,

nor did I know that the man behind this unparalleled vision for our country and future was none other than Nelson Mandela.

I was too young to know the depth, magnitude and the impact this life changing event would have on a global scale.

Yet I've always known in the depth of my heart that;

 

"The spirit of the Lord is upon me because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.

He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." -- Luke

 

As my role is being revealed each day  I find myself deeply humble and profoundly moved by the mere thought that God has chosen me to continue this great work that many weren't able to do because it was against the law to be fully human.

This is something we must never forget lest we become the oppressor.

 

"Corruption in government - that is a plague that must be erased from every regime in every place in the world." -- Nelson Mandela

 

He goes on to say;

"It was during those long and lonely years that my hunger for the freedom of my own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. A man who takes away another man's freedom is a prisoner of hatred, he is locked behind the bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. I am not truly free if I am taking away someone else's freedom, just as I am not free when my freedom is taken from me. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity.

 

When I walked out of prison, that was my mission, to liberate the oppressed and the oppressor both. Some say that has now been achieved. But I know that is not the case. For to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others. The true test of our devotion to freedom is just beginning.

 

I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can only rest for a moment, for with freedom come responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not yet ended."

 

Jesus says;

" I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing."

 

I always stop just to feel life's marvelous blessings, like sunshine kisses and butterflies! (Laughter) In the process I learn the discipline of being the master of my soul thus the master of my calling, realizing that;

 

"Often, our greatest discoveries are born not in a flash of brilliance, but in the crucible of a deliberate effort over time. And often they take something more than imagination and dedication alone---often they take an investment and commitment from government. That's how we sent a man to the moon. That's how we were able to launch a world wide web. And its how we'll help to build the clean-energy economy that's the key to our competitiveness in the twenty-first century". -- President Barack Obama

 

Abraham Lincoln wrote a letter to his son's teacher. It serves to comfort all of us today who have suffered immensely from man's inhumanity.

 

Eckhart Tolle informs us that;

"As long as you are run by the egoic mind, you are part of the collective insanity. Perhaps you haven't looked very deeply into the human condition in its state of dominance by the egoic mind. Open your eyes and see the fear, the despair, the greed, and the violence that are all-pervasive. See the heinous cruelty and suffering on an unimaginable scale that humans have inflicted and continue to inflict on each other as well as on other life forms on the planet. You don't need to condemn. Just observe. That is sin. That is insanity. That is unconsciousness. Above all, don't forget to observe your own mind. Seek out the root of the insanity there."

 

I'm sure Tolle doesn't in anyway suggest that one must do absolutely nothing when facing unbearable challenges.

 

Nelson Mandela says;

"It would have been immoral to keep quiet while a racist tyranny sought to reduce an entire people into a status worse than that of beast of the forest."

 

I have also come to understand that

"To flee vice is the beginning of virtue." -- Horace

 

The book of Proverbs reminds us that envy, Jealousy and hatred stirs up strife. However,

"Love invents reasons to avoid strife!"

 

Lincoln's letter to his son's teacher;

 

"He will have to learn, I know,

that all men are not just,

all men are not true.

But teach him also that

for every scoundrel there is a hero;

that for every selfish Politician,

there is a dedicated leader…

Teach him for every enemy there is a

friend,

 

Steer him away from envy,

if you can,

teach him the secret of

quiet laughter.

 

Let him learn early that

the bullies are the easiest to lick… Teach him, if you can,

the wonder of books…

But also give him quiet time

to ponder the eternal mystery of birds in the sky,

bees in the sun,

and the flowers on a green hillside.

 

In the school teach him

it is far more honorable to fail

than to cheat…

Teach him to have faith

in his own ideas,

even if everyone tells him

they are wrong…

Teach him to be gentle

with gentle people,

and tough with the tough.

 

Try to give my son

the strength not to follow the crowd

when everyone is getting on the band wagon…

Teach him to listen to all men…

but teach him also to filter

all he hears on a screen of truth,

and take only the good

that comes through.

 

Teach him if you can,

how to laugh when he is sad…

Teach him there is no shame in tears,

Teach him to scoff at cynics

and to beware of too much sweetness…

Teach him to sell his brawn

and brain to the highest bidders

but never to put a price-tag

on his heart and soul.

 

Teach him to close his ears

to a howling mob

and to stand and fight

if he thinks he’s right.

Treat him gently,

but do not cuddle him,

because only the test

of fire makes fine steel.

 

Let him have the courage

to be impatient…

let him have the patience to be brave.

Teach him always

to have sublime faith in himself,

because then he will have

sublime faith in mankind.

 

This is a big order,

but see what you can do…

He is such a fine fellow,

my son!"

 

Dr Washington once wrote that;

"To the deeply emotional and religious slave, Lincoln was an earthly incarnation of the Savior of mankind."

 

I received this letter a couple of hours after I wrote a sweet note to Abe on my facebook time line, Feb 12-

I wrote;

 

(Who's birthday is it today? Abe Abe sweet and lovable Abe! Big kiss on your forehead! You just make me so so happy, ohhhh!!! Picture me in my denim shorts, sneakers, fun +fly top as I rap away a 2pac jam that my grandfather enjoyed too!):-)

His letter was so unexpected, I cried because at that moment I felt that it was written for me.

 

So is it any wonder that I too love Abe?

Washington writes,

"Gradually the Negro built a more emotional image of Lincoln, a perfect man and, in a peculiarly individual way, a personal emancipator."

 

Abes's letter comes a day before we celebrated the 24th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison, our much loved personal emancipator. A day that future generations will sing about, rap about, write stories about from new and fresh angles, that will reach their peers thus, new audiences. I can hardly wait for their prowess, magic and pure genius. They will out live, out class and silence cynics for the glory of God.

 

It is abundantly clear to me that;

"Any men or institution that tries to rob me of my dignity will lose." -- Nelson Mandela

 

How does one explain the fact that Abe handpicked me to be a part of his 150th anniversary of Gettysburg Address?

 

"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for wholesomeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope." -- Jeremiah

 

The book of Ephesians reminds us to;

 

"Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not associate with them; for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,

 

Awake, O sleeper,

and arise from the dead,

and Christ will shine on you."

 

Peace prevails where love abides.

 

Dr. Ann Dunham, (Pres Obama's mom) comes to mind for many reasons, I'd like to share with you what her daughter Maya Soetoro-Ng says about her;

 

"She felt that somehow, wandering through uncharted territory, we might stumble upon something that will, in an instant, seem to represent who we are at the core. That was very much her philosophy of life—to not be limited by fear or narrow definitions, to not build walls around ourselves and to do our best to find kinship and beauty in unexpected places."

 

Is it any wonder that her son would be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009, for "his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."

 

President Obama offered us a window through his soul as he reflected upon his years in Hawaii, he said;

"The opportunity that Hawaii offered—to experience a variety of cultures in a climate of mutual respect—became an integral part of my world view, and a basis for the values that I hold most dear."

 

In my early 20's I lived in England for a couple of years because I needed to experience different cultures thus, humanity at large. Here I would write a profound poem called Global Unification, published by Jubilee2000, recited worldwide through tv interviews, recited in an event organized by Department of International Relations and Cooperation (South Africa). I addressed an audience that included several ambassadors who were invited by the deputy minister of the department.

 

Global Unification was largely inspired by the very first country I visited abroad (Sweden) when I was still a student. That was life changing for me. It opened me up in ways I never thought were possible.

 

Without God I would have never ever been able to do these things.

 

Pres Obama says;

"I was not raised in a religious household ... My mother's own experiences ... only reinforced this inherited skepticism. Her memories of the Christians who populated her youth were not fond ones ... And yet for all her professed secularism, my mother was in many ways the most spiritually awakened person that I've ever known."

 

Today one never knows if they'll come out alive in some churches. I want young people to be aware and their parents to be cautious. Knowledge is power. Our safety is a gift from God, the government needs to exercise its power completely and fully when safety and security of some citizens is threatened.

 

"You will keep perfectly peaceful the one whose mind remains focused on you, because he remains in you. ... And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." -- Scripture

 

Always remember;

“Beyond our ideas of right-doing and wrong-doing,

there is a field. I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,

the world is too full to talk about.

Ideas, language, even the phrase ‘each other’

doesn’t make sense any more."

-- Rumi

 

Therefore;

"On the road of life meet people where they are. Accept who they are. And there are some folks that you need to leave where they are. Keep walking!"

-- Denise Linn

Babalwa dancing Abe Babalwa at microphone Khulu laughing