Culture…our village way of life. We still have it.
One of the few things that stir up flames of passion inside of me is the sight of people living out the culture that I was born and raised into, in this present century where the world in limping culturally because it has let development cut off its roots.
Everybody needs a foundation and the stronger and rooted ones is, the higher the chance of overcoming whatever battle is presented in that area. If you don’t know where you are coming from, how well will you know where you are going?
I have an opportunity every holiday to escape the lights and the cultural emptiness of the city and go back to what I know…be it simply sitting around the fire in the late hours of the day for devotion and family time, be it looking after the goats, pounding mahangu, collecting fire word while hunting for whatever food nature provides that season, harvesting, cooking dinner for the family or a walk in the woods admiring nature and singing along with the birds. We still have not lost it. How enthusing?
This is the life I know. And this is one of the many things that keep the Namibian pride in me. Namibia has dared to keep its culture in a conflicted world. Namibia has maintained the diverseness of its culture yet living it all out as one nation. Just go around and observe them. Everyone in their own language…in their own attire…greeting their own way…so different yet so united.
It therefore saddens me to see diluted culture. I believe there is a difference between enhancing culture and actually diluting it. Enhancing actually adds some up to date flavour to it but diluting? – diluting weakens it, it reduces it.
The lifestyles have changed-in most cases not even for the better, the customs are looked down on, habits are broken, tradition doesn’t even matter lately and cultural practices are not more. Cultural dilution must fall.
There are a lot of things you can snatch from me, but this one can never take away-my culture. It is in my heart; it’s buried in my arteries and mixed up with my blood. It is in my DNA and in every atom that makes me ‘me’.
And so this inspires me-the fact that in most parts of Namibia, we still have it. Our culture…and it is still pure…
By Albertina M Nande