The title “ubuntu spirit” comes from the Zulu proverb umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu” meaning, “A person is a person through other persons.”
Ubuntu began as a blog for me to voice my experiences, opinions and research so that others could interact with them and thus share our persons together via the web.
Now, ubuntu is heading in a new direction.
Fundamental to the “ubuntu” philosophy is that each person is set within a nexus, a network if you may, of other people. What happens to you necessarily affects me and what happens to me impacts you. The Nguni people put it like this, “umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu” – literally, a person is a person through other persons.
Our world is one of great strife and vicious conflict. Unfortunately, much of this derision is caused by religious tension. History books are full of the stuff that makes religious moderates cringe and fuels the fire of the new atheists’ tirades against faith in any form.
As the new report from the Pew Forum suggests, one possible cause for this ubiquitous religious conflict is the lack of knowledge about religion (see post “Time to Get an Education”), whether one’s own or the beliefs of the person down the street.
With this in mind the Ubuntu blog will target specifically religious topics. More accurately, the Ubuntu blog will comment on religion as it intersects with society, popular culture and education.
I do not hold to any utopian vision of a world of religious literates living in harmony together whilst each claiming their own epistemological truth. I believe there will be no pervasive peace until the parousia, and then we will all share the same confession (Isaiah 45:23; Philippians 2:10-11). However, this blog’s intention is to raise awareness of religious issues, educate those who desire to understand more about other religions and prayerfully increase dialogue between people of both faith and non-faith in an effort to better understand one another in today’s (post)modern age.
To that end I invite you to join the dialogue and help all of us to better understand one another as persons, and in so doing better apperceive the thrust of the ubuntu philosophy that posits our blithe existence as necessarily tied up in the well being of others.
Connect with me on Facebook – Ken Chitwood or follow me on Twitter @kchitwood. You can e-mail me in regards to UbuntuSpirit at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!
*One more thing…as a disclaimer I want to be upfront and honest with folks and say I am a progressive-confessional Lutheran. At times, I will offer my Christian perspective on the events, people and issues I write about. You will notice this especially with my earlier posts. I will do my best to remain religiously neutral, and I appreciate your candor and critique along the way if I overstep my own boundaries. With that said, you will also notice that I will rip into Christians more than anyone else, not because I think that I am better than any of my other brothers and sisters, but because I would expect the same of them if I stepped out of Scriptural Christian discipline. Thanks for bearing with me along the way!