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Switch to Forum Live View The Legacy of Ethiopia -
4 years ago  ::  May 30, 2010 - 5:01PM #1
Wayne
Posts: 16

The Legacy of Ethiopia -


Ethiopia has been described as the Switzerland of Africa--a mountainous land of cultures, and an inspiration for independence to Africans shebawide. Renown author Paul Henze wrote "no where in the world does the primitive, ancient, medieval, and modern mix as it does in Ethiopia."


Sharing the tallest peaks in Africa with its southern neighbour Kenya, coffee is believed to have originated from Ethiopia--its fertile soils would wash away as silt into the Nile waters, providing the fertile soil that would bring life to Egypt.


Ethiopia is first mention in the biblical book of Genesis as near the Garden of Eden in Gen 2:13. Since 1974, when scientists discovered a 3.1 million year old humanoid fossil known as Lucy, Ethiopia has become known as the cradle of mankind, where humanity began--the scientific garden of Eden.


The ancient Ethiopians were known as the Aksumites. The Persian writer Mani in the third century described the Aksumites as one of the four great empires in the known world. They were second known to mint coins, and used Greek to record their history.


Ethiopian legend traces Aksum's origin to Menelik, the son of Queen Sheba and King Solomon. Menelik is believed to have brought the Ten Commandments and the Ark of the Covenant to Ethiopia some 2,500 years ago. It is in Aksum today, in the temple of St. Mary of Zion, as depicted in the above photograph, where the Ark of the Covenant is allegedly kept.


Ethiopia was late in its modern transition from its feudal medieval and biblical past, once ruled by monarchies that traced themselves to the Solomon dynasty .


In 1974, Ethiopia fell to communism, its monarchy overthrown. As a consequence of the cold war wit, arsenals of weapons from the Soviet Union were sent in to ensure communism’s success in Ethiopia, which plundered the country and set the stage for future famine and catastrophe. Millions of Ethiopians would perish.


In 1991 the communist government collapsed, and Ethiopia found itself the poorest country in the world. Today Ethiopia struggles to overcome the many hardships and missed opportunities it has endure, but its historical legacy, and its dream to restore its past glory, lives on.


 

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4 years ago  ::  Jun 01, 2010 - 2:55AM #2
Blü
Posts: 25,091


Wayne


That's a charming travelogue.  But any number of sub-Saharan nations are war-torn basket cases, and the parts of the old Africa Orientale Italiana are just three more, competing for the West's compassion and cash.


It's quite unclear to me on what basis you say they're more deserving than the others; or that the others are less deserving.


 

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4 years ago  ::  Jun 05, 2010 - 8:48PM #3
Deborah
Posts: 3

I am not sure Wayne has stated that Ethiopia is more deserving than other war torn countries.  Maybe there is just something about that country that reaches out to him. Maybe he met someone from there that touched his heart. I have met people who attended the college in my town from different countries. I became friends with several people from Nigeria. Extremely intelligent, hard working, and (what attracted me from the first) who loved to laugh and find so much joy in life itself. They were from several different tribes and had different customs which fasinated me and made me want to know everything about thier country. One of my dear friends had two scars on his face, one on each cheek, and he explained it was his peoples custom and a welcome honor to receive. Here most people would consider it disfigurement and abuse. But by being honest and open and laughing at how different and yet so alike we all were it was so easy to accept and not judge. Some things bewildered us about our differences. They wondered about the well-known problems concerning race relations in our country and yet they felt prejuduce aimed at them from black people of our country. They had thought it was a matter of skin color that created the fear and hatred.. But black against black? I shocked and saddened them. (This was before all the slaughter and terror of black against black that took place in Africa not long ago) Not being black, I could not answer but would be humbled and surprised years later when I received an answer that was so simple and yet made all the sense in the world.


The thing I was horrified to know about Nigeria at that time was that it was ok to break your wifes leg if she did something to shame you. Although assured that most marriages were now based on love and respect and only the most extreme would do this..It still bothered me. And I had to remind myself that they had been raised to believe this was  acceptable just as people here had been raised to think it acceptable to make blacks use seperate bathrooms, hotels, water fountains, etc. etc etc. These things do not come natural. They are learned behaviors we are taught to accept..The bible tells us time and again to love our enemies, love each other, and Do NOt Judge one another.  I have such a hard time with religion because time and time again almost every religion or church this is preached and yet turn around and do the complete opposite and whisper well this is what God really meant.. Why not say Yes God said to love and not judge and we are all one in his eyes but he sure must have lost his mind here so we just pretend to agree and then we do the complete opposite because we know better than God , right?


I was married to a black man for 5 years. I am white and have two white children who are now grown but were 3 and 6 back then. We lived in  a mostly black neighborhood and with a few exceptions hung out with mostly black people. Expecting all these questions from my kids about race and how come there was hardly any white people there.. I was thinking all these things planned to say and then I thought here we go when we went camping and my son went with my husband to use the woods as a bathroom..He came running back all excited  saying , mom, mom, guess what? I said what? He said you will never believe it but Lee is black all over ..even his butt. I  said, Yes he is. what color did you think he'd be there. and he shrugged and said, I don't know but probably pinkish like his  hands or bottoms of his feet. I started in with you know God made people in all different colors but he butted in with, "I know I know. But can I just ask you one thing? Anything I said, and prepared myself for questions of prejudice, hatred , and what ever..So he says, "well,  how did you know his butt was black before I told you?"I just stood there like an idiot with no idea what to say. finally he took off to fish some more.


the marriage did not last but the friendships I made with other women still do. I don't see my closest girlfriend as much now as I did then because we live in seperate towns now but we try to keep in touch. Our sons grew up together and I remember them about 11 or 12 taking turns driving my car up and down my long driveway and laughing and saying oh no when they would veer off the drive and over my flowers. Hurt me . OK Hurt my son, It kills me. I asked her how she deals with people shunning her son just because  he is black and how on earth do you make sure your son doesnt feel bad or hurt? It makes me so mad just thinking of people acting that way towards any child and I honestly hoped no one ever slighted her son around me because I loved him like my own and was afraid I'd knock them on their butts. She said,"She said, "Debbie NO! What you have to do is love them even harder.Pray for them to understand God's Love. It is not thier fault. They were taught to hate. They were never born that way. Children love. They don't know hate. The more they hate . the more you love. God knows. listen to him not to your anger. My son is a father himself now and not long ago I ran into my friend and as usual she says you know Bran runs into me alot and he still runs up to me no matter what and hugs me and asks about my son and family and I just love him and it means so much. (I honestly did not think much of it because my son is affectionate and hugs alot of people) My friend says You don't get it do you. And I said What? She said Your son does not hesitate, look around to see if anyone will see him hug a black person. Half the time I do not even see him but he will be yelling at me to slow down and give him a hug.  He does not see color. Children learn from who cares for them. They sense it if you are uncomfortable or dislike someone. By observing you, the color of someones skin has nothing to do with loveing someone. and his son will do as he does and  hopefully it will pass from there.


I still fight the anger. As hard as I try I cannot feel love for someone who shows hate for others. I need alot of help from God on this one..How can you love some one cruel? I tell myself to love but I sure do not feel the feeling. Maybe I just do not have enough faith in God. That is even harder for me to do. Faith is belief isn't it


 I have a problem believing something without proof. Oh man, and faith is believing without proof? I seem to be getting deeper and deeper lnto doubt but what is to point of lying?

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4 years ago  ::  Jun 07, 2010 - 4:05AM #4
Blü
Posts: 25,091

Deborah


Interesting memories.  I warmly support your stand against racism.


It's just that Wayne said nothing like that, and since he hasn't been back, I still don't know where he was coming from.  He didn't give the impression he'd ever been to Africa, for instance.


 

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4 years ago  ::  Jun 09, 2010 - 10:37AM #5
Deborah
Posts: 3

I am not sure I would be able to help people in another country without first helping the many people in our own country who need it. It would be like closing my eyes and ignoring the pain of a close family member and rushing to comfort a stranger. And I am not saying there is anything wrong with helping a stranger but shouldn't we all start with those who are closest and then we can all go from there? Emergencies being the exception, of course.

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4 years ago  ::  Jun 11, 2010 - 2:07PM #6
ozero
Posts: 1,411

In Ethiopia there are race problems and have been for a long time.  The Amahara people consider themselves caucasian as opposed to negroid, as those who live in the southern part of Ethiopia are.  They do have some caucasian features, but it would be difficult for most Americans (black or white) to tell the difference.  It is a mostly christian country, with a large moslem population especially around Eritrea which was a part of Ethiopia till the 1990's. Racially, I suppose it's a lot like Mexico, which has their own race problems.  Ask some Mexicans about the difference between Los Indios and Los Negros. 


I've known some people from Ethiopia.  Very interesting and mostly normal people, but they do have the hottest peppers in the world and that has to have an effect on them.


 


 

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4 years ago  ::  Oct 29, 2010 - 5:46PM #7
Marcion
Posts: 2,883

Besides harboring the ark of the covenant, Ethiopia has some pretty good coffee.

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