I first learned about Ubuntu, the operating system, about 5 years ago when I was working with an advertising/PR agency that was transitioning to open source software. The name stuck with me and I wanted to know where it came from and that’s how I learned about South African philosophy.
Ubuntu is a south african term that can be roughly translated into “human-ness.” Philosophically, it means that in the known universe, everything is connected. That we, as humans, are not only connected to each other but to everything. It’s ver meta 😀
As a humanist, this idea of ubuntu was something I could easily identify with. According to Michael Onyebuchi Eze, Ph.D. in his book Intellectual History of Contemporary South Africa, ubuntu can be summarized as follows:
“A person is a person through other people”
That makes sense, right? We are a product of our circumstances, good and bad. We are what our interactions with the world around us make us. We are what we observe and learn from our family, friends, media, etc. That explains why some people grow apart while others are drawn together.
“I am because we are.”
I cannot be human by myself. I wouldn’t be who I am today without the people I have met along the way. Take one person out, one movie, one book, one event… and I am another person. How crazy is that? It’s UBUNTU.
So I want to take this opportunity to THANK YOU! YOU! who has been reading my blog, YOU! who leaves comments, YOU! who also writes, YOU! who makes ME possible.