A beautiful and ancient word that denotes the deep collective power of empathy and humanity.
Ubuntu is a Xhosa word that denotes sharing what you have. As in, my humanity is inextricably linked and bound up in yours. Ubuntu recognises that true healing is impossible without recognition of our common humanity and common destiny.‘The Body Keeps the Score’ by Bessel Van Der Kolk.
‘Ubuntu’ is a Xhosa word that denotes sharing what you have. As in, my humanity is inextricably linked and bound up in yours. That true healing is only possible when we recognise our shared destiny as a speciesTweet
Ubuntu is a NguniBantu term meaning “humanity”.
This is occasionally translated to “I am because we are” (also “I am because you are”),[2or “humanity towards others” (in Zulu, umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu).
In Xhosa, the latter term is used, but is often meant in a more philosophical sense to mean “the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity”.
Ubuntu in Maxims
Motho ke motho ka batho (Sotho/Tswana). A person is a person through other people.
Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu (Zulu). A person is a person through other people.
Umntu ngumntu ngabantu (Xhosa). A person is a person through other people
Munhu munhu nevanhu (Shona). A person through other people.
Ndiri nekuti tiri (Shona). I am because we are.
One thought on “Ancient Word of the Day: Ubuntu”
It’s also an OS (operating system) that I’ve been using for years (because I hate Windows). Nice to know the lovely meaning behind it. xo
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