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#RedPillAfrica 04 Killer Mindset – The African Elite Dilemma

One thing I am sure about is that the African Elite Dilemma has led to us Africans to be at the short end of modern civilization.

I. Meaning in life is characterized by moral choices. When the choice is between two options whose value is hard to differentiate or the choice is utterly too difficult, we call such choice a dilemma. It is the failure to make the right choice (when faced with a dilemma) that prevents many of us from transforming our lives from average to great ones.

II. My life experience so far, which has been within Africa and the Western world, has taught me two dilemmas that we go through. Since the Western world is based on individuality and the Western value system is what has created the modern world, the dilemma for a Western person is simply to make a personal choice about his behaviour and level of effort needed to transform his life. The collective culture plays a smaller part in preventing that choice. On the other hand, in the African context, our dilemma is more about the constraints from our heritages of birth than the personal choices we can make. So the choice is not only about how to behave and the effort we can put in to transform ourselves but largely about how the collectives (usually the tribe and religion) constrain our choice.

III. The major dilemma which I called **the African Elite Dilemma is that the more we are educated or the more we advance in this modern era, the more we are cut off from our traditional roots.** But no tree can grow tall without roots. The dilemma is that many of us fail to make personal choices between the Western and Islamic worlds that we internalise through education and the traditional cultures that are our roots. We end up being suspended between the foreign and the traditional in a sort of a mental paralysis. It creates a cognitive dissonance. Without planting ourselves firmly in either of the two, we become rootless about our identities and convictions. This mental paralysis is the cause of the two civilizational existential problems, namely:  

1) Scattered Intelligence, and 

2) Shallow Collective memories.

IV. **Scattered Intelligence** refers to the status quo characterized by the fact that; 

a) even if many of us are intelligent, we waste that intelligence scattered on meaningless lifestyles and attitudes that have not uplifted Africa, or 

b) we expend our intelligence for the benefit of the Western or Islamic/Arabic worldviews.

V. **Shallow Collective Memories** refers to the fact that throughout our education and society in general, we are limited to identifying ourselves either by the colonial states that are very recent creations by Europeans, or by the unwritten tribal allegiances, which we never cultivate throughout our entire education system. Think about it, most of the African countries were created by Europeans after the 1884 Berlin Conference. For example, the British started creating Uganda in 1892 and finalized its borders in 1900. That is only 110 years ago. Or if you consider the independent country, it is only 58 years old. Can you appreciate it then that if I am to identify myself firstly with the colonial country Uganda that is only 58 years old, I will always have a shallow sense of collective memory compared to someone, say, a Japanese whose collective memory is thousands of years old.

VI. Whether the African Elite Dilemma caused the two civilizational problems, or it was the other way around, is a chicken and egg problem. One thing I am sure about though is that the African Elite Dilemma has led to us Africans to have a shallow sense of African identity, it prevents us being imaginative beyond Western and Islamic world views, and ultimately prevents us from creating lasting solutions for the many problems of Africa in the modern civilization.

As an educated African elite with choices, what have you done to reconcile the traditional and the foreign, so that we create long-lasting solutions for Africa?

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Written by ES Kirunda (0)

Author / Creator / Self-Transformation Advocate
#FourthHeritage,#RedPillAfrica, #EDISAC
**My books can be found at, or by visiting Amazon

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