Growing up in Ethiopia and being exposed to African stories from a very young age had a profound impact on my perspective in life. These stories, often intertwined with nature and animals, instilled in me a deep sense of interconnectedness with the world around me. They taught me that everything in nature is alive and has a role to play.
Wisdom in African Folklore
The recurring themes of certain animals, like the hyena, donkey, and snake, each symbolizing different qualities and characteristics, provided valuable life lessons. The hyena represented wickedness, the donkey portrayed misunderstanding, and the snake was seen as a messenger of danger. These stories, conveyed through songs, rhymes, and riddles, made learning captivating and memorable.
The African stories I grew up with emphasized the idea that we are not separate from nature but an integral part of it. In contrast to what I later learned in school, where nature was often reduced to non-living entities, these stories kept the spirit of nature alive in my consciousness. As an adult, I now understand that my childhood perception was closer to the truth – that everything in the world, including diverse cultures and ethnicities, is interconnected and alive.
We are not seperate from nature but an integral part of itLaxmi Easwaran
Lessons from Africa’s History
These stories have taught me that diversity is a source of beauty, variety, fun, and joy. While we may be different, these differences contribute to the richness of life. Our unity lies in our diversity, and it’s a reminder that we should not treat each other differently based on these differences. Life is inherently inclusive, and there is enough space for us to coexist harmoniously.
Reflecting on Africa’s history, I’ve witnessed the challenges it faced with colonialism and the exploitation of its resources. Despite this, the resilience and rich hearts of Africans have endured. However, this richness sometimes led to internal conflicts as divisions emerged. It’s essential to acknowledge this history not to assign blame but to emphasize the urgency of unity.
In conclusion, African stories have left an indelible mark on my perspective, reminding me that we are all part of nature’s tapestry, and our diversity should be celebrated. These stories inspire us to co-create and dance with consciousness rather than perpetuate divisions. We are nothing without everything, and everything is nothing without us.
The Power of African Storytelling
What is your story?
Our personal stories are a powerful tool. It’s why we dedicated an entire panel session to the topic at Bokobokids. That is why we invited people to explore their own journeys around African culture. In sharing our experiences, we can inspire and activate others.
#BKBStoriesofDiversity movement #CelebrateDiversity
#AfricanNarratives #InclusionMatters #PreserveAncestralWisdom
Do you want your story to be highlighted next? We are looking forward to receiving your story at firstname.lastname@example.org