n Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe - Denkontwikkeling en armoedebeswering

Volume 44, Issue 2_3
  • ISSN : 0041-4751


The assumption from which this article departs is that if the human race were to solve the poverty problem adequately and in a sustainable way, a radical transformation and development of human thinking capacity is urgently required. The problem is that human thinking is trapped to the point of stagnation in the rut of reductionism, one-sidedness, and blindfoldedness. We need to move out of this rut by developing new thinking habits and new foci for our thought. Such a move will enable us to develop new perspectives on matters that gnaw at the roots of our survival, and poverty may be one of the biggest single threatening problems in this regard. If this is true of the human race in general, it is equally true of South Africa and Africa. Inadequate thinking may cause our downfall.
Six themes have been selected to demonstrate the possibility of radical new approaches to thinking, and to encourage the development thereof. In the first place, there should be a realistic view of the inner limits of humankind and its inherent inability to find solutions should be viewed realistically; subsequently the fact that all humans are in essence poor because humans and their institutions are fundamentally parasitic is emphasised; in the third place one should realise that wealth, even in its ultimate monetary manifestation, is empty and hollow, and a plea is made for an economy of the living; the wealth of poverty, on the other hand, is articulated in terms of the notions of having as opposed to being which requires a new kind of thinking in a radical sense; the view that nobody should starve and be unabled to feed themselves is emphasised; in the last instance an appeal is made for the development of an attitude of conviviality without which the survival of the human race seems difficult to imagine.

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