The Ladies of Air – Growth through Intellect

In South Africa, August is Womens Month  with National Womens day on 9 August.  This month I will be paying homage to the women of  iTongo Tarot.  Starting with The Ladies of Air.

Queen of SwordsQUEEN of ASSEGAI (Swords/Air) – People of the East
Nandi (the sweet one) kaBhebhe eLangeni (c.1760 – 1827) Daughter of Bhebhe, a chief of the Langeni tribe, and the mother of Shaka, King of the Zulu and the third wife of Senzangakhona, ruler of the Zulu chiefdom.

What do we learn from Nandi’s journey?
This was a woman who managed to maintain her dignity and focus, no matter what trials and tribulations she endured.  She had a single purpose, to have her son Shaka recognised as the true heir of the Zulu kingdom.  She was determined that Senzangakhona (Shaka’s father), would marry her and legitimise their son.  He offered a paltry sum for her Lobola, which she turned down (this lady knew her value) and legend has it that she settled on 50 head of cattle.

Even though she knew of the prophecy that one day her son would be murdered by his brothers, she pursued the throne, because she knew her son would be king.

“Nandi, daughter of Bhebhe, your first-born shall be king,
Giving birth to a mighty nation of blood stained spears and thundering black shields,
The conditions of the prophecy are that your son remembers
not to defy the ancestors by reaching for powers that are not of his heritage.
The heavens will destroy him from his own blood. “

Nandi was named Queen of Queens when Shaka became king of the Zulu.  She ruled alongside her son with realistic expectations, a sound philosophy and never shied away from difficulties.

iTongo Tarot CardOur next ‘Lady of Air’ is Shaka’s aunt Princess Mkabayi.  The adage “Behind every man is a woman of power” is a true reflection of the woman Princess Mkabayi was.  She had the ability to accept reality with a clear perspective.  She consolidated her resources and was not afraid to act on her thoughts.  She teaches us to follow through on our ideas, maintain harmony and balance within.  Move the focus from within and see the visible manifestation of our thoughts in our actions.

Princess Mkabayi was the elder sister of Senzangakhona, and daughter of King Jama.  She was one of a set of twins and according to Zulu custom, one twin should be sacrificed to avoid the death of one parent. Jama refused to kill one of the twins and so broke a well-established tradition. His wife, Queen Sikhombazana, died without bearing him further successors, and people believed this was a consequence of his act.

A woman of great intellect, Mkabayi presided over the reigns of four kings – King Senzangakhona, King Shaka, King Dingane, and King Mpande. They all drew on her wisdom and experience, and a famous phrase at the time was “Buzani ku Mkabayi”, which means “consult Mkabayi for any solution”.

The Four Kings
Senzangakhona kaJama (c.1762-1816), son of Jama, was chief of the Zulu clan from 1781 to 1816. During the chieftaincy of Senzangakhona, the house of Zulu was a small clan in the Mthethwa confederation, which was ruled by Dingiswayo.

Shaka kaSenzangakhona (c.1787-1828), son of Senzangakhona, ruled from 1816 to 1828. Shaka (sometimes spelled Tshaka, Tchaka or Chaka; sometimes referred to as Shaka Zulu; was the most influential leader of the Zulu empire.

Dingane kaSenzangakhona (c.1795-1840), son of Senzangakhona and half-brother of Shaka, ruled from 1828 to 1840. He came to power after assassinating his half-brother Shaka with the help of another brother, Mhlangana, and Shaka’s advisor, Mbopa.

Mpande kaSenzangakhona (1798-1872), son of Senzangakhona and half-brother of Shaka and Dingane, ruled between 1840 and 1872, making him the longest reigning Zulu king.


4 The Emperor – Growth through Masculine Energy

iTongo Tarot CardPreviously we explored our mother energy, this week we take on our Father energy.  The Emperor is all about personal power and leadership. Working with our masculine energy (animus) and to walk our path with wisdom.

The interesting energy of the Emperor is the deep love of the creative process. Confused? We often attribute creativity and growth with our feminine (anima) sides.  The Emperor brings creative solutions to situations.  It’s about the practical implementation powered by hard work and stability.  This is an opportunity to manifest your leadership skills.  Like the element of fire, be warm, nurturing, vital and energetic.

It’s a week to be independent and pioneering.  Go boldly forward and establish structure in your life.  Within each of us is masculine and feminine aspects, the Emperor guides us through wisdom, order and authority.  He represents our physical world and reminds us of our duty as leaders.

Rely on your own intellect when making decisions don’t be influenced by others.  The wise way is to listen to all opinions and then with that knowledge make your own choice and execute in your own unique way.  Having the upper hand does not mean that we can run over others’ hopes and dreams, rather we should support and encourage whenever possible.  Guiding and pushing their ambition to succeed. Reflect your essence of masculine energy, be definitive and create structure.

Our card of the year The Chariot supports our ability to control and proceed forward.  To take up the leadership mantle and lead with wisdom.  To manage change and to know when we need to change course.  To be innovative and creative when seeking solutions to problems.

Business is good this week.  Be open to suggestions from co-workers and give credit where it is due.  Natural Emperors are kind and fair in all their dealings with others.  Integrity is key.

When the going gets tough – dig down and find that tenacity to face adversity.  Focus and willpower will get you through.  We carry within us all that we have experienced, this is the time to bring that knowledge to good use.  It’s a time to expand your horizons and improve yourself through all experiences life has to offer.

Ultimately what the Emperor teaches us is the sometimes we have to go with mind over heart, so its important to maintain focus and self control.  Assertiveness and confidence sharpens the focus.  Forge ahead doing what you know best and become the master of your destiny.

Your career may become an issue this week.  Are you following your passion and doing what you love?  Pay particular attention to organization, logic and follow through.  Don’t leave things undone, or hope that in time it will sort itself out – it wont.  You need to make the effort.  Keep a clear mind on your end result and work hard toward it.  If you are unhappy where you are, its time to start making a move.  Apply for that promotion.  Share your vision with those in power to make a change.  If you need to move to another company, now is the time to do it.  Don’t get stuck in a rut, because you fear the unknown.  Take the reins and steer your way to success.

Be sure to take time out to meditate, contemplate and regroup.  Even in our analytical state we need to hear spirit when it communicates.  Meditation requires discipline and will become easier when you make the time and effort.

Know your self worth and value all that you are.  The Emperor and the number 4 represent the four seasons, the four walls, the four corners.  It takes missive amounts of energy to move them.  The strength is in the stability they bring, the weakness is being trapped and stagnating.

The Emperor is connected to 13 Death (1+3=4) and therefore has the power of transformation.  You can change whatever you want, you just have to have the will to change.  Be warned about having a sense of entitlement beyond your actual rights, this could lead to corrupting your material and spiritual world.

Go forth and conquer.  Be kind and lead with compassion and wisdom.  Be fearless and focused.

iTongo Legend

Elephants symbolise wisdom, strength, moderation, and eternity. Numerous myths abound in Africa about this animal whose very size makes it invincible in nature, its only enemy being man.

In African fables, the elephant is always the wise chief who impartially settles disputes among the animals. The elephant is described as kind and noble, who feels pity even for a wicked character and so is usually deceived.

The San people, the original human inhabitants of the Southern Cape, were the very first recorders of the existence of elephants and often depicted them in their rock art. Elephants were important in San mythology and religion. The elephant was regarded as the supreme animal from whom, when in trance state, San shamans could draw their power.

Warrior of Moritsoana – Manifesting Fantasy into Reality

Knight of CupsOur card of the week The Warrior of Moritsoana or Cups shows us the difference between fantasy and reality.  We can all dream the perfect dream but are we prepared to put in the effort to achieve those dreams.  How realistic are they?  I do say that when we dream we need to begin that dream with ‘in a perfect world’.

But our worlds are not perfect sometimes we limit ourselves, for a variety of reasons, but more often than not it’s not because we believe, but because we believe we do not deserve it.  We are unworthy.  This week we can afford to be a tad idealistic, to dream the impossible dream.  Why not be able to have the happily ever after…

Well known and beloved fairy tales share a common theme.  The forlorn, orphaned young person is cast out or cursed or put upon by evil stepmothers, sisters etc.  After various trials and tribulations (usually lasting 100 years) she is saved by an act of kindness usually by a prince or knight in shining armour.

The message from all these stories is that no matter what your circumstances, if we truly believe in ourselves, something or someone will come to our rescue. The Universe always knows what is in our hearts.  When we put out the right vibrations we alert all that is around us, in turn we receive the energy needed.  The awakening kiss of Grace.

We live in times of instant gratification.  We don’t want to wait for the saviour, we want a quick fix – we want it all …  NOW!  Life is like a fine wine, some things take time to mature and develop into their full potential.  Patience, all good things come to those who wait.

Another theme that runs through all the stories and fables is being pure of heart. I can’t think of a fairy tale or parable where the evil ugly sister got the prince.  So as we dream to be fulfilled, saved or transformed, we need to consider our motivation and intent.  Why do we want what we want?  Why do we feel that life is not living up to our expectations?  How realistic are those expectations? What trials and tribulations do we need to go through to reach the nirvana we desire. Are we ready for the life we dream of?

Often we confuse feelings of lust with romantic or true love, which is all flowers and candles and unconditional.  True love is a state of Grace not the sentimental love that Hollywood propagates, but rather the even flow of the poetry of life.  The beauty of heightened senses.  That glorious wash of emotion, clear and true without the attachments of need and greed.

The Fairy tales we learn as children, set up our vision of the future. This system becomes the foundation for our emotional intelligence.  As we mature our intellect so too should we mature our emotions.  Most of us don’t, we hang onto that system or foundation that we set up as children.  We aspire to the ‘happy ever after’.  We look at the end result and somehow are able to gloss over and turn a blind eye to the pain and suffering that was endured before the ever after moment.  When we experience pain and suffering we are confused.  Why is life so difficult?  We need to go back and mature the child within, so that as adults we have age appropriate responses to our mates, family and friends.

We also tend to do this with real life people.  We hold up Ghandi, Mandela and Mother Theresa as icons for humanity.  Which of us would have been able to live their lives? Even for a day.  To undergo the difficulties they lived through and still be able to maintain a purity of spirit.

Our lesson this week is learning to love personally and unconditionally.  We need to master our instincts and develop a way to control our enthusiasm and expectations.  There will be a fair amount of fire and passion around, so be prepared to fall in love or to experience feelings deeper than ever before.

Be prepared to experience the heights of joy and the depths of despair. Both are valid in our existence, both teach us valuable lessons.  Sometimes in our darkest moments we find our own inner light.  We journey on with hope.  We begin to love unconditionally and we shine our light.

iTongo Legend
The Basotho military system was not unlike the Zulu, in the calling up of youths to form guilds at the time of their initiation into manhood. These groups could be mobilised to serve as regiments for the chief in wartime.

These regiments were usually led by men of royal blood from within the ranks. The warriors did not have specific regimental dress but could be distinguished by their winged shields, designed to deflect spears in flight. They would be armed with light throwing spears or an axe.

Warriors would paint their clan totems on their shields. “Ba” indicates “People of” – and the name of their totem. Examples; Name: Bahlaping – Totem is a Fish (Tlhapi) or BaKwêna totem is the crocodile (Kwêna). Their headgear was black ostrich feathers.

Family Tradition In Sesotho, the words for father (ntate) and mother (mme) are also commonly used as address forms of respect for one’s elders. Politeness, good manners, and willingness to serve are values very strongly encouraged in children. The general attitude toward childhood is well summarised by the proverb Lefura la ngwana ke ho rungwa, which roughly translates as “Children benefit from serving their elders.”

The standard greetings in Sotho reflect this attitude of respect towards age. When greeting an elder, one should always end with ntate (my father) or mme (my mother). Words for brother (abuti) and sister (ausi) are used when one talks to people of the same age. A child who answers an adult’s question with a simple “Yes” is considered impolite. To be polite, the child needs to add “my father” or “my mother”.

Hospitality and generosity are expected. Even those who have very little will share their food with visitors. Of course, those who share also expect the favour to be returned when it is their turn to visit.

Growth through Universal Consciousness

iTongo Tarot Card21 The Universe – The visual on this card is The Southern Cross. This constellation is used in celestial navigation to find due South, and I like to think that the energy of The Universe guides us and always points us in the right direction.

We talk a lot about the universe and universal energy, this great amorphous place, Divine something or energy that is available to us, but what does it all mean? How do we connect or begin to understand the vastness of the subject?

When I look at this card I am reminded that we are all one and part of the Universal mind and force.  Every thought, action and emotion is the souls unity with others.  We are perfect in our manifestation, we just have to look around and know that our external world reflects our inner world – that in itself is validation.

Each and every one of us has unlimited potential, we are all natural explorers and adventurers and we should be visionary in what we hope to achieve in this life time.  We need to rise above our circumstances and make something of the hand we have been dealt.  Good fortune should always be shared and pay it forward, in kindness, generosity of spirit and being emotionally available to those in need.

In context with our Card of the year being  7 The Chariot, this week we are able to see the bigger picture.  To instinctively see what needs to be rebuilt or designed in new ways, whether it be environments, ideas, projects or people. We will have a natural ability to renew and regenerate ourselves and others.  Quite a creative and innovative week – be an original.

Don’t hold back.  This is also a good time to become more aware the world around you – become more ecologically minded and be active in making the universe a better place.  You may find yourself asking those questions about the origins of the universe as a whole or contributing towards theories, projects and services that assist universal understanding.  Value cultural differences as well as honour inherent similarities found within all of us.

When we are connected to the universal energy we reach a state of unity, a sense of wholeness which liberates our spirit. What we need to do is learn to understand the timing of things.  There are times when we birth and grow and there are times when we need to lie fallow and regroup, building towards a new beginning where we can realise ourselves and the Divine nature of everything.

There are times when we feel that we are drowning in life – the obstacles and hardships we experience either make us or break us.  We owe it to ourselves to not lose hope, to not give up on the dream, vision or goal.

You may experience several clear and important spiritual insights this week.  Each time we do the work required we experience a shift in consciousness.  Keep a notebook handy and record these.  Find like-minded people to discuss your point of view, even online.  We are all on a spiritual journey and your insights may be valuable to someone else.

When the self has reached a true state of unity with Universal energy we experience a wholeness.  I am that I am – a liberated Soul. The end is a new beginning. Yin and Yang merged in one whole.

This week is the opportunity to use your inherent moral compass, cut through things and get to the bottom of situations.  Build a new internal world, which in turn will be reflected externally.

Value the contribution you are making that makes the world a better place in which to live.  Explore the unknown and bring those creative ideas and projects into reality.

6 Assegai – Growth Through Suffering

iTongo Tarot CardAssegai is equal to the Suit of Swords and its element is Air.  The tribe represented is Zulu, which translated means ‘People of Heaven’.  The direction is East, time of day is Dawn and the season is Spring.  An assegai is a Traditional type of spear with a long slender shaft, which is thrown through the Air.  The suit of Assegai’s governs our Intellect, ideas, dreams, speech, the intangible, insight, wisdom, reason and justice.

Setting our consciousness for this week is going to take a bit of effort. We will need to manage and control our minds, our dreams, what we say out loud.  Manage our wisdom and journey within for insight, reason and justice. The best time of the day for this is at dawn.  Face East and just breathe.  Become aware of your thoughts and body.

Firstly we need to understand how our own physiology works.  How do we regulate our bodies and minds so that we can achieve our best life.  Our aim is to clear the mind, have a focal point and cleanse the body.

Breath is life, the basic and most fundamental expression of our life.  In yoga the breath or “prana” in Sanskrit is said to be the vehicle of the mind.  Because it is the prana that makes our mind move.  One of the simplest ways to manage stress is through Breath Control.  It is through breath that all those messages are carried through the blood stream to the relevant muscle, which in turn reacts.

The visual of this card is Nandi giving birth to Shaka.  As we all know, it takes nine months for a baby to grow to the point of being able to sustain life on its own.  But before that there is the process of actually giving birth.  These days many mothers choose “C” sections, but the natural way is to push, to push through the pain, breathing through the pain and when the child is born the final life connection through the umbilical cord is severed.  This is the underlying message of the Six of Assegai.  We know there will be a ‘new life’, we know we have to follow a process and then we have the trial and challenge to bring that ‘new life’ to materialize.  If we keep at it, we are successful, and the reward is worth the effort.

Birthing scenes in the movies is all about breathing and panting.  We cannot survive without breath (AIR) and we cannot survive without blood.  The ancient Greeks attributed the element of Air to blood as it was both hot and moist.

Everything we experience in our lives is about the process that is needed to achieve the end goal.  Whether we are at work, tending a garden or playing.  We follow simple golden rules.  Some of it is learnt from observing others, some life experience comes from our own trials and errors.  The harder we have had to work for something the greater the sense of achievement and reward.

In the Year of the Chariot we are asked to keep moving forward, and this week we know that its not going to be easy, but we also know that if we hang in and persevere we will achieve.  The journey will be pleasant, just don’t get yourself into situations that require legal assistance, the outcome is not favourable.

You are the centre of your universe.  If you want to change the world, first try to improve and bring about change within yourself.  Then that will help to bring change in your family.  From there it just gets bigger and bigger.

When you feel overwhelmed, breathe.  Breath is a great stress reliever.  Counting to 10 really does work.  It gives you time to clear your mind and prepares your body for the next action.  So when it gets too much … take a deep breath and count to 10.

If you are anxious or worried, focused breath will bring you back to the present.  Remember it’s only in this moment that you have the power to change, to do something.  Panting has its purpose, but when you find yourself out of breath, slow it down, take your time.

This week begin to heal and pick up the pieces of your life.  Go on holiday, travel or if you are planning to move, this is a good week.  As much as the goals promise joy, it can take the depths of despair to recognise what you actually want.  Even though it may not feel ideal at present, remember you are moving toward a positive place.

All together, breathe in 1-2-3-4, hold 1-2-3-4, exhale 1-2-3-4-5-6, hold 1-2-3-4.

May you transition through your suffering and experience a new frame of mind.

21 The Universe – Indalo

iTongo Tarot Card21The Universe – INDALO

CONCEPT Totality; Wholeness of body, mind, spirit; A state of knowing; Completion; Renewal; Regeneration

When I look at this card I am reminded that we are all one and part of the Universal mind and force.  Every thought,  action and emotion is the souls unity with others.  We are perfect in our manifestation, we just have to look around and know that our external world reflects our inner world – that in itself is validation.

Each and every one of us has unlimited potential, we are all natural explorers and adventurers and we should be visionary in what we hope to achieve in this life time.  We need to rise above our circumstances and make something of the hand we have been dealt.  Good fortune should always be shared and pay it forward, in kindness, generosity of spirit and being emotionally available to those in need.

Difficult circumstances should rather be approached as a challenge, everything and everyone has the capacity to change.  We need to just take the time to plot the course, be clear about where we are going and what results we want from our efforts.  Some change takes longer than others, but as I said last week, rather look at how far you have come, acknowledge the differences, adjust your thinking and keep moving forward.  If its not working, make it work or find another way to achieve your goals.  Remember you cant pray for rain and then complain when you get wet – buy an umbrella!

Throughout time, man has observed, recorded, and interpreted the skies. He has made use of astronomy to structure his life and determine his calendar. The geographical location of different cultures has helped shape their perception of how the universe works.  The universe is always listening.  Find your special star that will help you navigate your way through life.  Trust in the universe to help and guide you.

Believe in yourself and your abilities, conquer your fears and manage your demons.  Only you can do it.  Only you are responsible for the choices you make.  Live life to the full, don’t regret a single day.  Don’t miss an opportunity to do it better, but most of all love yourself and love your life.  sprinkle a little stardust, its a wonderful life.

Let the Sun shine in!

19sun19 The Sun – UBUNTU
Ubuntu invites you to practice humanity towards others.

Collaboration /Teamwork /Partnership /Personal potential /Illumination /Rebirth /Universal consciousness /Adjustment /Success /Optimism /Shining light /Glory /Honour /Higher knowledge /Higher awareness /Archetype of the child /Good judgement /Willpower /Moral order

The Sun is one of those ‘happy’ cards in a tarot deck.  It fills us with a feeling of freedom and optimism.  We all know how we feel on a perfect sunny day, we are expanded and share our sense of goodwill.  This is the basis of uBuntu – the philosophy and practice of humanity, kindness towards others.  This is also a time to honour those people in our lives that have made a difference.  The Zulu maxim “We are who we are because of others”.  Take stock of how people have helped you become who you are today.  People who have unconditionally been there to support, guide and advise, when you needed a hand up, or help or have served as a shining example on how to live your best life.

Feel the joy of self expression – be your own person but always remember that you are part of something wonderful and its the people around you that help make it true.  Its all about collaboration and teamwork.  When we partner with others we are often lifted beyond what we believe our personal potential to be.  They help illuminate the path ahead and at times enable our rebirth.

In order to achieve success we have to adjust our way of thinking.  The Sun is the Archetype of the Child.  Within each of us is the child we were – the innocent, divine, orphan and wounded.  For some they remain the eternal child, like Peter Pan.  The wonder of the child is the ability to dream unencumbered by life.  This week dream those dreams, be inspired and filled with the wonder of the world around you.

For some, they carry the Wounded Child archetype which hold those memories of abuse and neglect which has a substantial impact on your adult life. Many failures we experience are blamed on our childhood.  As an adult we owe it to ourselves to heal those wounds.  To take control back and believe that we are Divine and practice forgiveness, of ourselves and towards others who hurt us.  Its the only way we can truly move on.

We need to dig deep and find the remnants of that magical child, the one that is enchanting and sees the beauty and potential in all things.  Baudelaire wrote the ‘genius is childhood recaptured”.  Remember the magic of your imagination and the belief that anything was possible.  The key phrase this week is ‘Once upon a time … ”  What is your story?  What is your ‘happy ever after’? Take note of your shining moments. See the truth, accept what is, is.  Change what you can, adjust your way of thinking.  Honour your self, practice good judgement, have the willpower to follow through and practice the spirit of uBuntu.  You too are a shining example to others, show kindness, be emotionally available and live the dream.

iTongo Legend

Ubuntu (Moral Order)

Ubuntu is the African concept of ‘humanity towards others’. It is the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity. It is about having compassion towards other human beings, helping them physically, emotionally, socially and spiritually.

To achieve harmony, respect is fundamental in all aspects. What is right and wrong is assessed by how it affects other people. No one can show his humanness without showing how he relates to other people. Disharmony and disrespect are punishable by the Creator through the ancestors.

Free will encompasses ubuntu. The Zulu maxim umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu (“a person is a person through (other) persons”) may have no apparent religious connotation in the context of Western society, but in an African context it suggests that one can become an ancestor worthy of respect or veneration by behaving with humanity. Those who uphold the principle of ubuntu throughout their lives will achieve, in death, a unity with those still living.

King of Wands – iSibane

iTongo Tarot CardKING of ISIBANE  People of the South (Xhosa)
Key word – CHARISMA

The father of light | Natural leader | Commanding presence | Positive masculine power | Long term goals accomplished | Confront opposition directly | Inspire enthusiasm | Spontaneity | Ecstasy | Generous | Dignity and self respect

There is a lot going on this week.  First we need to refresh and take stock of our Card of the Year – 6 The Lovers and to take note of the Astrological triads of planets called the Grand Sextile.  The energy of six promotes growth and nurtures healing.  It is also the number of service, and as we all know we need to take responsibility for our actions and choices that involve others.  Working with this energy we will have the opportunity to speak out on behalf of those that cant.  Promote equality and harmony for all.

Our King of iSibane tells the story of Chief Ndlambe who has often been referred to as the father of African nationalism because he remained steadfast in his beliefs and refused to give up his land despite the overwhelming power of the British forces.

We hear someone being referred to as Charismatic, and what that simply means is that we connect and relate to their charm, and often we are inspired by the way they live and conduct their lives.

How do you inspire others? Give freely of yourself, your time, your energy and mostly your wisdom.  We all have the ability to lead by example.  We can’t all lead a country or organisation, but we all natural leaders and have the ability to lead those nearest and dearest.  Most don’t even try, because they look at the collective and believe they are unequipped or unworthy to step up and make a difference.  Often its the smallest act of kindness that can motivate a huge change.

We don’t have to be arrogant or commanding to achieve our goals – gentle persuasion goes a lot further than rigid domineering attitudes.

The masculine energy of the King helps us with our spiritual exploration and connections.  Its a direct connection to our Divine – the warning here is not to go too fast or too far.  Remember spirituality, peace and harmony is a process not a destination.  Give yourself the time and space to just be – keep at it daily with mindful intent and allow the universe to guide you.

Dream the dream, and set your long term accomplishments.  Create the plan and execute one step at a time.  Work steadily towards your goals and stand firm in what you believe in.  Change is always difficult – we fear the unknown and we are not sure of our resources and reserves.  Its easier to just go with the flow, even when the flow is not supporting our hopes, dreams and ideals.   We need to remember that as long as we have the courage of our convictions, we will overcome.  We need to stand steadfast and firm in what we believe in. Life is about our stamina to persevere – all too often we throw our hands up and say “I cant anymore” and its just then, in that moment that we have a breakthrough.  We have the knowledge tools and skills to achieve all that we dream, we just need to hold fast – we just have to persist.

This week – inspire and lead others – hang in there … it will be worth it.

iTongo Legend

Chief Ndlambe (c.1755–1828) was the second son of Chief Rharhabe and his mother was Nojoli, after whom Nojoli Mountain near Somerset East was named. Ndlambe had eight sons, Mdushane, Mhala, Mqhayi, Thuba, Sam Sam, Kuse, Mxhamli, and Nowawe1.

On the death of his father, Chief Rharhabe, Ndlambe served as regent of the kingdom from 1782–1796 for his nephew, Ngqika. During his years of regency, he succeeded in establishing himself as a powerful leader. For the first several decades of Dutch settlement in Ndlambe’s territory, the Zuurveld, his sovereignty remained unquestioned.

By 1796, his Great Place was on the banks of the Bushman’s River, close to Macleantown near the Xinira River. At this site, a group of boulders, are said to be part of the throne on which Ndlambe once sat and held court.

In 1811, the Dutch-speaking farmers persuaded the British colonial government to use military force to clear the entire area between the Sundays and Fish Rivers of its African inhabitants. At that time, this area was known as the Zuurveld, after the sour grasses that dominate the terrain. Nine Frontier Wars were fought in this area and Ndlambe was involved in five of them.

Ndlambe and his sub-chiefs tried to negotiate with the British military and civil officials. The negotiations failed because Ndlambe refused to agree to the voluntary removal of his people from their homes. War started and when it became evident that the British guns and horses gave them a huge advantage, Ndlambe, outsmarting his British adversaries, led his people in a night-time evacuation, and moved them safely across the Fish River.

His life spanned a major transition period in South African history, and he is often referred to as ‘the father of African nationalism’ as he remained steadfast in his refusal to give up his land to the colonialists despite the overwhelming power of the British military forces.

When Chief Ndlambe died in 1828, allegedly over 90 years old, the entire nation shaved their heads in mourning.

11 Strength

11strength11 Strength – AMANDLA
amandla n. (-ndla) : Force; strength; power; might

Strength/ Passion/ Creative energy; Taming of the beast within/ Courage/ Moral victory/ Power /Commanding and outgoing /Self-control /Responding to a force /Awareness /Conviction /Enthusiasm /Moderation /Extremes /Balance between rationale and intuition

We often find ourselves facing life changing choices and challenges.  Sometimes experience helps us make the right choice, sometimes we need to dig deep to find the answers.

When we take time out to reflect on who we are, what we want and what we are prepared to do, we are often surprised that what the heart wants is not necessarily what we are actually doing.  This poses the dilemma of heart vs. head.  Which one is the true leader?

Last week I discussed Heart Consciousness and we do need to listen to that little voice deep within.  This is our seat of power, where we get the strength from to carry on. The heart is the centre of our balance, its also what gives us the courage of our convictions.

Like the Lion in The Wizard of Oz, as he searched for a heart so he could have courage, so too should we continue to search for our hearts.  Finding that workable balance between what we think and what we feel is the right thing to do.

When we connect to spirit we are whole-heartedly committed to living our best life.  We have a knowing of peace and calm within.  We have the balance of intuition and insight – seeing things for what they are and accepting the task of changing what needs to and letting go of what is not serving us in our journey.

When we are in that state of Divine being, we increase our sense of self esteem, our common sense and find our creativity to manifest all that we desire.  We all have the potential for abundance, we just have to look for it.  Sometimes the answers are revealed in our dreams, sometimes in our day-dreams.

We don’t desire things without a foundation.  Look back on your childhood – what were your dreams, hopes and ambitions.  Look at what you are doing now, have you achieved those dreams?  What are you doing to fulfill your destiny?

This week find your courage to persist.  Make the changes needed.  Live life fearlessly.

Let Your Love Shine – Ace of Water

iTongo Tarot CardACE of MORITSOANA (Cups/Water)
People of the West Key word – LOVE

The gift of love | Power of love | Open heart – attraction | Deep feelings | Intimacy | Atonement | Forgiveness | Emotional awareness | Responding sympathetically | Emotional status

Tricky concept this week.  Love!  Emotions! Feelings! At one time or another we have all been there, done that.  We accept without question that as living beings we have the ability to love and to be loved.  From a very early age we have emotional awareness.  We learn very early on about the power of love.

The trend these days is practicing universal love and becoming more ‘heart centered’.  What is it?  How do we do it?

On a physical level – the heart is in the centre of our bodies, it is protected by the rib-cage.  The heart is vital to our health and life and is the only organ we attribute our emotions to – we call it the ‘seat of emotion’, when we express our desire we say ‘with all my heart’.

I was recently introduced to the amazing research of the Institute of HeartMath.  They work with the subtle energy of the intuitive heart.  With special instruments they can measure the electro magnetic energy of the heart.  The waves generated by the heart (measured with an ECG) show that the heart is the largest wave generator and can actually be measured up to five feet away from the body.  The other astounding finding is that it’s the heart that influences the brain (measured with an EEG).  The electrical information permeates every cell in the body, including the brain whilst radiating out. We have been taught that the brain controls everything, but the heart is auto-rhythmic which means it can work  without input from the brain.  There is an intelligence and consciousness in the heart.  Research has shown that the heart communicates to the brain in four ways –

  • neurologically (through the transmission of nerve impulses)
  • biochemically (via hormones and neurotransmitters)
  • biophysically (through pressure waves)
  • and energetically (through electromagnetic field interactions).

These communications affect our perceptions, reactions, intuition and decision making ability.  The feeling and emotional perceptions of the heart trigger the chemical changes throughout the body.

The heart affects our consciousness to such an extent that in order to truly live, we need to have our hearts open, with a clear flow of energy.  Using the mind alone, leads us to a separation of feeling which leads to sterile thoughts without understanding.

The last few generations have been all about living by our intellect and materialistic focus.  We need to rationalise everything and more we do so the less connection we have with our hearts – the intangible and the unexplained.

If we are going to be ‘head-centered’ then we need to learn to be ‘whole-brain’ rather than just left or right brain oriented.  How often have you felt divided between head and heart?  Which one usually wins?  The more specialised we are the more one-dimensional we become, which leads us to be less than all we could be.

So how do we begin to live with ‘heart-consciousness’?  We begin by setting the ego free, taking care of self.  Start treating others, as you want them to treat you.  Understand the difference between kindness and compassion.  Share openly and willingly with everything in your world.  Respect your environment and respect your body.  Forgive.  Uplift.

We cant actively love everyone – that would overload our systems, but we can live with loving kindness.  A Zen teacher once said  “Take care of what’s in front of you”.  Practice the laws of cause and effect, don’t harass others and they wont harass you, be inoffensive, don’t torture, destruct or anger others and they wont do it to you.  Project the right thoughts and feelings and you will have a friendly, happy environment which creates the sense of well being.

Love leads to the freedom of the mind.

iTongo Legend

Sesotho, or Southern Sotho, is spoken in the country of Lesotho, which is entirely surrounded by South African territory, as well as in the Free State province, southern Gauteng, and in the vicinity of Pretoria and Brits. With Setswana and isiZulu, Sesotho was one of the first African languages to be rendered in written form, initiated by the missionaries Casalis and Arbousset of the Paris Evangelical Mission.

The language of the Tswana people is spoken mostly in Botswana, a country on the northwestern border of South Africa, as well as in the Northern Cape province, the central and western Free State and in the North West.

Geography of Ace of Moritsŏana
The Golden Gate Highlands National Park (proclaimed 13 September 1963) lies in the rolling foothills of the Maluti Mountains of the north eastern Free State. The park derives its name from the brilliant shades of gold cast by the sun on the park’s sandstone cliffs. The most famous of these is the imposing Brandwag rock.

Golden Gate is situated in one of the most important water catchment areas in South Africa and more than 50% of the water supply of South Africa comes from this area.