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Ben Themba Silindza

Mafavuke Njengedangamane

National Anthem

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A national anthem it is actually a prayer for a nation. All nations are supposed to have their anthem in keeping with their spirituality, yet the significance of a national anthem is not known to most of us. Unfortunately we are not able to distinguish between a civil society and a nation. It is very important for a nation to have their spirituality. National Anthems were songs derived from the nation’s spirituality. The purpose of the anthem was to invoke the Gods of that nation including the ancestors. For a nation to have an anthem they need to have their own spirituality in place, as it cannot be based on foreign gods or religion. A national anthem needs to be always be in the language of that nation because every nation connects to their spirituality in their own language, you cannot connect to your spirituality with other people’s language, unless if you are invoking foreign gods or you are lost nation. A national anthem that is not in your language is not yours and you are not supposed to respect that anthem unless you are worshiping foreign gods.
Most of african anthems are not based on African spirituality but based on Christianity that’s why they have no spiritual significance to us. Here in South Africa we have ‘Nkosi Sikelela I Africa’ as a national Anthem. The South African nation anthem is written in four languages which is Zulu, Sotho then English and Afrikaans it is based in Christianity not African spirituality and was composed by a lost African who was a Christian. We have more than 15 nations in South Africa in which only 11 of their languages are considered official. Some people will find my writing very offensive and some won’t even understand what am writing about, some will even think I’m dividing the so called rainbow nation. I am a Swazi in South Africa and my language is part of the so called official languages but I cannot respect the South African national anthem because it has nothing to do with me. Firstly it is not in my language and also not in my spirituality but based in Christianity which is a foreign religion. In Swaziland they have their national anthem written in Siswati but I cannot respect it as well because it is based on Christianity (foreign religion) I’m sure it was also composed by a lost African who was a Christian. Before the whites created what is called South Africa today a business entity were there were nations like Zulus, Swati, Sotho, Tsonga, Xhosa, Pedi, Tswana, Sans, Venda, Ndebele etc. all these are nations not tribes. This so called democratic government has turned these nations into tribes and come with the false idea of rainbow nation. Before these nations were colonised by the whites they were having their own national anthem based on their spirituality. How can you accept a song as your national anthem whereas it’s not based on your nationality, spirituality and language and you can’t even understand or pronounce some of the words  i.e. I don’t understand Afrikaans but I have to accept an anthem that is also in Afrikaans.
A BaVenda cannot have a Swati written national anthem or written in any other language beside Tshivenda. During colonization nations and Kingdoms were destroyed and turned into mere tribes, today’s generation cannot separate between a tribe and a nation. The new democratic government is continuing from where the colonizers left by keeping all these nations oppressed .The Zulu (Kingdom) nation was not fully destroyed and even now still standing better compared to the other nations which are being destroyed by the current government. Nations are always destroyed in the name of the so called democracy, this destruction of nations has not only happened here in South Africa but everywhere in Africa and other parts of the world. The African Union anthem is written in English yet this is not England, that’s why even if we sing it, it won’t invoke the Gods of Africa but the Gods of England. The African Union which is a wing of the United Nations cannot have an Anthem because they have destroyed African Spirituality with no intentions of reviving it. So the present anthem for the African Union is not for Africans but for the Europeans we need not respect it. We find countries that were colonized by France having an anthem in French and some having an anthem in Portuguese even in English for countries like South Africa, such anthems are not for the people of that country but for the French, English and Portuguese. As I have mentioned that national anthems were connected to the spirituality of a nation that’s why they used to be inspired by spiritual events that had happened to that nation, and people’s spirits used to be revived and reconnected to their gods when singing.
High priests and prophets of the nation were the pioneers of national anthems, as they were spiritual leaders. Anthems were important songs they were sung as prayer during special occasions, proceedings led by the high priest. Every family used to have their own anthem (EMAHUBO) that were connecting them to their spirituality and ancestors. They used to sing the anthem in special occasions and ceremonies like funerals, cleansing, appeasing and weddings; the family leader (Inkosana) leading the proceeding. Unfortunately very few families and clans still know their anthems and such anthems were the ones who end up being national anthem. The challenge that we are facing now is that our kings are no longer connected to African spirituality, most of them are now Christians – connected to European spirituality and this results in having foreign anthems with no meaning to us Africans. Anthems are prayer for a nation, to connect us with the Gods – that is why we sing them with respect. But I cannot respect an anthem that has no connection to my African spirituality and is not in my mother language. An African anthem must be based on African spirituality and be in an African language otherwise it is not for us but for the people of that language and their spirituality. A nation without their own spirituality or with a king that has adopted foreign religions is not a nation but a civil society. If it is in a European language it’s not for an Africans. If it is not in your spirituality it is not yours. SIYINDUNA MAPOPO RAMPANE NDAUWE.
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