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Chapter Thirteen. 1892: THE BIRTH OF A PRINCE

Boy Tafari
Fallaci: Your Majesty, I would like you to tell me something about yourself. Tell me, were you ever a disobedient youth? But maybe I ought to ask you first whether you have ever had time to be young, Your Majesty?
Selassie: We don't understand that question. What kind of question is it? It is obvious that We have been young: We weren't born old! We have been a child, a boy, a youth, an adult, and finally an old man. Like everyone else. Our Lord the Creator made Us like everyone else. Maybe you wish to know what kind of youth We were. Well, We were a very serious, very diligent, very obedient youth. We were sometimes punished, but do you know why? Because what We were made to study did not seem enough and We wished to study further. We wanted to stay on at school after lessons were over. We were loath to amuse Ourselves, to go riding, to play. We didn't want to waste time on games. (From his last interview)

I. THE RAISING EMPIRE

Oh, this magic hour! The time of great changes. Nothing is better than the hour of the dying daylight. Only the mornings could be better than that. The birds call for a new day. The chill and darkness of the Abyssinian night is about to surrender to the hot and bright African day...

Before the first sound of the church bells and morning voices of mullahs on the minarets, the animals begin to cry. The night city was occupied by them -- dogs, donkeys, roosters and ghosts of budas. The remote wilderness outside of the capital was becoming alive at the hour of early services at the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity. The spirits were retiring for the day, the living creatures were awakening. They knew the hour to celebrate a new day. Totas, the small mad monkeys, led the chorus with the strongest voice of the former royal chimpanzee, Anko. The caged animals and their non-caged brothers in the trees felt no difference at this hour. First light, death of darkness, sundowns and sunrises are more powerful than human history. His Majesty Primal Time had his upper hand at the moment of the ancient battle between light and dark. Anko sang his old song. The court lion Anbeza cried right after he heard Anko; they remembered better times in the palace, when their voices were a sign to every human to be silent. Lion Anbeza knew human flesh -- it was long ago, but the old lion still remembered the taste of a man's blood in his mouth. Many believed that Anbeza was a man-buda, who decided to remain as a lion, not a man. Others said that he forgot how to transform from animal back to a human, or he couldn't do it because of new times and the curse on him for killing humans. But all agreed that Anbeza could talk, and one could hear him talking to himself from time to time when he had his special place in the courtroom, to the right of the throne. Anbeza was a king long before the humans.

Anko was a buda man, too. There was a golden ring in his left eye and he liked to wear gold rings on his fingers. He knew how to read, and he liked to read old books, but he never talked with people. Sometimes Anko would listen, staring straight into one's eyes, but he never answered anyone. That was the night when the two of them came to their master Menelik and told him the news.

.... "A large clock, one meter square, was later installed above one of the palace buildings. It was visible from afar, and chimed every hour, thus, it is reported, enabling the citizens, perhaps for the first time in their lives, to go to work on time." European history came to Africa. [The clock on the City Hall tower stopped working at the time of revolution. They say it was fixed in 1995; we left never seen the clock legs move.]

Menelik listened in silence and then sent Anbeza and Anko away. And then he prayed. Nobody knew what the great man was praying for. Emperor was a man of a few words.

The animals have cried. It was their duty to mark this magic moment. No revolution could reform the ritual. They, the animals, knew it and cried. The whole zoo of Africa was put into motion after Anbeza's cry. Giraffes, rhinoceroses, elephants cried as it was the hour of rebellion. It was the time of evening mass, the magic hour when buda-people changed themselves into hyenas and other ravenous beasts. The sleep of the people was deep and they saw nothing.

It was the night, not the morning... The eucalyptus leaves would tremble... Silver and silk, flesh of vegetation... Tne black dove flew from Harar to the Menelik palace in the capital, dark as night to confirm the news.

Ras Makonnen with his army was one day away from Harar when they woke him up this night. It was a boy.

You, fools, who believe that you know it all! You don't know how to listen and see! The spirits are everywhere! They give life to everything around, they move waters and air, they make birds sing and trees grow. You can call them "laws of nature" -- they don't care. Your foolishness is not their loss.

Oh, the power of the Solomon! The black Hebrew. Not long ago, before the revolution, the budas were distinguished from others by a peculiarly formed gold ring, worn by the whole race, the kind of a ring one could see in the ears of hyenas. Besides the power that buda-people had of transforming themselves into wild animals, they used to possess the still more dangerous attribute of inflicting disease by directing a malign look towards their victims. The evil eye. After the revolution the gold disappeared, as well as the budas' rings, and nobody knew anymore who was a hyena-man and who wasn't. All became evil. One could spot budas only during this hour, called 'the hour between the wolf and the dog.' One had to have in hand a piece of dried meat "quanta" to see them. Persons of royal blood, of course, had this gift of transformation, as did blacksmiths. Good Christians believed that the hammer and sickle on red flags had something to do with budas, but Christians had no say anymore. There was no place for budas in Addis, all Falasha were airlifted to Israel.

Now they are somebody else's problems. Oh, how much the country lost!.. A century ago it was another Africa in a different world we hardly remember. There was no Addis Ababa but the fourth sacred place of Islam, ancient Harar, where the future Christian ruler of Ethiopian empire was born.


1. CHILDHOOD OF TAFARI

Baby Tafari Makonnen was born on July 23, 1892, according to the western calendar; in the year of St. John, one of the four evangelists, according to Ethiopians. John the Divine, who received the Revelation of the end of the world and the Judgement Day. It was the rain-season, when the dried land is resurrected by water. It was the time after the Fast of Moses and before the Fast of Apostles and the Fast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. It was a good time to be born. A boy was born, not a prince...

By the time of the festivities of the Virgin Resurrection and Assumption Tafari-boy was circumcized... and baptized.

His father, Ras Makonnen, was a governor of Harar, sent by the Emperor to the land of the Muslims. Wezero (Lady) Yeshimebet Ali was 11 when she married Makonnen in 1874 (?), waited long to give a birth in Ejersa Goro, in a town-village not far from the old walls of Harrar. Tafari didn't remember his mother, who died of unknown cause when he was two. She passed away on March 14, 1894, barely thirty years of age and was buried within the precinct of St. Michael's Church in the city of Harar. She was quiet as a woman and born Muslim, therefore nothing is known about her.

Upon his birth, Ras Makonnen took Tafari from his mother and put him in the custody of his loyal General Haile Selassie Abayneh. Tafari was schooled and tutored by a French Catholic Priest. Dr. Vitalien and, yes, Abba Samuel, an Orthodox priest. When Makonnen opened a hospital in the city, he met the physician Vitalien, who came from the French colony of Guadeloupe. Ras himself had been to Europe and hired his new French friend to teach Tafari and his cousin, Imru. After a few weeks he realized that one hour a day wouldn't be enough; that was the time when he contacted another friend of his, Abba Samuel, who became the closest man with Tafari and Imru till his death. Tafari was expected to be a prince. Many children of Ras Makonnen, something between dozen or two, weren't of the same fortune; nothing is know about them.

The first tragedy happened before he could understand it -- death of mother. He didn't remember her. Tafari grew up without mother. He was his father's son, in spirit and tradition. Ras Michael had big plans for his boy. He was his heir, his pride and his hope. Tafari began to govern at age of twelve. Father died when he was twelve.

The father's side of the family was known and powerful. Ras Makonnen Welde Mikael was the cousin and right hand of Mighty Menelik The Second (King from 1855 and Emperor since 1889). The family was from the core of the royal web of the Amhara dynasty which ruled Abyssinia for the last seven centuries. Tafari's grandmother was Princess Tenagna Warq. His great grandfather was King Sahle Sellassie of Shoa (Solomonic dynasty, 1813  1847). And the great, great, grandfather, Dej. Walde Mikael Walde Malakot was of the Doba and Manz nobility. Wezero Ehte Mariam, Tafari Makonnen's cousin from his father's side, had married Haile Sellassie Abayneh and given birth to Imru (who later became Ras Imru), when Tafari has four months old. The boys grew up as if they were twins, not known that the big history is ahead of them.

When in 1904 Lij. Teferi was made governor of a district in the province of Harrar, emperor Menelik completed his big wars, tripling the size of the country. It was a new Ethiopia not in name only. The Amhara highlanders became the dominant power in the Horn of Africa. Too many nations and tribes found themselves within the borders of this empire. African tribes of way south, deep inside the continent. The country has to be govern in new ways. The appointment of Tafari as a governor of Harar was designed by his father, who was Ras of the whole region of Harrarge, but as usual it had to sanctioned by the Emperor. As it was customary, the title of "Dedjazmatch" (field-marshal) was also conferred upon him. Becoming Dejazmatch (also a count or, literally, commander of the gate) at such early age happened because Ras Makonnen neared death and he had to entrust Tafari to his long time friend -- the Emperor. Menelik liked the boy. He saw the great future in Tafari and treated his as his own son. The old ruler had no son to pass the crown directly and Menelik asked Tafari to swear that he wouldn't challenge his grandson, Yasu, who became a heir to the throne. Tafari did swear. He didn't know that he lied. Menelik knew. He knew the prophecy.

The date of Menelik's death is not known, it took place somewhere in 1912 or 1913. The passing of the crown was always complicated and delicate matter. Yasu was young and the legacy of Menelik was so heavy. Tafari was a man who saw it all. He was a patient politician. He was ready, time wasn't. Not yet. Tafari's political career was an obvious success. A Ras at the age of 24 in 1916, and in 1917 -- regent. He became Negus of Shoa when he was 36 in 1928. Tafari was King and Emperor since his birth, but he had to wait for the world to learn about it.

He loved his father. Ras Makonnen was one of the best man of his time, he wanted his son to be a learned man, ready for new times. Tafari was his son among two dozens of bastards the Ras left behind, following a traditional manhood life. Tafari wasn't a boy, he was a prince.

When at age seven Tafari and Imru began their schooling, a foreigner taught them French, Orthodox monk -- Ge'ez. This was the beginning of the formal education. By the age of ten Tafari and Imru could read and write in Amharic and Ge'ez, an ancient Ethiopian language and the language of the church. Of course, they had to learn the art of warrior -- horse riding and shooting. The boys had to observe the business of governing, to be present at all the ceremonies, receptions, trails. The two were brought up unlike the sons of the princes of the ancient time. From Teodoros and Menelik the physical labor taboo for Abyssinian nobility was broken. The boys had to learn how to serve in order to know how to rule. Menelik himself put the first stone at the foundation of the St. Trinity church in his new capital. Work was a virtue of new leaders of Ethiopia.

Tafari knew that he had to serve his God and his country.

2. RELATION AND RELATIVES

The country was a batch of relatives...

Dej. Haile Sellassie Abayneh was Tafari Makonnen's cousin by marriage. Throughout his life he was also one of Tafari's closest advisers and friends. (He accompanied Tafari to the coronation of King Edward VII in 1902 ?).

Arranged by the dying Menelik in 1911 at the age of nineteen Dedjazmatch Tafari was married to weyzero Menen who was the grand-daughter of Negus Mikael of Wello (province) and niece to Tafari's court rival and apparent heir to the throne (Yassu). Menelik wanted no fight between princes for the crown. The ancient way to prevent it was to lock them into close relations. The Power was a family business.

Marriage was a matter of politics. Each new born is another figure of the game of the ruling class....

The old house of Ethiopian culture was full of forgotten but religiously observed rituals. Culture, not a civilization with written rules, ruled that universe. CULTURE in pre-modernity had powers of totality. It wasn't separated from everyday's every step. It was a culture of specific thought and sensitivity; behavior was the culture. The Family went with the Emperor into exile to keep the immediate environment of Ethiopian culture.

Ethiopian or Abyssinia (Amhara) MARRIAGE had its own features:
The Emperor Menelik was the fifth husband for the Empress Taitu, and Menelik's daughter, the Empress Zauditu, was married four times. The Empress Mennen in her third marriage became the wife of Leul Ras Seged, whom she divorced to be given in marriage by her uncle Lij Iyassu to Dedjazmatch Tafari Makonnen, later Haile Sellassie.

In addition there were the inevitable and usual extra-marital arrangements which, through wide acceptance, largely converted official monogamy into polygamy. Such liaisons were more the rule than the exception... From the time of Ras Mangasha, the illegitimate son of the Emperor Yohannes, down to Haile Sellassie, the ruling households consisted of heirs both legitimate and illegitimate, the `inside' and the `outside' off springs. (Spencer 205)

Poor Esther, she still struggles, with, at least six, known to her other offsprings of her father outside of marriage. History is dirty and painful. Life isn't clean.


II. HISTORICAL GREETING FROM THE WORLD: ADWA

The opening of the Suez Canal in 1869 made the Red Sea coast attractive to European countries. Drive for colonization was in full swing. Italy was determined to colonize Ethiopia because it already had the coastal Eritrea and Italian Somaliland. In 1872 they captured the port cities of Assab, and Massawa in 1885.

In 1889 Emperor Menelik signed the Treaty of Wichale, which was supposed to be a treaty of friendship and cooperation with Italy. But instead it was viewed two different ways, and the Italians claimed that it made all of Ethiopia their protectorate. As a result, war broke out in 1895. Ethiopian forces defeated the Italian forces in the famous Battle of Adwa in 1896. Italy was forced to recognize Ethiopia as an independent nation. Never-the-less, Eritrea stays under Italian protectorate. Not once the Eritrean shadow would cross the whole country from the North to the South.

His memories starts with the Ethiopian triumphs. He was four when the great battle of Adwa was won...

Sunday,
When Ethiopians kiss their church,
Saint's day,
Before the Holy Easter-feasting,
Freedom,
Cannons dried up in panicking Rome.
Ethiopia,
Ordered all rivers to strike the neck.

In the early 19th century, Italy itself was not a nation. By the time it came to the scene, most of Africa was under the control of the British and the French. The only free countries in Africa then, were Ethiopia and Liberia. With the encouragement of the British, the Italians captured the northern part of Ethiopia and started expanding south. In 1896, Emperor Menelik II signed the Treaty of Wochale. As it is customary for colonial powers to distort and sometimes change articles of treaties to fit their interest, the Italian version of article 17 of the Treaty of Wochale was completely different than the Ethiopian version.

The Ethiopian version of article 17 read "The Government of Ethiopia may solicit the help of the Italian Government in its affairs with European nations." The Italian version of the article read "The Government of Ethiopia should conduct its affairs with European Nation through the Italian Government." In effect making Ethiopia a protectorate of Italy. European nations immediately recognized Italy's claim and refused to deal with Ethiopia directly as an independent nation. Thus the stage was set for the battle.

As the result the Treaty was declared null and void and the Italians eager for new land to conquer, invaded Ethiopia. Menelik II assembled his army and met the invaders at Adwa. The Italians came with a large well equipped army. In a single day battle, the Italian army suffered one of its worst defeats. Two of the five generals were killed at Adwa. A third was captured, one general escaped alive with few survivors. The Ethiopians took more than 2000 Italians prisoners.

Menelik, 
Roared and sat on a white Horse, 
Gebeyehu, 
Chief of Ethiopian Armed Forces, 
Harvest, 
Started grounding unwelcomed weeds. 
Gobena, 
Trying to cover for Chief Gebeyehu, 
Nation,
Utterered: this is our marriage again! 
Gebeyehu... 'No Chain Our Nation" and died first 
Mekonnen, 
Followed on the line of Dargie,
"Tobia: 
Not without reason trusts us!"
Atikam,
Spoke as he chased Racist Rats; 
Appetite, For angry Lions never chose killers; 
Believers, 
Ethiopians feast on enemy beaf;
Finished, 
Shells dropped like the Hamle rain, 
Ethiopians: 
All Men and Women gashed for the Feast, 
Kneeling, 
Fat abdomens of Italian generals, 
Balcha, 
Breathing fire artillery operator, 
Taitu, 
Black Angel turned to killing devil:
"Strike: 
And Victory Stays in Our Bosom!"
Water, 
Sweet Adwa springs turned red... 
Bodies,
Adwa got covered with human bodies,
HGiorgis,
Could not estimate the number;
Yohannes,
Came in spirit to complete the fight...

Ethiopian Army totaled 110,000. Under the direct command of Menelik -- 34,000, Empress 5,000, King Tekele Haimnot 5000, Ras Michael 14,000, Ras Mekonnen 15,000, Ras Bitwoded Mengesha 5000, Ras Wole 6000, Ras Mengesha Yohannes and Ras Alula 3000, Wagshum Guangul 10,000 and Fitaurary Gebyehu 13,000.

Italian Army had 20819 soldiers. General Dabormida 3800 and 18 pieces of artillery, General Arimondi 2493 and 12 pieces of artillery, General Albertoni 4076 artillery, General Elena 4150, plus 12 pieces of artillery, General Baratieri 5000, Major Emilio 1300...

All of it was lost. 7000 dead, 2500 wounded. 2400 were taken prisoners. The Italians lost all their artillery. Among the dead -- General Arimondi, General Dabormida, Colonel Galiano, Colonel Campiano and General Albertoni was captured...

It was a wrong day to do it. "On the night of February 29, 1896, Barateri took advantage of the moonlight and the fact that the next day was a great feast of the Ethiopians - that of St. George's - to advance." The Italians marched into history which remembers its all -- victories and disgrace...

Warned by his scouts, Menelik moved forward although a third of his men were away for the holiday. By using mountain passes unknown to the Italians he crept upon them and surrounded them almost entirely. At 6:30 the next morning the Italians opened the battle. Their mountain guns played havoc with the massed Ethiopians. But Menelik, bringingup his modern quickfirers replied with vigor. Then he gave the order to advance on all fronts, and the Ethiopians sweeping down, pressed the Italians into such a closely packed mass that they could not use their guns. Many of their cannon were found after the fight, unfired. Thereafter the battle was a massacre. The Ethiopians speared the foe like sheep. By 3:00 P.M. the Italians were in full flight, leaving 12,000 dead.

The Ethiopians did not pursue them but the black subjects of Italy, taking advantage of the defeat, slaughtered the fugitives. The entire supplies, including the 56 cannon and 4,000,000 cartridges fell to Menelik, whose loss was between 3,000 and 5,000 slain. Thus, the Italian provided Menelik for his future campaigns...

Colonizers, 
From the far land of white fox, 
Ignorant, 
Confused use of cannons on Ethiopian land; 
Experience, 
Romans needed a school to question, 
Philosophy, 
Why Ethiopians choose death than us? 
Teodros, 
Why do they shame us before changing them? 
Hopeless,
At exacting twelve thirty Ethiopian Time, 
Civilizers: 
Menilek deflowered Italian defence 
Warsongs: 
Changed from attack to 'Gurowesheba' 
Beware: Ethiopians cut enemy male genitalia.
Prisoners: 
There was no prison for city builders; 
Engineers, 
They rushed them to build the City. 
Alternate, 
To make Addis look like Europe, 
Colonize, 
They then 1886 colonized the colonizers.
Employment, 
And built our city with white prisoners. 
Ethiopia:
Will never have colony or colonizers. 
Menilek: 
Kind human engineer of freeborn folks; 
Taitu, 
Toughest Lady on Italians brain; 
Abyssinians, 
Built the city with white prisoners; 
Invite:
Let Africans drink from Taitu's wine. 
Dreamer: 
Menilek and then Martin Luther King... 
World: 
Both are blond black human tigers;
Unchained, 
Humanity's Black and White freedom, 
Melting, 
Ethiopia is the pot of human race. 
Long live, 
The unconquerable spirits of Men and Com. 

1996. Taddele Gebre Hiwot, Servant of Ethiopian Letters.[2]

At the time of Adwa Tafari war four year old.

Oh, Ethiopia of Menelik, the rising star of Africa! He childhood was full of stories about victory of Adwa, conquests over the South. Father, Oromo (everything; present and past), Tafari's marriage, Yasu...

"The victory resounded around the world. It amazed Europe and heartened black men everywhere. Especially it gave to the oppressed Africans new hope."

...Menelik with new Italian arms moved his huge army south to conquer Africa! "Oppressed Africans"? Oromo oppressed by Abyssinians were praying for the white man (British) to save them....[4]

That was the way for a boy to start his life, to dream, to strive. Yes, there were two man to model his mind after -- his father and Emperor Menelik.

...There is no monument for Adwa. Well, even the anniversary wasn't in Addis. Great emperor Menelik has his PR problems in today's Ethiopia.

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I thought about including the notes to this chapter -- it's a book-in-progress, I don't know the final shape of it. So, here they are, the notes.


III. THE SECRET WORLD OF A SECRET MAN

1. BIRTH IS A BIGGER MYSTERY, THAN DEATH

"I have no name:
I am but two days old."
What shall I call thee?
"I happy am,
Joy is my name."
Sweet joy befall thee!
(Infant Joy, Blake 1789)

Why? Why should a new life to be so open to the unknown? It knows nothing better? "Joy is my name..." Is it so? "I happy am..."

He was extremely serious boy...

Nothing was said about the joy of resurrection... Why? Because before it comes DEATH.
If the body has to be renewed, the birth must change its name. Without redefining birth we can't change the nature of death. What did we do? We're monitoring birth. The birth is in the hands of people. We participate in God's miracle. We call it the Pill. The mind over matter, over life. We have to call it sex, because it's not the reproduction. It's pleasure without birth. We trick the nature, we are smart animals. We know how to control our bodies. Oh, silly flesh, your powers are blind. The life pushes us at the border of agony, but there is the angles of technology at the gates of life and death. The tales of genetic engineering are to follow.

The question is why birth has to be present in paradise? Or should I ask the forbidden question -- is it a birth at all? Was I born? What is this new birth?
No, we are not ready for such talks. We don't want to know.

Resurrection of the living? If R is the resurrection of souls, not bodies, shouldn't the LIVING be returned? They have to be killed first. (Forget the few, the saints).

Rome was always wise. Rational. What about the majority? Why it's all or nothing? What if there is a place between the hell and the heaven? Not a full paradise and not exactly the torture. That was the real inspiration for utopia. Something doable.
You know it, the Purgatory (Catholic) -- the-after-death still remembering the body. Slow departure from it. Not the angelic kingdom, not yet; the place to be born and die.

Hell or paradise, we live in the kingdom of God, the divine chronotope. Paradise on earth has the qualities of both houses beyond life. The confort of heavens and the hell of a place, when our technologies go wrong.

I saw this application form -- "None of the above": From many gods to one and to none.... God's inner universe has no gods. The end of the superior authority, the "before". In our world there is no "gods" -- not even a companion of Trinity? You can see the difference between the saint and an ordinary soul anymore, no, friends, not in paradise. This is the place of total equality!

What do I hear? The songs! What a strange mixture of joy and agony -- rock-end-roll! "American Time" (New Americans) -- Integrated Spectacle: "I love you, Tomorrow!" Tomorrow is today! If I live tomorrow, my "today" is yesterday! (For more go to the American Site American Identity)

What a power, will to live! My birth? What it's has to do with "me." It's only pre-conditions. No more than existence of life, air, light, universe. Sure, there are many pre-determined qualities which keep pushing me according to their own mechanisms and forces -- still not me. My life didn't begin with my birth, or conception; my life is always at the starting point. I'm not born yet, I'm waiting for the birthday -- the time when I get what I craving for -- the sense, understanding, feeling. I am always ahead -- this is "me."

Why should I be afraid of death when the death is an instrument of getting there. I died as a child, I died as a Russian -- what's how "I" was born. Birth is another name for death. Good name. Because we don't see "what" dies -- another replaces it. We accept and welcome this (positive) death and reject the final act -- dying. Birth is also out of my control, it's no less humiliating.

1.1. THE BIRTH SCREAM

I fear, my powers are overwhelming. Birth control, anti-biotic and controlled death...

Birth is a death of the baby as a part of mother's body. Birth -- programmed, forced appearance. We only can do damage, we are in position of resistance. Birth is the opposite to creation. I'm an object not a subject of the process. Death is the only possible input from me. I'm going alone with nature. Birth is passive and therefore is a gift! Birth is the resurrection of the ancestors!

Monitoring the birth, we do. Being born is a precondition, no more than being conceived. Being alive is only a situation. Your will (soul) has to be placed in for you to live. Your presence has nothing to do with you -- and nowadays it's a crime. Everyone has to have his mission; follow Christ! A resurrected has to answer, to act, to defend himself. J Day!

... Future is a kingdom fantasy, past -- of a memory. What is ahead? Life? If you're young. Death? When you're old. Am I old? That how it began -- I thought about death because I felt as I can't live. I wasn't happy with (my) life. I was young, and my life was ahead of me. My mind still has no balance between the past and the future.

Oh, there are many good reasons for not knowing.

How different is birth from death? For one, I'm not aware of my birth. I don't "know" about it -- and do not remember it. That's the result of a "total experience." Total alienation from myself? I have to be told about my own birth. Family's memories, my birth is a legend. Even the factual aspect of my presence has to be discovered. The right of the unborn?

What about the right of the not conceived yet? What about so many I didn't give to? My mother gave birth to as many as she was capable of. We prevent life from the explosion, we regulate... We play God. We have to. There is no God outside of us.

Nine months of the creation... Birth? Don't you know what is that? The welcoming Apocalypses. The begining of a tragedy... Go ahead! Celebrate the catastrophe! Why this break of the present is a happy occasion?

Death and Self-recognition: Duplication? No, Resurrection.

Speed of death supports quality of time (living)?

"Rational living beings must first become mortals." Heidegger says, when discussing the need for poetry, that he lives in a time when "mortals are hardly aware and capable even of their own mortality. Mortals have not yet come into the ownership of their own nature. Death withdraws into the enigmatic. The mystery of pain remains veiled. Love has not been learned."

For a resurrected soul death is a pre-requisite. I can't be in the KOG without being "a little bit dead." After all, the dead is always dead, even after the resurrection. Being aware of your own mortality? Not enough! Think about death all the time? Not good enough! Jesus had to die to know (experience) death and being dead. That's the only way to experience the anti-life. We have to colonize the Nothing. How do we go there? We have to treat time as nothing, we have to waste everything, we must make everything into NOTHING!

How does the second nature serves this "deadly" purpose? The dread, fear -- domesticated human being (communist) is a dead predator. His instincts, his aggression, his will to live -- killed!

1.2. THE UNREAL

Being loved = expected, waited for... Was I seek out? Parents, children -- but was it me? Even I, myself, not necessary look for me.

I can't respect the real because I never was respected by life. Technology is no less indifferent to my presence? That's how child feels, his collision with a chair is a conflict between two subjects. That's how primitives feel. Very appropriate in new nature where my environment is somebody's expression. Notice, we're seeing them all, we would sue God if only we could find his office.

1.3. NOBODY AND SOMEBODY

Who is he who comes to this world... if not a prince? And who is she if not a princess? Non-invited, unimportant, un-noticed. Billions of them lost in this abyss between animals and humans. What should we do with them, the people? By the time I reach this dark cellar of my thought-thinking, I stop. I stumble and stutter. I can't accept the waste. Not the mortality, but the vulgarity is humiliating. Yes, I would support the world of polaroid, when nobody should pass by not noticed. Do I have to be a modernist and revolutionary to follow this feeling? I remember myself feeling it in my youth. Don't get discouraged, friend. Welcome yourself to this world. ...

Our family stories are ahead. The Oromo blood and the Russian, all the invisible connections, not known to anybody, including them (my children) in whom this mystery takes place... Modernity likes to disregard the hereditary makeup. We like to believe that our temperament are "personal" -- not "tribal." The true rulers are invisible.

On no, we are not the first in this destruction of color, it's them, the Ethiopians, are the race traitors. Go and try to separate all the bloods.

The birth. A prologue? As well as the epilogue...

Something we understand, can understand. From Self: self-colonization, knowing yourself, which is past. Both -- intellectual and physical makeup. To discover, to learn, instead of constructing from nothing as bodiless existentialist thought. I'm a peculiar Nothing. The Nothing which contains too much, including my desire to construct something out of my existence. Past is both -- friend and enemy. What is this Nothing? A desire for Other -- a woman, a child. Opposite to me.

Do we disregard the body in the same tradition of Christianity? Should a body be our prime concern at the time of resurrection? At least, science, medicine and popular culture insists on materialist approach. They are much closer to totemism than our philosophy. My ancestors are present in me and would continue their travel in my children. "Biological" we say.

What would be a point of resurrection without remembering the body? RESURRECTION ISN'T CREATION.

My parents -- my pre-existence. And before them, and before...

Birth in R(esurrection) times isn't "natural" -- through technology the race is present (God in our primitive sensibility). Stirner as wrong as Marx, two extremes, we can't and shouldn't fully departure from the material.

My life (existence) is based, depends on physicality and end in it. Tribal philosophy always remembered it, never treated body as a temporary container. They were true formalists: form = essence. Greek art was "materialistic". Spirituality ended up in abstractions of communist ideology, when everything individual got lost, when nothing concrete matters anymore. Individualism has to be very materialistic, practical, precise. Materialism must be artistic, detail-oriented. Look at our bodies, what a craftsmanship!

Alas! BIRTH INTRODUCES TIME -- A TEST!

The Last Evil -- the Time is introduced!

Eckhart's understanding -- God is outside time -- apocalypse/resurrection is God's chronotope, where is no time or space. The present which includes the past and the future. Being and becoming are not the opposites anymore.

Nothing is as opposed to God as time. . . There is no process of becoming in God, but only a present moment, that is a becoming without a becoming, a becomingnew without renewal. . . All that is in God is an eternal presenttime without renewal. [Sermon DW 50]

Progress is anti-divine. (When and how?) Renewal? The news.

Being as becoming. Speed makes becoming = being.

Be-com-ing? Be(com)ing? "A becomingnew without renewal"?


If you wonder, why I have such notes for the chapter about H.S. youth, maybe I should post the last chapter of the book "Before Now" -- about his life before his birth. The immortal souls are in existance from the beginning of times, don't you know? Oh, you don't believe it? Well, then we will talk about it later, sometimes after our death.

Few notes on the historical background of H.S. youth.

2. HARAR, ISLAM and Yasu

Harar, city-state, old, perhaps, the oldest in Africa, ten centuries old town. Aw Abadir (literally meaning Father Abadir) is the patron of Harar who came from Arabia about 940950 A.D.. He converted many tribes around the Harar to the Islam. His tomb and shrine are inside the old city and are a holy center. There are three cities in one. The divisions are based on the difference in their economies. These are three concentric circles whose inner most one is represented by the city (Gey), followed by the adjacent gardens and grain fields (Geey fagaay) and lastly the whole region outside which was left fallow (Gaffa) before the sedentary Gallas occupied it.

"A Harari is a born trader." The merchants's town, the inner circle represents the town itself, called Harargey or merely gey by the Harari, Hararge by the Amhara, Adare by the Kottu, and Harar by the Arabs and all Europeans. It is encircled by a stone wall with five gates.
The Gardens, the green, irrigated, and the red soil. And it's hot. You're in Africa.
The outer circle is known as gaffa, which means fallow land, and is very wide. It is thinly populated, mostly by the Kottu (Galla). The city was the center.

Kush, son of Ham, grandson of Noah, gave them the name....

The conquest of Harar by Menelik in 1887 came after the Egyptians took over the city in 1875. The Great Harar had better times before....

Ras Makonnen met his wife here. Some historians she was a Muslim....

They said that Menelik presided over his last geber on 11 September 1909, by then mortally ill from syphilis.[7] On 28 October he suffered a massive stroke, which left him paralyzed and speechless. On April 10 1911, the sixteen-year-old Iyasu claimed his personal rule, without regency. He thought that he is ready, and who was there to object?
He was a joyful ruler, womanizer and hunter, they say that he tried to make Islam a state religion of the nation. He was careless...

Tafari Makonnen was ready to govern, too. He, who grew up with Yasu in the palace, didn't join his cousin's government. On 13 August 1916, Iyasu removed Tafari from Harerge, sending him to the less important province of Kefa. Instead of taking up his new post, he remained in Addis. At a meeting on September 1916 Yasu was accused of apostasy and excommunicated. That was the time to break Tafari's oath to Menelik. It was his hour. He was ready to be a king. The rest is known, it's history.

Iyasu, on hearing news of the coup d'etat, tried to hasten back to the capital, but was defeated at Miesso, half way from Dire Dawa. His father, Negus Mika'l, meanwhile marched south in an attempt to reestablish his son's rule. Two major engagements ensued. The first was at Toro Mask, near Ankobar, where the Wallo army was victorious. The second, and more decisive, at Sagale, north of Addis Ababa, on 27 October 1916, when the Shawan army, deployed by Ras Tafari, captured Mika'l, and thus brought the struggle to and end. Iyasu had little option but to flee into the Afar lowlands, where, refusing, it is said, to seek asylum abroad, he roamed among a friendly population for the next half decade. He was eventually captured, in 1921, after which he remained in close confinement at Garamulata, in the east of the country, until his death in the autumn of 1936. (Pankhurst 4)

[more on other pages]


Notes

[1] A History of Early Twentieth Century Ethiopia. 2, Punkhurst.
[2] This Poem is dedicated for the memory of Liqe Mekuas (Dejazmatch) Adnew Goshu Great Emperor Menilek's Brillian General and the 25,000 Nameless Ethiopian Soldiers slaughtered to give us this Day of Smiles.
[3] Rogers, J.A. (1936). "The Real Facts About Ethiopia." p. 18.
[4] Darley _Slaves and Ivory in Abyssinia_.
[5] INFANT JOY Blake 1789
[7] A History of Ethiopia, Harold Marcus, University of California Press 1994

I posted this text for H.S. birthday on July 23. If you have comments or corrections, send it to me. Also, another new page 1960: Lost Sons Thanks. Anatoly.

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