For any building to stand, it has to have a strong foundation. Without a strong foundation, the building crumbles. This is a simple datum, as truthful as to be indisputable by any sane person. The fabric condition of any human society determines the civilization of its people. Nations are as strong as established on principles of what is right, as separated from what is wrong.
A society is considered civilized when sharing the common good and acceptable principles. In short, the fundamentals of establishing an acceptable civilization are ethical families. The first common principle that enables the establishment of society is the family unit. It is impossible to talk about a society without well-established families. But we cannot talk about well-established families, without talking about individuals constituting those families.
A thing called family is initiated through the marriage of a man and a woman. The two get attracted to each other, although coming from different backgrounds. The most important question is centred on what makes a person attracted to another person. As long as the attraction is based on money or some materialistic commodity, that relationship bears a wrong foundation.
The relationship could also be false, when based on how physically beautiful or handsome the person looks. In other words, a relationship is false, as long as sustained by charming looks. Or that the person carries material possessions, making him appear admirable in the eyes of common men. It is wrong also to be attracted to a celebrity, in terms of talents and abilities, compared to others.
The Bible states that “the woman saw that the tree was a delight to the eyes and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.”(Genesis 3:6). The story of Adam and Eve serves to highlight the basis for deception. When desiring to know the recipe for deception, the story of Adam and Eve suffices.
Oddly, even bad things carry admirable components. What could Eve do, perceiving something that was a delight to the eyes, and desirable to make one wise? From the story of Adam and Eve, we deduce what appears admirable to the physical eyes, but not admirable to spiritual wisdom. There are also things that appear as making one wise, physically, when the opposite is true.
All marriages that end with disintegration are based on the viewpoint that trapped the woman, at the Garden of Eden, as based on falsehood. There cannot be a problem that can be solved, without first tracing its foundation to falsehood. Once established, the problem can be handled, so as to no longer be awkward.
Let us, therefore, first discover how Eve got trapped into the calamitous deception. She saw something that was a delight to the eyes and desirable to make one wise. Nothing appears wrong in that conjecture? But this is similar to a faker, embellishing and packaging a deceptive product. Many people are known to have lost big monies through tricksters.
The only known and acceptable way of avoiding swindlers is by questioning the source of origin. The known brand of a workable product could be a Samsung cell phone, for instance. Yet it is commonly known that some people sell what resembles the original Samsung product. Out of ignorance, people get tricked into buying such products, assuming them to be original.
It goes without saying, that this describes problems, known to be common in the computer industry. There are things that physically appear to be when they would be not. Some people are active in the business of selling clown computer material and making a living out of it.
In Zimbabwe, we have many people openly sustaining their businesses through such fake materials. The reason for such unauthentic businesses thriving is the obvious existence of unauthentic clientele. Many people are hungry for receiving, more than desiring to give. Such behaviour is commonly driven by poverty.
A poor person is vulnerable to manipulation in the hands of any trickster. The cause of poverty, itself, is a result of desiring to receive more than giving a benefit to others. Genuine products are viewed as expensive. But, when considering durability and workability, genuine products are less expensive.
There is a considerable difference between what is less expensive and what is cheap. As long as trustworthy and commendable, a product is less expensive, even though tagged with a high price. This is different from a cheap product, which would be more expensive, even though tagged with a lower price. One pays more money on cheap products than what can be paid on durable products.
What Eve saw as delightful to the eyes and desirable to make one wise, provided the opposite. She ought to have questioned the source of information, before entertaining the informant. By what authority did the serpent say what it said? What made her conclude that what was delightful to the eyes was not a trap? The fisherman normally uses a bait, appearing attractive to the fish.
A deceiver uses similar methods to catch the unsuspecting victims. Through the serpent, Satan used the obstinate trick, catching the unsuspecting woman, unawares. She could have avoided it, by checking the authenticity. Adam and Eve ought to have verified the Serpent’s data, whether from the source or not. Nothing else could have proven how fallacious the information given was.
The same wisdom can be used to check the authenticity of someone with whom to engage in marriage. The love that leads into marriage has got nothing to do with physical conditions. A highly educated person can marry someone, uneducated, as to be unable to write her name. Yet, at the same time, marrying an uneducated person can be tantamount to playing with disaster.
The problem arises when an uneducated person pretends to be educated, rather than appreciating being uneducated. Willingness to learn is the only contrivance that makes a person educated. The so-called educated person also displays being uneducated, when using education as a license to despise the uneducated partner. The authenticity of any information is attainable to anyone looking for it.
Those falling in love, may not even need to be heard. The signal strikes, as attracting what is spiritual, more than what is physical. The question of whether the person is educated or not is secondary and bears no significance. The unwise parents are known to even attempt to oppose the marital unions of lovers, based on their educational backgrounds.
The upshot of it is that true love is spiritual. It does not consider the views of other people or the circumstances of the individuals concerned. This includes marrying without the consideration of racial backgrounds. Such lovers may even oppose the viewpoints of relatives and associates. The union of such couples, as long as sincerely sustained by that genuine love, is justifiable.
There may be problems where one of the spouses would, somehow, not be telling the truth. But, if both spouses sincerely get committed to that marriage, chances are that they become a model of a good marriage. When holding common views on childrearing and avoiding quarrels, a model family would result. Children born out of such marital union could truly become a component of a good society.
Children born out of such marriages are properly educated and cultured. If all marriages were to come from such unions, the establishment of a strong society would be guaranteed. With such a strong society, we can be assured of establishing a strong civilization. Such a civilization becomes the opposite of what prevails, where fake marriages are dominant.
By fake marriages is meant the consideration of material acquisitions, rather than the person being married. The consideration of the person’s physical outlook, rather than the person’s dignity. The consideration of the person’s status in society, rather than the values that the person adheres to. The undesirables include the consideration of one’s Christian or denominational background.
Marriage is a spiritual union of two personalities, whose chemistry, sustaining their union, cannot be understood by other people. That union is not designed to please other people, but God, who looks at what is hidden. The vows, commonly recited during wedding ceremonies are virtuous. The only problem with those vows, as manifesting in divorces that follow them, is insincerity.
Making a vow is not necessary, as long as projecting truthfulness. The most laughable vows in Zimbabwe are those made during swearing-in ceremonies for the state president and his cabinet ministers. Blatant lies would have been publicly uttered, yet the public would still be expected to endorse, nevertheless.
The public avowal assumes that Zimbabwe would be a God-fearing nation, yet projecting the opposite. Christians just watch and look helpless, even when the name of the Lord is used in vain. This projects one of the reasons why Christians could be more to blame, than the actual blasphemers.
The starting point is to ensure that God-fearing leaders are voted in, rather than nonbelievers. The entire nation is under a curse, as long as under the leadership of such wicked people. A good man, attracted to a good woman, produces good children who can then guarantee a fine society.
There will always be bad people in society. But the more we have good people, than bad, the chances of having a civilized society are high. Good people can be the light of the community. The source of the armed robbers in society is bad families. But the source of role models in society is good families.
The biggest challenges, bringing serious problems in societies, are people who sit in between good and evil. These can be called the lukewarm characters, who assume that there is comfort in-between.
The origin of corrupt people is those who sought to impress their partners into marriages, using ill-gotten gains. Or that such people may have used their status, in society, to attract the gullible partners into a marriage. Such people value money and other material objects to impress, so as to project falsehood.
Others even assume that the size of a spouse’s manhood would be necessary for a happy marriage. Yet those attracted to each other, even without talking to each other, cannot have had such considerations in mind. The flirtatious ideas like “love is blind,” may hold some truth, as true lovers cannot conjecture fanciful ideas, in the physical universe.
Any society is an effect of good or bad families. Good families are those uniting in marriage through goodwill and trust. However, bad societies are the effects of those having moulded families out of deceit. This is where money and material acquisitions are valued more than the dignity of an individual.
Things can be bad in societies. Each day comes with bad stories in newspapers, rather than good stories. Corruption is, actually, encouraging more repulsive evils, leaving a clearly wicked society. But corruption is an effect of the characters comprising the society, through families whose foundation are bad marriages.
Valuable products are sustained by spiritual conviction, rather than material considerations. Valuable projections are more in what is given to others, rather than what is received from others. When freed from such falsehood, we would have better societies and a well-structured civilization.
Human societies can guarantee happiness and pleasure. Conversely, human societies can guarantee wickedness as known to exist everywhere. The cause of joy in societies is happy families. And yet the cause of wickedness in societies are bad families, characterized in animosities and divorces.
Good families are the necessary layers for good societies that then lead to fine civilizations. The promotion of good families starts by eliminating falsehoods, especially the falsehoods blurted out from some church groupings. There are also falsehoods from education, implying that education is a license for assuming to be better than one’s fellow men.
Just as a house cannot stand without a strong foundation, a family cannot stand without being guaranteed by truthful vows. Those finding it easy to terminate marriages should realize that they would be contributing towards an evil society. This includes the robbers that make night travel very dangerous.
Both bad and good societies are an effect of bad marriages, designed out of falsehoods, rather than truth. However, it is never too late to correct wrong actions. The bedrock of human societies is the responsibilities of individuals, failing to appreciate that anything bad is a contribution of individuals.
The individuals, through their improper relationships with their spouses, create faulty marriages, which in turn create faulty societies. Individuals, through their proper relationships with their spouses, can create solid marriages, which in turn create solid societies. Nothing else describes this reality, better.
Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing relief to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. In a simple conversational tone, most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope.
The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99