As early as nineteen-eighty, while Zimbabweans were celebrating the attainment of independence, the longsighted people saw disaster ahead. The principle of democracy betrayed the advantages of long-sightedness. On a dichotomous scale, advantages and disadvantages can be plotted to determine both long-sighted and short-sighted gradients. The more the country is shortsighted, the more problems it faces. The more long-sighted the country becomes; the better living conditions would prevail. This truism has characterized human sustenance since the beginning.
Once when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau came in from the open country, famished. He said to Jacob, “Quick, let me have some of that red stew! I’m famished!” (That is why he was also called Edom.) Jacob replied, “First sell me your birthright.” “Look, I am about to die,” Esau said. “What good is the birthright to me?” But Jacob said, “Swear to me first.” So he swore an oath to him, selling his birthright to Jacob. Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and some lentil stew. He ate and drank, and then got up and left. So Esau despised his birthright(Genesis 25:29-34 NIV).
Esau’s story reveals how shortsightedness suspends longtime considerations. The treacherous Jacob took advantage of this truism and took Esau’s birthright. The demise of Esau’s possible dynasty took effect at the point of his craving for the appetizing stew. The syndrome of shortsightedness gripped Esau, just as it grips most people, even in our present environment.
The problem of shortsightedness should not be viewed as limited to Esau. To curb accidents on the roads, shortsighted drivers should never be entrusted with driving on highways. Accidents are commonly caused by shortsighted drivers, more than assumed to be common human error. Drunken driving should be classified as another form of shortsightedness.
The problematic principle of shortsightedness applies to any other consideration, of which human life is concerned. This universe is governed by principles, determining the ability to be forward-looking, rather than inward-looking. A child, who prefers playing at home, rather than attending school for educational development, would be shortsighted.
Playing at home might be persuasive but condemning the child to an unpredictable future. The relevance of education cannot be measurable, unless aware of future problems. This highlights the significance of survival issues. The entire world grapples with the effects of climate change, caused by shortsightedness. In Zimbabwe, the makorokozas (illegal miners), concerned about their stomachs, have taken over tomorrow’s living conditions.
The shortsightedness syndrome cannot be limited to uncivilised societies. There is currently an outcry on dumped nuclear waste, propelled by the so-called civilized societies. This confirms the shortsightedness syndrome, is not limited to sections of societies. Shortsightedness is problematic to a greater or lesser degree, bedevilling the generality of humanity, from time immemorial.
Some semblance of progress in some societies is unsustainable. Ignoring inhuman behaviour in most areas is symptomatic of shortsightedness, by those assuming to be knowledgeable. The greatest challenge is how to reach out to the majority of humanity. The condemned are proportionate to the degree of failure to understand that there would be tomorrow. The apostle Paul alluded to the same viewpoint when illustrating the future resurrection:
And as for us, why do we endanger ourselves every hour? I face death every day—yes, just as surely as I boast about you in Christ Jesus our Lord. If I fought wild beasts in Ephesus with no more than human hopes, what have I gained? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.” Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character”(1 Corinthians 15:30-33 NIV)
Long-sightedness depicts, in greater or lesser degree, the only hope of human survival. As an advocate of Christianity, Paul spoke about the furthest degree to which long-sightedness aims. Physical life is represented in short-sightedness. This is what Paul was attempting to address, to his audience. Attractive as physical life is, to some; it is as temporary as Esau’s stew was temporary.
Feeding the stomach is temporary. For instance, cutting trees can be justified, but potentially damaging future survival. Today’s pleasures create liabilities for tomorrow’s survival. No future can be meaningful, without sacrificing today’s pleasures.
Young children have to sacrifice playing, for school attendance, to secure advantages found in good education. A farmer has to sacrifice leisure, for hard work in the fields, to ever dream of good yields at harvesting. Professional artists, have to sweat before attaining professionalism. Nothing comes without arduous commitment.
The physical universe provides unique gradients towards success, depending on sacrifices before attaining such benefits. Moving from one place to another requires effort. A shortsighted individual remains with a dream of arriving at the intended location. The change takes effect, only when able to invest time and effort towards the intended destination.
Failures are a result of committing time to short-term projects, which may be unrelated to long-term considerations. Immediate survival needs should not override long-term objectives. The failure reflects an inability to maintain the consistency required towards long-term objectives. Short-term projects can either enhance or derail the long-term projects.
Any short-term projects should subordinate the advancement of the long-term projects. Procrastination should never be allowed to prevail when aiming at the most desirable long-term entity. Taking advantage of material acquisitions, without regard for tomorrow, appears reasonable, but to a dying society.
Shortsighted viewpoints are entertained by those not considering tomorrow’s livingness. Their behaviour portrays not being different from animals. However, as fundamentally spiritual, humans are more destructive than animals, because they are not native to the material universe.
The more materialistic humans assume to be, the more destructive they become. After sinning, human beings were reduced to becoming as physical as animals are physical. The best education helps humans to first discover their origin. Jesus established fundamental principles of human deliverance from the current chaotic decadence.
Every human seeks survival. While some people pursue suicidal paths, the majority should not acquiesce to such levels of insanity. The highly demanded knowledge is sustained in pursuing survival—without which, there is no purpose for existence. The problem bedevilling humanity is in aiming the opposite direction when desiring survival.
For instance, the paraded propagandistic information focuses on the bad effects of colonialism. However, such information deliberately omits the advantages of colonialism. This is primarily deceptive, as long-term establishments, like railway lines, feature long-term developmental programs, by those former colonialists. This is different from the shortsighted characters, pursuing an agenda of destruction, through destructive misinformation.
Every activity starts with the mind, from where all decisions emanate. The mechanics of the mind reveal three components, that propel human behaviours. The first is somatic, functioning in automaticity, as driven by a desire to avoid pain. If one touches a hot stove, he quickly ejects the affected part of the body, without necessarily reasoning before doing so. The reflex would be automatic.
The second component is reactive, which uses past painful experiences to determine immediate behaviours. A typical example is portrayed in our ageing war veterans, who need careful handling. They are highly emotional when reminded of their past war-time experiences. Their past painful experiences cloud their reasoning capacity, which then reverses any gains presently achievable, from their intended progressive efforts.
Those comrades do not need to be condemned but need healing. The majority of them have since died, having not understood reasons for engaging in the liberation struggle. The problem with the reactive mind is that emotion is mistaken for constructive reasoning. This shows a person pursuing a trajectory towards destruction, rather than pursuing the intended livingness.
The only problem with our liberation war comrades is in influencing young people to behave like them. When a human being deteriorates to the level of animalistic behaviour, his reasoning capacity diminishes. Unfortunately, he influences others to behave similarly. The entire generation becomes accursed when pursuing paths towards destruction.
Shortsightedness takes effect, as long as controlled by the reactive mind, when aiming at pursuing survival without pain, leading towards eventual demise. The third component of the mind is analytical—capable of intelligently evaluating information, to come up with workable solutions. In its optimum application, the analytical mind helps in solving problems that impede survival.
The physical body perishes, like any other corporeal organism. But future survival remains intact, as long as evaluations are effectively computed. Unlike the physical body, the spiritual body is imperishable. Physical life is fundamentally necessary to teach humans to make the right decisions. It is in the physical body that a person chooses life ahead of death, without alternatively choosing death ahead of life.
The analytical mind enables the right decisions; one of which would be in appreciating that short-term decisions are counterproductive. It takes an analytical person to understand that life is generated by long-sightedness, rather than being stuck in past or present considerations. The person who focuses on the future is better than one who disregards the future due to the present time considerations.
The most senior consideration, after the long and short-sighted postulates, is focusing on a generation that comes after a century, for instance. Let alone those who have attained the freedom to appreciate what happens in eternity, rather than being stuck in the material universe. The attainment of life is achievable through decisions made by an individual.
This is not possible when influenced by those of the material universe. As physical humans are interrelated, they influence one another, to avoid pain. But the best influence can also come from the experiences of other fellow humans when properly using the analytical mind. This is different from considering issues that are influenced by the reactive mind, leading to destruction.
An effective person helps his fellow men out of the siege, being futuristic in his helpful conduct. This is what describes long-sightedness. Nevertheless, a person who cares less about those who would be under siege, for whatever reason, is shortsighted. That person regards himself as wiser than those unable to attain higher statuses of living conditions.
That person remains unaware that other people’s actions negatively affect his survival, as well. This is typical of shortsighted people, sustained in pride, more than in humility. With pride, it is impossible to care for one’s fellow humans. The person assumes that there would be safety in minding his own business, but the opposite is true.
Jesus brought survival ideas, once and for all, to the rest of humanity. But Christianity is too steep a gradient, having also been invaded by criminals who have taken authority. Ordinary people cannot easily benefit from Christianity. Many falsehoods have gripped that subject, except for a few having been called out, by grace. How about starting with the subject of the mind, addressing matters of current survival?
Life is still attainable when approached logically, through proper education. Only after attaining the ability to evaluate data, can one be able to assess truthfulness found in Christianity. Jesus explicitly stated that flesh and blood could not reveal the understanding that Simon Peter had, to ordinary people, at that time (Matthew 16:17-18). Christianity appears as having been a futile business, since the beginning of the first century. Everything is recorded in the Bible, but impossible to understand, for most people.
Rather than aiming at attaining what Jesus said was not easily attainable, it is better to focus on the analytical mind. This is possible when one is aware of the mechanics of the mind. It could be from that angle that God’s communication could be understood, by some people.
Having been engaged in writing for more than ten years, no theory has been published on this website. Everything published on this website is authentically taken from the source; although, coincidentally, some aspects may agree with others, having also projected it. One may neither be surprised nor disappointed if many people find the information unacceptable. Jesus made it clear that His teachings would not be for the majority of people in this world.
Either of the two reasons could be cited as being a cause for misunderstanding: 1) the information is not intended for the concerned reader. 2) Grammatical errors may cause misunderstanding, to some. English is not the author’s first language. Where clarification may be necessary, in some sections, one hopes those with good intentions would seek elucidation. The material being disseminated, herein, resembles the parable of the sower (Matt 13), shown as not, necessarily, concerned with the backgrounds of the recipients.
The background of the author may be a stumbling block to some people. But the author’s background carries no relevance to those hearing God’s voice, instead. The life of the author is as temporary as this world is temporary. God’s word has been in existence, since the beginning of creation. But, after the opening of the Holy Spirit to humanity, God uses whoever He pleases to use, whose evaluation, whether good or bad, would be irrelevant.
It may be necessary to leave a remark that those deliberately resisting God’s word will have to account for their actions, someday. Blessed are those sacrificing their short-term viewpoints for long-term considerations. Regardless of how admirable, most remarkable achievements are not sustainable in the current universe. The voice of the Lord remains for eternity.
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 who have witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. Most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope, in a simple conversational tone.
The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99