Reconciliation or Revolution (1)

For years, since 2007, I have driven the need for Social Cohesion through Reconciliation, extending into the need that a “Washing of Spears’ process is required.

This crazy thought was driven by my belief that the Poverty will Rise up against the Wealthy in the not very distant future, 2020 to be exact.

I foolishly believed that I was able to alert the country to the fact that we could develop Social Cohesion, which would, through Reconciliation and the Rehabilitation that would follow, avert any potential of a Revolution by the Poverty against the Wealthy.

As part of this process, I was encouraged to select Reconciliation Day, 16th December, as the date necessary to start the ‘washing of spears’ process, and the Battle of Blood River, 1838, the reason for why I had celebrated on 65 occasions, became my focal date and area.

For years I have blogged, and for year I have spoken, with very little comment on any topics. This month I receive comment, initially some very aggressive comments, but as we find common ground, or rather, as I find understanding of keeps us together, and what separates us, I realize that the decision to use the 16th December as Reconciliation Day was a poor Parliamentary decision.

A completely different date should have been selected to avoid the isolation of one conflict between two groups, in a country consisting of many different groups.

When a major conflict takes place, maybe the ‘peace agreement’ that results in the cessation of the armed struggle, is the Reconciliation Process.

Surely we should be responding to the need for Reconciliation around Massacres that took place during conflicts. Here, the massacre of Piet Retief and his group, the Sharpville Massacres, and a number of ‘black on black’ attacks during the period 1989 to 1994.

Yes, South Africa is credited and celebrated for the TRC hearings, and many of us accepted this process as having satisfied all those who suffered, me included, no, I did not suffer, but I was satisfied that we has reconciled. But, a large majority of our people suffered and did not feel the results on the TRC hearings.

When you hear a ‘born-free’ stand up in public and say, “Nothing has changed in our country,” what do we hear?

An ill-informed youth who does not know what things were like in South Africa pre-1994, or, a youth living in the Township or Rural areas, looking at the suburbs where the mainly white youth have everything that the black youth can’t have, looking at his home area, and seeing continued deterioration as he/she reaches adulthood.

Today I am at the crossroads in my life, for the second time, for six years I promote Reconciliation to avoid a Revolution, and today, I see Reconciliation impossible, or even unnecessary.

Reconciliation or Revolution??

It is time for us to talk.

Cedric de la Harpe


As ‘Video of Hijacking’ shocks Johannesburg, I ask myself, “Am I any better??”

Recently my pro-Africanist attitude was attacked and the video that all South Africans have seen was forwarded to me with a comment:

How do expect us to talk peace with these savages?

I had a look at the video, and I was not shocked, I have seen much worse in my life. I participated in much worse in my life.

While writing the manuscript, “Jeremiah 5:21″ the power from above brought most of these incidents back to me, If my God has not yet judged me, I know what is coming:

Short extract from ‘Jeremiah 5:21′  that refers to one of the incidents that I believe would have been far more horrific if seem on You Tube today:

His gaze returns to the young girl, looking her in the eyes, wishing to explain to her why he, the umlungu is not coming to her help.

As their eyes lock, this frightened young girl’s face transforms into a black male, thirty years-old, sitting crouched in the foetal position in the corner of a small farm shed, very much the way that the umlungu now finds himself. Standing over this young black man is his Baas, Baas Pieter, whipping him across his left shoulder and back with a sjambok.

As the second whip rains across the young unknown black man’s back, the umlungu becomes aware of the almost violent pelvic thrust of Inja, inflicting pain on the young girl, and her pain and shock is transmitted as a lightning bolt from her eyes, targeting the frozen umlungu, paralyzed by a force that is not unknown to him. In the speed of the lightening flash, the young girl transforms into the young man being viscously assaulted by his Baas Pieter, in the presence of this very umlungu nearly fifty years back.

Pieter had inherited well, and on his smallholding in Honeydew, he and his wife  entertained lavishly. Tennis in the afternoon, braai

in the evening, and then at nine o’clock that Saturday night, he summoned all his male family and friends to help him ‘sort out a problem with his labourers’.

Umlungu was only twenty years old in 1967, and had had very little contact with the black people in general. He knew enough however to understand that Pieter was in great danger if he went into the farm compound on a Saturday night, so this was enough motivation for him and six others, to accompany him on his dangerous mission.

Pieter, as it turned out, did not need any support, there was one single building, consisting of four rooms, single doors, no back windows to escape from the Baas. He was able to conduct his ‘investigation’ and punishment at his own pace. Maybe, his workers had already been exposed to a more violent group than we turned out to be, so maybe they were submissive based on previous experiences.

Pieter entered the first room, and without talking to either the male or female occupants, he pulled at the male occupant, and in the presence of his wife or partner, shouted; “Jou fokken Kaffir, wat se kak maak jy? Ek sal jou fokken leer!”

“You fucking kaffir, what are you doing? I will fucking teach you!”

As the young man submitted to Baas Pieter, Pieter proceeded to whip him while he was sitting in the foetal position, hands clasped in between is legs, ensuring that his baas understood and did not think that he was going to retaliate.

The young man never tried to defend himself, he only cried “Jammer Baas, Jammer Baas,”

between the lashes. Six, seven, eight lashes, our umlungu can’t remember, but today, with every thrust of Inja’s pelvis, through the young rape victims eyes, the pain and anger in the young black’s eyes, every lash from Pieter, penetrated our umlungu’s every feeling.

For years our umlungu believed that he had turned and walked away after the first two lashes during the first assault, but sitting in this fixed position watching the rape, the pelvic thrusts soon confirm that he had witnessed every one of the four attacks, eight, nine, ten, lashes during every assault.

Today the umlungu feels the pain in those eyes, but today he understands that the eyes did not only reflect their pain, their anger, but most importantly they reflected a plea for help. The same plea for help that the young lady is trying to transmit today.

Why was it politically correct to watch this type of assault during this period. Did the umlungu fear the swart gevaar, rooi gevaar? Was he only watching, or was he participating? No, today he can accuse himself of having participated, participated through being present, through the watching and not trying to put an end to it. Pieter was never in danger, why did he not intervene?

Can this attack on the blacks be any worse than the scene of the hijacking??

I am guilty of worse:

You can find links to buying the book on

Cedric de la Harpe



During the past days I have received regular updates from Edmund Elias of the SA National Trader Retail Alliance and I hurt with all of those and their families who are suffering.

—–Original Message—–


Date: Wed, 13 Nov 2013 14:33:09

To: <>




~  a voice from the peoples economy.     13  NOVEMBER 2013.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:          Edmund Elias ~                spokesperson.                                 cell 072 157 2481..

Yes Its true 

POLICE OFFICER robbed of his SERVICE PISTOL in the hawker free CLEANED UP area.  ( Park station area ~ Saturday 3pm)

Another, a JMPD officer was robbed of his patrol  car keys ( Delvers and Jeppe Streets ) Thursday noon ~ no hawkers around to blame 

Sent via my BlackBerry from Vodacom -


I do not wish to address the gross injustices that are taking place, but rather attack the supporters of this clean-up, including all the media that support them.

I hear’ “It is good, they must clean the streets up so that we can walk on them again”.

I do not believe that any one person who has uttered these words has any intention of walking the streets around the Noord Street taxi rank, no even if they were pave in gold and had diamonds to harvest.

During Taste of Africa’s early sorties into these areas, we soon discovered that the Hawkers, the taxi drivers and owners, were  our safety net.

I drove through there with two French French Journalists a week back, we would normally get out of the vehicle and walk the streets, visit Drill Hall and the Art Gallery, but this time I continued through, “I can’t believe just how this vibe has disappeared during the clean up activity” I described the magic that we normally would experience and hoped that it would return, as we drove on to the ‘Arts on Main‘ where we could give a bit of magic.

I was not honest, I could not tell the journalists that I was afraid, I looked at the wide open spaces of the clean streets and shuddered, shuddered from the looks that every passer-by was giving the white man. I will never walk these streets until they are returned to the Informal Traders.

The JMPD have turned these areas into no-go areas, yes, we have removed the hawker, but be warned, do not take up this free space, the criminal element are now free to attack, no hawkers, taxi drivers also hurting.

The rug trade is flourishing, no longer do their customers need to drive or walk through the turmoil.  Why not the drug trade first?

Those of us who loved these streets, who walked these streets, who respected the informal trade, we will never be safe to so so till peace has been restored. Peace will only be restored through respect. Respect brings mutual respect.

To the journalists who promote the clean up so that they can walk there, let me know when you will do so without an escort, carrying cameras that we could safely do a few weeks back. I will love to follow you in my motor car.

Cedric de la Harpe

Time for the washing of the spears: Uku gezwa kwe Mikhonto

In Zulu culture the ‘washing of the spears’ takes place after a war between two groups. We are criticised when we talk the Zulu Culture; not everyone is Zulu, and not everyone believes in the Zulu Culture. I am white, although my white friends are starting to doubt me, but it is not difficult to understand the concept of the Zulu Culture’s ‘washing of the spears’, I understand the power of what can be achieved, so we invite you to open your minds.

The Zulus have two very distinct approaches to this settlement; firstly, if the victor has no further need to continue the relationship with the conquered, then they wash their own spears. Secondly, if they intend to continue with a relationship with the conquered, then they ‘wash their spears together’.

In the event of ‘washing the spears together’ the two groups look at the damage done to both groups, and discuss the rehabilitation of the damage done to both communities, and then put plans to rehabilitate the damage in place.

Of greatest importance to the process is that you, whether you are the conquered or the conqueror, to assist in rehabilitating the damage to the other party, takes place in the other parties home, and all participants contribute to the process.

The importance of ‘washing the spears’ is that, if they are not washed, whether in the first option where they are done on your own, or secondly, with the other party, then there is still blood on the spears. While there is still blood on the spears, the conflict and the type of conflict will recur.

My Zulu brothers will believe that those who died in the conflict do not become aware that the battle is over unless the spears are washed, during this celebration process they are told by their own living relatives that the struggle is over, if not, they will not know that the conflict has ended, and they will use whoever is available to them to continue with the battle.

We can assure all our white brothers and sisters that the completion of the ‘washing of the spears’ process allows you to enter a world where you will experience peace, a world that is proudly African, typical of your experience when you travel into other parts of Africa. We are not sure whether Western Culture is skilled at making peace between groups that need to go forward together; our black brothers and sisters have shown us the way.

Western Culture tends to look at a budget and provide money towards a community rehabilitating their damage; this took place in the Treaty of Vereeniging; and I think it failed. Much of the 1948 to 1994 period was driven by the failure of the Treaty of Vereeniging to build a Union of South Africa that provided for English, Afrikaans and our Black groups.

Much of the driving force by the Nationalist Party was to recover the damage that the Afrikaner felt following that treaty, striving to achieve their own Republic, and avoiding the possibility of ever being conquered again.

Yes, if you have taken note of the rumblings and the warnings, stop the whinging and expecting the ANC to fix the problems, the problem is too big for any government to fix without our support. Even if a white government came into power today, they would not achieve peace without the ‘washing of spears’; without our Township and Rural village communities.

Let us take Nelson Mandela’s achievements forward as individuals, as groups, let us extend our hands to all, let us bring the two cages closer together, let us make peace, peace with one another, peace with the past, and let us go forward in peace and achieve a South African heritage of which we will be proud.

It is time for the washing of spears.

Uku gezwa kwe Mikhonto.

The End

                                                                   /\ (Beginning)

Reconciliation Day:

Event 15th & 16th December 2013



16th December 1838, the Battle of Blood River, as us whites know the day, as we know the history passed down by the Afrikaner descendants of the ‘war’ between the Afrikaner Trekkers and the Zulu warriors, and we have allowed the 16th December, to be celebrated as our ‘Day of the Covenant’ and now, the ‘Day of Reconciliation’.

Today, on the West bank of the river, the Blood River Heritage site, representing the history and ideology of the Voortrekker and their strong believe around the idea that their prayers and promises to God, the Vow that they took to God, should God provide them with victory, which he did.

One the East side of the River, the new Ncume Museum has been erected, and as I visit it for the first time, attending the COURAGEOUS CONVERSATIONS Conference, November 2013, my first impressions make me feel very uncomfortable. The Ncume Museum, established to depict the Zulu version of the events of the 16th December 1838, instead, gives added confirmation to the Blood River Heritage sites version of the events that took place on that day in 1838.

On registration I am faced with mural depicting the battle, maybe 20m long, and 5m tall, that dominates the conference centre. I am uncomfortable, this mural was influenced by the Afrikaner version of the battle. I am unable to take a photograph of this mural, as a white, I do not wish to be seen in awe of this mural. It belongs on the West bank of this river.

A stainless steel bridge erected across the river to symbolize reconciliation, the building of bridges, is the central feature of the mural. At this stage I believe that it is only part of the reconciliation idea, and no more.  After coffee I walk out onto the verandah, and discover that the bridge already exists, I walk down to it and find no beauty in the bridge, with the stainless steel locked doors on either end, and barbed wire to keep the enemy, or maybe just the criminal, out. I am not in Rural Africa, no, I could be in Sandton, looking through the typical structures that separate us.

I turn around to return to the conference venue, and then see the idea of the Ncume Museum, it depicts the formation of the Zulu Impi, behind shields, ready to attack. I look back at the Trekker laager behind me, depicting the Afrikaner in the defence mode, ready to defend his property and families from the attack by the black.

The irony of this entire museum, is that it depicts the typically Afrikaner, liberal-Afrikaner, English South African’s attitude today, when I warn of the poverty rising up against the wealthy, effectively the  black rising up against the white, they will all answer, “I am not afraid, we will defend our families and our property to the bitter end”.

The white needing to defend their property and family, in the face of the threat from the black poverty group, is depicted in the combined Blood River Heritage Site and Ncume Museum complex. Yet, it is off this basis that we are trying to build reconciliation in our country.

I did not go into the Ncume Museum area, but its relationship with the Blood River Heritage site appears to ignore the Zulu version of events, which differs from the history that I was brought up on as a white South African, a debate that is not part of this blog, but I need to comment briefly about:-

“The Voortrekker was invading the Zulu territory, they were the invaders not the defenders. Piet Retief was on a mission, not approved by the Trekkers when he died. Retief did not respect the Zulu Culture and Monarch.  Did the Dingaan-Retief treaty ever exist? Andries Pretorius was on instruction to dethrone Dingaan, the Trekker was the invader. Was the river ever blood red?”

I know many whites that will say that “we have done nothing to the blacks that require reconciliation”, and on the other side there are many blacks who feel the same.

Why the 16th December, why Blood River when I had nothing to do with it. It was an Afrikaner / Zulu issue?

Ignoring the major conflict that exists between a small group of Afrikaner Trekker supporters, and the Zulu nation, about the accuracy of the details related to the history of the 16th December 1838, the unintended depiction of the events of that day by the two sites in the larger complex area, extends to all South Africans, reflecting just how differently we see one another and our history, our heritage.

Here, at Blood River and Ncume, we can reconcile our heritage, through prayer, discussion, and interaction, so that we give the idea of ‘ready to attack, ready to defend’ museum status in our future South African legacy.

Join us in discussion and preparation for the Event on the 15th & 16th December 2013, as we go through the Uku gezwa kwe Mikhonto process, yes it is the time for the washing of spears

It is time for the washing of spears.

Uku gezwa kwe Mikhonto.

“Washing of Spears”


South African Heritage

As heritage day 2013 approaches I think back on my Heritage, look back on last years blog and my brief introspection, and I feel disappointed, I have achieved nothing constructive during the past twelve months.

I discuss my failure and frustrations with Bheki Gumbi, my partner/foe in the Black & White Intercourse initiative (found on You Tube).

Bheki, as per normal tells me that he had always told me that I was no more than a ‘white’ trying to fit into the ‘black cage’.

In my manuscript “If you don’t like it here, Leave?” I reflect on what I had found in the Township, Bheki accuses me of knowing what the problems are, but that I am afraid to tell my white brothers what I know, I do not want to disturb them. He accuses me of being typical of all whites who claim to be ‘struggle activists‘, that I still hold onto my security of the ‘white camp’, that I am afraid to be isolated from the economy, ….. his attack continues, only confirming that I have failed my people, failed the country.

Bheki gets into my car and he questions my thoughts about the media coverage on the news that Mbuyisa Makhubo has been found in Canada. I am not convinced that it is Mbuyisa and our discussion is in conflict, he thinks I am talking about Mbuyisa, yet, I am talking about the Canadian prisoner that I do not believe is Mbuyisa.

Bheki instructs me to drive, giving directions till we stop at a petrol station. Ten minutes later I am introduced to a family member of Mbuyisa, I listen for a few minutes, and immediately realise that it is Mbuyisa that has been found.

Once the family member is comfortable with me, he continues, and for three hours I listen to him, taking us into the heart of the experiences and atrocities of those in exile in Africa, during the period, 1973 to 1994.

We drop the family member where he lives, I am shaken.

I move the subject towards the Heritage Day celebrations again;

You whites celebrate the death of Apartheid, it is not dead, only the legislation has changed, only the signs are down. The attitude has not changed, the attitude that separates people throughout the world.

As I try to defend my heritage, I invite Bheki to visit the Apartheid Museum with me,

Where is the Museum, I did not know you people have a Museum to celebrate the death of Apartheid, how can you celebrate the death of Apartheid when nothing has changed.?

As we move from Dube to the museum, I hear Bheki tell me that he has always told me that I was doing things wrong, that I have failed to listen to his advice.

We receive two entry tickets, one for White and one for Non-White. I hand the White to Bheki and invite him to enjoy being white for the day, I enter the Non-White gate, and Bheki follows, I turn around as I do not expect Bheki’s ticket to allow entrance, he also has the wrong side of the ticket to the scanner but the gate allows him in.

Bheki listens intently to Verwoerd interview on a monitor,

Hell, I did not know he could speak English.

American students make comments that causes Bheki to tell then that the American situation is no different, and that their Government supported the Umlungu’s Apartheid structure, so they should not be acting so innocent. I need to leave their company, as I can feel the Americans discomfort.

Why do the international visitors come and look at what you have done to us, the world has done the same thing throughout the world, they just did not call it Apartheid.

Bheki and I have not been impressed by the displays, then, towards the end, we walk into a Video reflecting a little of the 1984 to 1986 conflict in the Townships, the violence that the youth were exposed to, the impact that this groups had on destabilising the Townships. Since 2008 I have talked about the impact that our silent history, 1984 to 1994, had on our people. The youth that we are seeing on this video, exposed to greater conflict that I ever understood.

The auditorium is full, mainly Primary school youth, their teachers, and a few international tourists standing at the back.

I am focussed on the events, Bheki points at me and makes a loud comment:

Look at what you have done to my people.

Bheki is looking at me and the other whites standing at the back of auditorium, he is angry,

Look at what you have done to my people, they no longer know what is real.

I become aware of his issue, I realise that I had been aware of the issue since the first laugh, but I preferred to ignore it. Yes, every time a Security Police officer or the Military through a young black off a truck, over a fence, or any other tackle that would be red carded in rugby, any violet baton attack, received a loud laugh, a laugh of glee, from both the children and teachers.

They do not understand what happened and even who they are.

As we finish the visit to the Apartheid Museum, Bheki bubbles with the laughter incident, the ‘Negotiation Period’ does not attract his attention, I keep an eye on these negotiations, and feel that the whites have been celebrated for achieving the Peace Agreement and for killing Apartheid.

What you got to say U’mlungu?

Brother, I am hurting, the Apartheid Museum allows me to believe that Apartheid is something of the past, but it is not.

Nine years in the Townships and believing that I am almost African, yet this week leaves me confused as I allow myself to have a closer look at my black brothers heritage.

I can celebrate ‘my heritage’, but can I celebrate ‘our heritage’?

What is South Africa’s Heritage?

What legacy will my ‘Baby Boom’ generation leave our children?

I am not sure.

Cedric nobraai de la Harpe





QUESTIONS, that remain unanswered:

An old white couple have moved into our Village,

Every morning we walk past their home on the way to school,

Our parents have always told us to love them,

We must not do them any harm,

But then, did they not hurt our parents?

Yet, Mandela says we must love them.


I listen to the other children as we pass,

“Good-morning Um’lungu, how are you?”

“Good-morning Um’lungu, how are you?”

Mrs Um’lungu says, “I am fine and you?”

The children laugh,

“Stupid Um’lungu, thinks we like them”


The same wisecracks every morning,

“Look the Um’lungu is driving my car”

“Hey wena, it is my car”

“Look the Um’lungu is living in my house”

“Hey wena, it is my house”

These children are trapped in this thinking, everyday.


One day I will get to ask the Um’lungu my questions,

Um’lungu, why did you steal everything from my grand-father?

Um’lungu, why did you take my ancestors as slaves?

Um’lungu, why is Kaffir such a bad word?

Um’lungu, why did you take our land?

Um’lungu, why do you not love us?


This morning I am alone as the Um’lungu approaches,

This morning my wish will come true, I will find the answers,

“Good morning Um’lungu, how are you?”

“Fine thanks and you.”

“Um’lungu, can I ask you a question?”

“Sure young one, anything you like, I will help”

“Um’lungu, do you know we love you?”



eyes, that can’t see, ears, that can’t hear.

Africa for Food Security;

Mission Statement:

The Ubuntu Food Chain, the link between the farmer, the convertor / producer, and the end user, you, me, and all the other that are feeling the pinch of the ever increasing food prices, has for two years researched, discussed, debated, the many radical adjustments that we need to make to reduce the costs of food, while transferring wealth to the still disadvantaged, through the process of empowerment and hard work.

Food Security in Africa, will take place through the systematic introduction of skills, and the opportunities for involvement and participation, in the provision of food, for both the local and international market.

This foundation has been involved in numerous initiatives in rural communities, the establishment is relatively simple, if costly, but the maintenance and development towards achieving sustainability proves impossible, mainly due the the fact our support takes place through monthly visits by the extension officer, which often is too late.

The condition of the ‘grass soccer fields’ planted with the compliments of FIFA and the 2010 SWC, whether in Soweto, or a rural area, is the example of what takes place in the rural emerging farmer scenario, and this deterioration is not due to the failure of the Township / Rural participant, but rather the developer, proudly leaving the initiative with the perception that the participant will succeed, solely because the project is successful elsewhere in a developed society.

The lack of structured development in the Agricultural / Rural areas of South Africa, contributes to the difficulties that we experience in creating sustainability and food security, at a cost that our low income groups can afford.

Africa for Food Security’s mission is to reverse this failure, through the Establishment of our Main Campus in Soweto, providing the initiative with access to all the experts / instructors / mentors, providing skills to the Rural Co-Operative Farmers in Co-Operative Management, Animal Husbandry and Crop Planting, and following the initial course, the Main Campus will become the basis of ‘Distance Learning / Support’ for the participants.

The Project: ‘Colonie de lapin’ will develop young entrepreneurs, while still at school, using practical ‘Rabbit Breeding & Production’ as the core to develop all skills required to become a successful entrepreneur, specialising in the Agricultural and Food Security fields.

Cedric de la Harpe


Distance Learning; through the establishment of a Township Campus: 

The internet is riddled with initiatives that this foundation has implemented during the past eight years, most people would celebrate our input, but we have continued to search for an initiative that will allow communities to empower themselves through their participation and development, contributing to a sustainable livelihood.

The problem faced by most initiatives, including large organizations, is the level of development required in the large poverty groups, faced mostly with isolation through distance from the Urban economy, with no suitable distance learning systems that cater for their needs.

Whether it is livestock, vegetables, maize, Moringa trees, the establishment is costly and lengthy due to the distances, then, follow-up supervision and support, normally done on a monthly basis, only to find that progress is limited as we are faced with solving problems and rebuilding continually.

This failure, of the ‘distance learning’ requirement, contributes to the failure to achieve sustainability.

In order to become sustainable, it is essential that the Entrepreneur is skilled at continued moving market needs, the need to modify the design the need to select genetics to improve their product, and continue to grow as part of a community that is growing with the Entrepreneur.

Africa for Food Security has established the Main Campus in Soweto, accessible to Limpopo in the North, North-West, Mapumalanga and Kzn-Natal, aimed at providing  a facility where Rural community members, including Township emerging Entrepreneurs, can find a base off which the ‘distance learning‘ process can find root.

Rabbit Production is our selected core process, allowing Agriculture and Entrepreneur Development to take place where the community can feel the benefits and become involved.

Under the Ubuntu Food Chain, Africa for Food Security is to develop Rabbit and Moringa Production into commercial ventures, where the entire community has the space to participate and share in the empowerment of the communities.

Although many will see the State as the structure responsible for the development, Corporate Social Investment, and personal contributions, will speed the rate at which we reduce the gap between the wealthy and the poor, while, through this initiative, becoming the leader in Africa’s development of World Food Security.

Cedric de la Harpe:


Butter or Margarine?? – ‘It is all in the mind’

On Tuesday 30th July, Gillian Godsell on her Radio 1485 AM program, ‘Jozi Today’, interviewed me with three other participants, talking about the ‘poverty’ parts of Johannesburg that we tend to avoid.

The other three guests blow me away;

Nigel Bracken, who with his family, two young daughters, and an addition born in the Johannesburg public hospital, describes their motivation and experiences, I am riveted.

Julian Hewitt, is embarking on a month in a Mamelodi shack, with his wife and two young daughters is taking a great step towards our future.

David Smith, nearly my age, finding himself in a space where he wished to free his mind, started the Walking Johanneburg photo initiative, as he takes to the road to free his mind.

I listen to them intently, we do not hear any claims about what they have given to the poverty group, no, today we find only the satisfaction that they have received by sharing themselves with the poverty group. No material donations, only Ubuntu, only sharing themselves with the community.

Very little conflict in attitude and perceptions is heard from the four participants, each wishing to learn from the other. Thank you Gillian Godsell for producing this exciting interaction, and for the skilled manner in which you extracted the magic from the team you interviewed.

For the next two days my wife Nettie and I analyse the ‘Jozi Today’ interview, debating a few of the comments and motivations, discussing to what level the three participants have opened their filters of their minds to receive information, we celebrate the discovery of others who have achieved the status of a receptive mind, a mind that sees social issues without restriction.

Two days later, with this blog still in the drafting phase, we hear a Radio 702 interview, discussing the pros and cons of the ‘Butter & Margarine’ debate, a normally very one-sided decree, that has become part of our lives since 1977.

Prof Tim Noakes is aggressively supporting the use of butter, to the extent that he is ‘anti’ the use of margarine. I immediately pay attention, Prof Tim Noakes has previously had input into my eating habits when I was introduced to the Comrades in 1997, as a novice runner we were encouraged, no, ‘forced by general opinion’, to take guidance from the two gurus, Prof Tim Noakes and Bruce Fordyce:-

 “Carbo-load, carbo-load, carbo-load”,

to where I am 20kg overweight today.

I am aware that Prof Tim Noakes recently released his ‘protein’ diet, and briefly, we very successfully followed it for a few weeks, but due to the life-style, no, not life-style, the mindset imprinted on us by decree during the 1980’s, I am back to 20kg too heavy.

As an 65 year-old, the butter vs margarine mindset adjusted our lives drastically from 1977, so, as a Margarine family, we listen to the interview with – initially a closed mind, already moulded by thirty years of ‘no fats’.

As we listen to Prof Tim Noakes debate, we are able to understand that he no longer relies on other’s research to mould his academic findings and principles. He has successfully allowed the ‘filters of his mind’ to open, allowing information to flow freely into his brain, that, a few years back, would have been as selective as all the Margarine supporters minds.

Thanks to the research colleague supporting the Margarine mindset, we are able to identify that our mindset has been programmed, we realise that it is not a lifestyle, it is only in our minds, through cleverly using the ‘filter of our minds’, filters to protect our brains from being flooded by information, they slip through the positive that we want to hear.

“Use Margarine and you will be healthy, you will live longer,”

they allow our filters to protect the mindset under the guise of what we want to hear,  a healthy life-style.   

Today, as we listen, Prof. Tim Noakes talks with authority and conviction on subjects that others will take years to research. He is prepared to acknowledge that he has been wrong, you can hear that this message is his message, he is not calling on other experts to support his theory. It is no longer just a message, it is the FACT.

When you listen to such conviction, conviction developed through a mind that allows every aspect of a specific topic to enter freely, unrestricted, you can follow this message without fear.

The debate took place barely two hours back, and we have already given up carbohydrates,  except for those that sneak in through the vegetables, and we are looking for the animal fats, that we have denied our bodies for thirty odd years.

Based on our academic thought process, developed through the University of Knowledge’, we can highly recommend the Prof Tim Noakes advice that we need to revert to our pre-1977 eating habits, when eating was not a life-style.

During the past seven years, Nettie and I have allowed the ‘filters of our minds’, to open, specifically with regard to South African social issues. In the elite areas, it brands us as crazy radicals, in the poverty areas, we are seen as a persons who continually change direction as our thought process continues to understand, continually moving towards the answer.

The Gillian Godsell and the Prof. Tim Noakes interviews, have become an important yard-stick of what we will use as examples on how to define a persons mind. Who has allowed the restrictive filters of their minds, to open sufficiently to allow information on a specific topic, that is not already part of their understanding and beliefs, to flow into their brain?

A word of warning:

 “Be warned, the filters of your mind perform a specific function to protect your brain from input that would make life difficult to handle is these filters were not in place.”

“Specific filters can be opened, bit by bit, and soon, a specific area of your brain will receive everything bit of relevant information on the topic, no matter which source it originates from.”

“When this happens, you will never be able to close these filters again.”

On the Positive Side:

“When this happens, you will live a life more fulfilling than the one you lived in unison of the masses who have not had the privilege of one of their ‘mind filters’ being opened.”

Cedric & Nettie de la Harpe


Follow Radio 1485 interview for an understanding of the mindset changes. Podcast:  with @gilliangodsell @Nigel_Braken @mamelodi4amonth @DazMSmith


My apologies to all my family and friends who believe that they have open minds and that we are crazy radicals.


You may not support our radical social views, but take note of the Butter vs Margarine and for your own sake, go with Prof Tim Noakes and the Butter & Animal fat diet.


Cedric de la Harpe.