This happens often to normal people, you happen to be doing something or walking and a word just pops up in your mind. I was walking and the word ‘Disposition’ just popped up from nowhere without any encouragement. How does a word such as this just come up? In other cases a word that pops up to a person unceremoniously can cause him or her to be troubled. However, this was not the case when this word ‘Disposition’ popped up in my head.
One thing that must be born in mind is that, you do not play with words as some words have deeper meaning. Words have been known to change the course of history. In our recent time take for example the words, ‘Weapon of Mass Destruction’ and see how such has changed the world, making it a totally different terrain than before. In some cases with these words ‘Weapon of Mass Destruction’, has acted as a catalyst for more advancement in technology for instance speeding up the advent of drone warfare.
So armed with the word ‘Disposition,’ next was to find out exactly what this word means. Two meanings jumped up from the online dictionary that was consulted. One being a description of a person’s character and or constitution. The other meaning takes us to describing positioning or ordering. As can be appreciated words are rich in meaning which makes me to say that one has to guard their character. This can be through careful association or practice, topics we will explore in later write-ups.
The quotes this week just like last week, dwells on the historical narratives and events that have shaped a generation and a nation. If well understood one can associate the various characters of people including those in senior positions we have in our midst in this era. History has the habit of building character of people in a nation. I am sure the selected quotations extracted from a history book will enlighten you to one or two lessons, read and enjoy:
BLANTYRE MISSION AND THE MAKING OF MODERN MALAWI by Andrew C. Ross
” ……. Dr McMurtrie wrote complaining that Scott spent too much time and energy in ‘mlandu.’ McMurtie went on to suggest that getting rid of all people from mission land except the committed church men seemed the only way out. This was exactly what Scott could not do. But what better use of his time could D.C. Scott have found? Where else could he have gained such knowledge of the language and way of life of the people to whom he wished to preach the Gospel? To be effective Gospel must be preached in terms of relevant to the situation of the hearers, relevant to where they are, where they see themselves to be. The world view of the Malawian people is similar to that of the other Bantu peoples, a view which has been given its first clear exposition in Father Temples’ Bantu Philosophy. Clement Scott did no such systematic study of Bantu thought, but through the many, many milandu in which he took part, he became deeply appreciative of the Bantu thought-world, the results of which are most clearly seen in his Dictionary. In any case, the problem of law and order simply had to be solved, and the way chosen by Scott was as close as was possible to traditional ways; it minimized the foreigness of the mission though it could not remove it.”
“The Free Church of Scotland and other anti-slave trade people went on pressing for a More positive British presence on the Lake, even after Foot’s appointment. These efforts centred round the African Lakes Company, whose managers in Africa, the Moir brothers, and the directors in Glasgow, were both Free Church and anti-slave trade. The Moirs during their travels in the Shire Highlands and the lakeshore area in 1885, began to collect signatures of chiefs on treaty forms which called for British Protection, a protection to be exercised through the company.”
“However, in 1914 we find a friend of Hetherwick warning that racial feelings were by that time so strong in the cities of Scotland that it would not be a good policy to continue bringing Africans to Scotland for training as it would be a hurtful and not helpful experience.”
“Tension remained high in Blantyre, not only because of the continued Portuguese troubles, but because of the pressing question of the nature of the ‘protection’ they had now received. It was true that the Portuguese menace was being cleared away, that Mlozi had signed a peace treaty and that many other chiefs, Tonga, Yao and Makololo had also signed treaties accepting British protection. On the other hand the sole British official presence was still the vice-consul John Buchanan. No new positive development had yet taken place, and the nature of any future development was by no means clear. The new chartered company was known to be related to their future, but the point was, in what way? All of this meant that the jubilation of the Blantyre missionaries was tempered by apprehension and doubt, which was expressed by Scott in an article he wrote in the same week as the flag-raising in Blantyre.”