The word “ubuntu” is from some southern African languages and it literally means “humanness.” To have ubuntu is to be a person who is living a genuinely human way of life, whereas to lack ubuntu is to be missing human excellence.
Black people indigenous to Africa commonly believe that one’s basic aim in life should be to exhibit ubuntu, which is done by prizing communal relationships with other people.
This essay reviews this concept and how it informs both the good life and how to act morally.
Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, allegedly the biggest advocate of ubuntu, gave a quite exciting contribution to the “traditional” philosophy of ubuntu. His conceptualisation of ubuntu is rooted in the belief that in African cosmology, ubuntu symbolises the backbone of African spirituality and moral conduct. He based his argument on the understanding that while it is generally accepted that the Western world gave the world economic stand points like capitalism, Africa has not been able to contribute that much to the economy. Instead, the social ethic of ubuntu has been Africa’s largest contribution to the world (Tutu 2000: 88). Taking it...
The Analects of Confucius is a collection sayings attributed to the early Chinese thinker, Confucius (551-479 BCE) and others in his circle. It was viewed as a canonical text in China for over two millennia. This translation, with glosses and simple commentary, is designed as an open-access online source for teaching use, particularly at the college level.