The Body of Knowledge
The Body of Knowledge
Wednesday was Women’s Day, with August being women’s month in South Africa. It is a tribute to the brave women who marched to Union Buildings on the 9th of August 1956. This was a demonstration in protest against the extension of Pass Laws to women. Now, who better to speak to other than a powerful, intelligent, magical woman who emulates the body of knowledge!
9th August Women’s day march 1956
Kate Masopha invited me into her office to have a conversation. A conversation that would change the way I look at things and the world as a whole. In awe, due to the knowledge recently imparted onto me during one of her SME workshops, I listened attentively. It was here that I realised that she embodied the title itself.
We got straight into it! She mentioned how imperative it is for individuals to have a definiteness of purpose. Unpacking that statement would read something like this: If we do not understand the position we are in and place that we want to go in our lives, we will be stuck forever. It is important to find something to live for, something that isn’t measured by the conventional grading system. Something, defined by you!
I asked her what moulded her into the strong woman she is today. What unfolded next really triggered me. She told me a story about how she struggled with Afrikaans in school. A language her father was fluent in. Whenever she asked for help, he would consequently, only give her an Afrikaans newspaper. What she learned from this was invaluable. She learned to seek out answers herself. This gave her mental emancipation. Always believing in her ability to discover solutions, combined with her love for people, sculpted the woman many look to for answers today.
I began to understand the definition of contentment. Being able to look at the situation you are in and appreciating it for what it is, allows you to remove the negativity from your life. As human beings, we have to keep moving forward. As a result, we are able to find purpose in today and tomorrow. Contentment breeds a type of humility that channels power. Mentioning that after she got over her ego and started applying herself to serving others, she adopted a new ethos. An ethos that made her willing to try whatever she was given, while she may not succeed at her first attempt, her achievement would be, not failing to try.
Happy Women’s Month
Kate gave me advice that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. First of all, people start businesses forgetting that businesses revolve around people. If you do not know who you are trying to help, how would you know how to help them? She elaborated and focused on the human element of a business. Everything we build or construct is there to assist humans, so go to them and find out how best you can. This took us into another story, a story that emphasises the need to free yourself from the concept, idea and reality of laziness. “A lazy man will get lost in a potato field”, that hit home for me. It forced me to introspect and look beyond myself, straight into my future.
Finding strength and peace in her religion, learning not to disregard her beginnings. She found her formula to success. To be the best version of yourself, you must live by your principles. Your biggest enemy of progress would be being a hypocrite to the scriptures you say define you. She mentioned the advice experts. The individuals that give million dollar advice and invaluable counsel. Many of them do not bear the fruits of their knowledge because they do not eat from the same basket they so easily share.
I took my portion from the body of knowledge. I hope you get your own serving from the lessons she has lived through. To end off this auspicious article, there is a lot to learn from love, seeking knowledge, humility and humanity. To all the women out there, happy women’s month!