A script for the Game of Thrones.
The story of Krotoa inspired the need to talk about marginalised people and how with time their history is unearthed into a new horizon. A new horizon for new people who realise the need to redress the past and seek no compensation except that the truth must be told. In the build up to just thinking of writing of an event that occurred 320 years ago and given significance through traditional burial rites in 2017 here in South Africa, was full of conflict because I knew no better as I was taught a history I did not own. Using Krotoa as the protagonist it is clear that history is peppered with thousands of stories of heroines whose legacies are not known because it was the choice of people in power. Krotoa is no epiphany but, her story reveals the Achille’s heel of History written with a bias because the life of heroes and heroines are a marvel. Their lives, when stamped underground by the colonial boot and inveigled pen, search in the tapestry of time, the opportune moment to reveal themselves to be heard so that dignity can be re-established because, every human being is born with dignity and has a right to it.
The right to life and dignity are inalienable to all human beings and when snatched away natural order is disturbed. In the disturbance there is another distraction and that is writing a false history. The clip below is a version of how Krotoa could have written her story but, the conditions upon her at the time were implacable because she was torn between the world of her people and the dictates of her colonial master. Faugh! and the crest of betrayal continues into this century as we still see this happening but we are caught so deep in the abyss of fulfilling sensate desires that we ignore the truth. I am impelled by the research of revisionists to bring to the fore stories of remarkable women who shaped historical events but, the patriarchal lens of history always overpowers the narrative. Perhaps it is time to write history the way it should be written. Written without bias and with full acknowledgement of facts because historical truths surface like pegs of icebergs causing the top to fall. This cycle of nature is insuperable.
The Khoe people referred to as the ‘Bushman’, the San and the Khoi suffered the cycle of genocide yet, they, like the Red Indians of America have proven that their history cannot be diminished forever as people who did not exist. The reading of Krotoa’s history shows how the Van Riebeeck journal entries had intercalated her life between the colonial demands and his personal ambitions which reflect a conflicted man too. However, it is the power of the colonial narrative that we don’t package the likes of Van Riebeeck as tyrants and oppressors except Hitler and Osama bin Laden and their likes because they in the main made Jews and Christians their target of misery and annihilation. It gives the feelings that African and Muslim lives don’t matter or that their blood is cheaper than the ink that blots the historical parchment. This script is problematic and needs attention.
The attention can be enticed on one account of Noor Inayat Khan. Do you know her? She was a British spy in WW2 . She was betrayed, captured and executed at the Dachau concentration camp. Sad, tragic and true. Her death in 1944 did not cause a stir because of the postwar conditions but, in 2012 all came to light when her life surfaced from the ashes of history. Noor Inayat Khan was posthumously awarded the George Cross in 1949, and a French Croix de Guerre with silver star (avec étoile de vermeil) showing that her involvement in serving Britain did achieve great ends but, why is it that histories of non-whites appear as the lines on the page where we write and not the words that fill the book? It is like this because we are not making sufficient effort to write about what we have achieved because our criterion is the everything foreign. Until we don’t appreciate ourselves and our unique identities, inferiority will be our headgear and humiliation our shoes. The game of thrones continues and the script have the likes of Krotoa and Noor as footnotes, ambiguous allusions and ambivalent references whilst they deserve greater status. They deserve greater status. That is why we should begin talking about them as we how speak about Van Riebeeck, Vasco da Gama, Hitler, Sharon, George Bush in context of their contributions to the world. Their contributions must be seen in the light of human dignity and not in the script set out as a game of thrones because, the game of thrones demands deceit and that is internecine for the past and the future of humanity’s history.
Humanity’s history is fascinating and I appreciated the story of Florence Nightingale as a boy in Grade 5. My ambitions became the golden fleece that had the threads of these benevolent people but, I always wondered about Muslims being benefactors too. However, the yoke of stereotyping and generalisations stick like gum to your sole and gives your hopelessness away like a the reeking of shoes fresh out of a pile of crap. It is when you start reading you realise that human beings the world over have got wow stories that will fructify lives. Do you know the life of Rufaida Al-Aslamia? She was born approx. 620 AD; 2 BH. Recent research has it that she was an Islamic medical and social worker recognized as the first female Muslim nurse and the first female surgeon in Islam which to many is unknown. In these troubled times of wars and terror how would these stories change the way we look at people if they become part of online textbooks for children in schools. It would in many cases excite the mind to research. What we have is some thing else in the elusive game of thrones.
The Mosque at Salaman, location of the Battle of The Trench where Al-Aslamia treated the injured. Medina.
The continuous game of thrones in Afghanistan is enrapturing. Its history makes for absorbing and exciting reading to say the least because, both the Soviets and the USA allies wanted to keep the nation subjugated but it never succumbed. Today, it survives like a thistle despite the efforts to maintain its suppression and subjugation through the persistent medium of indoctrination. It was startling to say the least when I read an article that had this head line:
Children are taught violence and hate through well designed textbooks funded by those in the game of thrones and the rest in the game seem to press the start button again and again and again and… This is why we need to find more Krotoas, Noor Inayat Khans and Rufaida Al-Aslamias out there to write about, talk about, research about and make them part of the teaching, learning support material that goes out to the world of children. Their world currently is shaped with an overkill of lies, deceit, hate and destruction coloured in slogans of human rights, liberty, equality and fraternity overshadowing good. This is how the game of thrones is played out before Armageddon.
Armageddon is a word on so many peoples lips all because the present is so beset with evil having center stage in their own lives too. If the Armageddon is fought within the self first, days ahead become good. The good thing is making an attempt to read or talk about people who, despite the weight of controversy over their heads have an almost axiomatic aura over their lives. One such life is that of Āʾishah bint Abī Bakr, the youngest wife of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. There reality of Āʾishah bint Abī Bakr‘s life encapsulates intellectual prowess, pristine chastity, refined bashfulness and profound wisdom. Her marriage to Muhammad ﷺ is a controversial for many but not for me. However, the point deserving to drive home is that the traditions of Muhammad ﷺ are not complete without traditions taken from her. It means that the supreme wealth of religious dogma on Islam is incomplete without her input and personal knowledge. She shaped historical text on Islam and like all the women of her time who learnt the traditions/hadith did not fabricate even one therefore, proving that their ambitions were in the best interests of humanity at large. Yes, the period of her time had the intricacies and espionage, intrigue likened to the game of thrones too but, her life is one marvel that immortalises her legacy. Her love and innocence in the eyes of Allah, the High the Great is sanctified in the Holy Quran, the unchanged word of Allah, proving that greatness of being is not who writes your history but, how History will reveal you to the world to be written about by greater authority. When Āʾishah bint Abī Bakr suffered the humiliation of slander she waited patiently for Allah, the High the Great’s help. After some time, revelation came in this form of ten ayats (evidence). I have quoted only three of the ten:
﴿١١﴾ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ جَاءُوا بِالْإِفْكِ عُصْبَةٌ مِنْكُمْ ۚ لَا تَحْسَبُوهُ شَرًّا لَكُمْ ۖ بَلْ هُوَ خَيْرٌ لَكُمْ ۚ لِكُلِّ امْرِئٍ مِنْهُمْ مَا اكْتَسَبَ مِنَ الْإِثْمِ ۚ وَالَّذِي تَوَلَّىٰ كِبْرَهُ مِنْهُمْ لَهُ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ.
Those who perpetrated the slander were a bunch of you. Do not consider it bad for you, but it is good for you. Each person among them bears his share in the sin. As for him who played the major role: for him is a terrible punishment.
﴿١٢﴾ لَوْلَا إِذْ سَمِعْتُمُوهُ ظَنَّ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتُ بِأَنْفُسِهِمْ خَيْرًا وَقَالُوا هَٰذَا إِفْكٌ مُبِينٌ .
If only, when you heard it, the believing men and believing women thought well of one another, and said, “This is an obvious lie.
”﴿١٣﴾ لَوْلَا جَاءُوا عَلَيْهِ بِأَرْبَعَةِ شُهَدَاءَ ۚ فَإِذْ لَمْ يَأْتُوا بِالشُّهَدَاءِ فَأُولَٰئِكَ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ هُمُ الْكَاذِبُونَ.
Why did they not produce four witnesses? If they do not produce the witnesses, then in Allah’s sight, they are liars.
(Holy Quran. The Light سورة النور. Chapter 24, ayahs 11-13. See full text in the Holy Quran)
This revelation will not change and no matter how people will write about her, she is vindicated by the one who does not die, Allah, the High the Great. Therefore, the emphasis is that the unsung women of greatness who suffered humiliation at the hands of tyrants, oppressors, dictators, colonists and autocrats will not be diminished. The script of their legacies will have a longevity beyond the new horizon of the next world order because in the pursuit of greatness they chased no throne. What they did witness was the fall of many from thrones. Krotoa’s is now part of African soil with dignity deserved showing that greatness of character has innate perseverance which battles deceit with steady courage leaving the pen of tainted history on the plains of embarrassment. Come to think of it, every time the Quran is read, Āʾishah bint Abī Bakr is affirmed. Stories are been rewritten parallel to new ones in the making, creating space for you to add a chapter or to write a new story. The story does not place a demand on you to write anything ethereal for effect and attention but, it opens its sacred parchment for you to write the truth with sincerity because, it is its burden to carry it into the future. The future will anoint it with greatness beyond the present and it will look after it better than those who chase after thrones. Stories reveal the games behind the thrones with the only intent of saving humanity from itself.