The Grand Prize Of Sinful Life Is Death

BY: Dan Phale*

From what we often hear, coupled with what we see, most of people prefer soft life to hard life; and at times this wish leads them to making decisions that are against the will of God. In this regard, many people are tempted to go against the order of humanity as is expected by the heavenly Father, as such their life is characterized by sinful acts. And in this article I’ve picked one of the numerous sinful acts commonly committed by quite a number of people across the world – as our focus – and this is stealing. Of course it is needful, before we actually get into details of this article, to make ourselves familiar with what stealing implies.

In clear and concise terms, theft refers to the taking possession of somebody’s property against his or her will… At law, this occurs when a person, intending to bring about a permanent deprivation, without a claim of right and fraudulently, takes or converts to his or her own use any other person’s property. At times an act of stealing is accompanied by some violence, a situation in which owners of properties are subjected to grievous injuries or in the worst instances, death… And the fact that whenever a person is deprived of his or her property his or her economic growth gets inhibited cannot be overemphasized. As already observed above, this is against the law. According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, particularly under Article 17(2) No one should be arbitrarily deprived of his or her property.

Having said that, we have to quickly admit the fact that the victims of robbery and/or theft get not only confused and worried, but they also become angry. And in the worst circumstances, they resort to administer vigilante justice whereby the perpetrators are grievously assaulted or even killed. Suffice to mention herein that two wrongs don’t make a right thing. But what can they do when the innocent people become fed up? Perhaps this is one of the most difficult questions. As a matter fact those who are entrusted with a duty to protect people’s lives and/or property must tirelessly work in order to preserve confidence and trust among the people they serve.

Well, I reasonably believe that it is not by mistake that Yahweh bestowed this planet with such natural resources that every prudent and hardworking person can maximally use in order to enhance his or her life status. The old wise folks in Africa say that Digging is weariness, but eating is sweet… I mean, it is quite important for all and sundry to realize the immense pleasure one gets at the end of working; otherwise it is inhuman and wicked for somebody to reap where he or she did not sow… Well, even the scriptures are very clear on issues of acquisition of properties in a diabolical way. In accordance with Proverbs 21: 6, as per the impeccable wisdom of Solomon, then king of Israel, the riches a person gets by dishonesty soon disappear, but not before they lead him or her into the jaws of death. Simply put, wickedness is the road which leads to death.

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Irrefutable Facts, Rarely Spoken By Those In Command

BY: Dan Phale*

It appears that the social structure which exists generally across the world particularly in various work institutions and/or decision making entities has the potential to create discriminatory lines between those in command and their average staff plus those at the extreme receiving end. In this article the phrase Those In Command includes the top dogs in various work institutions, eg the supervisors; those with positions in the society, or the so-called honourable figures.

Let us begin with supervisors… For the purpose of common understanding we have to refer to the dictionary… In this regard ‘to supervise‘ is synonymous with ‘to direct‘ or ‘to guide‘ which implies, in fact, that a supervisor is not actually the lone actor in the mainstream operations. He or she is often supported by his or her junior staff members. In the same vein, it is an irrefutable fact that subordinates are the ones who play a bigger role than their supervisors.

Surprisingly, most of the times, we hear supervisors praising themselves for an achievement which, without their junior staff, would not have been possible at all. At the end of particular work their tongues rarely make use of the pronoun we when giving a progress report. In this way supervisors portray themselves as single-handed heroes… Apparently, the head would fail to anchor itself up if it did not rest over the neck. In accordance with 1 Corinthians 12: 20, there are many parts but one body… Surely, they need to understand that everybody is equally important, whether a supervisor or the average staff.

The other fact which is irrefutable but is rarely or never mentioned by those in command is that no person is holier than another. More often than not when there is a problem, a supervisor is too quick to accuse his or her subbordinates of some professional mistakes, and it is actually baffling to realise that the accusation is phrased in such a way that reflects the holier-than-thou syndrome. But ironically it is very rare for a leader to come in open and accept his or her mistakes. And one wonders if leaders are such angelic that they don’t make mistakes…! For the sake of our integrity as mankind, let us not pretend to forget that they only feign to be gods with small g’s.

As a matter of truth, supervisors are the ones who, more often than not, commit more serious wrongs than those at the base of the file and ranking. This comes about in the spirit of abuse of power as they feel like they are on the tiptop of the world.

This article would be incomplete if we left out the questionable conduct shown by some selfish people who are in the justice administration system in various corners of the world. As a matter of legal requirement, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights provides that everybody is equal before the law. Furthermore it entrenches the right for victims of human rights violation to have unconditional access to tribunals and courts of justice for legal redress; however this is not the reality on the ground, as most of the low class and less privileged are vulnerable to various forms of social injustice.

It is very sad to take notice of the fact that when the so-called high-class men and women are on the wrong side of the law, their titles play a very influential role in evading justice. Sarcastically, poor people are the ones who are mostly deemed to be wrong even when they are innocent.

In conclusion, I strongly believe that all irrefutable facts cannot be suppressed willy-nilly as the truth has the potential to withstand any attempt to overshadow it with lies. I also believe that it is our noble duty, both as individuals and in groups, to bring social sanity in all our communities.

Selling Coffins At High Price Is Bizarre And Inhuman

BY: Dan Phale*

Having consulted quite several people on pertinent issues aligned to illnesses which negatively affect human beings and the subsequent deaths and all other related problems, I have decided to take time to publish this article. The aim is to bring out such views that came out from those people whom I consulted during my research which to some extent bordered on sales of coffins or caskets. Of course I may not be in a good position to know clear facts as to when and how people across the world began trading in coffins and caskets. But I dare say that not even a single person can bring us convincing facts on why things which are supposed to be sold at giveaway prices are more often than not sold at very expensive prices.

In the first place I hereby very sincerely congratulate the one who invented a coffin or a casket. It is too obvious that the primary focus was and is to ensure easy carriage and conveyance of dead bodies of human beings from their homes to the graveyard for burial. Of course the other significant idea which I subscribe to – as many people often say – is to pay the last respect to the beloved one after his or her death.

No matter how skillfully the coffin or a casket may be crafted there is no any single mentally sane person who can welcome death in his or her household; not at all. This is why in order to save their beloved relatives and/or friends from succumbing to different illnesses, people go to various hospitals to seek medical attention. As a matter of fact this is done in the spirit of hope that medical doctors shall use all their best skills in line with their trainings and/or books to help restore healthy lives of the patients. And when the situation fails in any way to improve as expected, patients are referred to other hospitals at least for better medical services. Suffice to say herein that every human being here on earth is a mortal such that he or she is obviously bound to pass away from this planet, one day.

Also clearer than water is the fact that during the period of different illness, resources – more particularly financial resources – get exhausted. This implies that by the time a person passes away the bereaved family may be financially challenged, with very little or no money left in their accounts. Furthermore, it is sad to observe that most of the times coffins and/or caskets are sold and/or bought at very high prices. Additionally, there are expenses which are always incurred by the bereaved family, and these are to do with transport, food, and the like.

Now, my argument – which according to some people, may be construed as very controversial one – is that selling coffins and/or caskets to the bereaved family is somehow bizarre because it is more like cashing in on somebody’s sorrow. I know this is rebuttable, but this is my personal position.

To begin with, let us have a critical look at issues of commerce and trade which are characterized by a common and/or general knowledge that all merchants aim highly at making profits. By virtue of this fact we are fully aware of the reality that any business person looks for the potential customers to buy his or her merchandise; and this happens through various forms of advertisements. Others have even reached an extent that they erect their coffin shops very close to the mortuary. Of course we do not need to remind one another herein that having failed to get the expected returns a business person gets worried.

And we all know that stakeholders across the world are busy day in day out endeavouring to enhance the well being of all and sundry by, among other things, improving health services, promoting coexistence in their countries… So what would happen if the mortality rate got drastically reduced? Would the coffin workshop owner get upset? Else, would he or she pray for the death of somebody in order to make money out of it?!

I remember correctly that when I was still young, people in my home village, under the community leadership, were mobilised to contribute planks and other related raw materials which were stored to be used at the time of any person’s death. This communal initiative lessened the financial burden caused by the death on the part of relatives and friends of the dead person. If anything, a carpenter was only given a simple kind token of appreciation for the job done, and not payment as would be the case with the hired carpenter for other carpentry work. But, by and large, this tradition phased out.

In view of the aforementioned facts, I boldly propose that there be no coffin workshops any more. The time of death is the rarest moment for us to show our support and sympathy to the bereaved family. As I have already stated above, selling coffins and/or caskets is more like cashing in on sorrow… In a nutshell, all I am saying is that somebody’s grief should not be taken as another person’s opportunity to make money. Otherwise, coffins should be sold at very low prices.

No Life Condition Is Permanent

BY: Dan Phale*

It is our common expectation that each of us should have a quality life which is often measured by what we basically need to get pleasure. And it is an open secret that, irrespective of status, each of us wants to be able – and should be able – to say that I get such a significant recognition that I am a human being and I am valued and respected as such; I am empowered to do things that are vital in my life by myself; I live in my own decent house; I am independent almost all the times…” Of course these are but some of the indicators of quality human life. And the naked truth is that there is a good meaning of human existence when there is satisfaction and pleasure. But in a sharp contrast to the expectation, it appears that most of the times we are not able to attain such things. It is in this regard that we find ourselves groaning.

Suffice to say that sometimes we worry too much as if we don’t know that we exist by grace and plan of the almighty God who created us all. In case we forget, it is an irrefutable fact that He who created us is the sole provider of whatever we need for our better being. Therefore we must understand that no matter the excruciating pains caused by the iron grip of Lucifer, but sooner or later the heavens will smile upon us. As such, we shall never be the same for we shall have what we have always longed for.

I remember pretty well a certain man whose means of subsistence was a very primitive one. In fact he was a skilled repairer of faulty bicycles whose owners could approach him for maintenance work, and in return he would be paid. This man, not only liked his career, but was also very hardworking… But after some years of socioeconomic woes, his life changed drastically as he emerged the winner of the grand prize which, in fact, was Six million Malawi Kwacha in a promotion that was organised by one of the mobile phone network operators in our country. Apparently, that was God’s unique way of rewarding the man for his hardworking spirit and passion in his smallscale income generating activity. Thus he became a millionaire simply in overnight, and his socioeconomic life improved entirely. He used some of the prize money to construct two medium dwelling houses for rent. And from then henceforth his duty to bring bread and butter on the table for his family was quite simple.

According to the Bible, a certain woman had been suffering for twelve years from menstrual bleeding. She had consulted many doctors and spent all what she had, yet instead of getting healed her health situation got worse and worse. But at some point in time she heard more about miracles which were performed by Jesus whenever He met and/or taught people in various places. Therefore, she went to meet Him for the healing power, and as she came closer to Him, she touched His cloak and got healed instantly.

There is another story of Hannah, one of Elkanah’s two wives. It is a very much impressive story such that somebody has to refer to it when missing his or her expected pleasure. Unlike her marriage sister – Peninnah – she had no child. And because her womb had been temporarily closed, her marriage sister usually made fun of her in order to provoke and/or irritate her… Year in year out, Hannah never got pregnant which was the only reason she usually wept in bitterness. But, believing that God would surely answer her prayers, she never ceased to pray. And, it happened that in course of time she conceived, and gave birth to a son who she named Samuel. For obvious reasons she was full of joy so that she showered praises to God for answering her prayers.

As a matter of fact, each one of us has his or her graph, and God, vis-a-vis, has His own time to respond to our prayers… We may be leading a miserable life, yes, but our destiny will still come. We may not be promoted to the next rank at our work place, but we will not remain the same. With our God, the life condition for each of us will certainly be changed. We only need faith in Him and when time is ripe our turnaround will come. However, we need to change our life pattern. Each of us must develop such viable plans that will enable us realise our dreams, as we all know that failing to plan is planning to fail. Not only that, we should also be active in putting our plans into action. There and then we shall all be able and proud to say that “No life condition is permanent.”

From The Barrel Comes No Peace

BY: Dan Phale*

History has always revealed – and it continues to reveal – horrendous facts about a failure of coexistence among human beings across the world. This follows the fact that most of the times we are not in terms with one another on some issues affecting our lives, which is why we have witnessed a number of conflicts. Making the situations worse, some people reach a point of resorting to fight… But this is not the right way to resolve matters.

When we look at several books in the archive, we get to know that even before the first and second world wars, nations and races fought against one another. In a bid to justify their bloody actions, the leaders could give out incomprehensible reasons, such as protection of national interest, and many more. But honestly speaking, war did not help them achieve what they aimed at; in lieu thereof it only made their differences soar to the much more aggravated levels.

Unfortunately, most of those who are in the leadership positions nowadays have little or no keenness to learn from the past events on issues of differences. All we hear is ‘We will destroy your territory’; ‘We’re more superior than your country; and this and that. When shall they adjust their tongues to harmonious talking? I mean, no matter what, two wrongs cannot make a right thing. As a matter of fact, it is such a confrontational attitude that fuels up intolerance and lack of peace among races or tribes and nations. And worse still, the young generations get a very bad precedent.

The magnitude of the impact of the use of a guns when the situation is not okay is quite immense; it only makes it more volatile. In fact peace does not come with a gun. In a sharp contrast it brings about instability in various aspects of human lives as it negatively impacts on growth and development such as health services cannot be easily accessed by everyone because the trained medical professionals are on the run; economy is shattered down; education system too dwindles; everything becomes in deep shambles as there is fire everywhere. Apparently, scores of innocent people get displaced from their homes.

So do people need the guns for them to get the peace which they desperately want? Affirmatively no…! Guns bring about pieces instead of promoting the much needed peace. Let us often remind ourselves that it is as easy for us to live in peace and harmony as the cat and a dog tamed by one person within a single compound. Is our creator not one God…?

Economic Miracle With A Kitchen Garden

BY: Dan Phale*

This is my third time for me to publish a post related to kitchen gardens since I created this blog on WordPress a couple of years ago. I am, actually, publishing this article with all reasons to proudly say that I am a regular kitchen gardener, filled up to the brim of my mind with a keen interest in sharing with everybody what positive things a kitchen garden can bring in our lives.

It appears that there is an imbalance of of life as characterised by insufficient human needs. Actually, most of us have much less earning capacity than the ever rising cost of living. And this makes it a requirement for all of us to have viable and diverse means of sustaining our livelihood at household level, both in the short term and long term. In fact, one of the short term means, in accordance with my mother’s advice, happens to be the creation of a kitchen garden.

Managing The Kitchen Garden is not all that challenging. Let us bear in mind that the soil needs to be regularly boosted, and we can do this by adding composite manure both before and after planting vegetables; or we can plant nitrate fixing plants. If we rare chicken or guinea fowls or ducks on free range basis, we should ponder erecting a woven bamboo fence, or a wire mesh fence, or a twine mesh fence around the garden with an aim of keeping them away from the vegetables.

After planting, it is also very important to ensure there is adequate moisture in the garden. This is achieved through a number of ways, for example, adequate and regular irrigation and mulching. And in terms of irrigation, we have to create basin-like planting stations which allow water to go deeper into the soil so that our vegetables do not wither.

It is further vital for us to randomly plant shrubs around the garden with an aim of providing some shade for the vegetables. The shade provided by the shrubs helps in shielding the vegetables from the scorching sunlight, and the soil doesn’t get dry just anyhow.

Benefits Of A Kitchen Garden are quite numerous. For instance, we are able to get healthy and fresh vegetables which are highly enriched in all the nutritive values within our compound; wasteland around our compound is made useful as well as productive; waste materials like the sweepings and/or the droppings are accessed easily and/or cheaply as in comparison with manufactured fertilizer; there is a reasonable saving of the cost of buying vegetables.

Well, the savings cannot be seen in just overnight. But after a period of time, let us quantify vegetables so far consumed, we surely realise that there is a huge saving in this initiative. At the meantime, for instance, there are mustard leafy vegetables in my kitchen garden which, in view of my estimation, will help me save the sum of K8, 000.00 which is equivalent to the sum of US10 dollars in a period of three months… This means, for the whole year, a substantial amount of money can be saved.

Let us take notice of the fact that we can also plant medicinal herbal crops in our kitchen gardens. Actually, this initiative shall ease the task of moving up and down in the quest for the herbs in times of need because they will be readily available for use… And to some extent, such plants – skillfully intercropped with vegetables – do add some colour to the beautiful scenery of the surrounding of our compound.

The But-why Method In Countering Poor Duty Standards

BY: Dan Phale*

Most of the times many managers and supervisors in various work institutions tend to groan about poor standards of services discharged by those who are under their command. However they seem to have very little or no time to make an in-depth analysis of everything in a bid to understand why such is the case. It is in this regard that I have decided to publish this article so that we discuss some of the various issues that negatively affect performance of the duty bearers.

First and foremost, we need to come to terms with the fact that there are quite many people who are well educated but are not employed. In a sharp contrast, those who are entrusted with the duty to work in certain fields are not suitably qualified for the job. Rather, they are recruited on the basis of nepotism, or regionalism, or tribalism, and so on and so forth. Usually, such are the people who do not perform their duties to the required best standards.

Let us check around, and we shall find out that even promotions are not done on merits… Not at all. Those with strong extraordinary unprofessional strings attached to their existence in work institutions have an upper hand to be elevated from one position to the next level than those without. The latter group of workers can, thus, work for many years without being considered for promotion let alone some kind of incentives; and, calling a spade a spade, they feel quite disappointed as well discouraged. Just imagine that somebody who has always portrayed a vast professional character and experience is at the receiving end of discriminatory and unfair treatment by his or her superiors.

Abuse of power and corrupt practices are other factors which have negative impact on delivery of services. What has horns cannot be wrapped in a sack… No matter how long it may be hidden, one day the horns shall protrude out, and the secret will be known by everybody. As a matter of fact leaders must lead by good examples; otherwise, eventually almost all junior employees will think that this is the right way to go. The wise old folks in Africa say that “when the chief limps, his subjects also limp.” You know, evil starts like a small seed and after germination it spreads like an oak tree.

In other circumstances, a superior in rank does not want to get views from those under his or her command. Even if he or she doesn’t know what to do, or goes astray in the line of duty, he or she doesn’t want or doesn’t accommodate views from the junior staff. Such are the know-it-all members of management. And this tendency is detrimental to the outcome of the intended objectives and goals.

There is another bad syndrome among some managers. More often than not, their eyes are blind such that they don’t seem to notice the good performance and achievements made by their junior workers. But when a very little mistake is committed, they swiftly produce insulting words or take very harsh administrative actions with little or no regard to the requirement of natural justice… This is very unfair.

Over and above, leadership is another key aspect in management of duties at every institution. How can there be the best quality services under unskilled and unsound leadership? And the issue of payments cannot be overemphasized; whereas little perks that are insufficient to match with the current cost of living are also a potential cause of poor performance of workers.

All in all, such issues as favouritism, abuse of power and corruption, unsound leadership, among other issues, bring about frustration among workers. And frustration is a catalyst for their poor standards in discharging duties. It is high time managers stopped being biased towards the selected group of their subordinates.