Home 9 Fiction & CNF 9 Sex is the Opium of The People

Sex is the Opium of The People

by uMonde iNxele


The point is the longer you go, the deeper you see into your own sexuality. It is like coming face to face with your shame of sex. Everyone has something to be ashamed of, and most of the time it has something to do with sex. That says something about the society we live in.

Tshepo from K Sello Duiker’s The Quiet Violence of Dreams


That day, that fateful day in January, I’d woken up at exactly six o’clock. I straightaway became disgusted at the prospect of my day. I did not want to go to school; I wanted to be left alone to learn with my Imagination. I could read and write and I knew the basics of arithmetic; I really had no need for them.

But dropping out was unthinkable; it would have broken father’s heart. If I’d dropped out, father would have asked for help from the church. They’d all have then ganged up on me to declare that it is Satan’s fault.

The Sun had risen. I left the “cabin” for the main house where father was still sleeping. There I lit a primus stove to cook some Water and, as I waited for the water to boil, I couldn’t help but gaze at the flames that issued from the stove. At length, I wondered at the Mystery which is Fire; I felt that it was more than just heat, it was more. I gazed at the Fire, meditating on the Myth of Prometheus.

When the Earth was at its infancy, Prometheus stole the Secrets of Fire from the gods and taught mankind the arts of cooking and boiling. He was isolated and hanged on a mountain rock for his trouble, where an Eagle would eat his liver bit by bit ’til such time that he saw it fit to recant his subversive ways and repent after his misdeed. But Prometheus -half man and half god- refused to disown his benevolence; his liver grew whole again, and the Eagle had his feast. Prometheus was one of the first Rebel-Outsiders, if you believe in Myth.

I stood gazing at the Fire, and meditated on the relationship between Science and Myth; Is Myth “primitive” Science or is Science “advanced” Myth?

The water soon grew hot. I took it back to my “cabin” so as to prepare for the first day of my matric year. As I washed, I wondered what type of Science they’d be feeding me at that level. I’d become nauseated by the dead textbook Science of formal education. I dreamt of a dynamic, living Science; a Science that is conscious of its indebtedness to Myth.

That first day of my matric year was relatively uneventful, except for the encounter with the physics teacher. Mss Maneli is a quiet woman in her early thirties. I had seen her many times before at assembly and at the female staff room, but up until she took us for physics, her existence had been on the margins of my conscious experience. Meeting her was a completely ambiguous encounter for me; she frightened yet fascinated me. I did not want to look into her eyes, yet I hadn’t the will to look away.

Her first lesson was uninspiring; it was more of the usual dogma of objectivity and verifiability. Halfway through the lesson I raised my hand, saying “absolute objectivity is a false doctrine. In the quest for knowledge, the knower cannot be separated from the known. What the knower perceives is inescapably conditioned by his subjectivity”. I was breathless, surprised and frightened.

“If absolute objectivity was a ‘false doctrine’, then there would be no science in the world” was her rebuttal. My interjection had obviously been considered an insult or a challenge.

“There would be no science as we know it today. If we could overcome the illusion of objectivity and the ‘scientific’ tendency to disregard that which cannot be verified by the outward eye, then we’d develop a more wholesome way of knowing. Science would cease to be something that you do, or a state of mind that you adopt, it would be The Way you Exist.” To my relief, the bell rang for lunch break; I was beginning to tremble as I spoke. I trembled even more when Mss Maneli told me to see her at the staff room after break.

During break, I sneaked away from school and made my way to the streets without my books. I was glad to get away; I felt released from Mss Maneli. I decided to stop at a shop on the way for some apples.

As I got out of the shop, I saw Mss Maneli’s blue Mazda 3 approaching from the distance. I panicked but took my chances and hurried away without looking back; I was hoping that she wouldn’t notice me. When she pulled up beside me, I longed for the earth to open up and swallow me.

“Need a lift?” she wore a pleasant and reassuring smile. I was absolutely dumbfounded. She opened the passenger door and signaled me in.

It was comfortable and warm inside, the windows were tinted black. I felt taken, undefended, and vulnerable. I noticed for the first time how pretty she was.

“I will carry you to your destiny.” She was surprisingly soft spoken, totally unlike earlier in class.

“My destiny?”

“Destination, I meant to say I will carry you to your destination.”

Owing to the dimmed interior, there was a strange air of secrecy, as if we were hatching a conspiracy. “I don’t know where I’m going really, I’m just drifting.”

“Drifting away?” 

“I suppose so; but I don’t know where I want to go.”

“I hope you’re not drifting away from me.”

“I’m kinda drifting away from everything; you just made it worse by trying to confront me.”

“Who said I’m trying to confront you?”

“Because of what happened in class, I figured. . .”

“I just wanted to know more about you, I want to know what makes you different from the others.”

“Who says I’m different from. . .”

“You have courage and wit, that’s what it took to do what you did in class today; your courage and your passion make you different.”

“I was frightened.”

“But you spoke anyway.”

We’d been driving around for about ten minutes when she suddenly stopped the car and let go of the wheel, looking distant and thoughtful.

“Since you’re just drifting, why not come have lunch at my place? I’m also taking the rest of the afternoon off”, she winked and laughed mischievously at our escapade.

“I don’t see why not; these apples aren’t going to do me any good ’cause I’m starving.”

“Excellent! I love nothing more than making food for a starving man.”

Somehow, I was energized by the fact that she considered me a man. Within the space of a few minutes, what she thought of me became momentous, and I liked to listen to the way she laughed.

We got to her flat almost an hour after noon. It was a modest single-dwelling place; a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and lounge. Unlike most women, she didn’t seem to be too obsessed with stuff; her flat was full of bare necessities. But it felt surprisingly warm and comfortable; it betrayed the fact that its occupant drank from the fountain of Eros.

We said very little to each other, which unsettled me at that time because I was yet to learn to be comfortable with Silence. I thought her Silence meant that she regretted inviting me into her private space; that she wanted to withdraw from contact and have her Solitude again. But when I looked at her, I saw that she looked to me; her eyes were eager and expectant, although her manner was passive. It was as if she was saying “action is the prerogative of Logos, I look to you to initiate the conversation”.

I began to tremble as I initiated a different kind of conversation with her; I put my hand on her thigh and started kissing her. She woke me up from my dream with a slap across my face, saying “Zifune sies! Can’t you see that you’re a child? I could be as old as your mother!”

I was a bit dizzy and confused, but I resolved to go back home and hang myself. The shame of it! What was I thinking? I started making for the door ‘with my tail between my legs’ when she suddenly leaped for me and pulled me down to the floor with incredible strength. It was unbelievable because she looked so effeminate and helpless. But the note of frailty was not completely lost; I could see it in her eyes as I lay on top of her. I know that she is a sensitive woman; she moaned when I thrust into her.

She wasn’t at school the following day after. I was brutally disappointed after waiting for what felt like a lifetime for physics period. The day after, there was a substitute teacher for physics. We were told that Mss Maneli would be on leave for the next three weeks.

I became a divided individual during that time. No, during that time I became a battleground for a conflict between longing and self-restraint. I was dying to see her, but I did not want go to her place. I had to consider the possibility of her refusing to see me; perhaps I made her feel ashamed of herself. But still, I was dying to see her.

I got on badly the whole time, sustained by the possibility of seeing her again. I just wanted to look at her. When there was no one for physics on the day she was due to return, I was baffled because I had seen a blue Mazda 3 at the parking lot earlier.

During break that day, it emerged that Mss Maneli had been in to submit her resignation letter, and that she would leave immediately. I quietly sled away from school and made my way to her place, determined to see her.

When I got there I saw that it was locked, and there was no sign of anyone inside. I went round the back and used the emergency exit stairs to get up and broke into her window. I wanted to look at the spot where we laid, and savour her presence one last time before I walked away from our encounter with each other.

But when I finally got inside, I discovered that the flat was completely bare except for a rubbish bin behind the door. She’d taken everything and disappeared. There wasn’t even the smell of her left there. I felt cheated. I broke in for anything of hers that would make me feel close to her; even if I’d just sat in her favorite chair that would have been enough for me. But it was increasingly becoming clear to me that there won’t even be a memento for the brief spark we shared. In my defiant desperation however, I went and searched the rubbish bin behind the door. I discovered a used home pregnancy test kit; the result was positive, pregnant.


I almost lost my mind. There were so many questions to be answered; what would she do about the pregnancy? Mine? I wondered if I would ever see her again.

I had lost all hope of ever hearing from her when I got a letter after almost a year had passed. It read thus:


Dear Zifune

I could have written to you sooner; I didn’t because I wanted you to focus on your studies. Knowing how intelligent you are, I’m sure you did well.

I hope you’ve been well this past year, and that you haven’t been too negatively affected by what happened between us.

What really happened between us? I have been pondering this question ever since we were together, and still I fail to come up with a satisfactory answer. Whatever it was, love or lust, it has changed my life forever.

I like to believe that it was love, if it is possible for a teacher to fall in love with her pupil. The love-seed you planted has grown inside me, and I have become a mother of new possibilities. You must believe me when I declare that our love was meaningful.

But on the other hand, it is forbidden contact. Besides the legal consequences for me, society would punish us both with an open or implicit ostracism if our union came to be known.

Society teaches us too much shame about sex. I will never forget the incident of “mob justice” against sexual union that I witnessed in my childhood.

We were skipping rope in our neighbor’s yard, and two dogs were getting intimate in the middle of the street. Of course, at the time I had no idea what was really happening. Nonetheless, it was fascinating to watch. This fascination had nothing to do with the conscious idea of sex; it was more akin to the fascination that children get from watching a fire.

The commotion started when a few teenagers laughed and cheered at the dogs. One of them offered that the male dog was “bonking” its own mother.

When I think about it now, I remember your love for Myth, and the story you told me about a wise King Oedipus from the West.

“A bitch!” one of the female teenagers said with conspicuous disgust.

Then there came by some church-goers in their Sunday best. An old man who seemed like the leader of the congregation was the first to spot the abomination. He quickly changed the subject to the book of Leviticus, and they all passed by without appearing to notice anything.

The gathering around the dogs grew significantly in a short space of time. There were the teenagers who were enjoying the show, the parents who were anxious and the children who were fascinated. The dogs could not run and hide because they were fully mated, and could not separate without a lot of pain.

It was a tipsy Sis’ Julia who defended the dogs and their right to be animals with the words “let them be, this is what animals do. And let me remind you that all of you are also animals, in case you’ve forgotten”.

It was a sober and respectable man who threw the first stone at the dogs: “incest!” he shouted. When his stone hit one of the dogs, he gritted his teeth and clenched his fists to keep himself from shaking. He was not married and lived with his mother.

“They are animals, your morality does not apply to them” was Sis’ Julia’s rejoinder. But her words were lost in the uproar as other members of the mob followed suit with stones and morality directed at the mating dogs. I had to look away.

My point is that the consequences would be tragic if they found out about us; that is why I had to get away. I know it was unfair of me to decide on my own after you and I became one; it’s just that I love you too much to see you live through this scandal.

I conclude by asking you not to go out of your way to try and find me; if we are destined to be one again, then it will happen without any contrivance on our part:

It is the way of Heaven not to Strive,
and yet it skilfully overcomes;
not to speak, and yet it is skilful
in obtaining a reply;
does not call, and yet
men come to it of themselves.
Its demonstrations are quiet,
and yet its plans are skilful and effective.
The meshes of Heaven are large,
far apart, but let nothing escape.

Lao Tzu


Nolubabalo Maneli


There was no return address.



Sex is the Opium of The People (Part Two)

The schizophrenic Revolution -“all Power to the Imagination!”


There’s nothing else to do but sit quietly, and in my sitting quietly I must have Faith. I am not the first Explorer to reach these realms, nor am I the only one currently bathing in the Fire. I am in isolation, but I know that there are other Voyagers who are also in Meditation now. When two believers pray at the same time, the distances and barriers that stand between them are of no consequence; they are one with each other and one with the Creator. Therefore, I am also one with other Brothers who are currently exploring the heights and depths of Consciousness in the Spirit of Ganja. I must say a short prayer:


I am falling; I pray I fall into your hands,
Now that it is too late
To find balance.

I find myself in flames; if I must burn
Further, I pray my Glow
Lights up the House of my Ancestors.

Above all, I pray you teach me
The Secret of Letting go.

I tremble, because let go is what I cannot do. Dr. Nxele says that whenever I tremble under the Fire of the Herb, that indicates that I’m struggling against the awareness of feelings that surpass my normal experience. He says that I must cease to struggle; even as I shake uncontrollably, I must accept the symptom as a message from my body.

Now I hear a voice; “the body has unlimited storage capacity. It keeps a flawless record of all your experiences, especially those associated with feelings that for some or other reason you could not experience fully. These feelings or memories sometimes come back as physical symptoms, especially under the Fire of the Herb”.

This must be the Pit of Insanity; one cannot get anymore insane when one has attained to hearing voices. But I will not flee from this dark presence. When one runs away from one’s own shadow, it runs away with him. A wise teacher once told me that where there are shadows, there you will also find find Light, because the one cannot exist without the other.

“Are you afraid?” Asks the voice.

“Why should I be afraid of you?” is my reply.

“This is abnormal.”

“Says who?”

“Do you think it is normal to hear voices?”

“It doesn’t matter, I know that you’re not real, and I am not afraid.”

“Yet you tremble; you have anxiety and this is proof enough of my existence.”

“You are a product of my Imagination!”

“That may be true, but does that truth make your anxiety any less real?”

Now I’m begining to manifest other physical symptoms, the most notable of which is an increased pulse rate. Now it is as if the Fire is coming from my heart. Let me lie down on the floor and submit to its rhythm; thud thud, thud thud, thud thud. I must let go and flow with the stream. Thud thud, thud thud, thud thud, I hear the sound of Drums inside my head!

My eyes are closed; there is no need to act or think. I must not try to understand, for now I must just experience the Fire. I must have Faith in the life flow. I must have Faith in the Voyage and draw from the companionship of other Explorers who are in Meditation now. I must wait patiently, and let the Fire wash away all fear, guilt, shame and lust. I must recognize, acknowledge, then let go. Verily, there is no need to fear, because it is Sunrise.


Notes from the journal of Dr. Nxele

“Legalize it”


I’ve had to cut my dreadlocks so as to hide my true identity and blend in with the surroundings more. This has been a thoroughly emasculating experience for me. In growing my dreadlocks, I learned great lessons in the virtue of Patience. Growing the locks was also a lesson in self acceptance, and the burning away of an inherited inferiority complex that centred around my African appearance. These lessons were the cornerstone of what was then my unfolding Philosophy of Manhood.

But it is yet another great lesson of Manhood to yield to necessity. The Authorities have nullified my psychiatric practice license and issued a warrant for my arrest. They want me for distribution of Ganja seeds, an offence punishable by lethal injection since Ganja became legal in the year 2037. That was three years ago, and in the interval the Authorities have been on a witchhunt for any independent cultivater of the Herb. The law especially made provision for these brutal witchhunts with the stipulation that the distribution of Ganja is an exclusively government-private sector privilege. By “private sector” I am not refering to the enterprising individual; I am refering to “big-business” or multinational corporations. The government was to issue a tender, which it did. After the consideration of aplications, the Authorities awarded the tender to an American pharmaceutical corporation. The law also made provision for the distribution of an inferior hybrid through state clinics free of charge.

The downside to all of this is the fact that the legal Ganja is not Ganja proper, and this is especially true of the inferior clone given to the poor. This legal Ganja is a special breed cultivated under conditions aproaching those of a laboratory, with geneticaly modified seeds. The yield is a golden bud with absolutely no seeds.

All these interventions are desperate measures by the Authorities to help the people manage Anxiety. Anxiety is the great afliction of the present and the future. It is the cause and the symptom of humanity’s stunted development. The human race is capable of miraculous feats; the development of science and technology is a testimony of humanity’s potential.

But, for the majority that lives in destitude townships and squatter camps, this potential is a mockery of a promise that will never be fulfilled. Instead, for them the development of science and technology has resulted in unemployment on a mass scale, since their jobs have been taken over by machines. Many Fathers are no longer Fathers, for to them Fatherhood meant being the spine of the family. Being providers for their loved ones has been emotionally fulfilling for them. We should not hasten to tell these men to find meaning somewhere else, because the role of a provider is indispensable. But, above all, it is their Choice to thus give meaning to their lives.

Now families in the townships and squatter camps suffer the economic insecurity, and everyone is crippled by Anxiety. To complete the greatest robbery of our times, the people have been denied even an outlet for this Anxiety; there’s no one to complain to, because no one’s really in charge. Everything is run by machines and protocol. When you call the Authorities, you get a pre-recorded interactive voice message. When you send them an e.mail you get an automated interactive reply. When you visit their offices you sit down in front of a computer and submit your grievances electronically.

So the Authorities saw it fit to Legalize Ganja so as to manage national Anxiety levels. This decision was based on a recommendation by an American based group of psychiatrists known simply as the “think tank”. This group is sponsored by an organisation called Intercom or International Community.


The schizophrenic Revolution

“If the Initiate persists through the Fire, a precious Stone will emerge from the Furnace.”


I should not will health, nor should I will sickness, I must just exist. If I just exist and follow the bliss, all the superfluities will fall away in good time. I must be tolerant and patient with myself with regard to my imperfections. Contrary to what the Christians teach, I do not believe that the Creator  is a stern judge over man’s imperfections. He created everything to exist according to its own laws, and if these laws are breached the Creature sickens or becomes afflicted with a bad conscience. This sickness or bad conscience is the Creature’s burden and his alone. The Creator is not punishing him. If the Creator exists as a conscious being, his atitude toward his suffering Creature is more akin to that of a witness than it is to that of a judge.

Let me get up from the floor and sit upright awhile. Looking at the clock, I notice that only a few minutes have passed since I began this session. But it feels like I have been High for hours! It must have some element of truth, the theological speculator’s assertion that a single moment is equal to an eternity when you are High above in heaven.

I see Somagwaza walking alone, with the blazing Sun overhead. It was not long before he came across a river, which he had to cross in order to get to his Destination. The Water was calm; there was no turbulence. He was halfway through, when suddenly a soft wind blew and he felt something in the Water tie his legs together, so that he lost his balance. He did not sink however, but merely floated above the Water, and fell into a dream: there she was, sitting on a protruding rock in the middle of the river. She was looking away from him. She glanced over her shoulder, called his name, then looked away again. But he saw her; that brief moment was enough for him to take into his soul all the perfection of her beauty. He wanted to posses her, but he could not move his limbs. No matter how great an effort he put into it, he remained magically tied to the spot. She slid off the rock and turned to face him. Her breasts were round and firm; he could not look away from them. She spoke to him; I am Mamlambo, these Waters are my domain. He was mesmerised, expectant and terrified. “I know who you are, and why you are here”, she said.

“Is that so?”

“Yes, you are here because I called you.”

“No, I am here because this is where I must cross, I have to get to the Other Side.”  She moved closer to him, so that her breasts squeezed against his bare chest. Hot blood rushed to his Phallus. Now he could move his limbs, and discovered that he could embrace her. He took her into his arms; she was light and yielding, her skin was soft and electric. He proposed to enter her, and she smiled triumphantly and said to him: “I will give you my sex, enough of it to satisfy your every wish and desire. I will come to you, even when you call me in your dreams. Only, there is one thing that you have to do in order to have me.”

“What is it? I want to have you, then I must  Journey on.”

“I want you to abandon your Journey and go back to your hometown. There I want you to use your Gift to found a Secret Temple for the Mothers, and be that Temple’s most faithful servant. If you do this, I will exist for your pleasure, for all eternity.”

“I don’t have a Gift, I fail to understand you when you say ‘use your Gift to found a Secret Temple'”.

“You are Self-Seeking Somagwaza! You come from a long line of Gifted Fathers; the potential is there, in your Blood.”

“If I have a Gift, and if I have this Gift because I am a descendant of Gifted Fathers; why should I use it to found  a Secret Temple for the Mothers?”

“If you agree to do this, then I will allow you to enter me now. On top of that, I will bring you seven times seven Virgins to be your servants and playthings. All these pleasures and more will be yours, if you say ‘yes’ to the Mothers.”


She took his hand and led him to the soft grass on the bank, and there spread out her legs for him. Afterwards, he felt physically weak and inwardly guilty.

Before long he awoke to discover that he was not in the Water where he fell asleep. He remembered his dream and instantly understood why he was where he was. He approached the river with the intention of crossing it and resuming his Wandering. But he soon grew frightened because the nearer got to the Waters, the more rough and turbulent the became.

Now I see Somagwaza talking to an old: “Can you see things before they happen?” he asks.

“Sometimes, yes.”

“You must have seen this coming then; I fail to understand why you made no attempts to stop it.”

“We couldn’t, we can’t stop her; you’re the only one who can.”

“You could atleast have warned me about her.”

“We had to let you make a Choice.”

“So what happens now?”

“Now you have to make another Choice; will you go back to the Womb and live your life a servant of the Mothers, or will you Rise with the Sun and cross the noontide with Him, that you may rest at twilight cleansed by Struggle and full of Repose?”

“But there is too much turbulence, it would be suicide.”

“The turbulence is in your mind, not in the Water. You have to learn to control the flow of your thoughts and cool your boiling Blood.”

“But how . . . who will teach me?”

“It is night; make a Fire now, and lie down.”

Notes from the journal of Dr. Nxele

“Cult of The Psychedelic Voyagers”

It is Sunrise. On friday night, after granting an interview to a journalist of an influential sunday paper on condition of anonymity, I moved from the township where I was hiding to a more densely populated squatter camp on the outskirts of Cape Town. Here, I see poverty beyond compare, and I am a nobody. Here I am a nameless and faceless member of a neglected crowd; there is no better place to hide.

I am waiting for one of the members of the Green Brotherhood, he is shortly to bring me a copy of the paper from the City. The journalist assured me that the interview would feature in today’s issue.

I’ve sent a message to all my former patients via word of mouth, letting them know that they can still write to me should they feel inclined to. Members of the Brotherhood tell me that Zifune, my senior most student, wants to meet with me if it can be arranged. It has been painful for me to decline to meet with him. Considering the risks involved, of which I’m sure he is aware, it would be prudent for us to communicate via hand-delivered mail.

Now I see left-handed Elephant’s Way, he has a copy of the paper with him. The headline is rather controversial: “Cult of The Psychedelic Voyagers”, subtitled “an exclusive interview with an initiated member”. I guess they have to sell papers, and nothing sells better than controversy. The article was a transcription of the voice recordings from friday night:

Reporter: Give us an idea of who you are and the position you occupy in the Brotherhood.

Mr. X: I am a member of the Brotherhood. I have been Initiated into the Art of Healing Souls.

Reporter: What has prompted you to found this Brotherhood?

Mr. X: We want to liberate the poor from marijuana. As you may know, our mental hospitals are flooding with schizophrenic cases from the lower classes.

Reporter: You presume that the cause is marijuana?

Mr. X: We know that the cause is marijuana, we have evidence gathered from a series of pharmacological tests carried out by independent scientists. This evidence is the reason why there’s a manhunt for members of the Brotherhood.

Reporter: Before we get on to the evidence, could you give our readers a brief history of the marijuana problem.

Mr. X: Well, during the nineties, researchers who where interested in the medical use of Ganja discovered that in its wild herbal state it contains Cannabidiol or CBD, an agent that was tested and proven to have anxiolytic (anxiety lowering) and anti-psychotic effects.This led to mass campaigns calling for the legalization of the Herb, which especially intensified during the first decades of the twenty first century. As everybody knows, Ganja became legal in the year 2037 and officially became marijuana. The name “Ganja” was banned, for reasons I shall not get into here.

Reporter: But then, if Ganja was proven to reduce anxiety, why do you think it is the reason behind this mass paranoia?

Mr. X: The people are not given Ganja, they are given marijuana, which is a clone and a dangerous imitation.

Reporter: Enlighten our readers on the differences between Ganja and marijuana.

Mr. X: Ganja is a mysterious Herb given to man by its Creator. The ancient races believed that, under apropriate circumstances, the Herb becomes an invisible bridge between man and Divinity. Marijuana, on the other hand, is an experimental project funded by a mysterious organisation known as Intercom. There is a secret wing in every state mental hospital. This is where they conduct mind control experiments on every patient who is admitted because of ill-effects from marijuana The aim is to know marijuana and all its effects, and in knowing use this knowledge to control the destinies of those who are ignorant.

Reporter: Control them how for instance, could you give our readers an example?

Mr. X: I’ll do more than just give you an example; I will give you the raw facts of the cruelty. The female products of the experiments are placed in upmarket brothels throughout the country. These brothels are play-houses for international tourists and “investors” from the West.

Reporter: What happens to the male patients?

Mr. X: They become cheap labour for the international companies that outsource jobs to state mental hospitals. They call it “Investment and Capacity Building”.

Reporter: What role has your Brotherhood been playing amid these developments?

Mr. X: For the most part we are trying to Heal those who have managed to escape. We distribute Ganja seeds to those we Heal, and encourage them to grow their own.

Reporter: Why is it important for them to grow their own?

Mr. X: Pharmacological evidence in our possesion suggests that the fertilisers used in the cultivation of the state hybrid contain large quantities of ammonia; an agent which is proven to precipitate psychosis. A psychosis is a loss of contact with reality. It is characterised by hallucinations and other alterations in perception, delusions, disorganised thinking and speech and loss of insight. This is the main reason behind the mass paranoia of the poor.

That was the gist of it. Elephant’s Way also brought a letter from Zifune. The letter is a recreation of a Vision that came to him under the Fire; here is my attempt to help him make sense of it:


Dear Brother

In Solitude, at length I meditated on the Vision. Each time I saw Somagwaza in conflict with his weaker nature; I saw him trying to liberate him-Self from the tyranny of the instincts. I saw his weaker nature desiring the warmth and oblivion of Woman; that part of him that wants to return to bliss through the Womb door. Associated with these desires is guilt, because it is not the Destiny of any man to return to the Womb. He is like the isiXhosa Initiate who must not look back when his Womb of Rebirth burns to ashes; he must run forward into the new life of Manhood, he must run forward into the future.

His Higher Self would have him inwardly commit matricide, and name him-Self a descendant of the Fathers. The guilt can only be resolved when he ceases to dedicate him-Self to the worship of Woman. In order for him to become whole and in order for the man in him to be born, he must not chase after any Woman’s Womb, instead he must bring about his own psychic Rebirth. This is the Paradox of Somagwaza, The Seeker After Rebirth; he is pregnant, and must become Mother, Midwife and Child. He is the First-born of Creation. If he persists through the Fire, a precious Stone will emerge form the furnace.


The Outsider


The schizophrenic Revolution

“Persevere my Child, you are destined to Heal with Herbs.”


Today I got a reply to a letter that I’d written to Dr. Nxele, and with it the news that he was arrested a couple of nights ago during a police raid that was manifestly orchestrated specifically for him. He was tried and convicted in secret by a special tribunal. No one was allowed to see him, and he was executed almost immediately after the trial.

I have inherited his notes, and I study each new passage with diligence and enthusiasm. The epigraph to his thoughts is a most memorable song:

I’ve been sick since childhood
I’ve been sick since childhood
I will persist
I’ve been sick since childhood
I will persist

Persist my Child, you are Destined
To heal with Herbs.
Persist my Child, you are Destined
To Heal