At yesterday's conference for Edinburgh Council school leaders mention was made of 'Ubuntu' by Steve Munby our main speaker. Given Gillespie's strong links with South Africa I was intrigued to find out more. What I found out was fascinating.
The following extract from Wikipedia explains what the Ubuntu philosophy is about.
Tim Jackson refers to Ubuntu as a philosophy that supports the changes he says are necessary to create a future that is economically and environmentally sustainable.
Judge Colin Lamont expanded on the definition during his ruling on the hate speech trial of Julius Malema.
Ubuntu is recognised as being an important source of law within the context of strained or broken relationships amongst individuals or communities and as an aid for providing remedies which contribute towards more mutually acceptable remedies for the parties in such cases. Ubuntu is a concept which:
- is to be contrasted with vengeance;
- dictates that a high value be placed on the life of a human being;
- is inextricably linked to the values of and which places a high premium on dignity, compassion, humaneness and respect for humanity of another;
- dictates a shift from confrontation to mediation and conciliation;
- dictates good attitudes and shared concern;
- favours the re-establishment of harmony in the relationship between parties and that such harmony should restore the dignity of the plaintiff without ruining the defendant;
- favours restorative rather than retributive justice;
- operates in a direction favouring reconciliation rather than estrangement of disputants;
- works towards sensitising a disputant or a defendant in litigation to the hurtful impact of his actions to the other party and towards changing such conduct rather than merely punishing the disputant;
- promotes mutual understanding rather than punishment;
- favours face-to-face encounters of disputants with a view to facilitating differences being resolved rather than conflict and victory for the most powerful;
- favours civility and civilised dialogue premised on mutual tolerance.