Himba Wisdom for Modern ParentsThe Himba tribe in Namibia has a unique tradition that can teach parents a lot about the importance of identity and community in education. In this tribe, the birth of a child does not begin with physical birth or conception, but much earlier. When a woman decides to become a mother, she listens under a tree to the ‘song’ of her future child. This song symbolizes the child’s unique identity.
Share with the community
Once the mother knows the song, she shares it with the father and later with the midwives and elderly women in the village. The song becomes part of the community, a way to welcome and support the child.
Growth and support
As the child grows up, the entire village learns the song. For falls, injuries or successes, the community sings the song to support or celebrate the child. This tradition teaches us that raising a child is a collective effort that involves the entire community.
Memory of identity
If a person in the tribe makes a mistake, he is not punished, but reminded of his identity by singing his song. This emphasizes the importance of love and acceptance in education, rather than punishment.
The song accompanies the person throughout his life, until the deathbed. This illustrates the continued connection and support of the community.
Valuable lessons for parents
This tradition of the Himba tribe offers valuable lessons for parents:
- Every Child is Unique: Just like the unique song, every child has their own identity that should be cherished and celebrated.
- Community support is essential: Raising a child is a communal responsibility, with support and love at its core.
- Focus on love and identity: Rather than punishing, reminding a child of a child’s unique identity helps shape positive behavior.