Humility Among the Kung! Essay

Humility Among the Kung! Essay

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Humility is a valuable attribute in the character of an individual, in society and in a culture. Cultivating this value in can be learned through psychological exercise, misfortune, costly mistakes, and various other methods. Such was the case with Ontah, the anthropologist in the story, “Eating Christmas in the Kalahari.”
As an expression of gratitude towards the !Kung Bushmen and there families for there cooperation, Ontah purchased the largest meatiest ox he could find for the Christmas festivities. After living with the !Kung Bushmen for three years, with experience and observation of the Tswana-Herrero custom of slaughtering an ox for Christmas, makes it apparent that Ontah’s ox was not the choice of a novice.
As the word circulated around the village of his polite gesture, he was baffled by the accusations that he had chosen an ox that was worthless and amounted to nothing more than a bag of bones. Ontah carefully measured this ox before he bought it. This ox was five feet high at the shoulders, five feet across the horns and estimated at 1200 pounds. According to his expert consumption calculations this ox was large enough to feed every man, women and child of the 150 Bushmen in that area! So how could it be said by everyone in the village that his choice of ox was skin and bones, would dampen the excitement of the festivities and since it was not enough to go around it would most likely cause a fight between rivals among the Bushmen, who would accuse one another of ...

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