The Attitude Lounge by Kodwo Brumpon: A fact of futility 


“When God is cooking, don’t expect to see smoke.” – Zambian proverb

For a great many of us, life is good as long as we have what it takes to live a good life. Often, the translation is on materiality; and that usually entails being surrounded by the things we have worked for and acquired through our ways and means.

We desire to live life as if it is about us. It is not surprising we take excessive pride in who we are and what we have, without necessarily understanding our role in the great scheme of things. It might sound harsh, but such a perspective is what vanity is all about.

Interestingly, most of us have become so aroused by our egos, we cannot think through anything else unless it is related to fulfilling our desires. And the sad part is, we are so engrossed in this craze, we scarcely realise the grime our footprints are leaving.

In all honesty, many of us have become addicted to ourselves, even though we would not readily accept it. We reject the fact that we have become addicted to ourselves because nobody wants to be associated with addiction.

The picture we paint of addiction is a scene of going through the “one last time drama”, only to turn round and do that very act again. It is a depressing picture, but is that not what we all do all the time? Some may want to blame it on the rise of the social media maniac, but that attitude has always existed.

It is because the majority among us are always working to find fulfilment in ourselves, in our abilities and the things that we invent without realising that such an approach is the reason we fret over life.

Let us be frank; there is nothing about us that lasts incessantly. It is a dispiritingly uncomfortable statement, but that is the harsh reality. All around us, we are always salivating for change. We are being buffeted by a charge of constant change.

And this change has a way of always luring us, entangling us in a web of discontentment. You acquire a product; and a newer model is unveiled the very next moment, pushing you to be doomed with what you have. You, thus, garner your efforts with the aim of working harder so that you can actually keep up with what is new. In a manner of speaking, we live more in an irony, than in sincerity.

Life is always going to be here. We, on the other hand, will only live for a while and then we will be gone. Whoever we maybe and whatever we may possess, we cannot hold onto them forever. We are just passing through life. It is a pilgrimage, and it is not just us but our mighty empires and great inventions as well.

Throughout history, whatever humans have carved and protected have always crumbled down over time. The philosopher, in the book of Ecclesiastes, says that all “life is vanity.” But this vanity, translated more often to mean futility or nothingness, should never be an incitement of pessimism in us.

Instead, it should drive us to seek for that which is permanent and eternal, that is our Creator or God as He is often referenced. It is said that “the temporary is only because there is eternity.” We are, because there is a God.

When life comes down to the wire, the beautiful and the great exists in our dare-dreaming of replicating that which is eternal. In all honesty, almost all our endeavours are shots at that. It is the means by which God beckons us to Himself. Unfortunately, the rise of lethargy and the desire to be masters of our destinies have influenced quite a number of us to perceive the temporary as good in themselves.

For example, we do not live to eat. Rather we eat in order to live, to nourish our body for the journey of life. And so, food is good but it is not a good in itself. Such is the case with all the materialism around us. They help to spice up the dreariness of life.

Regrettably, quite a substantial number of us have turned them into security blankets and we step on our fellow humans in order to wrap them around ourselves. Such an attitude is leading many to the pursuit not of the glory of that which is eternal; but rather of fleetingness, which is here today and gone tomorrow.

Our desires and aspirations are good, but they are only good for the purposes of offering liberty and heaping dignity on our fellow humans. They are not meant to degenerate into uncontrollable lust that drives us to belittle others. All the glory we carve for ourselves is futility unless they are in line with the glory of the eternal Creator.

We are creatures and it is high time we accepted our position and the impermanency of our lives. We have to appreciate that every breath we take is simply another breath that draws us closer to our demise. It draws us closer to our Creator. Our duty, thus, is to be conscious of our insufficiency; and seek to depend on the will of our Creator so that our efforts would not be futile.


Kodwo Brumpon is a partner at Brumpon & Kobla Ltd., a forward-thinking Pan African management consultancy and social impact firm driven by data analytics, with a focus on understanding the extraordinary potential and needs of organisations and businesses to help them cultivate synergies that catapults into their strategic growth and certifies their sustainability.

Comments, suggestions and requests for talks and training should be sent to him at kodwo@brumponand

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