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A Candle Is Enough!

About 400 years before Christ, Socrates was jailed accused of many things among which were corrupting the youth of Athens and not believing the gods of the time. His friend Crito wanted to bribe the guards for him to escape. Socrates refused the offer because he didn’t believe injustice should be fought by injustice. He was sentenced to die with poison.

In a way, Socrates is the first martyr who died for his views. He could have escaped but he rejected the idea believing that, “philosophy is training for death”.

About 170 years ago in Madagascar, modern Malagasy, there lived a Queen with a very long name Rabodoandrianampoinimerina. She was as isolationist as the PFDJ who couldn’t maintain a sane foreign relation policy with the world, particularly Europe. The queen launched a campaign to eradicate the Christian population of the Island and used a traditional practice of fanompoana (forced labor as tax payment) to extract work from the people—just like SAWA for public projects and had a large standing army from an ethnic group. War, disease, and forced labor wiped out about half the population of the country.

Let’s see the evolution of the concept of Martyrdom in Christianity and Islam.

The origin of the word martyr is Greek, and it means “witness,” similarly in Arabic, the contemporary word “Shaheed”  also means a witness. The first Christians who bore witness to the teachings of Jesus were persecuted—and they were tried as witnesses to incriminate themselves.

In ancient times, people mostly died defending their religion, that was the main thing they were prepared to voluntarily die for. And people venerate and remember those who give up their lives for their religion.

In the Eritrean case, the concept of Shaheed, Sewoue’, martyr became synonymous with the Eritrean struggle when the people chose to sacrificed their lives for the cause of freedom and liberation. It was a selfless act of bravery and courage, and as such it has shaped our collective psyche. But elsewhere, it has been abused and corrupted by killers and haters who have no respect for life. And we believe that anyone who gives his life in a just struggle is considered a martyr.

The Arabic word Jihad means gedli in Tigrinya and struggle in English. The word Jihad was fine with the West until the Afghan war against the soviet Communist ended successfully. Thereafter, national interest changed faces, and overnight, the much-loved Jihadists of Afghanistan who were supported by the West and the Muslims alike became the reincarnation of the devil. The restless youth who were trained by many countries, armed to the teeth by the USA under Reagan, and financed by the Gulf Arabs, turned against their sponsors and wreaked havoc all around the world and spread terror, which was met with equal or worst terror by the West. The destruction of Iraq and the dismantling of its army led to offshoots of modern-day Jihadist who grew to become ISIS and associates. Ironically, they called themselves “Shaheed” giving a bad meaning the noble term that many anti-colonialism and occupation used—including Eritreans who gave about 100,000 martyrs to free their country from the Ethiopian occupation. But in Eritrea, the concept of martyrdom, in its secular face, was well established when the ELF launched its struggle against Haile Selassie’s regime in 1961.

Remembering our martyrs

Last week social media platforms many peoples of the world who remember their martyrs dearly. Importunely, since the last two or three years, our martyrs who are elevated to the level of saints in our collective memory, have been insulted, belittled and dehumanized.

One can have a different view about martyrs, but expressing that view should at least be civilized, decent and not vulgar. Freedom of expression does not include being vulgar or indecent, but some can only express their views only in foul languages and laced with racism and bigotry. Traditionally, if one encounters an entourage of a funeral, they take off their hats, or stand up and stay still, for the respect of human life, even if the dead was a known scoundrel. That is decency and civilized culture. What do we make of the vulgar, indecent speech targeting our martyrs, a talk that is all hate and spiteful?

I was disappointed because from all the many postings in remembering our martyrs last week, I saw a negligible number that suggested a way to confront those who desecrate our martyrs, knowingly or unknowingly. Here is what a young man had to say:

Indeed, how do you uphold the goals of our martyrs? And here I will propose one little solution. Anyone who posts a disrespectful post against our martyrs should be kicked out of the list, be it Facebook or the like. Just kick them out and let them go back to their dungeons and shout their disgusting vulgarity together. But this is not just that, I will post and let you know whom I kicked every time I do so. Please follow the same plan to fumigate our internet spaces. Kick and report publicly who you kicked out—shame them. Walk the talk and show them some decent fight.

The second thing I would like to discuss is the way we personify or depict our martyrs. Sometimes we forget they are human beings, not supernatural. They lived their lives like any normal person, they had families, friends, neighbors, people they liked, they hated. they had a natural interaction. They had faults, gaffs, jokes, anecdotes, experience that we fondly remember but  are afraid to share publicly. and that stripes them of their humanity. I believe we have to present them the way we remember them as mortals albeit, courageous, brave, dedicated, and noble type of people. I believe it’s time we humanized our martyrs.

Most of my friend who were martyred had different characters and I would like to share some of what I remember of them. For today let me mention a few of childhood friends, one of my closest friends Beshir Neberay, my classmates, Qebrequdus and his brother Gebreleul Daniel, Yassin Abdalla.

Of course, the naughtiest was Gebrequdus and there is one incident that still crack me up whenever I remember it. That was the time when girls’ skirts were going above the knee and they had to always hold their skirts so that the wind doesn’t blow it open. Once waiting for the bell to ring after break, a few of us where sitting outside the class and looking at a group of girls who were chatting on the distance. A strong wind blew and surprised the girls—many skirts went a little up. Immediately Gebrequdus wanted to tease the girls and shouted, “the red panties…” when in fact the skirts were intact. All of them held their skirts as if to stop their red pants from being exposed, when nothing was exposed. We had a laugh like never before.

Incidentally, his martyrdom was the first I experienced, and I was so sick and couldn’t eat properly for days throwing up anything I ate or drunk.

That is the kind of fond memories I have about Gebrequdus and no one can take that from me. He was a human being, naughty, witty and no one wanted to be a target of his sarcasm. But he was a beautiful fun person who fell for the Eritrean cause that the few idiots are degrading. Skanks are not worthy enough to belittle our martyrs.

Yassin Abdalla was the always smiling and person known for his extreme cleanliness. He seemed as if he would be stained if touched. Always clean dressed in washed and ironed clothes and didn’t seem to wear a cloth for more than one day at a time. He was so careful about his hygiene. Yassin didn’t care when many were bullied into wearing dirty clothes to blend in with the school bullies.

Of all the things I worried about how Yassin was going to cope with the dirt after joining the struggle. But my personal worries were snakes, they scare the hell out of me—but Yassin, beneath all the soft looks was a man made of steel. He graduated from the military academy in Iraq and returned to the struggle and later on he fell in Dankalia, heroically. See his picture and his trademark smile.

Beshir Neberay, well, that would be many episodes and I will not even try to tell it here—though he is occupies a big chunk of my book, Of Kings and bandits. One episode is too short to recount my adventures, escapades, daring (maybe embarrassing) moments with Beshir.

When I was in grade 2, I saw a martyr for the first time. The Ethiopian army had his body hanging from a pole. Then. I saw five hanged at the Serawit’s favorite corpse display area, ironically at the grain market, then six, then 21–the martyrs of Mehlab, who were in the village when a spy informed the commandoes who caught them off guard. All were killed and their bodies displayed, at the grain market.

By then I was used to the smell of the dead—and every time I smelled DDT, it was the smell of martyrs in my mind. That is because the army were careful not to offend our smelling senses and lavishly sprayed the hanging bodies with DDT to kill the smell! From then on, I thought that was the smell of a martyr. Whenever they had bodied hanging, I was at the grain market to watch—my fathers business was only a block away.

Next time I want to talk about the 596 villagers who were massacred by the Ethiopian forces—I will also try to squeeze the scene of the martyrs killed in Mehlab.

Finally, let’s remember our martyrs with the respect and honor they so well deserve. May their sacrifice inspire us forever to serve our people, may their dedication and resilience light the path of struggle for us. May we be decent enough to recognize the ultimate price they paid and how they laid the example for the love of freedom and its price, and noble ideals. They sacrificed their lives but didn’t expect anything in return. They loved themselves like anyone else, they loved their relatives like anyone else, but they loved their people , collectively, more than anything else, and they proved that with their blood, flesh, sweat, limbs and lives. And we, knowing the heavy price they paid, must be certain, very sure that a bright dawn with soon break in Eritrea Eritrea. A dawn of peace, stability and prosperity, Eritreans will be liberated from the shackles of the PFDJ and the memory of our martyrs will always fuel our quest for a better life. Let the rooster crow. Let a million roosters crow. Let all the roosters of the world crow. When Dawn breaks in Eritrea.

About Saleh "Gadi" Johar

Born and raised in Keren, Eritrea, now a US citizen residing in California, Mr. Saleh “Gadi” Johar is founder and publisher of awate.com. Author of Miriam was Here, Of Kings and Bandits, and Simply Echoes. Saleh is acclaimed for his wealth of experience and knowledge in the history and politics of the Horn of Africa. A prominent public speaker and a researcher specializing on the Horn of Africa, he has given many distinguished lectures and participated in numerous seminars and conferences around the world. Activism Awate.com was founded by Saleh “Gadi” Johar and is administered by the Awate Team and a group of volunteers who serve as the website’s advisory committee. The mission of awate.com is to provide Eritreans and friends of Eritrea with information that is hidden by the Eritrean regime and its surrogates; to provide a platform for information dissemination and opinion sharing; to inspire Eritreans, to embolden them into taking action, and finally, to lay the groundwork for reconciliation whose pillars are the truth. Miriam Was Here This book that was launched on August 16, 2013, is based on true stories; in writing it, Saleh has interviewed dozens of victims and eye-witnesses of Human trafficking, Eritrea, human rights, forced labor.and researched hundreds of pages of materials. The novel describes the ordeal of a nation, its youth, women and parents. It focuses on violation of human rights of the citizens and a country whose youth have become victims of slave labor, human trafficking, hostage taking, and human organ harvesting--all a result of bad governance. The main character of the story is Miriam, a young Eritrean woman; her father Zerom Bahta Hadgembes, a veteran of the struggle who resides in America and her childhood friend Senay who wanted to marry her but ended up being conscripted. Kings and Bandits Saleh “Gadi” Johar tells a powerful story that is never told: that many "child warriors" to whom we are asked to offer sympathies befitting helpless victims and hostages are actually premature adults who have made a conscious decision to stand up against brutality and oppression, and actually deserve our admiration. And that many of those whom we instinctively feel sympathetic towards, like the Ethiopian king Emperor Haile Sellassie, were actually world-class tyrants whose transgressions would normally be cases in the World Court. Simply Echoes A collection of romantic, political observations and travel poems; a reflection of the euphoric years that followed Eritrean Independence in 1991.

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  • said

    Greetings ,
    Thank you SJ for great article.

    In the real world, sometimes the good people lack the wit to win. Sometimes they lack the will needed to win. Often they lose. That is a commonplace of history. That is the story of the Roman Republic, the Founder’s model for America. The fall of the Second Republic is not certain. “Choice. The problem is choice.”— Neo in The Matrix Reloaded .
    Die Revolution ist wie Saturn, sie frißt ihre eignen Kinder. (Revolution is like Saturn, it devours its own children.)
    – Georg Büchner (1813–1837), German dramatist, revolutionary,

    What happened to so called EPLF political platform and progressive ideals, there was a hope political landscape will move in a more progressive direction. In a betrayal of Eritrean ’s spirit. In reality there was neve a space for progressive views, it was an appearance and shenanigans underlying EPLF platform. EPLF has not changed at all from its s inception day, and will never tolerate a progressive views and never amended its policies. Any independent patriotic thinker and visionary were eliminated , Eritrean had paid heavy price , tens of thousands people were killed for their freedom ,the whole country was laid to waste – I mean the physical country as well as the people. Once it was clear that the Ethiopian Derge gangster governments were going to be defeated. Eritrean dreamed ,A vision of a new Eritrean Century , newly independent hoped to be industrialize and achieve higher living standards for Eritrean people. They valued freedom and justice and three decades after we’re not living remotely in the “land of the free and abject poverty .” with DIA how unfree Eritrean truly become .Initially, wishful thinking, Eritrean dreamed to model Eritrea like Singapore’s ,the world’s third richest country (per capita) It’s hard to still believe that now Eritrean dream evaporated
    The true moral test of our time and almost everyone within DIA cohort failed . Politicians who hold the purse-strings. You name it. No questions asked, the political and moral of regime ,it is an “open question”,. No one foresaw the consequences being falling to Eritrea, disaster was coming and Eritrea were not better prepared. No warning come about the growth of a home-grown dictator , driven by DIA whose lust for power is limitless. Eritrean history was altered for the worse. DAI, he is the product and the gift of EPLF that give us DAI ,that keeps on killing deliberately on his own people? , This is what happens when Eritrean submitted over the running of the nation to dictator, an ignorant, arrogant ,stubborn, psychopathic individual with a mind that focuses only on power and himself

    A common saying during, Revolutions eat their children; Eritrea definitely no exception. After gain the trust of the people. EPLF as soon as they have accomplished their goal and preservation of the new achievement, the independence of Eritrea ,the status quo was established, post independence ,EPLF turned on their fellow FIGHTERS AND Revolutionaries who were either were not too radical enough or not atheists enough . the horrors produced by EPLF/PFDJ ,as time passed and eventually the terror became too arbitrary and unpredictable, EPLF/PFDJ were blinded by zeal and are heedless of any consequences, so long as their particular revolution is allowed to become ever more radical. revolutionary justice” is applied to the members of the old EPLF/PFDJ They assume power and those who are victim to their rule are usually the ones who were their die hard members and followers. EPLF/PFDJ circle expanded upon thousands of suspects suspected of hostility to the regime .
    The people of Eritrea paid a heavy price, no Eritrean should accept the rotten narratives against our people and those who sacrificed and paid dearly with their lives for just cause. The brave men, women ,the living and dead, who struggled With them to give them due respect and their final resting place for those who gave their lives that that Eritrea might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. For those who are showing dissent in political discourse. And the delusional mindset of some people.
    the sellout in some areas ,they try to control the narrative. Those attempts were to be expected.
    The famous English writer George Orwell in his masterpiece Nineteen Eighty-Four very rightly said, “The masses never revolt of their own accord, and they never revolt merely because they are oppressed. Indeed, so long as they are not permitted to have standards of comparison, they never even become aware that they are oppressed.”
    Eritrean normally thrives on patriotism -nationalism and self-interpreted martyr. The Regime have only brought ignorance and destruction to the country It perhaps only needed common sense to categorize Tagdelte as a secular martyr, but then common sense is very uncommon in Eritrea /PFDJ,in these days, especially in the ranks of the ruling party. Isn’t it a very simple realty and fact is PFDJ cruel rule system ,it can not steer the country out of its massive problems. After all, keeping society in dark for three decade ,keep people to be an ignorant society and fed them the opium of patriotism .So that it can ensure the rule of the DAI and he can stay for longer period. The problem is the PFDJ cruel does not want masses to think and to compare their liberties and standards of living with the developed and emerging nations of the world and the regime continues to ignore the existential crisis faced and that brought the country to the brink of an abyss. this gloomy picture will continue . But the evolutionary process of real change will take place, those capable of critical thinking are challenging the narratives of the regime from every segment of society ,everyone from academics to journalists and from present and former politicians .

  • Hashela

    Selam Saleh

    thank you for the great Negarit and honoring and humanizing our ስውት ።

    I couldn’t suppress my laugh about your fear of snakes.
    It reminded me that I owe an explanation for the “ለተሪና” observation you made in Meda.
    It is called mimicry. Its a defense mechanism of some snakes that are in most case harmless. For an understandable reason, a poisonous snake is rarely attacked from the front. Cleverly, some harmless species of snakes exploit the fear of snake predators and have developed a tale that looks like a snake head.

  • መሃንድስ-ምዕባለ

    ሰላማት ሳልሕ
    መምህር ናይ ታሪኽን ፍልስፍናን ክትከውን ይትመነ!

    ስጋብ ሕጂ ብዛዕባ ስውኣት ዝተጻሕፈ ከምዚኣ ጌራ ዝመሰጠትኒ ኣይረኸብኩን።
    ክቡር የኽብረካ መጠነ ነብሱ። ኣማን ብ!ኣማን

    ክልተ ነገራት ዝበልካየን ድማ ተወሳኺ ተንኪፈናኒ:
    1. ኣብ ታሽዓይ ክፍሊ: ኣብ ካምቦኒ ‘ዩ: ኣብ ግዜ ዕረፍቲ ‘ንዳዕለልና ናይ ሓንቲ ጓል [ኣድያም] ሙታንቲ
    ሪአዮ ኢለ ክዛረብን ዘይተጸበኹዋ ቡኛ ክራጸምን ሓንቲ ትኸውን። ሓዋ ምዃኑ ኣይፈለጥኩን።
    ዳርጋ ሰሙን ዝኸውን ቃንዛ።

    2. ተመን ምስበልካ ድማ ሰንቢደ። ስጋብ ሕጂ ዘይፈትዎ ፍጥረት። ነዚ ፍጥረት ዘጥፍእ ፈውሲዶ የለን: ክብል ዓመታት ሓሊፉ።

  • Haile S.

    ሰላም ሳልሕ

    ዝኸሰትካዮ ሰሚዔዮ። ካብ ዘመን ኢኒ ኢኒ፡ ሕምባሻ ከሎ እምኒ፡ ትጅምር ተውሪ ትቓኒ። እሞ ኣነ ‘ተወሰድኩ ዝጥዕመኒ፡ ኣይሃጸጽኩን እንታይ መጺኡኒ።

    ጥዑም ምቁር እንዳውረኻ፡ ኣርእስቲ እንዳስፋሕኻ፡ ባዕልኻ፡ ትመርሓና ዘለኻ።

    ስለዝኾነ ከኣ፡ ኣነ ብወገነይ ኣብቲ ኣምልኾ ኣማልኽቲ ግሪኽ ዝጠቐስካዮ ገለ ክብል። ከምቲ ዝበልካዮ፡ ብዙሕ ተግባራት ብግሪኻውያን እዩ ተጀሚሩ። ሕጂ’ውን ካብኦም ብዙሕ ኣይረሓቕናን!

    እዚ በሃላይ ዘይኣማኒ፡ ኣብ እምነትና እንታይ ኣእተዎ ኣይትበሉኒ፡ እምበር፡ ሕጂ’ውን እምነት ተዋህዶ ዳርጋ እምነት ናይ ቀደም ግሪኻውያን እንድኣሉ። እዚ ክብል ከለኹ ከም ጽቡቕ ደስ እንዳበለኒን እንዳኣድነቕኩዎን እምበር እንዳወቐስኩ ኣይኮንኩን። ኣማልኽቲ የብዝሓዮም! ኣማልኽቲ ክበዝሑ ከለዉ ርኤኹም፡ ሓደ ተማህሊልካ እንተዘይሰምዐ፡ ጥዋፍካ ንኻልእ ንዝሰምዓካ ተወፊ። ኣብ ዘይሰምዓካ ደብሪ ኣይትማህለል እኳ ዝብሉ ኣቦታትና!

    ንምሳለ ኣብ ከባቢ ገጀረት ትነብር እንተኰንካ፡ እንዳ ጋብር ጸጓር ትፍትን። እንተዘይቀንዓካ እንዳገርግስ ትፍትን። ክልቲኦም እንተዘይስርምዑ ክኣ ዋላ ንሳንፍራንቸስኮ ስንኻ ነኺስካ በጃኻ ትብል። ካቶሎክን ተዋህዶን ብኣማልኽቲ ምብዛሕ ዘይ ዳርጋ ሓደ እዮም! ስለዝኾነ ከኣ ኣማልኽቲ እንተኣግፊሕካ፡ ካብ ሓዲኦም’ሲ ዝሰምዓካ ኣይትስእንን ኢኻ። ፍቕሪ፡ ብጻይ/ብጸይቲን ቆልዓን ዝምልከት እንተኾይኑ ጸሎትካ ግና፡ ጊዜኻ ካየጥፋእካ፡ ለማናይ ካይሓ_ _ ትኽ ኢልካ ጎዳይፍ ሳንታ ኣንቶንዮ ምኻድ እዩ ዝሓይሽ።

    እንታይ እየ ክብል ደልየ እመስለኩም፡ እዞም ናይ መጀመርታ ክርስትያን (ካቶሊክን ተዋህዶን) ጎርሓት እዮም። እዛ ሓደ ኣምላኽ ጥራይ ትብል ሓሳብ ስለዘይተዋሕጠትሎም፡ ቅዱሳን ኣብዚሖም እንሃልካ’ድኣሲ ንበዓል ኦሊምፒያ፡ ኣፖሎ፡ ኣፍሮዲት፡ ፖሰይዶን ወተረፈ… ተካእቲ ረኺቦምሎም። ወይ ጉርሒ! ወይ ጉርሒ! ስራሕ ኣፍሮዲትን ስራሕ ሳንታ ኣንቶንዮን ሓንቲ ዶ ኣይኮነትን?

    • Saleh Johar

      HaileS,
      We the believers have washed our hands:-)
      ነዞም ጻድቃናት ኣይተሕጥየና ግሪል ከይንቅየር እንዳፈራሕና ኢና ንሳሰ:: እምብርዶ እታ ጃምባ ጁስ ዝበዝሓ ገነት ከምዛኽማይ ትፈልጣ’ኢኻ 🙂

      • Haile S.

        ሰካም ሳልሕ፡

        ካየሕጥኣካ እንዳፈራህኩ’ምበር፡ ከም እዞም ኣብ history channel ዝርኣኾዎም መዕጾ ደብተ-ግነት ርኢናያ ዝብሉ ቅልቅል ኢልካ ዝተመለስካ ኢኻ ትመስል እሞ፡ ፍቓደኛ እንተኰንካ እስኪ ወረ ተዘከረና! ርግጸኛ እየ ኸኣ ብወገኖም ጳውሎስን መሃንዲስን ውሽጢ ኣትዮም ምስ ቅዱሳን ዘዕለልዎ ዕላል ከምዘሕክዩና። ጥራይ ንስኻ ጀምረሎም! ሓሸላ እኳ ዝድየብ ጎቦ የለን ምስ በልዎ፡ ካብኣ ዝሃደመ፡ ምስ ሃይለን ዓለመይን ይሕሸኒ ኢሉ ተመሊሱ።

        • Saleh Johar

          ኣታ ሃይለ, በጺሐስ ተመሊሰ ቀደም እንድየ ጸብጻብ ሂበ!
          በል እንሀልካ::
          http://awate.com/crossed-met-seyoum/

          • Haile S.

            Saleh,

            What a nice treat. Fresh and delicious like newly cooked. You are a gifted story teller.

            From your account, heaven is like when it was 7500 years. Bushy, full of ponds thorns, snakes and men. You have this predilection to go bushy places in search of justice and meet your likes. We need to send someone else to bring more saucy stories. Don’t go again BTW, nothing had changed that needs you updating.

            Thank you Saleh for bring this again.

          • መሃንድስ-ምዕባለ

            SaleH,
            I demand a Negarit video on this!
            Very nice!

          • Saleh Johar

            Mehandis,
            Let me hear what others say. If there is a demand apart from the Atheists, I will yield to the request. Deal?

          • መሃንድስ-ምዕባለ

            SaleH,
            I will take it!

          • Haile S.

            Saleh,

            Mehandis is the only one who came back from the Asseb and Abay fronts. You better count me in.

        • መሃንድስ-ምዕባለ

          ሃይላት:
          ኣብ ኣፍደገ-ገነት ገና ኣይበጻሕኩን።
          ወረ ሓደ-ሓደ ግዜስ ካብቲ ባንዴራ ናይ ካናዳ ዶ ከትክኽ ይብል። ‘ተተመሰለለይ። ኣብ ዓድና [ካሊፎርንያ ማለተይ’ዩ] ናጻ ኢሎምና ‘ንድዮም።

          ቅድሚ ቁሩብ መዓልታት ብሰንኪ ኮሮና ምውሻብ ሪአዮ ዘይፈልጥ ጸፋር ተኽሊ ሪአስ [ኣብ ካንቸሎ] ክቖርጾ ደልየ።
          ኤእ! ምስ ኣምነ ኣረጋዊ ከይተባእሰኒ ኢላ ኣይትኽልክለንን [በዓልቲ ቤተይ]!
          ደሓርሲ ትዝ ኢሉኒ: ኣዴታት ኣቡነ-ኣረጋዊ ቀልጢፉ ‘ዩ ዝትግግ ክብላ።
          ኣታ ወዲ ሃለው ተብለኒ?

  • Paulos

    Selam Aya Saleh,

    Timely article. Thank you.

    Can time be sacrificed? An interviewer would say, ግዜኻ ሰዊእካ ነዚ ቀለመሕተት ፍቓደኛ ብምዃንካ ብሽም ሰማዕተይ የመስግነካ, for instance. And of course, Attila the Hun extolled sacrifice when he said, “Sacrifice is the passion of all great men.” The fact that he was a fierce warrior, we would assume that he had killing oneself for a nation in mind. But certainly there are other forms of sacrifices as well. First born would sacrifice his or her youth for his or her destitute family by joining the work force in an early age when he or she could have gone to college instead.

    There is altruism as well including at the cellular level where cells undergo a process called “Apoptosis” when a cell kills itself for the benefit of other cells. Is it really “normal” though for one to give up his or her own life as in ኣነ ክስዋእ ከክንዳኻ when one’s life is too precious and once it is gone irreplaceable. There is no rehearsal in life they say. No offence.