Respect is a simple word – Ubuntu

The most false lesson given to our children, given to us is:

“Respect needs to be earned”


To that I always utter the simple statement of “Huh?”.  Why does respect have to be earned? Why is it not given outright, why shouldn’t it?

We are taught from a young age that respect needs to be earned, that we must respect the elder and wiser not the poor who clean our toilets or scrub our floors.  This archaic thinking never ends, it starts with our past, a past that we then pass on to the next generations to come.

So many of us hold people in power with such respect that what ever they say is the law, we look down on the “staff” and treat them as if they were dirt, animals out to rob us blind.  By following the teachings taught by the previous generations we prevent ourselves from seeing the truth and reality.


The reality is that it doesn’t matter who you are, where you are from or what you do for a living.  Respect should be given equally not with discrimination.  All things should be given equal amounts of respect until they do something that forces us to lose respect for them.  Just because they are who they are doesn’t mean we should respect or disrespect them more or less.

Respect should be given freely to all things, never earned.  It can be lost, there can be new found, but never earned.  No matter who a person is they deserve to be treated the same as the next person.


What is Ubuntu?

Ubuntu is respect, it is the understanding that you are important because without you I am nothing.  Each person has a purpose, whether they are the CEO of a large corporation or the garbage collector, they have a purpose.  What would life be like with out that person collecting all your garbage?

Ubuntu is knowing that each person is equal, it has no castes, no race, no statures or preferences.  It just is. Respect through equality.


It all comes down to that one simple word.


Everything in life is respect

We can’t run from it, we can’t hide from it, it just is


Think about it…

13 thoughts on “Respect is a simple word – Ubuntu

  1. I’ve noticed a lot of people think respect means automatically deferring to someone’s opinion (like an elder). I don’t think that is respect, that is obedience and I don’t blindly obey anyone unless they have a badge.

    I think true respect is Ubuntu. This is a wonderful post!

  2. Lol dang those badges! You make a good point, I feel the same as you – just because they are elder doesn’t mean they are wiser. I listen for wisdom not age hmm interesting thought. Glad you enjoyed, thanks you!

  3. ROFL Dang woman are the doctors not sexy enoughs??? huh huh punk? Sooo going to post that song now because YOU got it stuck in my headball!!! (payback is coming just so you know!)

  4. I respect all people. That means people of any age also. I don’t feel it’s an earned thing at all. I feel you treat people the way you want to be treated. I treat all fairly unless it’s proven to me that they don’t deserve me and even then I’m not rude to them, I just don’t have time for them.

  5. SF – I couldn’t agree with you more. I once knew someone, who from the get go didn’t respect me… and I therefore didn’t respect them. This may or may not be the right way to go about things… But hey, I was young and didn’t know any better… And today – I would speak to them rather than disrespecting them… but never mind, there was no harm done – this person and I get on really well no… and its because we both found the respect for each other… 😉

    Sometimes our perception of others prevents us from seeing the true person, sometimes they are just too alike us and then at other times we go on the hearsay of others… neither is wrong it is all human nature, I am not immune either

  6. There’s two sayings in Hebrew about this. The first one is “haZchut lechavod vehaChova lechabed” – freely translated “you have a right to respect, and a duty to give respect”. The other one is “Mechabdi Achabed” – I will respect the one who respects me.
    The root of the word respect in Hebrew is K-B-D (and in some forms, as you see, the K becomes CH and the B becomes V). Another word from the same root is “Kaved” – heavy. Basically, to give respect is to give people “weight” (in worth units).

    Thanks Dude, I always love learning new things especially with regards to words and their origins. Makes sense in a way, thanks you!

  7. I agree whole heartedly with this post; however whenever I use the term respect must be earned, it is not in the same sense as you have heard it used. I use it when there is someone disrespectble demanding respect from someone simply just because of their status – thus when I say to someone, respect must be earned, I mean that they must show me respect in order that they be considered a respectable human being and receive genuine respect. It’s not just given just because of who they are or are not; it’s given because it has been earned by the manner in which they treat others. Although I may be kind to the disrespectful being, he or she hardly is respected by me. In fact, the person who demands respect without earning it is a most unrespectable person. Anywhew, that’s the way I use the term. Peace, Light and Love. . . CordieB.

    Someone who “demands” respect in the sense that they look down upon you to look up to them is as you say disrespectful for they see you as sub-them. I agree in that sense but then it all goes back to the root of it all – their ego disallows them to function with the Ubuntu of life, they will only show respect to someone of greater status as themselves. I am with you on that one sis

  8. fro me,”i give you as much as respect you will give me and as much as you are capable of taking” 🙂 no use,giving a billion dollars to a beggar is it?

    Not unless he needs it or you show him first how to use it…

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