Ayanda Bambiso

Bruce Cadle

What do you do?

I am a teacher, but that’s too simple. I hope that I engender awareness and enlightenment in the students that I come into contact with. And above all, I hope that I stimulate a lifelong curiosity which can illuminate an otherwise unfounded place in their minds.

Are you living your life purpose?

Yes, very definitely. I have questioned it and wondered if THIS IS IT, but I keep returning to the fulfilment and enrichment that teaching offers me.

What do you still want to achieve?

I am intrigued and excited by issues, which engage more with the intellect. I am entering a phase of temporal issues, of ideas, research, and knowledge. I want to write more, engage more with like-minded people and I am becoming more and more curious and at the same time, aware of how little I actually know. I am still thrilled by the academic process and the university offers me a space and a place where I have a thrilling opportunity to pursue the things I want.

What or who is God?

I don’t believe that God is a separate entity or a higher level being. God is “having humanity” – the value that is central to human beings. It’s the sacred thing that defines how we interact with other human beings. It’s why I think, that as a spiritual person (without dogma, rituals, or man-made artefacts that attempt to represent God), God resides in all of us.

What happens when you die?

I have no idea. Death doesn’t concern me. We have no control over when or how we die, and if I knew in advance that I was going to die, nothing much would change for me. I have no fear of death.

How do you deal with adversity?

I challenge myself to make it better, which normally means making a positive change of some sort. I am a pragmatic, rational person who will probably neutralize the emotional response and get on with the required change. And all the emotional energy would be redirected to positivity. I have been like that since I was a child – I always find a practical solution.

What would you do if you knew you had only 24 hours left on this earth?

I would grab Ethna (my wife), get into my jeep, and head into the bush. I would want to be in solitude and beauty – and on the way out, I would stop at the bottle store and buy the most expensive bottle of whisky on the market. It would be a time of reflection and passing time until the moment of death.

What do you think about most?

Sex! That, and being irritated by the uselessness of trivia and the need to wash it away.

If you could ask God one question what would it be?

When will I win the lottery? Haha! Actually, I have no questions, as I don’t really want to know my future. Life is for now.

What advice would you give to someone starting out in your career?

I wouldn’t give advice. I would simply ask a question – Do you want to do what I do because you love the business of dispensing knowledge? If not, back off, and if yes, then welcome to an amazing, individual journey where you will learn your own lessons. To be a teacher, you have to have an unquestioning appreciation of the sanctity of knowledge.

What would you do with a spare 15 minutes?

I would step outside and immerse myself in nature. I would use it as a contemplative opportunity.

How do you think people would describe you?

Formidable, domineering and inflexible, direct, brash but with a good heart.

How do you describe yourself?

Considerate, positive, an initiator, and very private.

If you could rid the world of one thing, what would it be?

Human beings.

What is the best advice you have ever received?

I don’t really listen to advice. I certainly haven’t asked for it. I have always just followed my own instinct.

What do you think about South Africa today?

It saddens me that there is so much greed and callous disregard for each other, particularly from those who should be the role models – especially for the youth. It delights me that there are many others, who despite adversity, are not bowed down by this and continue to face the challenge of making a difference every day.

What do you think about the state of the world today?

Mmmm, one shouldn’t think about it too much save for the fact that it’s a pity that the sole motivator seems to be to be top dog at whatever cost. The planet suffers because of this and because of human’s mind-boggling ignorance and lack of common sense. Best to view the world from outer space, then it’s exquisite no matter what.

Sandy Coffey ~ Photographic Commissions

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