Saturday, 9 April 2022

A Few Accomplishments of Haile Sellassie I for Ethiopia


The following is a short list of works or accomplishments of the Emperor Haile Sellassie I, as He served Ethiopia as Ras, Regent, Crown Prince and Emperor. They are not listed in chronological order. This list is not definitive, it was compiled from my notes while reading Indrias Getachew's "Beyond the Throne."

1. The Emperor was known as the Architect of Modern Ethiopia, He ruled in total for close to sixty years, fostering growth, development and peace.

2. During the 1920s-1930s He modernized and centralized the government by uniform administration, legal codes, and by appointing "educated elite."

3. Reshaped and re-equipped the Ethiopian army and police, with modern training and weaponry.

4. Introduced capitalistic agriculture  with crops such as coffee, oilseeds and cereal, traded in the Middle East. This developed export economy to provide for developmental goals in other sectors before and after the war.

5. Created a sustainable national economy to improve the standard of living overall.

6. Introduced modern communications to unite the country and travel, such as phones, trains and planes.

7. Redefined the aristocracy to strengthen the centralized state. Abolished the feudal system, and thereby limited the power of the aristocracy over the peasantry.

8. Introduced tax reform to standardize payments countrywide.

9. Introduced modern education taught in the many schools built across the nation, bought printing presses. Models from Europe and America were adapted, and students were granted scholarships overseas to study. The Emperor was an advocate of higher education. He was the titular Minister of Education and Chairman of intergovernmental Board of Education. He visited students often to observe their studies and inquire after their daily care and well being. He formed a strong paternal bond with those who would become the foundation of government, His educated elite.

10. Introduced the first parliamentary government.

11. Got Ethiopia admitted into the League of Nations in 1924.

12. Liberated the Ethiopian Orthodox Church from the Coptic Church at Alexandria, where bishops were appointed from and by Ethiopian priests rather than the Egyptian Coptic priesthood.

13. Defended the sovereignty of Ethiopia by rallying an army to fight off the Italians. 

14. Ensured that Ethiopia gained the respect, investment and attention that it needed in order to modernize, all while keeping colonizers from overstepping on her borders.

14 Values, Habits and Qualities of Emperor Haile Sellassie I


I've been re-reading a few books on His Majesty Emperor Haile Sellassie I, and I found myself picking up on the following values, habits and qualities that He emulated. In these books, the authors express that many found HIM to be aloof, self-centred and hard to read or understand. But I personally think that if you read enough about Him, and take note of His achievements, passions and passion projects, that the Emperor's character or nature is easier to ascertain. These are just 14 outstanding things about HIM that every Rastafari can learn from. Traits that essentially encourage InI to elevate and be better individuals. They are not listed in any particular order.

1. Have patience. Set your goals, and bide your time when there are others who present themselves as obstacles in your path.  If your goals are truly meant to be fulfilled, you will find a way and a time to manifest them in spite of these people. Don't be held back by the naysayers. 

2. Reflect. Spend time daily in silent and quiet reflection, nothing gets done without mental preparation. By being mentally prepared, you stay ready to act at anytime.

3. Be a game changer. Don’t be afraid to dream big, to address the things which need to be reformed for the greater good. If something in your life or community is lacking, don’t be afraid to act on it. Especially when you have the personal power to see it through. The smallest nugget of an idea can do great things.

4. Make your family a priority every day. Give your family the time and nurturing it deserves. Give your children whatever you can to secure their future. Guide and instruct them. Everyone in your family deserves that attention and support.

5. Treat your spouse as an equal partner. Trust in them, seek their input and help with whatever you have to do, or in your struggles. 

6. Invest in people who can support your visions or business. Invest in other people's dreams when you can as well.

7. Always rise to the occasion. When tribulations arise, don’t run, face them head on with courage and smart thinking. Don’t cower in confrontation - remain calm and regal in the face of adversity. When Babylon comes at you, remain composed and speak intelligently. Remember your morals even when you are facing adversity.

8. Be better than your oppressors. It's as simple as that.

9. Carry yourself with dignity wherever you go. Present yourself to the world in a clean and stylish manner. Shine your light. Be proud.

10. Do not trust your first impressions of strangers. Appearances can be deceptive. Keep your thoughts and impressions to yourself and enact due diligence when necessary.

11. Never stop learning or trying to improve yourself, your family or community. Read and learn every day.

12. Pay close attention to the people who work with or under you. Everyone has value, so reward those who deserve it, and correct those who need it. Don’t be afraid to push people to be better, but be honest and fair at all times.

13. Remember the God you serve and act accordingly to the way of godliness. Be spiritually in tuned. Move in spirit, live a spiritual life.

14. Always give 100% in your work and value your work, no matter how big or small the task. Everything you do is for the good of something or someone, including yourself.

And as a bonus, simply because it was definitely a known trait of His Majesty,

15. Be kind to animals. Spend time with animals and in nature to relax and be happy.

What other values, habits and qualities of HIM can you think of? Drop a comment below!

Rastafari Love and Dignity,

Ila Addis