15 September 2013

Nigeria: Five Books Recommended in the Middle of a Betrayal

Betrayal has been with us for as long as man has been around. When you are betrayed by people you don't consider your friends, it is much easier to deal with. The man who betrayed you in your office has always looked at you in a certain way, has always answered you in a curt way and never agreed with you even on a simple well-intentioned position you hold.

While you are wondering what your offence is to this man, he betrays you maximally and lies behind your back or even in your face. You can deal with that, he never really liked you anyway. The one you cannot deal with is when a sister betrays you or when a father deals you a deadly blow or when a friend you have trusted all your life knifes you. Betrayal is hurtful, even shocking and can stop you in your tracks and prevent you from realising your full potential. In life's journey, this is something that will rear its head from time to time and hard as it maybe; it is something you must learn to deal with. In dealing with it, you must stay strong, stay prayerful, stay positive and learn to laugh. While this is going on, your mind plays tricks on you and you can have mental blocks and suffer low self- esteem in some instances. You have to keep holding on. While it is easier said than done, you need to try. I doubt that there are people who have never been betrayed. Everyone has had their share of betrayals; persons, companies, businesses, nations, friends and families. While you are in the middle of all of this, here are some books that will amuse you, inspire you, and educate you. Betrayal is real but you can rise above it and conquer your betrayer by being the best that you can be and shine like a million stars. It's a temporary setback. Don't let anyone keep you down.

The Kite Runner by Khalid Hussein.

Long Walk to Freedom, Nelson Mandela. Mandela and his contemporaries' long incarceration is a betrayal of sorts. Surviving it is what has made Mandela the man that he became. Long Walk to Freedom while this is a heavy read can help distract you from what you are facing when you know that there are people who have gone through worse things than you and still survived. The biopic of the book is also out and it stars phenomenal British actor, Idris Elba. Make sure to watch it if it is showing anywhere near you. Also any book on Nelson Mandela or by him tends to help you diminish your challenges or gives you nuggets of hope and inspiration.

Any faith book that paints the picture of what Prophets went through in trying to bring morality and values to the world. I particularly like the story of the Prophets in the Bible, but any book on faith is good to enable you see how men of the cloth have been maligned abused and derided. You are not alone. Betrayal existed long before you were born.

You will be amazed how learning something new is cathartic at this time. I find that cooking helps whether you are a man or woman. Ensuring that you reassure yourself of who you are and how confident you are helps. Get lessons in painting, go to French school, learn something new, and find some humour. Isabel Allende's book Aphrodite always gets me laughing but it also brings in biography, history and recipes from her mother. It's an incredible combination to save you from depression. A funny rewarding book. Also any book by Anthony Bourdain, a chef of exceptionally humorous proportions who now also has a TV programme.

Join the group of people whose everyday reading includes philosophy, poetry and inspirational books. These are calming words which enter your spirit and keep you going. The list is long as to who you can read. The metaphysical poet, John Donne, the works of William Shakespeare especially Julius Ceaser and Coriolanus. What about Socrates, Jean Jaques Rousseau. Read them again. Read columnists in newspapers and magazines at home and abroad. Columnists have the freedom that other writers do not and sometimes they illuminate an issue for you in a way you never imagined was possible.


It is important to ensure that at this time you have an inspirational biography beside you. A book that shows you how a man severally betrayed rose to the top of his profession or how a dirt poor person rose above the poverty around him. Read bout business leaders, world leaders, Nigerian businessmen and good men and women who have contributed to national development or to education, to community development. I have just started reading a crazy book on betrayal. While I do not recommend all of the tactics used by the author, I certainly find the narrative downright hilarious. It is called Surviving a shark attack on land; Overcoming betrayal and dealing with revenge. By Dr Laura Schlessinger. Don't read a book that depresses you. Take out a humorous book, laugh at yourself and the person maligning you. There has to be something that still amuses you.

Finally get a copy of Gordon Carrerra's The Art of Betrayal. It tells you how nations betray each other and the role of Britain by BBC's war correspondent.

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