The True Size of Africa


Africa is not a dusty village in Ethiopia or Sudan. I always laugh when an American, for instance, ask me if I know Joel, only to tell me he is in the Congo, a different country, a few thousand miles away.  It has 54 independent countries, each of which may have numerous states or provinces.  My country, South Africa, has nine provinces and eleven official languages from Afrikaans to Zulu. Only English is a foreign language in South Africa.  There are some 1,2 billion people living in Africa. Few have real Internet, so communication still is hard. 


10 thoughts on “The True Size of Africa

  1. Yeah it’s pretty wild how big Africa is compared to the US. There’s a reason why it’s the second biggest continent…it’s huge! I’m not sure if a lot of occidentals get just how big it is.

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  2. Mercator maps make the southern hemisphere look small and people up north think they are looking down upon a few lost souls down here. Sometimes, they are the ignorant, arrogant ones needing education from the third world about the real world. Worst of all, they come here trying to “fix” what they see as “wrong” and, in so doing, ruin a hundred lives for every one improved. One can only understand a place or people if you have lived there long enough. There are still people who believe that earth is flat, that we live under a dome, that earth stands on pillars and that the sun orbits the earth. Even the most primitive San Bushmen understood physics before Copernicus did. It is in their oral tradition, going back a few thousand years, also in their art.

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  3. That’s interesting! Native Americans here probably understood advanced synoptic meteorology many centuries before modern meteorology was developed. It’s very interesting!

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  4. Unlike whites, they do not need to set up multi-billion dollar telescopes like SKA here in South Africa, or do the NASA thing, to find the origins of the universe, or that of mankind. Primitive occidentals who have no spiritual sight are the only ones needing to do that.


  5. I have a sister that goes on missionary trips to Johannesburg, though she and I are not close enough for me to know any real details of the trip. She use to speak about a village where huts were made with stairs leading to the roof so people could get away from alligators that came into their villages. And do missionaries from the US actually do any good there? I’ve often thought that they don’t, especially since some churches I’ve known who send these missionaries teach that baptism is “a means to join the local church” and they even held prayer vigils for people who were terminally ill, asking that it be kept secret in case the person died anyway, which would lead them open to shame…

    I do loathe and detest “religion”, by the way…

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  6. I find this interesting, for various reasons:

    There are no alligators in Africa, just crocodiles
    Johannesburg has no crocodiles except in a zoo
    I have taken an American missionary out of the studio of a Christian radio station. He was inciting the youth to get into mass action in 2006. The next day,the youth did take to the streets and two were killed by cops after the mob became very violent and destructive.
    American missionaries twenty miles out of Cape Town don’t allow people to swim in the large swimming pool. Not even when it is 118F.
    It is better to adopt & sponsor a local missionary, provided it really is the Holy Spirit guiding you rather clearly and specifically.

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  7. Wow… I find it amazing that so much of the Truth gets lost in some of the strangest places. We sit over here in America and hear these tales of some, perhaps well-meaning christians, and completely lose touch with what God really wants, His true purpose for us as a human race, and not a bunch of people labeled as “from such and such place”. Why should WE, America, not have missionaries from Africa? Because we see starving Ethiopian children on our television commercials or get letters from christian organizations saying that African families need to be saved with only pennies per day? I am at a loss for words sometimes.

    I had a friend some years ago, Augustine, who had become stranded over here. It escapes me now how it happened, but he would often talk with me about how much he missed his wife, and asked me to pray with him that he would get back home. I want to say he was from Tanzania….?? I’m not completely sure. It may have been Tunisia, but I don’t believe he was that high up on the continent. He often remarked about the war going on all around his home.

    At any rate…I digress in my rambling 🙂

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  8. Yes.
    Africa is not a state it is a continent;
    this is most at times forgotten.

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  9. Yes, we find there are so many people, even from the mighty USA, who don’t know this. Many even think it is a small village in Sudan or Somalia or even in Darfur. I am taking this from actual conversations with foreigners. It made me question the quality of education elsewhere. Well before any of my peers were aged 12, we could name & place all continents, plus all countries on each, plus the provinces in West European countries, UK, USA, Canada, plus the capitals of each. And we could draw these maps ourselves. I scored 100℅ in my final exam, grade 6 in 1973, when I was still eleven years old. We also knew who its leaders were, its economies, industries and agricultural produce, minerals, etc. Sadly, our education system imploded after Mandela took the reigns in 1994. The senseless outcomes-based education started producing people who could not properly read or write by grade 12. Over here, there is no pride in knowledge and they have burned down some thirty schools this year. A neat way to get a better education. Go figure.


  10. What country are you from?


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