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This is one life manual that every mentor, coach or aspirant leader needs to consume to understand that nothing in life is incidental, accidental or coincidental.
But that fate is a constant path and that its twists and turns are determined by the choices and decisions we may have made long ago, as early as yesterday, or in the next split second.
Mgiba, born in Pretoria, Gauteng, in the 50s and raised in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga, obtained a medical degree from the University of Natal in the late 70s, and is at present based in Johannesburg with his wife Sibongile and five children, says a friend, James Ndhlovu, about the author.
"Man's intriguing behaviour, coupled with Mgiba's deep-seated philanthropy, combined to form the basis of this book," Ndhlovu explains.
In the acknowledgements section Mgiba says: "Thanks to James Ndhlovu, a close friend, for insisting that my perspective of life be diarised, and for putting up rational counter-arguments to some of my views," otherwise "this booklet would have been still-born ..."
Bridges and Ladders can be read in a day, but as a life education tool one can make it a longtime companion.
If Mgiba were to present a lecture based almost word for word on it, he would plant philosophical seeds that would help nurture visionaries in our youth.
This because, in Mgiba's own words, "this ... is a presentation concerning life as seen by the author, and is based on his observation of man's behaviour, its basis, and the way it should be.
"The point of departure is that man's behaviour is always concerned with the manner in which he promotes his life, his comfort, and his relationship with fellow humans.
"These goals for his behaviour constitute his basic needs and form the basis for his optimal physical, psychological, and social wellbeing."
The simplicity of the booklet is more or less similar to author-cum-philosopher, nobert soloria bermosa's interestingly quirky, yet highly-instructive "key points for a healthy and successful life", namely:
lMore deeds, less talk.
lMore sharing, less desire.
lMore sleep, less worries.
lMore walks, less rides.
lMore laughter, less anger.
lMore vegetables, less meat.
lMore vinegar, less salt.
lMore fruits, less sweets.
lChew more, eat less.
lMore water, less soda (or fizzy drinks).
Back to Mgiba and his Bridges and Ladders. The reader will find entries about life, man's body and the mind, in part one.
In part two lessons about the importance of education, love, marriage, children, conflict, violence, punishment, wealth and religion. In part three what kind of (a) world would it be if man were to treat others as he treats himself?