Haile Selassie I - Teachings

The Modern is not above the Ancient

“Since the way of living of people at any period is closely tied up with the particular conditions prevailing at the time, we cannot look back to Ethiopia prior to the 20th Century and criticize the manner of administration of our forefathers. The reasons and difficulties that made the way of living then what it was can be accurately known.”
Don’t criticize I&I biblical fathers through your modern age mindset. Understand the different needs and opportunities of our Ancients through serious and original Ethiopian education.
Haile Selassie I - Teachings

How can we Express without Education ?


“The extensive development of education should rank high in the list of your objecives. We have repeatedly stated in Our public utterances that ‘Knowledge is power and unity is strength’. If We had not developed education in our people, to whom could We have expressed this wish ? Praise be to Him, who has enabled Us to express it to the present as to future generations”. 


Haile Selassie I - Testimonies

The Tribute of the Indian Community of Ethiopia

“This statue was erected by the Indian Community in Ethiopia in commemoration of the Silver Jubilee of the Coronation of Haile Selassie I Emperor of Ethiopia, November 1955.”

Haile Selassie I - Teachings

The Importance of Ethiopian Dams

“Almighty God in His infinite wisdom and bounty has blessed our Empire with various incomparable riches, not the least of which is the wealth of our country’s water resources. The development of these resources has been our constant preoccupation and we are today taking the first step in our programme for the fullest utilization of this God-given gift for the benefit of our people, marking thereby the high place which we have ascribed to the matter of water resources in our overall planning. Unlike so many lands around her, Ethiopia has been especially blessed with an abundance of natural resources, and the prolific amount of her annual rainfall makes her fitly to be called: ‘The Water Tower of the Horn of Africa’. Millions of square miles of territory, together with millions of human beings and their livestock depend on the water that flows from Ethiopia’s mountains, and from her comes more than two-thirds of the waters of the Nile.
It is the duty and privilege of this generation and of posterity to conserve and develop these precious resources. To fail to do so will be to fail in our God-given responsibility. In building dams for impounding these waters and utilising the hydro-electric power to be secured from them, we are giving a powerful impetus to all the programmes we have laid out for the economic development of our country. We are thereby protecting from erosion the rich and precious soil of our Empire, and are storing up waters for the irrigation of lands not as yet under cultivation, for increasing our agricultural and plantation potential. We are thus providing the sinews of industry through the generation of electric power, and finally, we are aiding the development of transportation in securing the means for its eventual electrification.” (…)
“Today is a day of deep historic significance, for in laying this foundation stone, we are establishing for our beloved people a source of wealth. This project constitutes the initial step both in the development and utilisation of the water resources of our Empire, and in the programme designed by us for enhancing the progress and expansion of all fields of economic endeavour of our country – agriculture, industry, transportation and communications. And we shall never cease to strive, as we have done in the case of the resources of these Awash waters, to exploit to the maximum each individual source of wealth which God Almighty in His mercy has bestowed upon us. It is our duty to see that yet other barrages are build in order to ensure that this bounty of Providence does not go to waste and is utilised to the greater glory of His handiwork.
This project is but the first step in a similar programme we have in mind for the other water courses of our Empire, such as the Nile with its volume and potentialities so vastly greater, as well as the Baro, the Atbara, the Sobot, the Akobo and the Webi Shebeli.”
H.I.M. Haile Selassie I
Laying the Foundation of the Koka Dam, 1958
Haile Selassie I - Teachings

Don’t Listen The Propaganda News Media

“We remind you, finally, that all of you are by race, colour, blood, and custom, members of the great Ethiopian family. Although there may be local dialects, we must always strive to preserve our unity and our freedom. We can achieve this only by close co-operation and unified effort, and by struggling firmly against all propaganda trying to break Ethiopian unity and violate her freedom. It is inimical but easy to spread irresponsible news, trying to induce people to betray their country and step outside the path of truth and love of their country. It is to assume a great responsibility to give useful and sound advice and guidance to any intelligent observer who is willing to listen and profit. Such advice and guidance constitute a real source of life, because they reveal the path of truth and preserve the hearer on earth and in heaven. Even as every individual has the duty to sacrifice his life for his country, so also he must defend himself against subversive news and propaganda. You must not believe those who, being unable to think clearly or to achieve their ambitions, try to break the unity of the country with malicious news, in order to obtain temporary personal benefits.”
H.I.M. Haile Selassie I – Ogaden Speech, August 25 1956
Haile Selassie I - Teachings

Learn Languages

“Difference in language often creates misunderstanding, and can seriously affect the responsibilities that are being bestowed on you. Lack of knowledge of the national language will be a barrier for the education we have in mind for you. In addition to your national language, it is necessary for you to acquire knowledge of a foreign language, for in this way you will not only acquire the basic education, but also will be able to attain the University standard. It is imperative that you encourage your children in the acquisition of education. It is exceedingly difficult for you to fulfill your duties as members of Parliament through interpreters. We have opened the door to education, and it is your duty to use that education. If, through idleness, you do not avail yourselves of this opportunity, you will have condemned yourselves to ignorance.”

–  H.I.M. Haile Selassie I – Ogaden Speech, August 25 1956

Haile Selassie I - Teachings

To Die in Freedom

“BeBar(e)net KeMennor BeNetzanet Memot Yshalal”
“To die in freedom is better than living in slavery.”

BeBerennet / In Slavery
KeMennor / than living
BeNetzanet / In Freedom
Memot / To die
Yshalal / It’s better

Spiritual Poetry

Haffi Dreadful to Be Rasta

means Terrible
haffi Dreadful
to be Rasta
it’s a pilaster
weak heart
shall not prosper
heathen nah like
His Name
as a monster
for slave master
We don’t fear
human figure
reflect the terror
for the Pastor
in dem minds
smell of disaster
black star.

Haile Selassie I - Life and Works

From the Official Introduction to the Selected Speeches of H.I.M. – 1967

“The history of modern Ethiopia is being compiled by the activities and events that take place each day in the nation’s supreme and sustained drive for progress in all fields. As Head of State, the prime mover and the driving force in this drama, the public utterances of His Imperial Majesty are, in many respects, a mirror of these activities and or the events that determine the course and tempo of Ethiopia’s development.
On the 75th Anniversary of his birth, it seems proper and fitting to record some of the most important of these utterances made on the many occasions that merited public statements from His Majesty the Emperor during his lengthy, brilliant and devoted service to his country and people.
It is impossible to include all of the Emperor’s pronouncements in one volume. It is hoped, however, that through those reproduced herein, the reader will get a fair picture of His Majesty’s thoughts and ideas that have provided the centrifugal force of his thirty-seven years as Head of State and of the preceding years of, his early appearance on the scene as national leader of Ethiopia.
These speeches, some of them excerpted, in the variety of occasions for which they were intended, as well as in the many subjects on which they deal, portray the breadth of the Emperor’s vision. They detail the persistence, the determination and the unflagging drive with which he pursued the application of “modern Ethiopianism” to which history cannot fail to testify.
The Emperor’s idealism, coupled with his insistence on transforming his country, both on the domestic and international fronts, his courage in the face of adversity, his unchallenged perspicacity, his keen sense in evaluating world events, his unfailing respect for principles, and his abiding faith in humanity – aspects of all of which are found in his public utterances – should make this volume a ready-reference to certain phases of the history of modern Ethiopia.
As the central figure in the renaissance of the nation after its five years of trials in the late I930s, His Imperial Majesty’s vital and indispensable leadership has played a distinctive and decisive role. His appearance before the League of Nations and his impassioned plea for justice for Ethiopia and all small nations and for international morality still remain a classic example both of the breadth of his vision and of a profound comprehension of the foibles of international life. Subsequently, despite the failure of the League of Nations to live up to its covenant and the gruelling distress that both the Emperor and his country suffered as a result, Ethiopia, under his leadership, was among the first nations which, at San Francisco in 1945, built the United Nations on the ashes of its predecessor, the defunct League of Nations.
In these pages will be found expressions of the spirit and the faith that animated the Emperor in this lofty role in international politics.
His primary motivation – that of raising the standard of living of the Ethiopian people and restoring the ancient stature and glory of his nation – runs through the theme of the majority of his public utterances. In them can be clearly seen the inseparable impulse of his whole career. This dedication was amply exposed as he spoke to his people and the world in the speeches contained in this book.
Although an ardent reformer, Emperor Haile Selassie is no iconoclast. Thus, he has advanced the policy of ‘modern Ethiopianism’ a philosophy which he has put into practice from the earliest years of his public career. The Emperor, addressing the nation on the 24th Anniversary of Ethiopia’s victory over aggression, said: ‘Ethiopia is an ancient land and her civilization is the result of the harmonious alchemy of the past and the present and upon which we confidently build for the future. This heritage is the bed-rock of modern Ethiopia. In it the people have chosen to distil from the past that which is useful and enduring, to adapt those worth-while attributes of our present-day world and to fashion this modern Ethiopianism – the foundation of our social order that has served so admirably the purpose of the nation’s steady advance’.
An absorbing interest in youth has characterized the Emperor’s entire public career; and is infinitely more than just a formal, enlightened paternalism. It is grounded in the fact, so frequently expressed by him, that his Ethiopia is built around the future. Haile Selassie I will go down in history as a leader whose concern for posterity has been both avid and constant. He has always kept close to the people and in particular to the nation’s youth in whom, as the speeches herein illustrate, he places immeasurable faith and confidence.
His Imperial Majesty’s constructive influence has been particularly effective in Africa’s political emancipation. Recalling the days when Africa was a sea of colonialism to the emergence of the Organization of African Unity, Haile Selassie I has been both a symbol and a pillar of strength to Africa as its people fought progressively for their ultimate liberation from colonialism. Today he still stands four-square behind the cause of the complete freedom of the continent in which Ethiopia is the oldest sovereign state.
His Imperial Majesty’s faith in divine providence is a built-in factor in his personal armory. Institutionally, he is ‘Defender of the Faith’, and history will most certainly assess his era as the one in which the Ethiopian Church succeeded in, winning its independence and autonomy after centuries of tutelage under the Alexandrian Patriachate. In times, good or bad, the Emperor’s abiding faith in the Almighty seems to have been both harbinger and fortress, it being rare for him to make any public utterance without calling on divine guidance and acknowledging publicly his thanks for God’s beneficence.”
Haile Selassie I - Prophecy

Anointed and Crowned By The Holy Spirit

“And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him”
Isaiah 11, 1