Know Thyself

Past Prefects' speeches at Assembly 2019

To those of you who don’t think you need to be reminded to “know thyself”, the truth is we all don’t know ourselves as well as we might think we do.

At some stage, we also thought we knew ourselves, as we directed the award winning play that went to Grahamstown and were later humbled with the positions of Head Boy and Head Girl. It was when life threw a curve ball at us, that we realised how much we still had to learn about ourselves.

Looking back, it was through the more difficult times between us that we were able to introspect and recognise that the journey to knowing thyself had only just begun.



“Know thyself” is a phrase that we have heard on these grounds on countless occasions … but have we ever really taken that moment to self-reflect on what it really means to know ourselves?

We assume that by being in this school and living under this motto, it’s automatically instilled into who we are. However, the journey to truly knowing yourself starts with you. SAHETI can only remind you of the phrase, but it is solely up to you to live by it.

For Leo and me, nearing the end of our school career, I think we can proudly and realistically say that we still have no idea who we truly are. Having said this, we are so grateful to SAHETI for prompting us to set foot on this journey of self-discovery – to “know thyself”.



‘The unexamined life is not worth living’ – Socrates
This is where our school motto originated from. Socrates’ philosophical saying has different meanings to different people.

To me this means so much more than a simple internal SWOT analysis or an external Porters 6 forces of High school. It is about new experiences and to “know thyself” truly – you must stray from the carefully pathed yellow brick road and find what you enjoy.



In Ancient Greece, people seeking wisdom and knowledge traveled to the Oracle of Delphi. Before they entered the Oracle, there above the entrance, was inscripted “γνωθει σαυτον”.

This saying was purposefully placed above the oracle, as those who seek wisdom must first know themselves before obtaining said wisdom and enlightenment from outside forces. Likewise in our lives we seek advice and approval from those who surround us when really, knowing yourself is the root of all wisdom.



In today’s world, the notion of self has become more lost than ever. With things like Photoshop and Facetune, we slowly Instagram ourselves into the unknown. And when those things are taken away from us, we are left wondering who or what we have become. So let’s make “know thyself” an integral part of our lives.



“Know thyself” is a motto I strongly and proudly stand by. It encapsulates the unique beliefs and motives of each and every one of us. I believe that from this motto, stems a growth in the building of relationships and achieving personal success in all aspects of life. I have constantly tried to live up to this saying thus far, and will continue to do so even when my schooling journey comes to an end.