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Archive for October, 2010|Monthly archive page

15TH ANNUAL DAY OF ATONEMENT, REFLECTIONS PAST & PRESENT, FATHER AFRICA SPEAKS…..

In AWARENESS OF SELF, Black Culture, HOT BUTTON TOPIC, INTERNATIONAL NEWS, SCIENCE OF POLITICS, THE PEOPLE'S NEWS, WORD ON THE STREET on October 21, 2010 at UTC.43.31.

I was baptized at age 5 in a Baptist church, however I was raised in the presence of Muslims {One who is of peace.} Why do I mention this?

Sometimes we as a people allow others to define for us, who our leaders are or should be. They (outside influences) denigrate our leaders. Ridicule our brave souls who dare speak up on the behalf of us as a whole.

The 2nd principle of Kwanzaa is Kujichagulia which means self-determination. To define ourselves for ourselves. Powerful stuff when applied to your daily life!!

Because as long as I could remember I’ve always been a student & seeker of knowledge. I’ve read more books in the last 20 years then most will read in a lifetime. 

When a person seeks truth there is no end to the places you can find yourself. Your inner spirit & yearning to know allow you to read, study & visit various cultures, disciplines, faith traditions & ultimately the world.

When you seek truth, then there is no questioning it’s sources no matter how uncomfortable you may be when stumble across unpopular facts. If you truly want to know, then there is no limit to the depths or heights you’ll go to find it. I had, and still have an insatiable appetite to know.

I was always taught, “you have not, because you ask not!”

So, if you really want to know you just need to ask for it, and then get out of your own way. That’s the secret. The power of the CREATOR is within.

Today, attending the 15th anniversary of the Million Man March, here in Tampa I was reminded of a young man idealistic, studious & whom yearned to be free. Free from ignorance. Free from someone telling who to listen to, what to read, or even how to worship.

I along with 7 other young black men traveled from Ft. Lauderdale (through Tampa) onto Washington D.C. It took us about 16 hours to arrive in Alexandria, Virginia just outside of D.C.

Though, let me tell you we could have flown on the backs of giant eagles & our journey wouldn’t have been more memorable. Seeing ‘strangers’ whom I didn’t know confide in me their most inner most feelings, secrets, fears showed me that this march was cathartic & therapeutic.

How many black men do you know that shirk their responsibility to go see a Dr for an annual checkup. Most of them right? Well, this was a way in which brothers could get well & have fun while doing it. 

It reminds me of an African proverb that I brought back with me in my spirit when I traversed the Atlantic ocean returning to Florida back in 1997.

“Man is Man’s medicine!” It reminds me of our affirmation here in the west; “No man is an island!” This is the real success story of the march.

AT-ONE-MENT is a spiritual precept. No one can teach another that. It’s an internal process that only begins w/ the submission of your being to an internal force more powerful & unlimited in stature: THE CREATOR.

I love how Farrakhan broke down “the A tone” in relation to our healing. Tones heal, excite, kill, or destroy. Every man present was on ONE accord & ONE vibration. Don’t believe me, but I witnessed it 1st hand. Me acting respectful, courteous, & lovingly towards one another.

Check the footage Will Smith was in tears after witnessing the spectacle of black men in one place at one time w/o any negativity. It was mentally liberating. To know that brothers aren’t in reality as we’re depicted in the media, history books, stereotypes 

The million man  march wasn’t about any centralized character the way the media depicted it. It wasn’t about “Black Muslims” either. Truth be told over 80% of the gatherers were purportedly Christian. Hmm, think about that..

When an idea catches fire then there is no stopping it. The idea of a million men gathering in one place scared the government. It scared a lot of people. What would they do? Will they drop a bomb on them? Will there be an attack on them, or by them? All sorts of hyperbole, & bull shit was spreading faster than truth.

Truth is we as men had to witness our raw power as a collective unit. It couldn’t happen any other way. Reminds me of a song by GOODIE MOB, inspired by the march no doubt. In it there is averse that says; “One million niggas inside, you can’t break me even though you tried, One million niggas inside,  still found truth, even though you lied….but the rest just run on instinct!’

This song has meaning layered meaning in it. However, it depicts the intrinsic power of black men. Check the lyrics & look at your dad, brother, lover, father, husband. Black men are the shit, and this march was the 1st, in my lifetime, that the world stopped to acknowledge the fact!!

We all paused to “take a look at the man in the mirror.”

I found out what spirituality is all about that Fall weekend prior to the march. On the ride up black men had flags, tags and anything to connotate their desire to seek peace, refuge & a higher calling of SELF! Men came from far & wide.

I recall when we hit the strip by Howard’s campus we stopped, and I recall a wall mural that said “TRUTH CRUSHED TO THE EARTH SHALL RISE AGAIN!” Somehow I knew that was me, and my brothers, my people, our ancestry.  That word sound burned in my mind, and hasn’t lessened since that day.

That is a mantra that I repeat often to myself, or to others that need to draw strength from within! For the kingdom of Heaven is within correct??

Brothers embraced, affirmed, prayed, & lifted one another up literally. One woman had come w/ her son, but had misplaced him w/in the crowd. Black men escorted her through the sea of people until she found her little boy.

One black men drove from Ohio he said non-stop thinking about D.C and the plethora of black men he would greet & break bread with. he said that’s what kept him going. I remember his face smiling from ear-to-ear. We embraced & took a picture w/ his wife, daughters, & sisters. He was the only man, yet he found a family full of men in us…

S-P-I-R-I-T manifest, spirit revealed…

One elderly brother was faint from the heat generated by the crowd en masse. We carried his listless body over our arms one at a time. It was the fastest way to go from the interior to the exterior. That’s what spirituality is all about.. They said our & my presence redeemed their faith in black men.

Women told me they were glad I came to represent every man that was incarcerated, dead, wasted or ignorant. I smiled knowing I had done something real special w/ my very presence!

Don’t tell me you believe in GOD, but turn your back when your fellow human needs your help. Don’t profess to be a follower or faithful, yet are far away from those whom most NEED you..

The bible says, “you know a tree by the fruit it bears!”  You know a thing by the actions taken by that thing. I am a lover of humanity, though I despise those forces that operate counter to life, goodness & nature. I mean that with my very being..

I recall that me & my boys decorated a lily white statue on the Washington mall w/ the colors of liberation red, black & green!Me w/ my dreads clad in Black & Gold African attire. The rest of us in living color. We jumped all over that statue. It was the 1st black statue in D.C. lol

Quiet as kept we posed for cameras panning over us. Little did we know folks back home in Broward County, at B.C.C. then, now Broward College saw us on camera.

We visited the historical black college Howard University. The Muslim sisters on cam,pus had a prayer vigil the night before the march. That ceremony will live w/ me forever. The emotion, passion, pain, realness can not be captured w/ words.

Just know that every woman there walked around & touched, hugged, prayed & conveyed their stories to every brother present, myself included.

Some confided that they had been molested, raped, beaten dogged etc. My commitment to them as a part of our community was symbiotic. 

“I AM because we are, We are because I AM.”  It was a blessing for me to hear those women’s stories told to us before the march the next day. You see I was atoning for my wrongs against self, sisters, family etc. I didn’t know it then, but I knew that I was witnessing OURSTORY, not HISTORY and that it would live with me forever.

I somehow knew that I’d learn over the course of my life what true atonement meant. If that ain’t spiritual then I don’t know what is. Because I learn more about myself each day. Some lessons must be lived, they can’t be taught.

My spirit was heavy w/ the responsibility to these sisters that they made sure we recognized our vocation for our race was squarely on our shoulders.

They through the power of voice, song & unity reminded us of our purpose in coming to D.C.

They had white candles & split them in half, then they gave us brothers one half of the candle. There candle was lit while we sat in darkness, figuratively. Then after a few words of power they then lit our candles w/ their candles. This they said symbolized the connection b/w male/female.

Moreover, it was them, sisters collectively allowing us to re take our rightful place as heads of state, fathers, brothers, teachers, leaders, MEN ready to work  for the betterment of our community, nation & race collectively!!

Picture that scene if you can. Sisters in their traditional garb, under the night sky. Brothers gathered to pay witness to the work our sisters, mothers, aunties,wives etc had paid for w/ their blood, sweat & tears!!

That is SPIRITUALITY!!

Behind us was a small gathering of brothers from Azania, so-called (South Africa). They were dancing around a bonfire chanting: AYE, Aye-Aye, AYE, aye-aye… I didn’t know what they were saying, but my spirit wouldn’t allow me to stand still. I joined my brothers from the motherland.

We chanted, we danced, we moved & were moved! That’s S-P-I-R-I-T-U-A-L-I-T-Y!!

Later, i found out from Alix from Miami-Dade Community College, whom taught me the Zulu warriors have a war cry & response before they go off to war!!

AYATE is the call??? ZULU is the response….

AYATE……………….. ZULU…….

AYATE…………………ZULU…….

AYATE…………………ZULU…….

Needless to say, I received more of a universal education there than I have ever garnered at a formal institution of higher learning! The march left an indelible impression in my mind. It made me respect black m en on a whole other level. I saw our divinity, our royalty, our humility, our need to be with,of & for each other.

My nickname was father Africa before the march, yet this name was realized, & actualized at the march.

LONG LIVE THE SPIRIT OF THE MILLION MAN MARCH.

I’d like to shout out my bredren that made the trod with I-n-I:

Desmond Defoe, now Minister Desmond Muhammad

Lowell Gelin

Paul Mocombe

Cedric Lovett

Dwayne Holloway

Polo

Defoe’s military bredren

One more brother whom I can’t seem to recall…

I pray you brothers are well, & still carrying the torch of liberation for our people.

THE STRUGGLE CONTINUES……. FOR A PEOPLE W/O KNOWLEDGE OF THEIR HISTORY IS LIKE A TREE W/O ROOTS….

ASHE`

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