Black History Culture : THE GOOD THE BAD THE UGLY OF AFRICAN CULTURE...

Discussion in 'Black History - Culture - Panafricanism' started by Isaiah, Aug 31, 2004.

  1. Isaiah

    Isaiah Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    3,210
    Likes Received:
    62
    Ratings:
    +62
    In the Honoring Our Elders Thread, i believe, I posed a thought which i thought might be best given it's own thread, and that is, are all things about African Culture GOOD? Do they have to be All Good for us to address them without being labeled self-hating for finding fault in some aspects of the culture??? Is it not possible that our ancestors were thinking some wack S@!$ when they created certain aspects of our culture???(smile!)

    One of the things I think is not healthy about African culture is Tribalism, which, looking at it historically, might be why we're in the mess we're in today, all over the world... I think Tribalism is inherently DISUNIFYING, in that it separates folks into groups, which inherently causes internecine rivalries... We suffer from this even in the so-called New World, with African Caribbeans, African Americans, and African Latinos unable to find the solidarity of cause, the unity of purpose, needed to put the former slavemaster outta bidness...

    Another item on that hurtful list of items in African culture are things like scarification, which I don't believe has any real good purpose at all - none!!! Looking at things metaphysically, The Creator created us as SHE wanted us to be, and to alter that through self-mutiliation is unacceptable to me... Then again, your brother has issues with piercing of any kind - even the ears of woman... Why??? Because I believe, again, though it may serve the purpose of ornamentally beautifying a sister, I see that "hole" in the body as creating a vacuum in the internal power of the body... That's a deeper thing than I can explain here, but it's about the chakras, the power meridians... I wonder how they are affected by piercing...(smile!)

    Divine Kingship... Somehow I think this practice has carried over to us in the New World, through our religious and political leadership, and I think it is dangerous, to say the least... Our leaders, particularly our religious leaders, are very autocratic, and their word is divine, and cannot be challenged, and I don't believe any such animal exists on the planet whose words cannot be challenged... In fact, I believe even the wisest amongst us should be challenged to show and prove their words with actions and deeds, and that they should be only so happy to demonstrate the efficacy of their truths...

    Among those things which I feel are the most positive and powerful in African Culture are, the elevation of the African Woman, how in our culture she is seen as divine, as Godly... One of the ironies of us Africans in the United States is that we seem to believe African Women lead our families by default, rather than the result of the continuation of African Matiriarchy... African men aint got no jobs, so African women lead the household...

    Well, I don't think that's true at all... Even when there were close to 80% of our households containing both men and women, sistas ran the show - and she ran the show in White folks homes, too!!! Oddly enough, Sistas probably don't want to hear that they're the BOMB as homemakers, but, of course, traditionally, no one does it better... Additionally, African women's roles in our religious institutions all over the diaspora, and in Africa, is power not ever seen in the women of other cultures - which is why Sistas don't much seem to be able to wrap their heads around what is called Feminism in the United States...

    Of course, the African Family, the Village/Compound mentality, of African peoples is superb when functioning as it should... Unlike Europeans, Africans believe in "extended" families, grandmama, granddaddy, cousins, and neighbors, are our family members... in fact, that term "extended" is a European conceptualization of what we do, and has zero to do with how we view family... If a friend is close enough to one's blood family, he is more than a friend, he is an adopted family member, with all the rights of a family member... That is quite unusual in European families - except perhaps where they have been touched by our culture, as in the southern United States(smile!) Awight, now!(smile!)

    Perhaps, y'all can pose some positive and negative aspects of our culture - in your opinions... I think it is possible for us, as Africans, to accept that there might be things about us that we'd like to change, as well as, those things which we should hold far more closely... Perhaps, you might want to take some exception to what I've written, and that's all good, too!(smile!) Let's have a discussion on this, in any event...

    Peace!
    Isaiah
     
  2. MississippiRed

    MississippiRed Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2004
    Messages:
    1,307
    Likes Received:
    33
    Ratings:
    +34
    Man that post was deep for real.....the thing you said about us being a Tribal people I feel that and see it even today...some folk think I'm crazy but I believe that even gangs and cliques and such are holdovers from our tribal past ...I even have potnas that refer to funk with other little cliques of brothers as tribal warfare..this I think is one of the main reasons we can't come together as a people today..another problem I think that still rides us as folk is the light skin dark skin thing....I find it funny too because folk love to generalize ..I've heard the light skin house negro thing more times that I care to count but they never realize that yellow complexion blacks were just as likely to be in the field as in the house and that there were light and dark skin slave owners .....I guess my point is how can we expect fair treatment from others when we still have bigotry amongst ourselves...coming up in the South and being a redbone, half-breed man I had to scrap almost everyday until high school just to show folk that judging me by the complexion of my skin was a serious mistake, I gave some and took some but in the end was respected and for a long while I had bad feelings for darker skin cats behind those early days in short that is one thing I Know we need to work on...Another that I think is important and I feel is a through back to jubilee is our wastefull way with money, not all of us but some of us...a lot of us still act like the first freed slaves when they got hold to that first dollar...it burns us to have to hold on to it...generations after being freed physically we still have trouble managing our money ....spending a grip on big shoes for the ride even though the light bill is due or when little man need some shoes for school we go get the 140 dollar S dots instead of taking his behind to payless and getting him three or four pair...after all this time our financial priorities are still off center.........and you now power follows money and until we as a people have the chips to get in the game we will sit on the side and watch the other folk that do, play and determine our destiny..

    Mississippi Red
    "I work hard for the South these cats playin hard with they thumb in they mouth." :smokin:
     
  3. Isaiah

    Isaiah Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    3,210
    Likes Received:
    62
    Ratings:
    +62
    What's up, Red!(smile!)

    Now, see, that's what I'm talking about, the hidden ways in which we continue to practice 'Africanisms" without our knowing it - Gangs, the Color Complex, Urban Vs. Suburban/Rural factions, and of course, class conflicts between the less well-off economically, and the well-to-do... It's all up in there...

    Now, good brother, some of what you said regarding our money problems may stem from some "other" issues, as well as the ones you pointed out... For example, and I will post a very good article on this, White folks made a business of rooking African people out of their money when they put it in their banks, or invested it in property... Tuskeegee Institute says that many of those more than 5,000 lynchings of African Americans from 1870-to 1970 lead to a trail of property stolen from African Americans... Massacres of African Americans in many small towns, and the subsequent departures of the survivors to safer environs, led to the sale of their properties at rock bottom prices - always to other white folks...

    I remember reading the book, All God's Dangers, about brother Ned Cobb, who organized the first Sharecropper's Union down in Alabama... Ned owned his own land through much sweat and tears shed, and saw how other African farmers were routinely being cheated or chased off their land, so he began to organize them to physically fight back... Well, Ned was himself, shoot in the buttocks during one of these skirmishes, and later sent to prison for 12 years... Of course, his land was seized by the state municipalities... Ned had related a story about his father, how after refusing to continue working for a particular white man, that man came with the sheriff, and took everything, including the food, his father owned...

    Living under that kind of terror can cause people to be very fatalistic and jaded... It can cause people to say that "I might as well enjoy what I got now, before someone comes and snatches it from me..." Red, when I read about some of the petty S#@#! these crackas would pull down there on a brother or sister who dressed well, or held their heads too high... I think we have to factor those things in, and since we're talkiing about the elders in another thread, maybe we need to - if we can - ask the elders about the validity of these points???

    Yo, think about it, even a very learned man like George Washington Carver died with that mattress fulla Chedda... He knew what time it was... Kinda like how a lot of African men feel about white doctors(smile!)

    Peace!
    Isaiah
     
  4. MississippiRed

    MississippiRed Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2004
    Messages:
    1,307
    Likes Received:
    33
    Ratings:
    +34
    :grin: What say Isaiah....man I like this thread here and that's real.....the money problem as far as I can tell had to have started around what was called in Mississippi Jubilee....when we were freed....so in that one I was a few years off...quite a few..lol....but man you're right a lot of those lynchings were in the name of land grab....a lot of course were done because of sheer fear of Black manhood but that's another story...I know personally that members of my Daddy's family lost land to the white folk because of strong arm stuff and lies and manipulation....and yes sir ofay did some funky stuff to us down there for simply not bowing your head or stepping off the sidewalk when a white woman walked by....my Daddy lost two friends that were killed fishing in a bar pit in Louisiana...killed by two peckerwoods that were never charged..funny one of em came up missing a few years later....funny things happen in Mississippi at night...and this isn't ancient history like they'd like us to believe...a boy got hung in Woodville Mississippi this year....was found hanging from a pecan tree with a pillow case over his head...ruled a suicide....just funny that his family was in a lawsuit over some land that an oil company wanted....funny huh>? I think you're right about asking some of the elders their opinions on some of this...oh and the point on my man G.W. Carver...let's not even get into the banks with our money..they were as bad as the swiss banks during wwII with the Jews money....Like I said bruh this here is a good good thread if anybody else will post to it I can't promise though...you know it's easy when we say we're all down from Kings and Queens...but when you say well we couldn't all be down from royal lineage hmmmm..and especially when you say what are the bad characteristics of our heritage that live today then nobody has anything to say....show me the dirt and negative things that we still live with today so I know what I need to change..Oh and my doctor is a cat from India...I don't trust ofay to work on me dog...lol....like I said man this is a good one and I'm excited to see what other folk will post...Is there a way we can pose this question on the reclaiming our culture forum or post it to some of the elders of the site..I'd like to see what they think about this as much as you do....

    Mississippi Red
    I'm not from Mississippi I Am Mississippi.
     
  5. MississippiRed

    MississippiRed Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2004
    Messages:
    1,307
    Likes Received:
    33
    Ratings:
    +34
    I missed the fact that it's already posted on this forum....man I'm trippin...here's a link to a news report on the latest "lynchin" this happened 30 miles from my Mama's house where I was raised in Natchez and she knows this dude's cousin.....

    http://africancultureonline.com/forums/printthread.php?t=60

    Mississippi Red
    Nothing changes but the names of the victims... :devil:
     
  6. Isaiah

    Isaiah Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    3,210
    Likes Received:
    62
    Ratings:
    +62

    Yo, Red, oh my god! O My God!

    Now, you see, this is why I feel compelled to post our history at this board, particularly the lynchings and burnings, and murders of our peops - because young folks, as well as, some older folks, just can't wrap their heads around the continuing saga, man!!! This has me boiling this mornin', brother... Not a great way to start the day...

    If this brother, Roy Veal, doesn't remind me of stories I've read in 10 books on this subject, my name is not what I say it is... But, ****, man, it's 2004, and our lives still don't mean zip to these crackas!!! If we live on some land these devils want, then we gotta still be on our p's and q's... And oil, too, is involved???

    Yeah, Brotha man, dealing with the negatives of our culture and community doesn't draw the same level of attention and honesty as dealing with it's beauty(smile!) That's because so few of us have reached the level of consciousness about the world, generally, that you have... Like you said, I want to know what I need to change, so I can get better, and make others better... That logic escapes us, particularly when we talkin' 'bout how good we are on the dance flo - or baddest britches in da bed(smile!) But that's us, we love a good time, now!(LOL!)

    But, yo, I'm gonna do a straight LYNCHING HISTORY thread in the Honoring Our Ancestors forum... Aint posting nothing up in there but stuff I find on Lynchings of our ancestors... We Must Pay THEM Our RESPECT on a daily basis... Many of Our FAMILY died in an inglorious way, and it is our duty to give them some honor for the painful price they paid... Sorry, I love my sister Pdiane, but that's why I cannot see myself relinquishing this soil to the devil... We've made a monumental downpayment for it with our blood... To leave and cede it to 666 means we didn't have anymore love for them than did 666...(smile!) Rap to you later, Red...

    Peace!
    Isaiah
     
  7. NNQueen

    NNQueen going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2001
    Messages:
    6,375
    Likes Received:
    1,430
    Gender:
    Female
    Ratings:
    +1,860
    EXCELLENT THREAD

    Reading this discussion is causing me go have goose bumps because the information and dialogue is soooo good. I'm not ready to add my thoughts yet as I'm reading and absorbing what's being said so far. I look forward to more enlightening discussion.

    Queenie :spinstar:
     
  8. Isaiah

    Isaiah Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    3,210
    Likes Received:
    62
    Ratings:
    +62
    Sista Queenie, another thing that I truly have issues with - but which have nothing to do with African Culture - is our adoption of certain values from the majority culture... One of these was, and still is, played out during the Civil Rights Movement in America, and that is the pushing of African Women into the background when it came to making crucial leadership decisions... Relegating them to cooking the chicken dinners for the preachers, and making signs for the protest marches...

    Here these very same women were, and are, responsible for our very survival, navigating our safe course toward victory, and yet some African men felt that leadership was a man's perogative... What's interesting is that although very strong African Women like Ida B. Wells-Barnett, Septima Clark, Ms. Ella Baker, and Diane Nash ceded a great deal of power to men "so that they could be men", one still hears a lot grumbling from Black men about how aggressive and assertive Black Women are... Now, that's a Black man who has, both adopted the majority culture's patriarchal philosophy, and is straight ignorant about his own... He is out of tune, out of step, with the everyday workings of his own home, as well as, the one in which he was raised...

    The down side of this is that I believe that some African women have done so much contorting of their own culturally assertive personality that many have become a lot like women from the other group...(smile!) I aint necessarily talking about sisters who would frequent a discussion forum like this, but those who wouldn't dare come near it... Too much Womanism going on here for them...(smile!)

    But, seriously, though this may be something for the Women's forum, I have always loved that assertiveness of Black women... If she is not assertive, not strong, but mamby-pamby-wishy-washy, its like a turn-off... Culturally, I think we are all looking for that which reflects us, that which we saw in ma and pa, big brother and big sister... But back in the days of the Movement, I guess it was a great sense of power for African men to finally assert ourselves as a group, to provide manly protection for our precious jew-ells(smile!) My question is, did we have to push them so far in the back... Ms Septima and Ms Baker, from what I read, did not think so - and were quite assertive in stating that...

    Peace!
    Isaiah
     
  9. MississippiRed

    MississippiRed Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2004
    Messages:
    1,307
    Likes Received:
    33
    Ratings:
    +34
    Good point Isaiah man...it's funny that we say we need each other to make it but I think a lot of the we that brothers talk about is we men leaving the women at the house...One other thing I was thinking about is why are we still looking for a King..or at least to my way of looking at it...why do we always have to have as the media calls them Black Leaders ...why do we look to these Black Leaders to give us direction in much the same way a King would have done...I may be wrong on this though it's just the way I see it..it's almost like society is saying that we as a people as a whole can't be free thinkers we need others..."the talented tenth" to guide us as children through the darkness..that was just one more thing...Be Safe bruh and if you can't be safe be fast... :devil:

    Mississippi Red
     
  10. Isaiah

    Isaiah Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    3,210
    Likes Received:
    62
    Ratings:
    +62
    Oh, man, Red got me talking about that Tribalism piece, and we went off there(smile!) I guess the whole unite thing is something we crave after as a people...


    Personally, I don't necessarily believe we have to have TOTAL unity as a people to rock this planet, and the Civil Rights Movement proved that... It showed that just a few of us coming together to challenge the oppressor represented untold millions who stood in empathy(smile!) In effect, they represented the THREAT of allying with all of the rabble-rousers back then... It made a difference in the minds of a lotta White folks... Contrary to what a lot us believe, the vast majority of African Americans did not directly participate in the Civil Rights Movement... The vast majority of us went about our daily lives, and caught the latest developments on the evening news - truth be told... Sure, 22-million Africans in the United States and millions abroad, were in mad sympathy and empathy with the movement, and contributed in different ways, in our own ways, but most of us weren't out there getting bit by the dogs, or filling the jails down in Birmingham(smile!) And look at what was achieved...

    It might not seem like much, but in contrast to what WAS, man, anyone who thinks that is just plain outta their minds... Do we need to be put in the position of having to go through the back door for a sandwich, or buying them tight-assed shoes just because you tried 'em on, to understand what our ancestors were fighting down there??? I think, sometimes, we've spent too much time listening to El-Hajj Malik belittle the Movement to truly appreciate what it laid waste to... The other day I was thinking about the Dravidians, still living under condtions much like our ancestors - in the land of Ghandi, no less!!! WTF! I'm like Dravidians, get up and stand up!

    I digressed, though(smile!) I want to ask folk if they believe that the old Divine Kingship beliefs in our African past has anything to do with the high-handed tyranny practiced by a lot of our leadership in the 'Religious and Political arenas???? Maybe I am in error to say that, because I am not fully versed in the powers of the Kings or the Village Chiefs, and so forth... Perhaps, those more well versed than I can set me straight??? Please do, I'd appreciate it...

    Peace!
    Isaiah
     
Loading...