Black Spirituality Religion : Trading one Master for another.

Discussion in 'Black Spirituality / Religion - General Discussion' started by Sekhemu, Apr 6, 2007.

  1. Sekhemu

    Sekhemu Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    What is religion but the deification of ancestors, the making sacred of traditions within the context of history. How can we honor any god who is used against you? The only people to accept alien gods are defeated people; all others honor and accept their own name for the Almighty. We must learn to appreciate our traditions and ourselves. What is wrong with the Afrikan God?

    What would we think of a Yoruba who accepted Chinese ancestors as his own? We would find it quite interesting and wonder how it came to be. But what of Afrikans' acceptance of others' gods? Is there no tradition with these alien gods? Of course there is tradition with these gods. To accept the Jews' god or the Arabs' gods or the Hindu's god and so forth is to valorize those histories about your own. Indeed, it is to honor the names in those myths and stories higher than your own stories, it is to love the language, the places in their stories above your own. Why is Mecca, Rome, or Jerusalem more sacred than Bosumtwi? Quite simply, it is imperialism, not by force of arms, but force of religion, which sometimes comes armed.

    Dr. Molefi Asante

    "The slave trade: Consequences of the explorations. European or Arabic, the slave trade always had a destructive effect on Afrikan society..the principal sources of slaves for markets in Arabia, the Middle East, and the New World. The Trade had devestating effects."

    "... The Arab general Amr-ibn-al-As entered Alexandria in 642 A.D. with four thousand men. The conquest of Kemet by the Muslim armies was not only to change the character of Kemetic civilization radically, but it was to have a disastrous impact on the dignity and destiny of Africans as a people. The Arab conquest had opened the floodgates wider and Arabs poured in. Colonization and Islamization progressed. As Kemet became a main center for Arab power, this fact found concrete expression in Arab-Islamic expansion of North Africa, into Spain, and southward in what remained as the 'Land of the Blacks.' "With eventual conquest of the Sudan through mosques and traders."

    Destruction of Black Civilizations, Chancellor Williams

    It almost goes without saying these days, Afrocentric people know better than to be affiliated with European culture or religion. Most people don't realize that for over 1000 years Europeans have been trying to subjugate Afrikans. Whethere it is with war or religion, they have been fighting to tie our minds and confuse us politically and spiritually.

    But how did it come to pass that more and more black people are adopting Islam as their faith of choice. Why don't we ever talk about the role "muslims" played in destroying Afrika? Perhaps it is because of all the positive things that the Nation of Islam had done in the Black community that we are now giving the entire Muslim community a free ride. For sure no other Black organization has had the commitment to work with Black people from all walks of life.

    Malcom X is of course a shining example of how the Nation worked in a positive manner to turn around the lives of many people. Malcom X was a former drug dealer, school drop out, pimp, thug and ex-convict that was transformed into a respectful, intelligent, informed voice for Afrikans in America. No denying it, that was the doing of the Nation of Islam. But I just can't get over the idea that Black people are once again taking on the ways of people that have enslaved, colonized and basically disrespected us. It was Malcom's own words that got me to thinking about whether Afrikans were just trading one master for another. "Just because you put kittens in an oven that does not make them biscuits." Within this context, this meant that just because the Nation of Islam has done many, many good things in the Black community this does not mean that Islam is good for ALL black people. Maybe being in the Nation got a lot of people off the streets, working, organizing, but so does the Black Church. So could the United Way or a job-training course. It does not make the United Way or the temp agency a source of Black culture. And it is high time that Black people live within the confines of their own culture.

    Regardless of the good work that Islamic organizations have done in the Black community, it is hard to ignore the long history of violence and racism suffered at the hands of Arabs. Arabs were the first outside group to enslave Afrikans on a large scale. A book worth reading is "Two Thousand Seasons". It details all the violations of Afrikan human rights that took place at the hands of Arabs during the times of ancient slavery. You could say they provided an example for Europeans to follow, Afrikans were used for labor and leisure througouth the Middle East. Under the guise of Allah-sanctioned Jihads many Afrikan nations were colonized and enslaved. So, are we to believe that God told the Arabs to enslave us and introduce Islam to Afrika by way of the sword or trade? I doubt it. Just like God didn't tell the Christians to come to Afrika and "save our souls." Now, I might be able to forgive this little lie except that both Christians and Muslims continue to say that God wants them to convert the world. I find it hard to believe that God only talks to Muslims and Christians.

    There are Afrikans enslaved in Afrika and the Middle East. Are not the perpetrators of these actions Muslims themselves? The same people that persecute their women and encourage chauvinist tendencies in their men? This does not sound like the West Afrika from which Afrikan-American can find their ancestry. Are we to give this culture a free ride because black people made something good out of it in spite of its origins? So here we end up asking ourselves another question, how did black people (again) end up following the religion of those that enslaved them?

    When you become a Muslim exactly what do you really become anyway? It seems that a lot of Afrikans in America sought refuge in Islam during the "concious movement" of the 60's and 70's. These people were looking for a way to connect with their own culture. Most of these people were interested in eradicating all the European influences in their lives and got involved in Islam because they mistakenly believed that Islam is of Afrikan origin. Again in the 80's and early 90's more Afrikans fled the ways of white America, which they considered racist and oppressive, in favor of Islam and what they knew to be a different way of doing things. These individuals pray in Arabic (some of them), women wear their hair covered in a middle eastern manner, prescribe to the thought that Mecca is the Holy Land, and use traditional, and more stoic Arabic culture to define etiquette and ethics within their households, while we can say that Muslims are less likely to be drinkers, drug abusers, or social thugs, are they any closer to freedom that they desired when they left Christianity and white American values? Maybe they are living more clean lives (obviously highly commendable), but they can they say that they've arrived at their original objective of knowing themselves better than before. Or are they simply trading one slave master for another?

    Afrikan Concepts of Traditional Dress and Image

    A thousand years ago, a woman who was initiated into priestesshood's of traditional Afrikan Religions would have probably appeared bare chested during rituals, sometimes during daily activity. If nothing else we know that she would be bare shouldered . Is she any less a priestess in showing parts of her body? Are the people present any less children of God for having witnessed and participating in said spiritual ritual because a bare shouldered sister conducted it? By the way, black people have always recognized the spiritual powers inherent in women. Why would any black woman deny her God-given right to serve a clergy because Arabic and white men have a problem with women as priests? Imagin how many sisters miss their calling because they allow the dictates of other cultures to determine their lives.
     
  2. Omowale Jabali

    Omowale Jabali The Cosmic Journeyman PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Thanks again, Brother Sekhemu.

    You raise an interesting question: "How can we honor any god who is used against you?"

    I have been thinking a lot about this lately.

    The "Hebrew" god appoints one branch "His chosen people" while promising to raise another into a "Mighty Nation" and both of these Jew/Arab are "raised" to subjugate Black people and to invade and destabilize OUR Motherland.

    Two people who were "raised" by "egyptian" women but clearly do not relate TODAY as BLACK people, or as "Africans".

    Then got Black people fighting in the names of Jehovah, Allah and Jesus.


    Wow.

    Confusion, EVERYWHERE!
     
  3. river

    river Watch Her Flow MEMBER

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    A Classic Historical Scenario:

    Black women have throughout history raised and nursed the white man. It was/is the Black woman who has been the backbone of the Black Church. But all the time they've been kicking our tails.

    Like Ray Hagins says there's nothing a slave master gives you that is designed to set you free.

    Keep doing whatcha doing bros Sek and Omo. The masses will come around just as you and I came around.
     
  4. Sami_RaMaati

    Sami_RaMaati Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I remember this lecture by Molefi Asante quite well. It is chock full of wisdom and astute observations. It should serve as a general orientation to all who are interested in the question of Afrikan Traditional Religion and its impact on our minds vs other religions and their impact on our minds.

    A couple of other profound observations he made were:

    "I shall begin my lecture with a conclusion: Until an African leader publicly acknowledges, honors and prays to an African God, we Africans will continue to be viewed as pathetic imitators of others, never having believed in ourselves..."

    "...There are no other people on the earth who have had to denounce their ancestors in order to become better people..."

    The full lecture can be found at http://www.asante.net/news/ptare-accra-speech.html. You'll definitely want to print this one out and refer to it often.

    Amos Wilson, another keen Afrikan mind, pointed out in his book "The Falsification of Afrikan Consciouness":

    "Alien religions can only serve the interests of aliens."
     
  5. Omowale Jabali

    Omowale Jabali The Cosmic Journeyman PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Ase'!
     
  6. Moko_Ananci

    Moko_Ananci Member MEMBER

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    Hotep

    It’s nice to see this aspect of the problem being identified. Perhaps the two main things that derail most of our liberation struggles, discussions, and solutions are the issue of religion and – even more problematic – the issue of male-chauvinism in religion.

    This is a bag of worms that has to be opened and kept open now more than ever. The events of the world today with globalisation, global warming, wars over mineral deposits are linked to the resurgence of religious fundamentalism (Christian, Muslim and Hindu). An integral part of that resurgence and its influence on the idea of a global economic and cultural village, is the assault on the feminine principle that once had great influence in the same mineral-rich countries Western powers are seeking to control once again (with our complicity and willing assistance). From the agricultural subsistence-first, then profit through surplus exports after which was controlled by women, to the unique governance by women’s politics that existed in Africa until the Arab Muslim/European Christian experience beginning in the 1500s and reaching their zenith in the 20th C; from the open sexual customs to the control of reproductive capabilities among women, patriarchal ideologies have been imposed upon every aspect of one’s life and thinking to the point where we all have internalised it often without full realisation.

    But there is hope; mediums such as this and other avenues of mass communication and access to information have seen a steady, albeit disjointed, reappraisal of religious ideas and what constitutes morality. I suppose it’s just for us to make a bigger attempt to throw attention onto this issue with those around us or within discussion forums such as this one.
     
  7. Angela22

    Angela22 Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    The thing is, the Father can't be "used" against anyone; we live according to His will, and He doesn't live according to ours. I do agree that people who accept aliens gods are a defeated people, but not as stated here. "Traditional gods" don't mean they aren't alien, because there is but one Father of all; He came before all traditions and different manners of worship, and so any gods other than He are alien.

    It's such a trip that many think the Father is a "european god" or that many treat worship as if we're choosing football teams to cheer for, and that we should go with the one who originated where we do or used to live.

    I believe in the calling, as is described by the Holy Anointed Son, the same who died for all our sins, and was resurrected back to life the 3rd day. I believe in His teachings, and how we should live. I believe in the promises of the Father, and His choosing His people out of all peoples. I believe in the salvation we can have, and the Kingdom of Heaven all faithful will indeed have. It's not that I have a want to uplift another people for the sake of putting down my own, but I want to uplift brothers and sisters in the faith, with a humbled heart, and want to give praise and glory to where it is due; The Father and His Anointed Son.
     
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