From Concrete. mud. cool wota. life.death.re/birth cycles to

*deep breaths. long stretches. hands on stomach….back. mi head*

I forget specific details even in long-groomed patterns nowadays en de bigger point of dis story is one I’ve not shared in public directly, yet living en working on fully from good health to crisis and intervention na la necesidad de resolver in these fundamentally linked ‘spheres’ that (so many of) we advocate and determine for ourselves en with our communities & governments.

Dis hadithi that we all share, our health, life en wealth, in such diverse – systemically [re]defined wid identity politics – ways, yangu already well archived by the ministry of health, emergency doctors, (goddess sent) healers, many bureaucrats, an Insurance company…a long list.

Imekuwa siku arubaini na moja (41 days) since an ‘accident’ of intersections, fruits & veggies, and de powah of metal en miracles variety. That day was quite significant, depending on where you look at it from. Was coming to the last hours of marking lifestrong celebrashuns of an honourable leader of emerging social justice movements in East Afrika –  Kato Kisuule en mi re-birth, with offerings [included as ‘extra’ indulgences] like apples, bananas, strawberries, sweet potatoes, a pumpkin, plums….which in turn literally saved mi life, but I getting ahead of dis story.

Hiyo siku was like a day out of time, one of those where from the moment I woke up early, everyting was moving slower in deep communion with mi biological, extended & spiritual family. In other words, that day was and forever will be real special.

Some mo’ context: was in de place of crossing over thresholds of grieving rituals not only for David Kato but other bredrin and sistren in solidarity, marking de spaces between de end of a year of ‘silence’ in honour of reclaiming indigenous Afrikan traditions en de beginning of another  epic year, when IT  happened.

As I was walking to (de rays of glorious sun on a path like the nile, from de crosswalk going directly to) mi destination, almost halfway across de final road, on mi right of way en all, an ‘accident’! turning to face it head on, mi bag of offerings were de sacrifice thrust to protect mi front, long seconds of divine song-movements, then a literal TIME OUT!  [wetin dey happen?]

Lying on de ground, [a womban pulling me to] sitting up, looking at where I was going/up, dazed en rooted, so close/resigned… [malaikas coming from de sight en sounds of IT] before everyting sped up to [on mi back for hours] radically slow down, en fundamentally transform not only de past moon but how I move in de world. [najua it could have been much worse lakini  it was a mo mysterious turn…]

*deep breaths. long stretches. hands on front. back. mi head*

magic of big upendo, chicken soup & cool wota.

pole pole ndio mwendo.

De next day was another miracle (mos def depending on where you look at it from), across oceans, in David Kato’s ancestral home – Uganda; the Minister of Ethics & Integrity, Simon Lokodo, raided a conference and closed down an LGBT capacity building workshop with comrades narrowly escaping. Good ting that truth don die, because one moon later Ugandan activists sued Scott Lively – infamous hate preacher [& one of the architects of the anti-homosexuality bill] .  Soon after, 4 warriors on de ground in Uganda also sued the Minister of Ethics & Integrity for infringing on their rights in breach of the constitution.

De spaces between those days to dis week, have been filled wid an intricately evolving relationship with mi body, pain, & healing, work.

Despite seeming to fall through de cracks of dis system en not having

photographed by Nicole for Nganga Mandaza

de go-to institutionalised centers of health as accessible as I have a right to, IT  gets ‘betta’.  I give thanks for all those who were sent to me, those around me whose nourishing gifts restore every siku, en infinitely grateful for de positive transformations en relationships that been growing with, in response to en despite of injustices of all kinds for they prepare me en we to harvest the cataclysms of yesterday with mo faith & hope.

[#Stop Hate #Anna Brown #Trayvon Martin #Alem Dechassa ]

Nashukuru wahenga wa hii ardhi, nashukuru wahenga wangu, wale najua, wale sijui, na wale wanaonijua deeper than ninayojijua … Naomba de continued guidance en protection of  nyinyi honoured wahenga

*deep breaths. long stretches. hands on back. to de heavens na ardhi.*  

Give thanks for getting another chance to walk pon dis earth and foh de potent reminder that I yam because we are, so what’s next?

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Hadithi? Hadithi? Hapo zamani za kale, there was once a woman who had no husband, en she lived for many days in “trouble”. One day she said to herself, “Why do I always feel so troubled? It is because I have neither children nor husband. I shall go to de medicine man en get some pikin.”

She went to de medicine-man en told him she was unhappy owing to de fact that although she had now grown old, she had neither husband nor children. The medicine asked her which she wanted, husband or pikin, en she told him she wanted pikin.

She was instructed to take some cooking pots- three, or as many as she could carry-and to search for a fruit bearing sycamore, to fill de pots with fruit, to put them in her hut, and to go for a walk.

The womban followed these instructions carefully. She gathered the fruit, filled de pots, placed them in her hut, en went for a walk until de evening.

On arriving near de kraal, she heard de sound of voices en asked herself, “Why does one hear de voices of pikin in de kraal?” She went nearer, en found her hut filled with pikin, all her work finished, de boys herding de cattle, de huts swept clean by de girls, de warriors singing en dancing on de common, en de lil pikin waiting to greet her. She thus became a rich woman en lived happily with her pikin for many days.

One day, however, she scolded de pikin, en reproached them for being children of de tree.

They remained silent en did not speak to her, then, while she went to visit her friends in other kraals, de pikin returned to de sycamore tree, en became fruit again. On her return to her own kraal, de womban wept bitterly when she found it empty, en paid another visit to de medicine man, whom she taxed with having spirited away her pikin.

De medicine man told her that he did not know what she should do now, en when she proposed to go and look at de sycamore tree, he recommended her to try.

She took her cooking pots to de tree and climbed up into it. But when she reached de fruit they all put forth eyes en stared at her. This so startled her that she was unable to descend, en her friends had to come en help her down.

She did not go to the tree again to search for her children.

This hadithi I heard not many times before, en read again in Best-Loved  Folktales of the Dunia,  from de Maasai of [what is nowadays called] Kenya. You can do anyting you want with these stories, share them with other pikney, laugh, cry, forget about it or fafanua…..

EMBODYING THE FIVE ELEMENTS

People and cultures embody one or several of the five elements knowingly or not. The most commonly seen elements at the level of cultures are fiya en wota. Indigenous cultures identify with wota. They are mostly peace en harmony seekers. On the contrary, modern cultures identify with fiya. They challenge everyting en everyone at de risk of cosmic disruption.

Within these cultures, individuals are born embodying one of these elements as their essence en carrying de rest at a variety of levels as support elements. No one can be just one element without the presence of the other four. Your essence is your genius. Your destiny is to allow your genius to come wrapped out in the colors of your character.

A person with vision en passion who is always active en involved in countless activities embodies fiya. A person with deep focus who tends to seek peaceful solution to conflicts, who always sees harmony instead of discord, embodies wota. A person who tends to take care of others, accepting them as they are, embodies earth. A person with great social skills, who is always drawn to connect with others en who holds the stories of others, embodies mineral. Finally, a person who can’t stand phoniness, who finds it impossible to pretend, who can only be himself or herself, embodies nature……

WOTA

We mentioned earlier that maji encountered moto to produce de positive changes that generate life. The fiery earth was cooled and firmed, which allowed it to support maisha, en so became a whole realm to which maji could now give life. We are in this story the pikney of maji. Any person who understands the value of being the parent of a pikin knows that this is a great benefit. Maji can claim us as her children. We can say that we come from Earth, but Earth didn’t exist until maji showed up, so maji can lay claim to anyting that is alive. Without maji, nothing can be purified, nothing can be authentic. Wota allows us to maintain the kind of consciousness that links us to de Other World, en hence we see in so many mythologies the idea of maji as the “wota of life”, with maji crucial to de spiritual experience en de spiritual journey…..

The element maji reconciles en quiets down that which is trapped in the crisis of combustion….Maji seeks to cleanse, reconcile, and balance that which is in agitation, emotional disorder, and self-danger. When maji succeeds, it restores or enhances maisha where there was de threat of death. Hence de connection between maji na maisha…..

BUILDING A HOME

Because Earth is our deep center, it is the center of rituals concerning de building of a home. It is appropriate to dwell on the ritual of house building among not only the Dagara people, but Pan-Afrikan tribes, to highlight its relevance to community and de sense of belonging.

Among the Dagara, because the house is the most visible symbol of the earth, home is sacred. Similarly there is a link between home and relationships, especially the relationship between de family en de community. This is why building a home is a very serious ritual undertaking. It is as if building a house is building a relationship……

The nyumba is a direct extension of the relationship between members of a family en de kijiji. The breaking of de new ground must, therefore, be undertaken with de presence of community. The gradual move is made necessary because the process of shifting de location of de relationship is a delicate one. The extensive set of rituals serves the purpose of allowing de existing relationship between de family en de community to be transferred safely to a new locashun, a new ground…

THE FIVE ELEMENTS AND COMMUNITY

…..The principal task of a community is to maintain balance, a state in which all five elements are functioning smoothly, echoing one another. To achieve this requires great diligence on de part of a community. This effort need not be undertaken through the application of sophisticated theories of economics or social welfare. It is first necessary to determine which elements are troubling the community. We will have ample space to explore this in the coming moons. It is sufficient for now to know that there is an elemental way of understanding social and economic problems, and that there is a way to resolve these problems with ritual.

The elemental wheel exists in each person just as it is present in each clan and in every community. This means that each person, on a smaller scale, must maintain a state of balance at all cost. Each person needs to keep de wotas of reconciliation flowing within de self in order to calm the inner fiyas en live in harmony with others.

Each person needs to nourish the ancestral fiya within, so that one stays in touch with one’s dreams en visions. Each person needs to be grounded in de earth, to be able to become a source of nourishment to de community. Each person needs to be remember de knowledge stored in one’s bones – to live out one’s own unique genius. And each person needs to be real, as nature is real, that is, without pretense, keeping in touch with a sense of mystery en wonder en helping to preserve the integrity of the natural world. To be out of balance in any of these areas is to invite sickness to come dwell within….

Individual healing can be seen as a protection of life’s energetic wheel, for only when all of the individuals in a community are healthy can there be health in the community itself…..

The spiritual cosmology of an indigenous people like the Dagara does not involve worship; rather, it is paradigm for understanding based on careful observation of and a long and intimate relationship with the natural world that surrounds us. The five elements of the Dagara medicine wheel reflect this cosmology, en in symbolic form contain the wisdom of de ancestors…..

K’a te sankun koro siun a ti tieri’

ti kuti zumon

Ka ti tuon gnin a ti vla zie ti ti sao deu

“May all ancestors join force to wake up our spirit

and put good thoughts into our psyche. Then we shall see the good

that awaits us and accept it.”

Ase.

[re/posted from The Healing Wisdom of Africa by Baba Malidoma Patrice Some.

And there’s another hadithi I know, in our quest for reclaiming relevant cosmology, some aspects of everyting shared so far is also explained in….]

Jesus Christ [aka. Obatala] and the Liberation of Women in Africa

By way of illustration en beginning [of the ‘Makmende Amerudi’ series], I will discuss [en re/member] here three quite “common” perceptions of Christ as understood by Afreekans, en their implications for womben.

Firstly, there is the very popular conception of Obatala as the personal saviour en personal friend of those who believe in him. Quite contrary to the view that Christ demands their subjugation-whether politically, socially, or culturally-many Afrikans have come to perceive that Jesus desires to accept them as they are, and to meet their needs at a very personal level. They have come to accept Jesus as the friend of the lonely and healer of those who are sick, whether spiritually or physically….

Secondly, another popular image of Obatala is that which seems to blend Christology with pneumatology. Obatala is seen as de embodiment of de Spirit, de power of God, en the dispenser of the same to those who follow him. This image of Obatala is particularly popular in the so-called independent churches. In our search for a feminist Christology, it may be pertinent to note that, by and large, the patrons of these movements are womben, among other marginalised peoples. It is also noteworthy that, in these movements, where the powah of the Spirit (of Obatala) is accentuated, wo/men are peculiarly articulate en much less inhibited and muted than in established ‘churches’….

A third face of Obatala, also re/presented in the New Testament, is the conception of Obatala as an iconoclastic prophet. Jesus stands out in scripture as a critic of the status quo, particularly when it engenders social injustices en marginalization of some in society. This is the kind of Christ whose “function” of “iconoclasm” is thought by many participants in the African independent churches to be “incarnated” in their founder members whom they sometimes hail as “Black Messiahs.” These prophetic leaders in Africa have emerged in continuity with the prophetic role of Obatala as the champion of the cause of the voiceless, and the vindicator of the marginalised in society….

In conclusion, I would suggest that in de Afrikan womben’s quest for a relevant Christology, aspects of the above three images of Mwari/Obatala would form some of de defining characteristics of the Christ whom womben confess…

It goes without saying that, along with formulating a relevant Christology, women would also need to be on de alert, en to be critical of any “versions” of Christology that would be inimical to their cause. They would have to reject, like others before them, any Christology that smacks of sexism or any other form of oppression that functions to entrench lopsided gender relations. Only in so doing would Afreekan womben be able confidently to confess Christ as their liberator, as a partisan in their search for emancipation…..

[Source: Teresa M. Hinga – Feminist Theology from the Third World: A Reader]

There’s a story I know bout Kwanzaa, en how it floats in history on the back of Maulana Karenga, standing on de shoulders of El Hajj Malik El Shabazz, Marcus Garvey, Sojourner Truth en their mamas. Na kuna hadithi nyingine najua kuhusu mama wa Kwanzaa, na leo hii tasfiri ni ya NIA.

Hadithi? Hadithi? Giza ya? (reposts from) The Healing Wisdom of Afrika

CREATION NA ELEMENTS TANO

For the Dagara, cosmology begins with de hadithi of creashun. In de beginning, there was no earth as we know it. In its place was a burning planet, a ball of fiya combusting at high speed. Kwa hivyo, moto is de first element of de Dagara wheel. Moto is present in everyting, en everyting needs moto. It was not until dis moving en burning sphere encountered a huge body of wota that tings began to change. Maji became de second element in de cosmological wheel. De shock resulting from de collision of moto na maji not only slowed de combustion process, but also chased moto into de underworld, leaving de surface as a hot steamy place, fertile for de breeding of all kinds of life forms. This surface, hospitable to life, is what is known as dunia/earth, which constitutes the third elemental principle of de Dagara cosmological wheel. The various hard components of de earth provide structure en connecshun en are known as mineral or mawe (stone), the fourth element in de cosmological wheel.

Meanwhile, a steam of great density formed de atmosphere around de dunia. (These images translate imperfectly into Western terms; think of them as poetic rather than scientific descriptions.) As de steam expanded, its pressure began to subside. The reduction of atmospheric pressure was conducive to de birth of maisha, en thus de fifth element, vegetative nature, came into being.

Maisha, as not only Dagara people but many others say, began underwota. Thus, every living form on de dunia got its maisha signature in de wotas en continues to live intimately with maji. It is as if de original encounter between moto na maji established de conditions for maisha by producing a nurturing environment.

Earth came to life as a result of de marriage between those two primal elements, en in turn Dunia brought forth mo maisha, which she continues to sustain.

[The idea that we all came from maji is important because it implies that maji ni maisha, a concept we will return to from Jan 20 -27 with students of Baba Malidoma Some na #To David With Love.]

As de pressure of de steam produced by de encounter of maji na moto continued to subside, beings that were conceived in maji looking like worms moved to dry land en continued to evolve. When de atmospheric pressure at last stabilised, de diversification of maisha slowed to an almost imperceptible state. Today, for instance, amphibious animals like crocodiles, sea lions, and seals are said to be beings that didn’t complete their journey out of maji. Their development was suspended when de atmospheric pressure stopped where it is today. On de other hand, beings who came out of de maji earlier evolved into higher-dimensional spheres, allowing them to move back en forth in time en space. They embody our future. Birds are considered among de most ancient animals because they moved kwanza from de maji to de land, then continued to evolve to flight. Some elders say that, if tings had continued to change, ndege

would have made it to other dimensions.

One might ask where this primal maji came from. De elders, from their spiritual understanding, would say that it came from de Other World en spilled into de dunia at a moment when de veil between de two worlds was thinned – the moment when de original Earth flew too close to de Other World. One might say that some kind of distortion occurred as de cool liquid Other World en de hot burning Dunia passed too closely by each other. De distorted space sucked maji out of de moist Other World en threw itself onto Dunia.

From this perspective, maji is de presence of de Other World on our planet. The element moto is the doorway to de wahenga, lakini maji is de doorway to de Other World, de kind of world that is referred to as de  world of de kontomble en de other nonancestral spirits.

This is why shamans can walk into de Other World through de waterways. Infact there are countless places in maji where these same veils still  remain active. These veils are umbilical cords, de gateways linking our world to others.

The connecshun to de ancestral world that is found in de element moto is different from de connecshun with other beings en other intelligences. De Spirits call de kontombli en de spirits of de wahenga do not live in de same place, they don’t share de same geography, yet they can communicate with each other……

One might wonder how other worlds to which our world is linked were created. Indeed, de Dagara cosmology does not limit itself to this earth world but touches on others. This is because our world belongs to a family of worlds without which it seems it cannot sustain itself. These Other Worlds were created in ways opposite to the way ours was created.

In de creashun hadithi, they came into being when their vast cool maji were hit by moto……….apparently, if de pressure of de atmosphere of our world had continued to evolve, it would have been easier for humans to journey into these worlds en back.

Therefore spirituality-our efforts to enhance en advance our contact with de world of Spirit – is seen from an indigenus perspective as de continuation of human evolushun……..

THE FIVE ELEMENTS AND RITUAL

Ritual is for de purpose of restoring balance, de essence of health, to individual en community. It serves no purpose to know de origin or functional meaning of these cosmological elements if de ultimate reason is unconnected to ritual. To de extent that ritual is born out of de understanding of de cosmological wheel, de elements are its molecular tools whose proportion to one another must be monitored en restored when needed. The procedure for dis is ritual.

Fiya rituals rekindle de connecshun to de ancestral moto en de moto within vision. Wota rituals cleanse en reconcile, restoring peace. Earth rituals ground en comfort, bringing a sense of nyumbani en belonging. Mineral rituals restore memory en light up a sense of knowing. Nature rituals restore de natural self en open us to de magic en wonder around us.

When a group of people gathers to conduct a ritual, in an indigenus context, people who embody each of de elements become de gatekeepers for dat particular element in de ritual en for de part of de ritual pertaining to that element.

As we’ve seen from posts of moons ago, a gatekeeper is a healer who by his or her nature is able to bridge this world of Spirit to be brought into de physical world. The gatekeepers of each element are those people whose genius, whose essential character, embodies de zawadis of that element. By virtue of de fact that you carry a certain zawadi, you are given a special relationship with de element from which that zawadi originated, en in this sense, you are a gatekeeper. You stand between de rest of community en that portion of the natural world that corresponds to your element en all that is represents symbolically…

Swagger

A person’s zawadis, when they emerge, make de carrier of de zawadi a servant to a particular gate, en because they are servant to that particular gate, we call them gatekeepers. Though every person embodies one element in particular, all elements must be present in each person.

Not only de Dagara people have developed this notion of gate keeping, of overseeing something vital to de healthy functioning of de community, in order to satisfy people’s innate desire to serve. By serving de gateway to an elemental aspect of de natural world, a person allows de qualities en resources that element represents to be brought to the community, giving de community wot it needs to blossom fully…….ase

[in-the middle hadithi…..Chapter5]                                      

Mentors and the Life of Youth

There are certain things without which young people cannot survive and flourish, and mentoring is one of them. Westerners see adolescents as fundamentally naive about life. By contrast, the tribal mentor sees a youth as someone who already contains all of the knowledge that he or she needs, but who must work with an older, more experienced person to “remember” what they know.

A mentor therefore is not a teacher in the strict sense of the term, but a guide who shows the way, working from a position of respect and affinity, addressing the knowledge within the young person. The pupil is not an ignorant person in the eye of her or his mentor. The pupil is seen as a storehouse, a repository of something the mentor is quite familiar with and very interested in, something the mentor themselves has and know very well. The mentor perceives a presence knocking at a door within the pupil, and accepts the task of finding, or becoming, the key that opens the door. There develops a relationship of trust between mentor and pupil, motivated by love, and without which success would be unlikely.

AWAKENING GENIUS

Mentoring is aimed at increasing security, clarity, and maturity in the young person. It seeks to develop the genius within a young person so that the youth can arrive at his, hir or her destination – the sharing of one’s gifts within the community….in Afrika, as elsewhere, the journey of a young person through adolescence is taken with the help of a mentor, so that the young person may grow into the mature adult who can live out her, hir or his purpose in the community, giving of one’s genius and receiving, in turn, the help of others.

At the core of mentoring is the understanding that genius must be invited out of a person. People carry to this world something important that they must deliver, and mentors help deliver that genius to the community. To see the genius in a young person is to give it the fertile ground required for it to burst forth and blossom, for it is not enough to be born into this world loaded with such a beauty.

The newborn must be assisted in giving birth to the genius that s/he is born with. Failure to do so kills the genius along with the person carrying it. The community responsible for the death of an inner genius is like an assassin. The community that is able to receive the person’s genius gives birth to an adult who is able to contribute his or her healing gifts to that community.

The West defines genius as a great intelligence, or an exceptional talent. I don’t reject that definition. But it is different from the indigenous definition, which sees genius as an open line that flows through a person from the Other World. It seems to me that limiting the meaning of genius to intelligence or talent displaces it from its real source, and privatizes it in the individual. If genius has no grounding in the sacred, then it becomes easy for the community to ignore it if it chooses. In the traditional context, the community does not have a choice. The community is obligated to awaken the newcomer’s genius, and the ritual welcoming of the newborn into this world is the community’s official acceptance of this responsibility….

Mentoring is a role that is assumed not strictly by age, but by ability and experience….but more parents and grandparents are mentors. It is not surprising to find mentors aged twenty-five to thirty years if the need and the knowledge are present. Similarly the people mentored cover a wide range of ages, at least with respect to the knowledge being exchanged in that relationship. This is because in indigenous Afrika, knowing means becoming old. To say that someone is old is to say that this person knows something or has experienced something valuable. Furthermore, the mature self is hardened in the field of experience by awareness. In contrast, the werd young refers not just to age but also to the absence of awareness.

The way villages are structured leaves no room for a young person to escape having a mentor. The cohesiveness and identity of a village require this kind of caretaking. Unlike loosely formed modern communities, where each person is preoccupied by his, hir or her own affairs, kijiji life requires that most things be done collectively because people are very tightly connected. Tight connecshun requires friction. In turn, friction among people deepens their sense of belonging. People bound by community are sure, at some point, to get on one another’s nerves. This is not considered a bad thing, but rather a part of the natural human experience…..

If mentors are spiritual parents, biological parents are stepping stones, the points of departure for children. At their best, biological mamas and babas are friends of their children. They can help their children as special friends do in times of need. But their limitation is to be almost helpless in the business of bringing out the child’s true spirit. This is where the mentor enters in, since his or her spirit becomes for the pikney a mirror of what the pikin is feeling inside. Consequently, their relationship has some content that is based on Spirit, in contrast to the paternal relationship, which is based on biology……

Chapter 6                                                            Elders and the Community

No matter what culture you belong to, certain personal situations and social relationships are inescapable. For example, common to everyone is the recurrent feeling of needing to expand and to grow. Similarly, you cannot help at certain points in your life feeling the need for the emotional, psychological, and social support of others. Everyone needs to come into some sort of visibility, some sort of recognition. Just as these experiences establish the need for a mentor, they also establish the need for elders. Where a mentor invites the genius of a youth to come out of its hiding, an elder blesses that genius, thereby allowing it to serve efficiently the greater good.

Zanele Muholi

We will be talking about two kinds of elders in this series (of hadithi), an elder in the formal sense of a village or community leader who helps community members coexist peacefully, and elders in the informal sense of people whose age makes them invaluable resources in community life……

The elder is as important to the community as the newborn, in that they both share proximity with the Other World, the ancestors’ world. The newborn just arrived from there, and the old one, the elder, is preparing to go there. The very young and the very old complement each other because they draw from one another. The very old honour youth as the source of collective physical stability and strength and as recent arrivals to this world, who are more closely connected to the ancestors….

Perhaps the respect owed to the elder derives from the perception that the elder is at this critical junction where the natural meets the supernatural and where the ancestors and the divine intersect with the humans. In indigenous Afrikan context, this is a place of great freedom and great responsibility. In effect, the elder is almost the only one in the village who can have things his, hir or her way.

But more important, the elder’s posture is rooted in their intimate connection to the balance between this life and the Other World without which village life would be a nightmare. Not only Dagara people have made up their minds that they can’t live without elders….indigenous belief in this is so strong that tribal communities cannot understand how cultures can thrive without elders, the same way that a modern person would have a hard time imagining a life without electricity and running water…..

[coming soon…. profiles of elders! from revised excerpts from The Healing Wisdom of Africa: Finding Life Purpose Through Nature, Ritual and Community by Malidoma Patrice Some]

 [In the beginning hadithi…..]

With a visible breath I yam walking;

I yam walking toward a buffalo nation.

And my voice is loud.

With a visible breath I yam walking;

I yam walking toward dis sacred object.

SACRED CALF PIPE WOMBAN

[There`s a story I know bout how dis ting called ubuntu initiated Molisa into de world wide web en healing/arts for social change movements kept dis blog here. I yam deeply grateful for divine collectives kama tdot renaissance, for when werds are not enough, there are true hadithi from simbas speaking. Oga I beg, check dis litanies of survival by sistas I love, respekt en admire so, en be inspired o!

Paukwa! Pakawa! Hadithi? Hadithi? Hadithi njoo, ukweli njoo, Utamu kolea.

Hapo zamani za kale palikuwa na…]

LAKOTA CREASHUN HADITHI

Iyan, de rock existed in a void; it was dark en lonely there. Iyan wished to create something other, so that he would not be lonely en so that he could have some powah over something other than himself. He pierced himself, en his blood, which was blue, flowed out until he was shrivelled, hard en powerless. What came from him formed Maka Ina (Mama Earth). De blue also formed de oceans, but de released powahs could not reside in de wota, so they formed de blue sky dome en called it Mahpiyato [blue sky].

The energy given up by de rock, now hard en powerless, is Taku Skan Skan, that which moves all tings. This powah was now diffused into de female earth, de male sky en de wotas.

Mahpiyato, creates Anpetu Wi, de Sun of de day, en Hanhepi Wi, de Sun of de night, or Mwezi [moon], to share his world with him. They marry, en there is constant daylight. S/he creates Tate’, de Baba, Igwe, or “chief” of all winds.

Created next are de Pte’ Oyate’, humans who live under de ground. They are created to serve de god/desses. They are called de Pte’ Oyate’ or Buffalo Nation; they become us, de Lakota. Their Igwe is Wazi [Old Man], en his wife is Wakanta [Old Womban].

They have a daughter, Ite’ [face], who grows up to be de most beautiful of de Ikce’ people. Ite’ is admired by Tate’, de Wind en eventually marries hir. Wakanka is not satisfied dat her daughter is married to a god, Tate’ en dat her children are de four winds. She wishes her beautiful daughta to be married to Wi, de Sun. She wishes for herself, her husband, en her daughta to have de powah of de god/desses en conspires with Iktomi, the Spider [trickster], to get what she wants.

He promises to help them, if they help him in his plan to make people look ridiculous forever. Iktomi tells Wi that he should have a feast to show everyone how proud he is of de Pte’ womban Ite’. He then helps Wakanka construct a magic charm for Ite’, so she will soon become so beautiful dat it will make Wi fall in love with her daughta.

Later, Iktomi sees Hanhepi, clothed in all her beauty, heading towards de feast. He tells her dat Ite’ has

been invited en dat she has made for herself a special dress. He encourages de Moon to return to her lodge en put on a mo beautiful face. Afraid to be embarrassed by a mere human, she agrees.

According to Iktomi’s plan, dis puts Ite’ at de feast of de god/desses before de Moon. iktomi tells her dat de empty seat beside Wi is for her, en she sits down next to de Sun. Then Wi, de Sun, takes one look at her en falls in love. Soon Hanhepi arrives to find her husband staring longingly at Ite’, a mere human. Ite’ sits wid Wi, ignoring her own husband, Tate’, de Wind. De Moon is shamefaced en storms off.

Angered, Mahpiyato, de Sky, calls de spirit together en punishes them for their foolishness. He banishes Ite’ to de earth, making one side of her face forever ugly, en tells her, “From now on you will be known as Anukite’, Double Faced Woman!” She is pregnant by Tate’ with their fifth child. Because of her mischief, Yummi, Whirlwind, is born playful en childlike. He will neva grow up. Sky sends Wakanka en Wazi to de far edges of de world, where they will wander forever. Tate’ is giv en custody of all five “wind” pikin en sent to de face of de earth, where he is to await a messenger, who will be Whope’, daughta of Mahpiyato himself.

Wi is told that because of his betrayal he will neva see his wife again. Hanhepi is told that because of her shame, she will constantly turn her

back on her husband en will neva look at him directly again. This begins de second time, night, en initiates de day-night cycle, en the third time, de “changing” moon or months.

Over time, Anukite’ comes to be lonely for Ikce’ or human nation. In spite of Mahpiyato’s admonition that she neva reside with her people, she begins to scheme. Drawn both by her desires en by his own for a lil mischief is Iktomi, also banished to earth for his part at de great feast. He is tired of teasing de animals en wishes to have mo fun, if only he en Anukite’ can

entice the Pte’ Oyate’ [humans] to de surface of de world. They decide that Iktomi changes his form to that of a wolf and, with de wondrous tanned en quilled robe of de buffalo en some roasted meat, heads for de cave known to connect de surface world with de underworld. He will leave de buffalo robe en meat near de entrance to entice de Ikce’ people to de surface.de smell of freshly roasted buffalo meat will entice them out of their cave. Anukite’ kills a buffalo, prepares de meat, en decorates the tanned robe with de quills of a porcupine.

Tokahe’ [First Man], chief of de Pte’ Oyate’, or Buffalo Nation, asks de spider to lead them to de surface world, where he finds de wondrous zawadis (gifts) en brings them back underground en shows them to the People. Six men and six women are convinced that Tokahe’ has found a betta place to live and follow him en his wife to de surface.

Here they become de ancestors of de Oceti Sagowin [Seven Fiya Places] that make up de Lakota, Dakota, en Nakota peoples – de People who are today called Sioux by de whites.

Soon de seasons changed, en de People wished to escape de cold that was sent by North Wind to torture them. They searched for de cave entrance but could not find it. Tokahe’, no longer Pte’ People but now only Ikce Oyate’ [common people], became frightened en ashamed; he cried for help. Wazi, now called “the Wizard”, en his wife, Wakanka,  now known as “the Witch” because of her ability to predict the future, will take pity on de humans, teaching them many tings that they will need to know to live on dis changing dunia. Thus de people learned to make their homes on earth.

(Originally told to Mark St. Pierre by Colleen Cutshall, Lakota artist and educator)

[remixed from Walking in the Sacred Manner / Healers, Dreamers, and Pipe Carriers – Medicine Women of the Plains Indians by Mark St. Pierre and Tilda Long Soldier]

[In de middle….Hadithi? Hadithi?  Are you ready for multi-layered readings of renaissance?]

De terms of de vision quest of maisha require dat you master de ability to walk in balance between those two worlds without getting caught between them. To a certain extent, it will be necessary to internalise de dunia of de Great Mama, for her perfect silence en solitude will not always be physically available to you. One way to ensure her constant presence in your moyo is to perform a simple daily ceremony……

Times will come when you can physically return to de wilderness en again hold communion with de moyo of Granmama Earth. But neva will you go to her to escape. You will go because you seek to return to e human world wid de benefits of her teaching en empowerment. She will offer you temporary asylum en will send her messengers to validate and clarify your life purposes. She will give you further insight into de resources available to you. Treat her with reverence en she will reverence you.

There will be many times when you stumble and fall, when you are certain no one in the human world knows or cares. Then you will want to crawl back to your power place en begin all over again. Remember that these are de times of greatest potential, when you are looking your dragons square in e eye. When all is said en done, only you know what you have hidden away, growing steadily en surely with its magical roots in your subsoil. As you grow, de vision grows. There is no other way.

[remixed excerpts from Kitabu ya The Vision Quest: Personal Transformation in the Wilderness by Steven Foster with Meredith Little]

En so goes dis love letter to Tdot renaissance. Nakupenda o! Werds are lacking in how to say asante to you.

Ire, Ire, ire!
Ire aiku, ire aya, ire omo, ire owo, ire isegun l’ori ota, ire alafia.
Blessings of long life, good health, obedient children, prosperity, victory over your enemies and peace of mind.

“I Am because We Are; and because We Are, therefore I Am!”

Ase….

Paukwa pakawa…inscriptions have been found in which Isis is associated with the city of Noreia; Noreia today is Neumarkt in Styria (Austria)…worship of de “Black Madonnas” probably begun during de same period. This ‘cult’ still survives in France (Our Lady Underground, or the Black

Madonna of Chartres). It remained so vivid that de Roman Catholic Church finally had to consecrate it.

The very name of the French capital might be explained by the spread of Isis. “The term ‘Parisii’ could well mean ‘Temple of Isis,’ for there was a city with dis name on the banks of de Nile, en the hieroglyph per represents the enclosure of a temple on the Oise.”

The author is referring to the fact that de first  inhabitants of the present site of Paris, who fought against Caesar, bore de name Parisii, for some reasons unknown today. De worship of Isis was evidently quite widespread in France, especially in de Parisian basin; temples of Isis, in western parlance, were everywhere….

De Sabaean god/desses were jus bout de same as Babylonian gods en all belonged to de same Kushite family of Nubian en Phoenician deities….de only triad revered was: venus-sun-moon, as in Babylon….they addressed a direct invocation to de seven planets. De 30-day fasting period already existed, as in Egypt. They prayed seven times each day, with their faces turned toward de north. These prayers to de sun at different hours somewhat resemble Muslim prayers, which take place during de same phases, but which have been reduced by de Prophet to five compulsory prayers “to relieve humanity”; de other 2 prayers are optional.

There were also sacred springs en stones, as in Muslim times: Zenzen,a sacred spring; Kaaba, a sacred stone. De pilgrimage to Mecca already existed. De Kaaba was reputed to have been constructed by Ishmael, son of Abraham en Hagar de Egyptian (a Negro womban), historical ancestor of Mohammed, according to all Arab historians.

As in Egypt, belief in a future life was already prevalent. Ancestors were deified. Thus, all de elements necessary for de blossoming of Islam were in place more than 1,000 years before de birth of Mohammed. Islam would appear as a purification of Sabaeanism by de “Messenger of God.”….kama hadithi ya hawk, de messenger.

According to indigenus [to Kobe island] myths, Hawk is akin to Mercury, de messenger of de god/desses….Wahenga (De Ancients) recognised dis magnificent bird of prey as a messenger bringing tidings to their Earth Walk, the Good Red Road, from de world of de grandfathers en grandmamas who lived before them….

Remember: Hawk has a keen eye en a bold heart, for Hawk flies close to de light of Grandfather Sun….

[remixed hadithi from The African Origin of Civilization – Myth or Reality written by Cheikh Anta Diop and Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams & David Carson]