[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]

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makmende goes on a badass quest

Q[_]t (pronounced officially as cute /ˈkjuːt/, though more commonly as Q.T. /ˌkjuːˈtiː/)

s/heroes who inspire us so

[werd remix/ed] is a cross-platform application framework [series] that is widely used for developing application software with a graphical user interface (GUI) (in which cases Qt is referred to as a widget toolkit), and also used for developing non-GUI programs such as command-line tools and consoles for servers.

[in the art of taking participatory leadership to scale with (queer, trans/two-spirited) indigenus perspectives from the continent to the diaspora of righteousness en, back to (akina babu, watoto na mama wa) Afreeka (with big love) migrashuns]

Qt is most notably used in Autodesk Maya,[7][8] Dassault DraftSight[9][10] Google EarthKDEAdobe Photoshop Album, the European Space Agency,[11] OPIESiemens,[12] Volvo,[13] Walt Disney Animation Studios,[14] Skype,

VLC media player,[15] Samsung,[16]Philips,[17] Panasonic,[18] VirtualBox and Mathematica.[19]

It is produced by Nokia‘s Qt Development Frameworks division, which came into being after Nokia’s acquisition of the Norwegiancompany Trolltech, the original producer of Qt.[20]

[with “freshly pressed” blogs on-the-ground kama ya african activists,  www.ancestryinprogress.tumblr.com, http://blacklooks.org/, behind the mask, gay uganda, kubatana, none on record, spectra speaks, the weapon of the revolution, things I feel strongly about, writing rights…..holding memories of rainbow nations en delving into UKWELI YA the complexities of hadithi zetu en QPOC resistance, to what comes next…a courageous.healing love….but who among us carries the sage secrets of loving?]

[songs in the spaces between: dream(season)s of co-creating sustainable learning villages,

farming en harvesting di powah of (our visions for) UHAI]

Distributed under the terms of the GNU Lesser General Public License (among others), Qt is free and open source software…….

[hadithi? Hadithi? Hadithi njoo! Uongo njoo! Utamu kolea!

Wetin next steps, after reaching out to the frontlines of the heart of our dreams, acknowledging dey s/heroes we’ve known from time and wetin those ‘betta practice’ paths of harvesting the powah! of cata(c)lysts, youth social infrastructure collaboratives en the legacies of elders en ancestors in coalition building? ]

[Hadithi? Hadithi? Hadithi njoo! Who among us carry the sage secrets of loving o?

Kesho in the Q_t werd…….b is for black queer resistance, blackness yes en Blockorama as cultural champions of Tdot en others who inspire en nourish we so, whom we are infinitely grateful for…]

I was born when lizards were in ones and twos

colour spill productions: east side story

A child of Idemili. The difficult tear drops

Of sky’s weeping drew my spots. Being

Sky-born I walked the earth with royal gait

And mourners saw me coiled across their path.

But of late

A strange bell

Has been singing a song of desolation:

Leave your yams and cocoyams

And come to school.

And I must run away in haste

When children in play or in earnest cry:

Look! A Christian is on the way……

[read Travels of alice in wonderland:upside-down]

…beside/s the sorrow of the solitary voice that now wailed after them they might have been returning with a bride. The sweet agony of the solitary singer settled like dew on the head.

Dis hadithi is about ‘IT’, for the purposes of dis blog (story/teller) ‘IT’

[revised excerpts  ya Arrow of God by Chinua Achebe]


is the tangled web of realities that transform (not only) my perspectives on waiting for superman, the politrix of diverse media on [david]kato’s trial, retreats en the pursuit of ‘rapture’ TO what comes next…

like a poem from d’bi young anitafrika’s epic dub archive….ancient concept…..

it all comes down to.. nothing less than UPENDO

that has me (en we)not only advocating for truth n reconciliation but co-creating epics of the hadithis of our lives with our learning villages

IT is what has had us rebelling in righteousness and rebuilding our homesteads from (long ago)

sharing all our resources to grow[ing] magical forests  en farm[ing] yams, pumpkins n herbs, multiply[ing] heads of goats en hens

retelling [ancient] poetry openly in diverse urban spaces [never confessing bush-rituals. But. dey plotting big time for return from exile o…..

[between the lines: we ask those tuff questions of remembering tradishun en paths of harvesting the powah! of our diversity,

only) TUKIFAFANUA the complexities of ‘every-night-till-the-newyamfeast’

(na)the urgency of security/interventions for LGBTIQ asylum seekers,

(na) the sacredness of  bredrin en sistrin/outsiders

IT is the spaces between silence, organising, and play(ing)with friends en families, praying (even) for blessings for  our enemies, and those who fight us…

IT is the struggle to maintain the abundance of well being and prosperity to blue sky and farm in the rurals,

source: sprbd.tumblr.com

Dreaming to Embark on a year long (artist-in-residence) retreat with (s)kin folk[s], finance [grassroots] organising with Bredrin and sistas in solidarity like   AfraKenya, Black Queer Resistance en The Brown Boi Project, Colour Me Dragg and FARUg , SMUG & T.I.TsUganda, Deviant & Goldelox productions,

massive human-positive en salaam coalitions and the people project[s] facilitating positive relearning en transformation at spaces like [moyo wa Afreeka] centres en women’s health in women’s hands,

IT is re/mapping the foundations of healing/schools without borders through [queer/Afrikan re-visions of en call outs for un]conferences like

Queer It Yourself – Tools for Survival

[read: how to become a professional queer –  in another place not here

Play: spot the remix/ed en indigenus….hold a memory..harvest pumpkins, yams en herbs]

As a part of the 2011 National Queer Arts Festival, “A Sustainable Queer Planet,” the Visual Arts Committee presents…….

QIY: A laboratory…envisioned as… [re]creating a sustainable queer culture and demonstrating the power of self and community organizing, co-creation, speculation, and transformation.

As an antidote to anti-sociality theories of queerness (that suggest queerness can only be rendered as a negation of heteronormativity), Queer It Yourself invites artists to forge their own tools for surviving the everyday challenges of contemporary queer existence…….

Queering the index….the various sections of the QIY exhibition include:

Land Use / Dig it (organic farming, community gardens, eco-projects, cruising sites, earthworks, recycling projects, rural gay culture, hippies and rednecks, RFD zine, Billy Club, 420 cultures, mountain men, off the grid living, survivalism, subsistence, indigenous and third world land use, border disputes)

Shelter / Sheltering (guides to urban and rural homemaking, urban and rural homelessness, cars, tents, bridges and freeway overhangs, tiny houses, pre-fab housing, visionary architecture, greening your living space, creating mood lighting with energy efficient fixtures, housing collectives, polyamorous living)

Craft Making / Queering it (queer arts and crafts, craft demos, how-to guides and workshops, how to use etsy.com, Blurb and self-publishing software, QIY kinky toys, homemade fashion and couture)

Commerce / Selling it (experiments with capitalism, fashion collectives, sexwork, alternative book,

art, and product distribution, queer & LGBT marketing demographics, critiques, small businesses, barter, trade, resource-based economy vs. commodity-based economy)

Community / Join in (political organizing, queer community organizing, ad hoc political action committees, queer pride, gay shame, organizing your first demonstration, social & political groups, leather clubs, s/m networks, biker gangs)

Nomadics / Roaming (the culture of the road, the runway, the superhighway, jetsetting, transnationalism, queer diasporas, queer immigrant and exile cultures)

C

kwetu

ommunications / Connecting (zines, homo-core

music, queer speed-dating, independent publishing, social networking, blogging, listserves, social media, flashmobs, promotional strategies, writing your first press release, street art, posters, stickers, queer graffiti)

Learning / Get Schooled (community art and culture projects, health activism, continuing education, grant writing and fundraising, guides for queer survival, mentorship, “training” in leather circles, drag “mothers”, informal or marginal methods of transmitting culture, service, apprenticeships)

Style / Working it (working the runway, drag king & queen culture, ball culture, leather, gear, street styles, rural styles, international styles, fashion and make-up tips and tricks, makeover demonstrations, finding the right photographer for your head-shot)

We welcome artwork, ephemera, documentation, publications, zines, music, videos, installations, DIY kits, guides, instruction manuals, maps, charts,

source:natural belle.tumblr.com

top-ten tips, alternative cosmologies, proposals for live demonstrations, workshops and interactive QIY workstations.

Propose a history of Zine culture, show work of collective art projects, show artifacts of ad hoc political action committees, give live demonstrations of quilting and queer homemaking, offer a do-it-yourself stencil-making so that you too can be a street artist, and much more…

[deadline to submit proposals passed but…If you have questions (say about funding for travel n accommodations or collaborating with grassroots networks),

please contact QIY@queerculturalcenter.org [and] uhai.eashri@gmail.com [pia]

todavidwithlove@gmail.com [na] check dis conference in another place, not here….mo’ wisdom circles in world cafes on the art of taking participatory leadership to scale]

UHAI-EASHRI is pleased to announce that the 3rd Regional Changing Faces, Changing Spaces Conference will be convened in Nairobi, Kenya from 4th to 6th May, 2011. This conference will bring together activists from the LGBTI and sex worker movements in East Africa, as well as health and legal professionals, human rights activists and organisations, and donor partners working in the Region (Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Burundi, Rwanda).
As such, UHAI is requesting participation, input and support from activists within the LGBTI and sex worker movements across the five countries. It is hoped that a representative team of activists will guide UHAI in developing the Conference agenda with the needs of the activist community in mind and in light of lessons learned from the 1st and 2nd Conferences.

This will require activist participants, working with the Conference Task Force, to volunteer time and their unique perspectives in helping this Conference meet the needs of all the stakeholders involved in UHAI. Further to this, the activist participants will be involved in crucial decision making regarding the logistics and organizing of this Conference. Therefore, we are seeking a maximum of 8 LGBTI and sex worker activists to volunteer a little of their time (hopefully not more than 5 hours per week in the run up to the Conference). Activist participants will need to have email and telephone access.

This is a great opportunity to shape the 3rd Changing Faces, Changing Spaces

Conference and to ensure your place at it!

….please feel free to send any inputs or inquiries to the Conference Coordinator at angusparkinson@gmail.com.

Looking forward to your support, input and participation!

CFCS³ Conference Team

give thanx for yesterday, today en kesho in the Q_t werd: we reveal s/heroes behind the masks,

(share our communing usiku at one a dem tambors for esu [odara]

en invite mo artists to)  co-create enchanted retreats

betwixt en between blue skies/ancient forests,

canoes on the Indian ocean en altars on mountains of the moon,

dis hadithi is the keeper of secrets, esu carry my prayer, divine messenger of transformashun, melding with [great] mystery ase::

dreams of, documenting en facilitating luv-in Elimu sanifu missions of [healing] Safe Spaces with people you [/we are blessed to] know like Lost Lyrics en Manifesto with The Weapon of The Revolution

#todavidwithlove projects watering seeds from Kampala to Nairobi, Tdot to Brooklyn, Cape-town to Dar-es-salaam en Kigali, Montego Bay to Santiago de Cuba, Lagos to Jinja en Tripoli,

from the diaspora of righteousness [back] to Afreekan shores, on a quest of maps with doors to no return.

Are you ready?

Hadithi? Hadithi? Hadithi njoo…….

Giza ya? Sahani ya?

Wetin dey (UKWELI YA) riddle of the sphinx o?

Hadithi? Hadithi? What would Makmende do?

Hadithi njoo, uwongo njoo, utamu kolea….

Sikiliza kuna hadithi. Kuna maneno utakuja kuelezewa. Sikilizeni niwasimulieni ngano.

Hapo (si) zamani za kale palitokea safari ya pan-Afrikans all ova di continent en within di diaspora of righteousness……

The ‘peacefulness’ of these elections has allowed some bloggers to look at the funny side of things.

Urban Legend Kampala keeps things in perspective, with fictitious interviews:

Urban Legend: Mr Museveni, what plans do you have for this next term of yours?

Museveni: Well, generally speaking our vision is to consolidate the gains made so far by my government so far, to keep Uganda progressing on track, to discover and exploit even more ways to maximize our natural resources and to further cement the vice-grip I currently have on power until the point that not even Armageddon can unseat me.

Urban Legend: Good luck with that, sir.

[Reposted with overflowing love, respekt en humility from http://wildugandablog.com/ ………Nollywood style…..]

Hadithi? Hadithi? Hadithi njoo……it is stories like these though that  inspire so many mo of us, so empowering when comrades and friends we love, respekt en admire, like bombastic kasha are abundantly recognised for their struggles and those of others on the frontline, ni kweli pamoja tunafika 🙂

http://www.africanactivist.org/2011/03/kasha-jacqueline-on-women-deliver-100.html

Hadithi? Hadithi?  Check dis text messages expressing support for mo of our freedom fighters like, Munyaradzi Gwisai of theInternational Socialist Organisation (Zimbabwe) and the 44 others who have been charged with treason:

Absurd it is and I condemn it in the strongest manner possible. Asi kuenda kwemukuru shingai varume we are with you in spirit.

  • ‘Let my people go.’ Exodus 5 v. 2 History is on our side! Age is on our side! People are on our side! God is on our side! The people shall govern!
  • Under these very difficult circumstances I wish you courage, faith, patience and humour.
  • The world has eyes. Nothing is going to happen to the 45 detained on false treason charges.
  • No rule of law, no democracy, no peace, no justice. It’s high time we should take to the streets and demonstrate against dictatorship.   
  • Let us pray for them. God is for the oppressed. One day he will free his oppressed people. Let’s have faith in him.
  • I support them because they are driving towards human, civil, political, social and economic rights.
  • We must be free to choose our favourite leaders.
  • Vicious regimes are destined to fall. We’ve the strong conviction to free our nation. Let’s fight on guys.
  • The Almighty God is watching. You will conquer. Keep the wheels of change rolling. We are with you.
  • Those who arrested the 45 are the ones who are committing treason.
  • Free the 45 now! – Batanai
  • To those imprisoned we want you to know that we serve a God of infinite justice. Be encouraged. We will pray for you and hold you in our hearts. – Nan
  • An injury to one is an injury to all. We are with them wherever they are. We will stand with them.

[reposted from http://www.kubatanablogs.net/kubatana/]

[we hear you, we see you, we feel you, tupo pamoja!]

[From i,S.I.S to Bredrin en dadas in solidarity, in the words of  one of my life-long sista/wifeys, “……..i fucking love you….” wanted to send you a special of specialiest of asantes for your divine selves and zawadis…i’m so grateful that we were sent into each other’s lives and that these soul families of ours are so nourishing and positively transforming….dis love letter is reposted with overflowing love, respekt en humility from a life-long dada in India and @  http://www.rehanatejpar.com ]

Hello dear friends,

I hope you are all well and carving your paths the way you wish.  Since I last wrote here, there have been many experiences and moments of self-reflection which have impacted my views on life, learning and where I think I need to grow.  I will try to capture some of my insights and outsights here, bearing in mind that my ideas are constantly being reformed and re-thought, that I am on a journey of seeking and have by no means reached my destination.

I am in Udaipur, Rajasthan and Shikshantar is a beautiful and inspiring place. It’s an open learning community where people of all ages are living and learning in a more practical, collaborative and sustainable way.  Do-it-yourself, zero waste – everything is made into something else. Solar cookers out of old trunks, a bicycle powered washing machine from an old drum and a stationary bicycle, a table from an old door on two wheels, baskets, blinds, coasters made from newspaper, never will you need to go to IKEA again, I tell you.

Guided by Gandhian principles,swadeshi – meeting needs locally and using indigenous products to the land you find yourself, is really important to Shikshantar.  They are growing organic vegetables in the garden, and support local farmers to also grow organic.  They pay a lot of attention to the food they eat, and try to eat a diversity of local millets, which have nourished Indians for millennia but which arebeing eaten less and less with the pressures from industrial agriculture towards monoculture. So although there are thousands of different kinds of rice and grains, today you find only a few largely being used across India, threatening the survival of many.  Cooking and eating is a communal ritual at Shikshantar and a lot of care is put into the process. Everyday all veg, local food is cooked and eaten together – without oil! For India, this is hard to imagine, since oil is in everything. Instead they use alternatives like nuts, mustard seeds, onions, tomatoes.

A sign in the kitchen says “We consider healthy, organic food to be the best form of health insurance.” I couldn’t agree more.

They are really working to shift consciousness and re-imagine other ways of thinking, doing and being

which are outside of the known, dominant systems currently in place.

They understand participation in the dominant system as violent as they know that exploitation is involved in extracting resources, manufracturing products and transporting them. They try to find local, more gentle alternatives to meeting their needs and are bringing forward indigenous knowledges, creativity, and the lesser recognized powers of trust, love, collaboration and spirit to empower their movement.

There’s a revolving door of workshops happening in the space, not to mention knowledgeable people from diverse fields, so learning from doing and discussing is happening constantly.   Last week we had a 10 day film making workshop and people came from across India.  It’s called Swapathgami – the one who makes their own path.  The first project was a personal photography project which I think helped to situate folks in themselves first.  Next they chose groups and created a short film which we screened the last day.  There wasn’t huge emphasis placed on technical skills of editing and videography, but more on creating good stories.  This way you first unleash your creativity and then you will learn how to edit and what shots work more or less as you go.  What was really refreshing was that every other day there was a skills share where participants had the opportunity to share something they know and people picked up far more skills than just film making. I learned how to make a spoon from a coconut!

The film making workshop introduced me to many unschoolers. Shikshantar has a walkout/walkon network which supports people who walkout of school or from their jobs to pursue their own paths, versus the ready-made road. I have for a long time felt and known that the

system of schooling worldwide is insufficient to developing our good character, our practical, life skills, our creativity or knowledge of self which enable us to be in the world in a non-violent way.  What I am realizing now is that schooling is a violent process which views people, souls, as pieces of clay which can be molded into whatever society wants and needs.  And the school’s goal of manufacturing conforming workers to fit into neat boxes in society, tries to beat out the being’s being.

Where is there room for the being to identify what resonates within them, to self-guide their learning, to pursue their own passions and know themselves? There is very little freedom within the processes of schooling.  And what has schooling produced?  The society we live in.  What do you think of our society?  I see a lot of negative, unfortunately (though I am consciously trying to think more positively these days). So I won’t even go into the hierarchies over nature and between humans, the violence, exploitation, constructed needs, and suffering which is man-made and within and around us.  How can we not locate schooling, the most far-reaching socially constructing device in this modern world as a serious cause of society’s ills? How do its disciplining structures and rigidity block our creativity and confidence, producing fears, insecurities and competition?

How has the emphasis placed on literacy resulted in the loss of oral traditions and livelihoods of peoples and cultures worldwide?  How have the schooled and literate produced more harm in the world than the unschooled, illiterates? How can we think differently about the way we could allow our young and old to grow? Learning, after all is what enables humanity’s continual survival and evolution.

The past week I spent with a beautiful family in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. They have unschooled both their children and have chosen a path less traveled.  I observed and played with these children and was so impressed with how mature, confident, creative, and articulate they are.   They really are exceptional humans. They spend the day rotating between drawing, playing active games outside, making jewellery, paper-mache, playing chess…They chose what they want to do, and have learned a lot from observing their mother who is often making something.  These kids know what they want and what they don’t want because they are given space and freedom to choose.  They can articulate themselves well, are witty, smart…, 7 and 11 years…just exceptional. I have so much respect and admiration for their mother’s ability to not intervene in everything in her children’s lives, to let them figure out a problem instead of jumping to telling them what to do, how to do, or just doing it. She trusts them and believes that they are souls on their own unique path and that she must only be a guide to them self-actualizing.  I think about how much I want to create an open learning space where my children and other children could learn through

doing and discussing together.  And then I also think about how bossy and controlling I can be.  And how that comes from ego and insecurity – subconsciously or consciously wanting to have power over life – even my own – to dominate over uncertainty and natural flow to breed anticipated outcomes.  So that things happen the way I think they should – as if I may know better than the Divine what should happen, or how someone ought to be.  When just being who we really are is the best we can be.  Just like a flower, who just is, and doesn’t need to go to school or be told how to be a flower and smell and look good and provide pollen for bees – we also need to just be.  I have much to unlearn.

I’ve been thinking more about movement and theatre and how I have always had a passion to work with these mediums, either as a performer myself or as a facilitator with youth and children, but how I’ve somehow allowed “work” to get in the way of really diving into it or trusting my capabilities in these fields (because I have no piece of paper that says I’m an expert….ahh the diploma disease!).

So now that I have been gifted this time of rethinking I am realizing that I want to work with these mediums to facilitate re-imagining , understanding and transcending oppression, reconnection to our inner voices, cooperation vs. competition, mindfulness of what we think, speak and do, interconnectedness, living non-violently, trust in oneself and others….let me start there. And that I want to yes, be inspired and use the experiences and methods of others who have come before me, and also, more intentionally create my own ways of using these methods especially with children and youth from marginalized communities.   I hope to develop workshops and practice them here and then hopefully with you when I next see you again!!

And in the process I’m working on healing myself from my socialization and schooling which has taught me away from nature and my natural way, to distrust myself and my abilities, to be violent against myself and other beings by taking more than I need and having too many expectations of myself, from negative thinking, and control, disconnection from my body, my waste (and how it should be recycled)…and much more. Healing is happening on all levels. Being slow is helping. Picking vegetables from the garden, cooking and eating really good food is helping (I’m going to start organic farming soon!). Having more time to think, make, read, write, meditate, talk and walk is really helping me to come back to being.

I am blowing you all a kiss of peace, wholeness, health and love. You are all in my hearts.

Rehana

[i,S.I.S note: I give thanks for yesterday, today and tomorrow….   Give thanks to my kukhu and granpa,  give thanks for my family, give thanks for those who share their love with me, and all those who have been sent to me, [give thanks for powah! Of prayer! ] en for all the positive transformashun!….

bless the collective of Bredrin and dadas watering the seeds of, fundraising for and facilitating good (re)education with youth/peers en elders in Brazil, India, Kenya, Uganda and Turtle Island, (like) through Elimu Sanifu, Safe Spaces, QLGBT groups, Black Queer Resistance, Goldelox Productions, AND The People Project; with the support of global networks like Bredrin en Dadas in Solidarity &  Schools Without Borders………  bless all a dem en their families, and all those around us….]

What is it?

A Photo Campaign in honor of David Kato’s life and legacy

(February 15,1964 – January 26, 2011)

Why should I care?

Because it is not going to get BETTER until all of our love can be celebrated openly

What can I do?

Join the Movement:To David, With Love” is about sending a message to our LGBTQ brothers and sisters in Afrika that we are watching, that we care and that we will not put up with their persecution any longer.

JOIN US: And make your sign or bring a sign with your personal message! We will photograph you and send your photo message to SMUG, for the QLGBT  community in Uganda.

 

Remember it is not going to get BETTER until all of our love can be celebrated openly

WHERE:

Women’s Health in Women’s Hands Community Health Centre

2 Carlton St, Suite 500 (near College Subway Station)

[Tdot]

WHEN:

Time: 6:00-8:30 pm

Tribute starts at 6:30PM sharp.

 

RSVP: humanwritesproject@rogers.com

Light refreshments

Sign-making materials will be provided

Bring your own markers, sparkles etc. to add that special touch….

A photo booth will be on site.

 

Sponsored by Black Queer Resistance ( BQR) & concerned LGBTQ citizens of Toronto.

The Petition

We the undersigned condemn in the strongest possible terms the murder of Mr David Kato the Ugandan gay rights campaigner. We wish to state emphatically that homosexuality is neither a sin nor a social or cultural construct. It is a biological given. Homosexuals are human beings like everybody else. Scientific research has been helpful in clearing the fog of ignorance entrenched by some religious texts in regards to homosexuality. Our opinions of homosexuality must change for the better just as our opinion of slavery has changed even though it was endorsed by those same religious texts. All violence against gays and people deemed to be gay in Africa must cease forthwith.

We call on the government of Uganda to find and prosecute all those involved in the murder of Mr Kato, including the newspaper that called for the hanging of gays. We also call on African governments to learn from the South African example by expunging from their laws all provisions that criminalize homosexuality or treat homosexuals as unworthy of the same rights and entitlements as other citizens. African states must protect the rights of their citizens to freedom and dignity. Homosexuals must not be denied these rights.

Undersigned:

1. Wale Adebanwi, PhD, University of California, US

2. Diran Adebayo, Writer, UK

3. Kayode Adeduntan, PhD, University of Ibadan, Nigeria

4. Biola Adegboyega, University of Calgary, Canada

5. Shola Adenekan, Editor, The New Black Magazine, UK

6. Pius Adesanmi, PhD, Carleton University, Canada

7. Akin Adesokan, PhD, Indiana University, US

8. Joe Agbro, Journalist, Nigeria

9. Anthony Akinola, PhD, Oxford, UK

10. Anengiyefa Alagoa, Writer, UK

11. Ellah Allfrey, Deputy Editor, Granta Magazine, UK

12. Alnoor Amlani, Writer, Kenya

13. Ike Anya, Public health doctor and writer, UK

14. Bode Asiyanbi, Writer, Lancaster University, UK

15. Sefi Atta, Writer, US

16. Lizzy Attree, PhD, University of East London, UK

17. Damola Awoyokun, Writer, UK

18. Doreen Baingana, Writer, Uganda

19. Igoni Barrett, Writer, Nigeria
20. Tom Burke, Bard College, US

21. Jude Dibia, Writer, Nigeria

22. Chris Dunton, PhD, National University of Lesotho, Lesotho

23. Ropo Ewenla, PhD, Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria

24. Chielozona Eze, PhD, Northeastern Illinois University, US

25. Aminatta Forna, Writer, UK

26. Ivor Hartmann, Writer, South Africa

27. Chris Ihidero, Writer, Lagos State University, Nigeria

28. Ikhide R. Ikheloa, Writer, US

29. Sean Jacobs, PhD, New School, US

30. Biodun Jeyifo, PhD, Harvard University, US

31. Brian Jones, Professor Emeritus, Zimbabwe

32. Martin Kiman, Writer, US

33. Lauri Kubuitsile, Writer, Botswana

34. Zakes Mda, PhD, Ohio University, US

35. Colin Meier, Writer, South Africa

36. Gayatri Menon, PhD, Franklin and Marshall College, US

37. Valentina A. Mmaka, Writer, Italy/South Africa

38. Jane Morris, Publisher, Zimbabwe

39. Mbonisi P. Ncube, Writer, South Africa

40. Iheoma Nwachukwu, Writer, Nigeria

41. Onyeka Nwelue, Writer and filmmaker, India/Nigeria

42. Nnedi Okorafor, PhD, Writer, Chicago State University, US

43. Ebenezer Obadare, PhD, University of Kansas, US

44. Juliane Okot Bitek, Writer, Canada

45. Tejumola Olaniyan, PhD, University of Wisconsin, US

46. Ngozichi Omekara, Trinidad and Tobago

47. Akin Omotosho, Actor and filmmaker, South Africa

48. Kole Omotosho, PhD, Africa Diaspora Research Group, South Africa

49. Samuel Sabo, Writer, UK

50. Ramzi Salti, PhD, Stanford University, US

51. Brett L. Shadle, PhD, Virginia Tech, US

52. Lola Shoneyin, Writer, Nigeria

53. Wole Soyinka, Nobel Laureate for Literature

54. Olufemi Taiwo, PhD, Seattle University, US

55. Kola Tubosun, Writer, Fulbright Scholar, United States

56. Uzor Maxim Uzoatu, Writer, Nigeria

57. Abdourahman A.Waberi, Writer, US /Djibouti

58. Binyavanga Wainaina, Writer, Kenya

59. Ronald Elly Wanda, Writer & Lecturer, Marcus Garvey Pan-Afrikan Institute, Uganda

60. Kristy Warren, PhD, University of Warwick, UK

61. Cornel West, Princeton University, US

[reposted from http://thingsifeelstronglyabout.blogspot.com/2011/02/writers-and-academics-against.html ]

give thanks for all those spreading love, hope, and positivity in abundance….bless them and their families, and all those around them….mo powah! to our unity 🙂