Friday, January 24, 2020
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Dr Maulana Karenga
New Year Wishes and Work: Pursuing and Practicing Peace
January 23, 2020
In this time of warmongering, weapon brandishing and the waging of war of various kinds against the vulnerable, revisiting this Kawaida stance and statement on the importance and essential good of peace is both needed and reaffirming. ... read more »
Considering King In Critical Times: Daring to Oppose War and Practice Peace
January 16, 2020
As we weave our way through the daily dose of lies and illusions, hype, hatred and hypocrisy from the White House, we must constantly question and be actively concerned about the relative sanity and real danger of those who continuously fake “imminent threats” and cry wolf to make war, and then try to wash away their sins of savagery with the dishonest indictment and blood of others. ... read more »
America Nodding and Nightmaring Towards War: Bedding Down and Mad-Maxing With Trump
January 9, 2020
It is an irony of history and a tragedy for the world that before we can finish making resolutions for a new and promising future, let alone begin building one, pathologies and problems of the past continue to pursue us, impose themselves on the present and threaten our very existence. And so, now we are confronted with the real possibility of a war in West Asia (the Middle East) which will no doubt, not only engulf the region, but also extend around the world. To speak of the pathologies and problems of the past is to speak of not only Trump’s thuggish act of war of assassinating Gen. Qassim Suleimani, commander of the Quds Force of the Iranian Army and perhaps the second highest ranking government member, but also of the continuing legacy and brutal practice of empire, imperialism, raw and unrepentant. ... read more »
Reconcieving Our New Year Resolution: Remembering Our Work in the World
December 26, 2019
This coming New Year will be the year 6260 on our oldest cal­endar, the ancient Egyp­tian calendar, the oldest calendar in the world. And we are the oldest people in the world, the elders of humanity. In­deed, we are builders of a Nile Valley civi­lization named Kemet that was once called the Light of the World, the Navel of the World and the Temple of the world. Therefore, be­fore we lose ourselves in the established order ritual of new-year-lite resolution-making on everything from loss of weight to giving less to the lotto, we might want to pause, remember and think deeply, and then make resolutions worthy of our weight and work in the history of the world. And this requires that in the midst of the diminished and distort­ed portrait of ourselves painted by the dominant society, we remember and rightly conceive of ourselves in more truth­ful, dignity-affirming and expansive ways. ... read more »
Celebrating Kwanzaa in the City: Highlighting Some Major Activities
December 19, 2019
This marks the 53rd annual celebration of the self-determined, culturally-grounded and family and community focused holiday, Kwanzaa. Celebrated by millions of people throughout the world African community, Kwanzaa is a seven-day (December 26-January 1) pan-African and African American holiday created in 1966 by Dr. Maulana Karenga, professor and chair of the Department of Africana Studies, Cal State University, Long Beach and executive director of the African American Cultural Center (Us). ... read more »
Kwanzaa: Embracing and Sharing the Good
December 19, 2019
Kwanzaa lifts up and reaffirms these values in the candle lighting ceremony and in its call for acts of caring and loving kindness, especially toward the vulnerable. ... read more »
Righteous Reflection On Being African: A Kwanzaa Meditation
December 12, 2019
Kwanzaa is a time of celebration, remembrance, reflection and recommitment. It requires these practices throughout the holiday. But the last day of Kwanzaa is dedicated to deep reflection, meditation on the meaning and measure of being African and how this is understood and asserted for good in the world in essential, uplifting and transformative ways. ... read more »
Symbols and Insights of Kwanzaa: Deep Meanings and Expansive Message
December 5, 2019
Kwanzaa was conceived as a special time and space for celebrating, discussing and meditating on the rich and varied ways of being and becoming African in the world. It invites us all to study continuously its origins, principles and practices and it teaches us, in all modesty, never to claim we know all that is to be known about it or that our explanations are only for those who do not know much about its message and meaning. For each year each of us should read and reread the literature, reflect on the views and values of Kwanzaa and share conversations about how it reaffirms our rootedness in African culture and brings us together all over the world in a unique and special way to celebrate ourselves as African people. One focus for such culturally-grounded conversation is on the deep meanings and message embedded in the symbols of Kwanzaa which are rooted in Kawaida philosophy out of which Kwanzaa and the Nguzo Saba were created. Indeed, each symbol is a source and point of departure for a serious conversation on African views and values and the practices that are rooted in and reflect them. ... read more »
Rethinking Thanksgiving: Beyond Big Turkeys and Small Talk
November 28, 2019
The histories and holidays of the oppressed, colonized and enslaved are, of necessity, different from the history and holidays of the oppressor, the colonizer and the enslaver. Likewise, their interpretations of those histories and holidays also differ, for they are lived and learned from different standpoints. Thus, the Palestinians call the conquest and colonization of Palestine, the Nakba—the Great Catastrophe, and the Israelis call it the war of independence. The Native Americans call the conquest and colonization of their land and the decimation of their people genocide and Holocaust.  The Europeans call it “discovery,” “the move westward,” “reaching the promised land,” and other self-sanitizing words and phrases. ... read more »
Uplifting the Liberator, Harriet Tubman: Unmasking the Imposter, Harriet of Hollywood
November 21, 2019
Part 1.  The conversations and controversy surrounding the movie “Harriet” of Hollywood seems, at first sight, to be simply about Harriet Tubman, the liberator, the Harriet Tubman of history. But in a larger sense, it is about Black people, about: how we see ourselves; how we see our heroes and heroines; how we understand and honor our history, especially the history of the Holocaust of our enslavement; how we think and feel about male/female relations; and how we relate and respond to our oppression and our oppressor. And it’s about our willingness and ability to rightfully uplift Harriet Tubman, the Liberator, and unmask Harriet of Hollywood, the imposter, regardless of the seductive propaganda by the illusion-making, myth and money-producing enterprise we call Hollywood. ... read more »
Remembering Times of Revolution and Revolt: Recapturing the Spirit, Pursing the Practice
November 7, 2019
It was a fundamental teaching and central source of battlefield talk, derived and discussed in the Sixties about the motion and meaning of history. There are, we assumed and argued with no small amount of certainty, two tendencies in history, that which is rising, grounding itself and growing stronger and that which is dying, decaying and passing away. And we defiantly declared that we and other oppressed and struggling peoples of this country and of the world belong to that rising tide of history. Likewise, we asserted with equal surety that oppressors of all kinds—racists, colonialists, capitalists, imperialists—and their lackeys, collaborators, hirelings, henchmen and handmaidens, belong to the declining side of history. And they would eventually be defeated, and freedom and justice for all would emerge and triumph in the world. ... read more »
Trump’s America By Dawn’s Early Light: Notes on Lynching, Lying and Seeking Justice
October 31, 2019
Pushing back the thick fog and fumes of the putrid propaganda of White supremacist triumphalism, what can we really see and sing by the dawn’s early light except Trump’s deformed and deficient conception of America unmasked? For all the hype, hustle and hypocrisy around “making America great again," it presupposes an imaginary past void of its victims and of the violence, genocide, enslavement, segregation and other forms of decimation and oppression they suffered. And such a deficient and dishonest vision also fails to confront the contradictions obvious and oppressive in the lived conditions of current daily life in America. For surely there is no greatness in greed and no virtue or bravery in creating and indicting victims; no freedom, justice or honor in oppression, imperial aggression and betrayal of allies; and no pride to be praised in corporate plunder and predation against vulnerable others and the earth. ... read more »
Righteous and Relentless Struggle: Reflections on the Principle and Practice
October 24, 2019
(Remembering, reflecting and recommitting.) We cannot say it too often, stress it too much and certainly must never downplay in any way the definitive, determining and decisive role the principle and practice of righteous and relentless struggle have played in the self-conception, ... read more »
Essential Teachings of Messenger Muhammad: A Careful Kawaida Reading
October 17, 2019
In re-remembrance and reflection on the Hon. Elijah Muhammad’s contribution to our self-consciousness and self-assertion as a people in that critical time of turning and overturning we call the Sixties.This is a careful Kawaida reading of some of the essential teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad in rightful remembrance and respect of his life and work in the wilderness of oppression and illusion in this country, in this the month of his birth, (October 7, 1897—February 25, 1975). ... read more »
Religionizing Racism: The Spectacle And Special Function of Black Forgiveness
October 10, 2019
Clearly, there are important lessons we may sadly learn from the spectacle of Black forgiveness in a recent Dallas court after a White policewoman, Amber Guyger, was convicted of the murder of a Black accountant, Botham Jean, in his home while watching TV and eating ice cream. After Guyger was found guilty and during the period for the victims’ impact statements, Botham’s brother, Brandt, declared his forgiveness, love and desire for leniency for his brother’s murderer. ... read more »
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