Africans knew that all things were interrelated. That knowledge brought cohesion and order to their lives. They respected the planet. They learned to live with nature, rather than control and conquer it. This deep respect for human and non humans set a tone for nurturing and harmony. Our removal from the cradle of civilization, the harsh and inhumane treatment during slavery has left wounds with African Americans that still must be healed. The train (culture) within which we travel place little values on ethics. It foolishly places a price tag on peace, reduces life to debate and offers material trinkets as a distraction so that we don’t notice the nightmare within which we live. We are all endangered because of the separation, the insecurity, the fear and the brutality born of this life style. It’s time to end the nightmare. We owe them more than the latest clothing, activities, toys and games as well as the so called “best “schools. We owe our children – a chance – to live – to discover their individual purpose for being and to develop their purpose for being born. We must release them from the mental chains that have kept us trying to keep up with “standards” based on other people’s values and had us forsake our own, the most important that of holding relationships as highest held value.
While looking for solutions to the problems facing our youth and adults, all paths seem to lead to the need for an integrated community in which all individuals recognize their own self worth, heal relationships with biological family and extended family. Those mark the points of healing that will empower us to recognize and honor our strengths and those of others, accepting individual differences (give up the practice of making wrong when others see differently and finding points of agreement. It allows us to free ourselves from the compare and compete that we inherited from enslavement (yes the physical removal of chains left us free to move physically but another process is needed to free mental chains and that process requires courage. It requires adults who are committed to freeing the children.) We owe our children community.
We are unable to give our children what we ourselves don’t have. Many of us have reached the age of adulthood without having passed the tasks in developmental states. Many parents are in their 30s or 40s and still have adolescent tasks to complete. If this person is a parent, there will be some problems simply because the parent still needs to work on issues that their child will be working on. In our communities, we often lack activities supervised by adults of the community. That is not a result of not caring, I say it’s the result of the adults still having unmet needs. I had given birth to seven children before I discovered that each of my children had unique stages of development and unique, innate purposes for their lives. That was a revolutionary moment, one that put me in the driver’s seat and released the chains of dependency….dependency on a system that took the Land from “Native Americans” and exiled them to “Reservations” , who brought Africans to the stolen land as slaves culminating in statistics where numbers of Black youth killing Black youth, Cops killing Black youth and George Zimmerman killing Trayvon Martin.
We must find solutions to our own problems, not as they existed years ago, but as they exist now. Not as they’re defined by a capitalist system but by our vision to have our children discover and fulfill their purpose in life. It is time for elders to take a stand. We must take the lead in healing relationships because our fore parents suffered and survived, our children carry the promise of change. It begins with relationships. PN Alerts!!
*** *SAVE OUR AFRICAN AMERICAN TREASURES –at the Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Pkway, Sat. July 20 from 11 am – 5pm. Bring up to three personal items (family personal items) for appraisal at no cost). Call 877-733-9599.
**** JOIN MILLIONS 4 Trayvon – A Family Project. Have all family members write letters expressing your feelings about the Verdict. Send to Millions 4Trayvon c/o Omi Rahim, P.0. Box 302, Willingboro, NJ 08046…E mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. The letters will be sent to the parents of Trayvon.
**** Another Forty Five Day Challenge begins Thurs. August 8th. PN’S contribution to Trayvon’s memory. Weekly conference calls (one hour) from wherever you are. Requirement: a project involving a child. For more info and to register email Parentsnotebook@yahoo.com.