“You’re never alone, even during what your think are your weakest moments. You have thousands of years of powerful ANCESTORS within you, the blood of The Divine Great Ones in you, supreme intellect, and royalty in you. Infinite strength is always on tap for you. KNOW THAT!”
Sooo New York is known to the be the spidooot for the Summer season. Most New Yorkers know that as soon as you get that first REALLY HOT WEEKEND in (ish even before that) you gotta book your summer weekends in advance cause the schedule could easily get real critical, real quick. This weekend presented many of those eventful conflicts as I hopped around the city to some really dope, entertaining, spiritual, and cultural events.
They say blessed is the meek
I be at Coney Island er year on Juneteenth
Pay homage to the 20 -30 million underneath
Offering flowers and fruits hear my ancestors speak, preach
Pardon my speech
Demons be way beneath
Ask the Natives if they speak with forked tongues
We bang drums, transatlantic dungeons
Branches we hung from
Wonder where we come from
Children of the Sun now forced to function in conundrum
-Nakeeba Amaniyea “Mr. Murderer”
On Saturday, I did a quick pass through to the Tribute to the Ancestors Ceremony at Coney Island. This event is held every year around the second Saturday of June and is presented by Medgar Evers College and the People of the Sun Middle Passage Collective. People of African Descent come to the boardwalk adorned in white, bearing fruits, gifts, flowers, and prayers of gratitude to commemorate the sacrifices and resilience of our ancestors that braved the Middle Passage. The event is full of dancing, chanting, poetry, singing, drumming, and all other kinds of celebratory activity. You know how WE do, African PRIDE be in FULL EFFECT!!!
It is always an emotional, realigning, and spiritual awakening that allows me to recharge my spirit while rising up in complete thanks with gratitude.
BE CLEAR: Our ancestors walk with us on the daily.
You have heard us at CREAD mention the importance of honoring our ancestors in past blogs like Lakou Nou: Claiming US , Native Tongue:Gullah/Geechi Nation, and They Chose Freedom. As the beach is filled with children of the sun kissed tribes moving to the rhythm of Yemoja’s sway, this intergenerational celebration always gets TUN UP!!
To see the elders, adults, young adults, and youth all coming together to pay homage and respect to the ancestors’ journey and the perpetual spirit of those that gave their lives so that we could exist today is a POWERFUL experience. There are no words that one can say to equate the kind of commitment to legacy, bravery, and survival that our ancestors displayed so that we could just BE or even think about BEING.
Here is a clip of one of the Tributes a few years ago:
I stopped by the event for about an 1-hour to catch up with some family and friends, vibe with the entertainment, and do my annual walk to the water. After praying and releasing my flowers into the tide, I walked back to the boardwalk backwards. This walk symbolizes that one should never, eva turn their back on the ancestors and those who came before to pave the way for the present. This is SANKOFA personified; you have to look and learn from your past to guide your progression forward.
It would be amazing to see more schools and youth based organizations coordinate as a collective to attend this tribute annually. How dope would it be to have a communal prayer around upcoming regents exams, summer safety/progressive movements, and the power of proclamation with our students in the presence of our ancestors?
How VICTORIOUS would that be!!!
When an informed, cultural context is holistically embedded into the way the we move in and out of our daily routines, milestones, big exams, small triumphs, board room presentations, cooperate takeovas, political meltdowns, sports and recreation, and love exchange we can be “BOTH AND” and not have to be subject to a system that requires segmented processing. This is the healing that we require to reinforce our greatness. We must remember them, we must honor them, and in everything that we do we must livicate them.
More POWER, MORE LIFE!