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wellness/skin therapy


... Eternal spring. As a regular gift to our $10+/month members, Live From Planet Earth offers traveling & video wellness/facial skin care consultation, techniques, & nutrition/exercise study led by our licensed esthetician Madeline Lafontant, who will assist you in building your personal care regimen with natural extracts/active-ingredient botanicals & a skin-analysis plan for long-term skin barrier stabilization. Sign up to create/maintain a healthy sense of self, practicing essential wellness rituals as old as humanity herself, by reviewing & choosing your desired membership below.

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breaking (the) media
𓆃 "Skymining: Transforming carbon into diamonds"

𓆃 permaculture: "What is Sustainability?"

𓆃 "Spillage Village – Mecca"

𓆃 "Dr. Greg Carr advises Ice Cube to form Political Action Committee"

𓆃 permaculture: "Moringa Tree: 25 Health Benefits"

𓆃 "Protoje - In Bloom f. Lila IkΓ©"

𓆃 permaculture: "2Pac's Mom Afeni Shakur Gives Amazing Speech"

𓆃 "Spark (Part 2) Yoni Egg Yoga Flow"

𓆃 permaculture: "youtube/livefromplanetearth"

𓆃 permaculture: "wake up & live from planet earth"

𓆃 permaculture: "kale harvest"

𓆃 permaculture: "aloe planting"

𓆃 permaculture: "avocado harvest"

𓆃 permaculture: "comfrey harvest"

𓆃 permaculture: "basil harvest"

𓆃 shamba- (in e.africa: "cultivated ground; farm") to-table kale, peppers, cabbage, & maharagwe ("curry/coconut beans, carrots, corn, & chapati") with african taste restaurant in nairobi, kenya

𓆃 "africana study abroad"

𓆃 "the last generation of black people"

𓆃 "the liberator magazine"

𓆃 "polyfidelity, (bisexual)polygyny, & intimate, complementary extended-family: the realistic, eternal africana-indigenous solution to disharmony & oppression"

𓆃 the flow: stephanie joy

𓆃 "Interoception"

𓆃 "healing yoga poses for most common pains & opening energy chakras"

(●●●)




stevie wonder moving to ghana... (again?)

The Orlando Sentinel says Stevie Wonder already announced to the International Association of African American Music in 1994 that he was moving to Ghana. As a psychopolitical tool for use during American dark eras, it makes perfect sense; though Oprah failed to ask Wonder if he had a more nuanced view including dual citizenship, only blurting out an obnoxiously simplistic, "you are permanently moving to Ghana?! Whyyy?!" I wonder if idols of his stature ever reach out in search of deeper questions or if they are content with communicating through advertisement of their newest commercial releases.

Submissions: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

Live From Planet Earth is a hands-on, cooperative meditation — on self-sustaining, tropical, organic human being and development — rooting and producing through your generous, reparative, faithful contributions. Please support by helping us fill this measure little by little, slowly but surely: Biennial ($2400); Annual ($36), ($180), ($2400), ($6000); Monthly ($3), ($5), ($10), ($15), ($25), ($30), ($40), ($60), ($70), ($80), ($90), ($130), ($200), ($500), ($1000).

//youtube.com/livefromplanetearth




introduction to tantra



Submissions: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

Live From Planet Earth is a hands-on, cooperative meditation — on self-sustaining, tropical, organic human being and development — rooting and producing through your generous, reparative, faithful contributions. Please support by helping us fill this measure little by little, slowly but surely: Biennial ($2400); Annual ($36), ($180), ($2400), ($6000); Monthly ($3), ($5), ($10), ($15), ($25), ($30), ($40), ($60), ($70), ($80), ($90), ($130), ($200), ($500), ($1000).

//youtube.com/livefromplanetearth




shamba- (in e.africa: "cultivated ground; farm") to-table kale, peppers, cabbage, & maharagwe ("curry/coconut beans, carrots, corn, & chapati") with african taste restaurant in nairobi, kenya












Submissions: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

Live From Planet Earth is a hands-on, cooperative meditation — on self-sustaining, tropical, organic human being and development — rooting and producing through your generous, reparative, faithful contributions. Please support by helping us fill this measure little by little, slowly but surely: Biennial ($2400); Annual ($36), ($180), ($2400), ($6000); Monthly ($3), ($5), ($10), ($15), ($25), ($30), ($40), ($60), ($70), ($80), ($90), ($130), ($200), ($500), ($1000).

//youtube.com/livefromplanetearth




polyfidelity, (bisexual)polygyny, & intimate, complementary extended-family: the realistic, eternal africana-indigenous solution to disharmony & oppression


(Above: Rainforest Living)





(Above: The Trifecta Love, Prank: Treating Our Girlfriend Like The 3rd Wheel; TriTalk: Is the Love Equal?; A Morning In The Trifecta Household; A Peek Into Polyamory, Who Gets the Middle?!)

In the following email about polygamy/(bi)polygyny/polyfidelity, a reader, sharing her thoughts after an individual study on the subject, wonders if a modified or resurrected, egalitarian version of the practice might be an immediate solution to and defense against persistent forms of politico-economic oppression such as greed.

She specifically mentioned an example where perhaps a father has children with different women yet those women choose to get along and foster and cultivate their relationships with each other for the purpose of making sure the children feel at home even when they are with their "step" mothers. In fact, I'm sure this type of thing happens pretty regularly already. Why is society negatively obsessed with the imagined pleasure of multiple-peopled long-term intimate relationships if parenting or fostering land is the shared primary purpose?


(Above: Triadsolit - Polyamory Relationships vs. Monogamy Relationships)


(Above: Davis Trilogy - Black Polygamists)

I would assume the reverse of this would also be something to consider, although the majority of these type of multi-parent situations that I know of involve woman sharing a common link to one man. But given the incarceration rates (or unjust incarceration laws) affecting black men, this is no surprise.

Like she suggests, the practice must be shielded by a sub-culture bubble from the mainstream norms. As a matter of fact, Africana diaspora nations may offer more fertile soil. But the fundamental concept is sound--multiple parents who share a common father or mother spouse making those ties of accountability stronger to each other. Classicists of all cultural stripes point out that bisexual polygyny was an ancient norm to foster and reify permanent inter-generational collaboration, interdependence, and harmony among familial codependents. The internet is full of loving examples of poly triads, throuples, threesome relationships, &c. As long as there is some sort of serious classic cultural understanding and appreciation taking place, alongside relentless communication and emotional therapy, these relationships should thrive.



(Above: Ayanna Talk On Polygamy; Polygyny)

And maybe the women wouldn't all want to get married to a brother, but perhaps they might define for themselves a higher definition or title for their mutual relationship than "baby mamas/daddys" as to hold each other accountable for each other's and the collective responsibilities; belonging to the shared family unit collectively. What's needed isn't matriarchy or patriarchy; every child knows it doesn't want to be patronized or matronized, just balanced in tune with the cradle.



(Above: Rise Family, What if one of your ladies wanted to add a man?; Come enjoy the vibes!)

Here's what she had to say:

"I stumbled upon a blog last week about Polygamy, its African and biblical origins, and as a possible alternative for single-parent homes so prevalent today, and the black family in western culture. Reading what everyone had to say was really interesting and got me thinking a lot deeper on the subject. Perhaps a modified version could be the cure for the destruction. At first when I read it I was like, 'hell nah that's some crazy cult mess,' then I thought about my current situation.

"Neither of us are "married" to him but the three of us are bonded as a parental unit and have the common goal of love, nurturing, and growing. Which in theory loosely resembles a polygamist or closed polyamorist union.

"The basic idea of it can't be ignored as we all strive to regain and redefine the 'village' culture in western society. I think it would be interesting for The Liberator readers."





(Above: Outstanding Personal Relationships)


(Above: The Portah Family Elaborates On Living Poly Life As A Throuple, How The Women Worked It Out, & More)


(Above: A Closer Look at the American Psychological Association non-monogamy task force)



(Above: The Co-Wives)


(Above: 3, The New Normal 2016)


(Above: Amunet, Polight, & Raet on Sex, Race, Trump, & Black Women)


(Above: Trigonometry 2020)


(Above: She Hate Me 2004)


(Above: You Me Her 2016)


(Above: Masego - "Polygamy")


(Above: Professor Marston & the Wonder Women 2017)


(Above: Big Love 2006)


(Above: Looks Like Love To Me)


Notable Polygyny on Social Media:
@poliginia


@the_cowives


@triamorlove


@thetrifectalove: @the_kassandra_lee, @carlyashira, & @paoulocq


@portahtriad


@ashleycoco_, @karytasantos, & @deraydavis


@im.with.them


@brother_polight, @raet777, & @amunetatumre


@2wives1husband, @kristylelove, & @kenyealove


@regal.love.33

@royalty.intheflesh, @mikamichelle.stewart

@davistrilogy

@thetriadfam

@polygenesisshow

@shaka.zulu._, @mama.star___, @mama.azeen

@perfecttriangle60

@polyam.us, @chachavavoom, @summerxrain


"Bisexual, Polygyny: Controversial Evolutionary Psychologist Kanazawa Says He Knows Why Women Are Sexually Fluid" [via]

"A US first? Massachusetts city votes to recognize polyamorous relationships in domestic partnership policy" [via]

"A Massachusetts City Decides to Recognize Polyamorous Relationships" [via]


"Personal Growth Through Consensual NonMonogamies: Considering boundaries, facing shadows, and embracing spirit"
by Elisabeth A. Sheff Ph.D., CSE
(psychologytoday.com)

For some people, the emotional rigors associated with consensual non-monogamies (CNM) offer a pathway to self-growth. Because the popular media tend to focus on sexuality when discussing polyamory and other forms of CNM, it might be surprising to hear that multiple-partner relationships can foster anything beyond orgasms, much less the lofty goals of personal growth. This is not to say that all or even most polyamorous folks are spiritually evolved, or that monogamous folks are any less spiritually evolved than those in CNM relationships. Discussion among some poly people or groups can have an obnoxious holier-than-thou tone, exalting CNM as superior and more evolved than monogamy. That is not this blog. Rather, the point is that polyamorous people can seek personal growth through their relationships - and some of them even find it.

Considering Boundaries

Selecting a CNM relationship means going outside of the conventional social boundaries that have been very clearly identified in the mass culture. In addition to the personal relationships of the people around them, people see monogamy and cheating demonstrated repeatedly in movies, television shows, songs, and pretty much every other form of media. If people want to have CNM relationships, they need to consider what they want, what they will not tolerate, and what they might be willing to compromise on. Pondering one’s boundaries can encourage self growth through reflection and testing limits. Many forms of CNM, and especially polyamory, emphasize self-possession, rather than partners possessing each other. This orientation towards self-possession means that people in CNM relationships are required to focus on and manage their own reactions, boundaries, and emotions.

Facing Shadows

Carl Jung famously defined the dark, unconscious, or repressed parts of a person's psyche as their shadow. Jealousy and other challenging emotions commonly relegated to the shadow can occur frequently in polyamorous and other CNM relationships. While some people can watch their lover making out with someone else and feel joy that their beloved has found a cutie to snog (in poly lingo, that special kind of joy is called compersion), for most people that it an incredibly challenging situation. Feeling the jealousy, learning how to manage it, living through it, and coming out the other side can be a harrowing journey that creates strength and resilience in the long run. Facing the jealous, angry, grasping, competitive, territorial, or insecure parts of their personalities and refusing to allow them to be in charge can help people grow beyond these shadow elements. Cultivating unconditional love, tolerance, and kindness through learning to tolerate and move beyond jealousy and insecurity can bring tremendous personal growth and peace.

Embracing Spirit

Some people find spiritual enlightenment through CNM relationships. Tantra, a sacred sexuality tradition based in tenets of Buddhism and Hinduism, offers some practitioners of CNM a way to integrate meditative and yogic elements into their multiple partner relationships. Polygamous relationships, a traditional form of multiple partner marriage often practiced as polygyny in which one husband can have multiple wives, are often embedded in religious communities such as the Fundamentalist Latter-Day Saints (Fundamentalist Mormons) or Islam.

In some cases, Afrocentric cultures in the United States also embrace polygyny as a way to reconnect with traditional practices of many African cultures. Racist laws, law enforcement, and sentencing mean that a disproportionately enormous number of African American men are incarcerated, leaving fewer possible partners for African American women who wish to marry an African American man. Such a gender imbalance among the heterosexual population can encourage polygamy. In other cases, the draw of connection in a hostile and divided world sparks people’s interest in intentional communities that blend spirituality, marriage, and mutual reliance. [via]


The One Where Katie Spills Her Guts Out
by Katie Simbala
(thetriadfam.com)

My name is Katie Simbala and I’m a NYC Bronx native living in Baltimore city. When I was a kid play time looked like this: I would put all of my stuffed animals in audience style seating, grab my favorite bible storybook, read and speak sternly to them with a lot of hand gestures. I always felt called to speaking and sharing stories, and the Pentecostal church gave me that outlet.

Fast forward to adulthood, and I’m a worship pastor in a conservative church. I was a church professional living a dualistic life. I presented as a straight monogamous woman, but really I was a queer, bi, polyamorous one.

Luis was my first real boyfriend and the only boy I had ever really ever been attracted to. Before him I was only attracted to girls. In fact, I thought I was a lesbian before I met him. In my mind he had “cured” me. We got married and we didn’t look back. We loved each other deeply that even through all the waves, we decided over and over again to stay committed to each other.

Then I meet this girl at a baby shower and lure her in with my wit and comedic awkwardness. I stick my finger in a hole in my pocket and say “hi, I’m Katie, I have a hole in my pocket”. Somehow I hooked her. In all honesty I wasn’t seeking anything more than just a friendship. I realized I was attracted to her the way a protagonist in a rom-com finds out she’s in love with the best friend: a drunken kiss. She kissed me innocently, platonically, but that kiss made me realize those feelings never left. I wasn’t cured.

So now that I realize I’m attracted to Raquel, I’m afraid of what this means. I did what I always did when presented with hard emotional processing. I went to my best friend and life partner. I went to Luis. I told him what happened and he gently proposed the idea of exploring this side of my sexuality that was repressed to be accepted by the church.

I started on a voyage with no clear destination. All I knew is that I was in love with these two beautiful humans and we were all deciding to do life together. Life together started to get complicated since I was navigating two different identities. I felt captive to the perceived identity I presented with for so long. I had a reputation. Among my peers I was respected, but not for my whole self.

In late 2016 I was having a lot of inner conflict on my identity and on how my decision of staying closeted was affecting Raquel. I wasn’t honoring her place in my life. People viewed her as the friend that helped us with Lukas, but in reality, she was the mother of our child. By early 2017 I decided to come out to the congregation I was serving. It took us a while to muster up the courage, but I was certain that this was what I needed to do.

I was fired the next week on a Tuesday, and felt defeated. I didn’t know what the next steps were. All I knew is that whatever steps were going to be taken would be in complete honesty and transparency. I googled “gay-friendly church”, and I realized that the Lutheran church on the corner of my block was LGBTQ affirming. I met with the pastor that Wednesday. He connected me with another Lutheran pastor, who just so happens to be from the Bronx and also grew up Pentecostal just like me.

By Friday of that same week I met up with her at a Thai restaurant with this new decision to live authentically, and so I poured my heart out to her. I was 100% honest and held nothing back. She listened without judgment and by the end of my confession, she offered me a job.

Coming out was scary. I was literally killing this other identity that I had operated under for so long. We told our parents, and then made a public announcement of who we are on social media, where the majority of my network were conservative Christians. I’ve lost a lot of friends, networks, and resources since then, but this year was also the year that we’ve had the most momentum in sharing our story. Transparency has led me to new freedom where no one else dictates who and what I am. I was told for so long that being gay would separate me from God. I’m amazed to see that God still calls me worthy, beloved and that nothing will ever separate me from that love. A few years ago I could have never stood in front of a crowd like this and feel as free as I do. If only little Katie could see me now”.

The journey to freedom looks different for everyone as we learned that night through the different stories. This is our story of freedom. Getting to that place is hard, painful and will leave you wondering at times if you made the right decision in being transparent and vulnerable, but then you’re reminded of how good it is to truly be free. No hiding, no shame, no fear- just freedom. [via]


Polyamory Part 2
by Summer Rain
(420nurses.com)

"Two are better than one, and three are even better, for a cord of three strands is not easily broken."
(Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)

My Name is Summer and Ive been in a fun loving triad for almost 7 years now. A triad is generally made up of three adults who are all sexually involved, commonly understood as a mΓ©nage Γ  trois [literally, "house of three"]. Most triads form when a single person joins an open couple. When I first met my couple, Chacha and Jimmy, I remember researching for these blogs or some sort of advice, like I’m writing now and I had very little luck. If I did find anything, it was very negative. Even today, Im about 10 pages into a polyamory book and Ive already read about 3 mini stories that end in disaster.

I had a great deal of positivity from my last blog linked below and that encouraged me to continue with more. Since then, my triad has expanded our 5 year plan, got engaged, and also was filmed for a media series and interviewed for a couple hours on our relationship. The 5 year plan includes marriage, babies and more, jimmy went above and beyond for our engagement which made the news, and the interview we did for Barcroft Media really gave us an opportunity to reflect on our life together.

I mentioned in my last post that “Our relationship was closed for many years due to me being uncomfortable with the idea of opening our triad.” “When I met my girlfriend and boyfriend it was at a concert that I attended with a group of girls for promotional modeling” “Being the “third” I never wanted to step on her toes, or make her feel uncomfortable with me.” These are some key topics I want to touch base on in this part two.

Respect is important

I was fortunate to join a couple with great problem solving skills, and a very strong foundation which relied on communication. In order to be in a stable poly triad, you have to have an equal respect for all members and find an open way to communicate. This is especially important if you are entering a couples relationship. I remember coming into the relationship I never wanted to step on her toes or make her feel uncomfortable with me. I was sleeping in her bed, eating her food, even down to the point where when things first got intimate, I just let her tell me what to do. And not to always say that primary and secondary roles have to exist, but you do have to be somewhat understanding of boundaries, and you need to be submissive to the person, or people you are joining. This doesn’t have to be a spoken thing really, when I met Chacha and Jimmy, they never really put any rules for me. Our way of life, and way to respect each other sort of just came about naturally. I’ve learned Chacha doesn’t like hickies and jimmy doesn’t like when you wander off without telling where you’ll be going. I’ve learned they both needs lots of hugs and kisses, even when they seem busy or standoff-ish. Ive learned so much about these two and I cant wait to learn more. It is ok to make mistakes but it’s important to never forget your intent. If you have questions, talk about it, If you, or he or she needs space, ask for it, or give it. Joining a couples relationship Is not the time to put up walls, it’s the time to break them all down.

Opening up

With our triad being closed for many years, or polyfidelitous, the relationship structure where all members are considered equal partners and agree to restrict sexual activity to only other members of the group, I witnessed both my girlfriend, and boyfriends urge or explore and meet more people. I really didn’t think I could handle it. Any topic of bringing another girl into the picture stressed me out, and if Im being honest, it also turned me on. Confusing right? Why would I be assuming all this negativity but still internally excited? How could I possibly share my thoughts and feelings about this with not one person, but in front of two possibly three? Was I not enough to fulfill my couple? If I went through with being openly poly, would we stay doing everything together or would things separate? All questions I had to ask myself. I remember sitting my couple down and suggesting they went and dated without me, and they could either share their experiences when they got home or maybe I wouldn’t even wanna know. I was really confused on how I could possibly make it work. At that point is when they made it clear they wanted me involved if expanding our hearts further was going to work. This was comforting, but took a lot of prying and being extremely uncomfortable in my skin. Without struggle there is really no growth, and Im thankful for the struggles I come across because it really does bring growth...

The Engagement

My triad owns a business together and we were hosting an event the night before their 10 year anniversary. Chacha and Jimmy had been together 3-4 years before meeting me, so this was their big 10 years. Our boyfriend Jimmy walked on stage with our girlfriend Chacha and myself telling the whole crowd at an event he was going to freestyle a rap, so everything naturally started filming. He started confessing his love for us both, and I truly had no idea what was happening at that point, even being so close to their anniversary. As he kept talking we both started to notice his nervousness and we all started to feel it, something big was about to happen. With lights flashing all around, he got on one knee and two rings appeared when he asked us if WE would marry him. I naturally looked to Chacha for approval, as she said YES, I did too. I started shaking uncontrollably I was in complete shock and once again honored to be unified even further with them. We later found out that our rings were made from a single diamond split into two, from the same solid stone. He did great. We started to discuss our wedding plans a year from that same date, but with the baby fever kicking in, and mother natures clock ticking away, we planned to speed up our date to December 15 of this year 2019, Giving us about 6 months to plan a unique, one of a kind polyamorous wedding ceremony for three people rather than two. Im really excited to see where life takes us, as I continue growing up, I’m finding that loving more than one person is really rewarding, and I know we all have more love to share.

Unicorns

A unicorn is a poly cliche of a bisexual woman who will fit into the couples life at their convenience, bringing no additional partners of her own, disappear or pass as a friend when being openly poly might embarrass or inconvenience the couple, and hopefully wants to do the laundry and take care of the kids.

I feel the term unicorn and unicorn hunting is portrayed as such a negative term in poly communities, and as someone who was a unicorn, and or now, “hunts unicorns.” This isn’t really a bad thing, as for me, it was an honor. The third person, or unicorn has to be universally submissive or the formation of the triad will not work. I was willing and ready to find our way to making it work, even if that meant passing off as the friend for awhile, or skipping a few conjoined holidays. It is ok to be unsure, it is ok to be bisexual and sexually open. Even though not always the case, unicorn Hunters are generally, just like my couple, a heterosexual man and bisexual or heteroflexible woman looking for a bisexual woman. Again, to me, not a derogatory term. Bisexual women are fetishized for the very reason couples seek them out. It is culturally desirable to have threesomes with two women. One of the opinions I’ve read “It is not as desirable to have threesomes with two men because of our deeply ingrained cultural homophobia. It perpetuates erasure of bisexual men by embedding a preference for girl-on-girl sex into our perception of sexuality.” I’ve had many people ask why not another man, or why not a non-binary or transexual. Im a female polyamorous bisexual so to me, a manly man, and a girly girl is my preference. Bisexuality is romantic attraction, sexual attraction, or sexual behavior toward both males and females, or to more than one sex or gender. It's different from Pansexuality, which is a romantic or sexual attraction to people of any sex or gender identity. I think people will judge anything they don’t understand and this is no different. I'm not homophobic because I would prefer to see girl on girl action, over boy on boy. It is simply my sexual preference... "Happiness - only real when shared" (Christopher McCandless). [via]

Submissions: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

Live From Planet Earth is a hands-on, cooperative meditation — on self-sustaining, tropical, organic human being and development — rooting and producing through your generous, reparative, faithful contributions. Please support by helping us fill this measure little by little, slowly but surely: Biennial ($2400); Annual ($36), ($2400), ($6000); Monthly ($3), ($5), ($10), ($25), ($30), ($40), ($60), ($70), ($80), ($90), ($130), ($200), ($500), ($1000).




the last generation of black people





2012, New York: The Liberator Magazine.
ISBN 9780991108404
» Artbook @ Museum of Modern Art PS1
» McNally Jackson
» The Strand
» Quimby's
» Ancestry Books
» PanAfrican Connection

Testimonials:
"Gorgeous."
(Amber)

"Brilliant."
(Joe)

"On a level nobody else is on... nothing like this exists elsewhere."
(Karega)


Table Of Contents:
» Editor's Note
(by Brian Hughes Kasoro / Minneapolis, MN:USA)

» For the Sake of Sanity
(by Stephanie Joy Tisdale / Philadelphia, PA:USA)

» Realities We Otherwise Would Never Know: The Art Of Relating Beyond Ideology
(by Brian Hughes Kasoro / Brooklyn, NY:USA)

» On Aesthetic Reasoning In Africana Studies
(by Josh Myers / Philadelphia, PA:USA)

» The Case of Hip-Hop
(by Michael J. Wilson / Brooklyn, NY:USA)

» Outsider Music: Willis Earl Beal and the Real Blues
(by Brian Kupillas / Fayatteville, AR:USA)

» I'm in the Band
(by Nira Minniefield / Houston, TX:USA)

» Nat Turner: God's Instrument of Vengeance
(by Vagabond Beaumont / New Rochelle, NY:USA)

» Reflections on African (American) Adulthood in an Object Permanence Culture
(by Adisa Ajamu / Long Beach, CA:USA)

» The Children of Injustice (book excerpt)
(by Ruth Auguste / Vancouver: Canada)

» (art) Rap Music and Gold Teeth
(by Fletcher Williams / New York, NY:USA)

» The Percussive Approach
(by Sherese Francis / Hollis, NY:USA)

» The Last Mask: An Ekphrasis of Papua's Masquerade Kamoro
(by Mia R. Keeys / Jakarta: Indonesia)

» "Dude, you're the Whitest Black man I've ever met."
(by Khaya Maseko / Johannesburg: South Africa)

» The Rise and Inevitable Liberation of the Black Creative Class
(by Robert Bland / Hyattsville, MD:USA)

» Beautyful Radiant Things
(by Taryn Jeanie Mackay / Johannesburg: South Africa)

» Notes from the Nobodies
(by Jessica Porter and Jeanette E. Toomer / Brooklyn, NY:USA)

» A Prince Remembers A King Named Oliver In Exile
(by Shawn Chandler Bingham / Tampa, FL:USA)

» Speaking Truth to Perceived Power
(by Vanessa May / Los Angeles, CA:USA)

» I Bet You Thought Her Life Was About You (Ms. Lauryn Hill)
(by Krystal Nylle Roberts / Atlanta, GA:USA)

» Heathen Songs of the Natives
(by Charles Nhamo Rupare / Johannesburg, South Africa)

» Afro-America at the Crossroads: Ritual Ethnogenesis
(by Shayla Monroe / Memphis, TN:USA)


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

The Last Generation of Black People

The opening words of The Liberator Magazine’s first book release fittingly belong to historian Dr. John Henrik Clarke: “A people’s name should link them to land, history, and culture. ‘Black’ tells you how you look, but not who you are.”

So begins The Last Generation of Black People (The Liberator Magazine, 2012) — a biographic, ethnographic compilation of critical research in consciousness and culture that marks more than a decade of independent print journal publishing. The theme and namesake were born out of a recognition that a mutation had occurred; from the multi-generational experiences bracketed by post-slavery reconstruction and the crack epidemic of the 80s, into fully-commercialized notions of “Blackness.” At this pivotal juncture, the generation of the post-crack era could either go the way of an historically-amnesic Blackness or embrace the potential for a generational rebirth and time-signature realignment with African land, history, and culture.

“In order to proceed confidently with the work of remaking lost connections in our collective consciousness there ought to be sober acceptance, as a whole, however long it takes, of both what we are and what we are not,” said publisher Brian Kasoro. “It follows that it may be a good thing to cap an era of rhetorical confusion.”

The Last Generation of Black People is 138 compact and perfect-bound pages with a matte full-color finish, adorned with commissioned double-cover artwork, reprinted on limited edition t-shirts.

Submissions: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

Live From Planet Earth is a hands-on, cooperative meditation — on self-sustaining, tropical, organic human being and development — rooting and producing through your generous, reparative, faithful contributions. Please support by helping us fill this measure little by little, slowly but surely: Annual ($36), ($2400), ($6000); Monthly ($3), ($5), ($10), ($25), ($30), ($40), ($60), ($70), ($80), ($90), ($130), ($200), ($500), ($1000).




realities we otherwise would never know / the art of relating beyond ideology



exclusive feature
Brian Hughes Kasoro
{Brooklyn, NY}
(2012). The Last Generation Of Black People. New York: The Liberator Magazine.

"We cannot see the wind, but we can both hear and see what it does. What some call intuition, others would call the eyes and ears of the heart. In real ways, only when we experience the Universe with our hearts as well as with our minds will our ears hear, our eyes see, realities we otherwise would never know."*

My dear love,

I do not support Feminism. Yet, I have noticed enough to call it a trend that many intellectual-types have pledged ideological allegiance today. I do not consider myself enlightened. I am not a romantic. At every turn ideology seems to me a reactionary solution. Imbalance--the absence of peaceful understanding--between man and woman, however, is one of the most important issues of our time.

In thinking about this imbalance, I think about struggle, war, and justice, as these remain major considerations. Forced to take war for granted today, I wonder about how people judge whether or not the winner of war deserves the result. How do people determine the winner's victory to be just? Outside of ideology, the best rational argument is simply "survival of the fittest," that cliche bromide used to describe Charles Darwin's biological theory of natural selection. If, by and large, men are physically stronger than women and have assumed this power over their counterparts in the physical world, then I suppose one could question whether the "fittest" are not simply surviving according to their natural abilities in this moment--those forms that are capable of outdoing others deserve to outdo others. Are we required to take war for granted for all time though? I'm aware that many Western philosophers shun what they call essentialist thought, or the imagining of a Utopian world where the problems of today do not affect our essential knowledge. Yet, for the oppressed--victims of the empirical knowledge that constructed scientific racism--discernment regarding what affects and transforms knowledge will always be an essential mechanism of existence. In this light, I conclude that justice cannot exist in war.

I'm not really tryna make an argument of it here, my dear.

I want for you to know of balance, first and foremost; as my father and my mother taught me. We come to know righteousness and unrighteousness in complement, as with light and darkness, and love and hate. One cannot even take love for granted in the natural world, so it should be cherished. Indeed, one can always take balance as granted, even when delayed, because it is absolutely necessary for life at its most basic, technical level. The "change" that Octavia Butler wrote about "shaping" is the continuous process of balancing--finding peaceful understanding.

"All that you touch you change. All that you change changes you. The only lasting truth is change..."

The epic story of our nature begins with the ingenuity that is original creation--as our original nurturer, nature is also our original teacher. It continues with the brilliance of re/connecting to original creation through successive original creations.

...

We see dominance in nature. So, are we surprised when we see it in human social structures? Certainly, we are not the only sociable beings on Earth. Yet, dominance in nature is a balancing act alongside subordinate instances. Hegemony--imperial dominance--seeks permanent justification in the face of balance and change. I ask, not how you justify becoming or being the fittest but rather, what do you wish to be fit to do, and why?; is it the right thing for the right reason?; can you do it and be doing to others as you would have them do to you? And is ideology necessary then, which causes some to believe that it is just and right to dogmatically reject dominance?

My dear, do you find an ongoing, interchangeable symbiosis between dominance and subordination in your life? If so, are they dynamic concepts that dance their way around questions of static victory in your mind, to lay your focus on the oneness in mechanisms of change and balance?

...

In a 2011 lecture titled "Reconceptualizing the Gender of Africana Women," Dr. Valethia Watkins-Beatty defined Feminism as "the study of gender as pathology, the study of pathological models of gender."

"... if the only thing that exists is pathology, then your interpretive framework does not allow you to account for, nor to see, positive health constructions of gender... it is a conception of gender that infuses permanent pathology in the study of gender, so there is no room for the construction of healthy gender relationships.

Can you analyze male-domination sexism without feminism? ... Those who cannot make that separation, then that tells you something about that analytical framework ... Our gender stories are not interchangeable Deborah Gray White in the film "Slavery and the Making of America" ... says that slavery demanded a different kind of womanhood from black women. It demanded that black women be self-reliant, that they have strength, that they show intelligence, that they be resourceful, that they be spiritually powerful, that they become warriors in order to survive, that black women would not have survived with the cultural norm of being weak, of being submissive, of being passive, of being less capable, or seeing themselves in that way. But that norm that we think is a norm is not a universal norm, it is a very specific norm.

My point would be that, although slavery demanded a different kind of womanhood, slavery did not create or produce that different kind of womanhood, that womanhood preceded slavery. So we have a different project. What Feminism is trying to do is bring into existence something they said never existed before, and that is the notion of powerful women, strong women, women in leadership, et cetera and so on. That is not our project. Our project is not bringing something new into existence, it is reestablishing, reconnecting, and returning to.

... When we have powerful women doing powerful things they are not defying gender norms, they are not transcending gender norms, they are living up to the gender expectations that African people have nurtured and groomed."


God bless his soul, when African American "anti-sexist activist" and filmmaker Byron Hurt (Beyond Beats and Rhymes, 2006) declares, "I am a male feminist," I instantly have a sense of his familiar. It literally comes to me in a flash. I sense it, he's about to share the pain and imbalance he witnessed in adult relationships as a child. He explains his ideological allegiance with testimony of his father's aggressive behavior toward his mother. He says he bears witness to "feminism giving women a voice" and "clearing the way for men to free themselves from the stranglehold of traditional masculinity."

"By the time my father died from cancer in 2007, he was proudly sporting the baseball cap around town that I had given him that read, 'End Violence Against Women'. Who says men can't be feminists?'"

Hurt never actually demonstrates that his father adopted ideological Feminism. He simply says that his father, "aged ... mellowed, and stopped being so argumentative and verbally abusive" toward his mother, and that his mother, "grew to assert herself more whenever they disagreed." Nevertheless, he co-opts his father's personal narrative of intimate maturation into the umbrella of ideological Feminism. It is tempting for children to idolize, idealize, and compact testimony--especially that of our parents--into ideology. It can often lead to disappointment and disillusionment, though, for those other than the most committed ideologues. Keep in mind that ideological Feminism/Feminists and feminist are two terms with some distinctions between them. As Dr. Oyeronke Oyewumi notes, "the adjective feminist has a broader reach in that it need not be confined by history; in fact it describes a range of behaviour indicating female agency and self-determination." The problem here is that Hurt conflates the two in an attempt to recruit African Americans to Feminism, which "usually refers to a historically recent European and American social movement founded to struggle for female equality" (Oyewumi). In fact, according to Hurt, his father never claimed to be anything other than a man who changed through a transformational process and "grew" toward balance, publicly supporting ending violence against women.

...

As a child, my black African mother was honest with me in explaining that my parents were together because everyday, on balance, they wanted to be. They reunited when I was about 9 years old after spending almost a decade apart becoming more in tune with their essential selves. Their understanding relating to agency and intention doesn't guarantee permanent harmony but by maintaining a functional, ongoing conversation around the processes of change and balancing, they actively cultivate honest peace. They have demonstrated for me that "love" is malleable. Although it maintains a general form, it is defined uniquely across specific relationships. I've learned that what is most important to a relationship is to define and agree on a love, and definition cannot be a one-sided affair. This is why simply "loving God" just won't do in many spiritual practices; one must know God to love God, one must know self to love anyone, one must love someone to develop personal relationships, and one must develop a personal relationship with God to know God. In other words, the art of relating is a non-ideological human function.

Of the myriad factors that prevent men and women from achieving balance, our social structure--hegemonic; white supremacist; American; European--is a dominant one that we are forced to cope with incessantly. Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno said in 1944 that "culture today is infecting everything with sameness." Looney Tunes has long been fully integrated into what Horkheimer and Adorno named the "culture industry." Drama is the order of our day in ways more intimate and massive than ever. We experience a desperate need to survive; indifference, disregard and negligence toward each other; as well as ignorance and fear of each other, while the dominant cultural discourse suffers amnesia regarding us, virtually unable to offer any honest constructive instruction. We're given a weak choice between the typical preserved and the newly manufactured symbols of reactionary hope. In the 21st century, our contradictory twoness, which has resulted as a consequence of the social construction of race, remains in the minds of many. Yet, from within this mess, balance between men and women must come to be known or re-known.

Today the question of freedom from this order is primarily a psychological one and for us the normalization of resistance to psychological imbalance is most vital. The act of balancing begins first and foremost in minds and attitudes. While it ought not end there, it is under no uncertain terms the very first step. From within an amnesic social order the question becomes how have we--thus, how do we--escape the hypnagogic constructions of the administered society?

...

Ideology has often been used as a supplemental catalyst toward correcting imbalance--as Dr. Cedric Robinson has shown us with his study of the ideological communist experiments of W.E.B. DuBois, Richard Wright, and C.L.R. James in his book Black Marxism (University of North Carolina Press, 2000)--but it often falls short. We now know that adopting alien, dogmatic ways of knowing--and the oft-hidden historical legacies that accompany them--for the sake of empowerment can confuse and damage our own sociocultural relations. As Dr. Oyewumi illustrates:

"Feminism is primarily concerned with the liberation of women. Given the aforementioned historical occurrences and the fact that in many African societies the category 'woman' cannot be isolated raises the question of the relevance and value of Western feminism.... In its various guises and disguises, feminism continues to be the most avid manufacturer of gender consciousness and gender categories, inevitably at the expense of local categories such as ethnicity, seniority, race, and generation that may be more locally salient

... sisterhood makes sense ... within the social organization of the white American nuclear family and the ideologies that flowed from it. Gender distinctions are fundamental to the institutions of Western culture on which the white American family is based, and the family as an institution is at the cutting edge of gender attribution and manufacture...

The gender-based division of power in the nuclear family permanently cast the mother in the powerless role of a victim...

... In the black community, 'sister' does not imply a desire for a female exclusive community (of interests), which is precisely what is at its base in white feminism.

... it is significant that for many of the enslaved Africans, gender was not coded linguistically in their original languages. Indeed the kinship categories 'brother' and 'sister' do not exist in Yoruba, Igbo, Efik, Wolof, Songhoi, Benin, Manding and Fulani to name some of the West African languages and nationalities from which many black Americans originated.

... The comparable category in sentiment in many West African cultures to the concept of 'sister' in Western culture--that is, sister as sibling who has a common interest because of shared experience and social location and whose love and loyalty are supposed to be unconditional--is a category that literally translates as 'my mother's child/ren.' In Yoruba it is 'omoya.' The following is a sample of the term in some West African languages: 'Nwanne' (Igbo), 'Omwiyemwen' (Benin), 'Doo mi ndey' (Wolof), 'N ba den' (Bamana, 'Gna'izo' (Songhoi-Hombori), 'Eyen-eka' (Efik), 'Badenya' (Manding), 'Biddo yaya'm' (Fulani).

... To put it crudely, in the traditional Yoruba household, the first thing you need to know is not whether you are a boy or a girl but who are your 'omoya'-siblings with whom you share the same mother.

... The experience of the mother's womb is not gendered--it carries both male and female babies; therefore the social grouping of 'omoya' does not anticipate any gender commonality amongst its members, and the elaboration of their emotional closeness does not rest on it. Sisterhood, in contrast, is defined solely by gender commonality and the anticipated similarity in social experience as a result of having what Western culture designates as the inferior body-type--the female one.

What emerges from such African household and family organization is the importance of motherhood, the fact that mother-derived ties are the most culturally significant, and that mothers have agency and power. Fundamentally, motherhood is not usually constructed in relation to or in opposition to fatherhood; it is conceived in its own right. Mothers are perceived as especially powerful--literally and mystically, in regard to the well being of the child. They are therefore the pivot around which family life is structured and the child's life rotates.

... In African societies, the question of organizing to attain a political goal speaks to the issue of forming political alliances, and not sisterhood, since group identity is constituted socially and is not based on any qualities of shared anatomy popularly called gender. Consequently, it would be impractical and counterproductive to approach community building and the struggle for a just society as projects constituted on the bases of an exclusive sisterhood of the body. Coalition politics seems to be the practical, age-old system of furthering group interest only, of course, if a group has identified a common interest. Women do not constitute such a group unambiguously or continuously. In the oft-repeated, eloquent words of Bernice Reagon, a 'coalition is not a home.' So if a coalition is not home, why are we looking for sisters within it."
(Oyewumi).

To these ways of knowing from African societies, mothers and children unambiguously or continuously constitute groups with common interests, but women alone do not. Here, what need is there for an alternative empire of balance to be created from a blank slate in order to save us from an empire of imbalance? Here, it is not about there being a fundamental problem with male or female dominance. Ideology falls short because although the status quo is a site of mutual resistance, the actual process of balancing our relations is largely circumstantial and intimate to those experiencing a given reality and informed by a given cultural genealogy. Here, a study of just one African widely shared language concept orients our values and aesthetics. Balance is cultivated from the bottom up like this; from the inside out. It requires honesty and openness with self and any counterpart. While it may be unfortunate that today it's exceptional to have the type of sustained, brave honesty and openness required for good speech, it is nevertheless still true that honesty with ourselves enables our capacities for love. I can see no sustainable ideological shortcuts or cohorts.

The impetus for an African future has historically been the vision of the reawakening of the African mind and the re/birth of African civilization. It is by force and the will to survive that African-descended people came to react to white privilege at all. Liberal Studies could not contain an African future and only the focus on remembering is ultimately a true coming forth of a new dawn. For many of us, honesty and openness means reconciling the reality that we feel as if we don't know who we are. Yet, straightforward insights into the African past, like those of Drs. Watkins-Beatty and Oyewumi, orient us and link us to an intergenerational conversation, which speaks back to us through our hearts and minds.

...

Many of black Feminism's critiques of patriarchy contain at least some modicum of diatribe against emotionally imbalanced "hypermasculinity," rightfully so. But today, the Liberal view essentially seeks a blank slate from which to create a new man. Instead, given a amnesic circumstance and cultural genealogy, the focus should be placed on recovering memory, lost both violently and through distraction, and the healing of the dark and empty spaces. Otherwise, we may enter a war that may never be won, finding ourselves stuck in a never-ending quagmire. African-descended/black women pledging allegiance to a Feminism that shares the genealogy of the status quo only serves most immediately to divide them from many of their men who see no need for ideology in order to honestly seek peaceful understanding in comradeship. Suffering and hate distract and consume us precisely with the symptoms of imbalance. And while perpetrated imbalances shouldn't be ignored, they should rarely dominate the journey to creating and recreating health and balance. The "hater" period is valuable but only insomuch as it informs our subsequent creative action.

As we resist having conversations in our heads and insist on engaging each other in faith, discarding ideology becomes increasingly practical; it can be an instigator that encourages counterparts to interpret critique as judgement. Our society of spectacle maintains a blurred fine line between the two, sensationally equating one with the other. But, as in therapeutic spaces where speech is constructed sensitively and open-ended, we ought to work on constructing our conversations in frames that are conducive to reaching each other. Both giver and receiver should be mindful of giving and receiving criticism in the spirit of peaceful understanding. Our options for relating are education and war. Even if at times we must war for a more just, more balanced survival, should we not generally prioritize? Even the pursuit of justice requires a future and if the war around this persistent imbalance destroys the fabric of our relations in the name of justice, for us justice itself will have nowhere to exist.

My dear, I only see true hope in education.

The recovery of memory is escape from an amnesic social order. The self who engages in the cultivation of balance becomes a site of balancing regardless of where or when she begins. From sites of intimate balancing, through authentic exchange, men, women, and families can share similarities, differences, and synergies. Authentic exchange involves the free sharing of strategy, ideas, tactics, and critique--not with the competitive goal of establishing or imposing a universal, rather for the purpose of constantly growing and improving our own intimate concepts of balance. Our senses develop and sharpen. Imbalance lurking, we consistently pursue and practice balance through action and speech rooted in intimate present demands. Despite the loud cries of our modern liberalisms, our instinctual, intuitive goal seems most correct: know ourselves, find ourselves around others who are also in the act, communicate honestly about our passionate imperfect pursuits of balance**, and either do or do not*** find the comforts, compassions, and passions in companionship that allow us to learn and journey with our counterparts. No matter how hard you try, you can only know when you know. Mom always said, "there will be incompatibilities that are worth your energy and ones that aren't." This too is a part of peaceful understanding and authentic exchange. Our most formidable creative challenge is in practicing the art of relating in order to maintain a real, constant conversation with each other. Some seek ebb and flow through fairness in the representation of competing ideologies, but this is a different project. Wherever and whenever our hearts and minds remember that which is hidden we are where we ought to be. Imagine the rise of generations armed with peaceful understanding of themselves across the three dimensions of time and of the social order that made them two--decidedly operating not from a twoness, neither confused nor amnesic, but from a oneness aware that it was made two. These generations know that ours is the perpetual movement, always in relation to each other and seeking solvency; that each act of relation is an original creation.

Footnotes
*From a note my father sent to me.

**In a friendly, laid back survey of five men on this topic of relating, I learned that their most common worry was the ability of their counterparts to balance confident self-improvement with honest and considerate communication. They took it for granted that they deserve nothing that they do not work toward themselves; "If I want the Jedi I need to get busy in the dojo." These young men--from major cities in the east, midwest, and west--worried: about the lack of cultural forums for self-improvement; about women's "Chi flow;" about how women reconcile "emotional trauma related to physical attraction;" about women who "worry" often; about women who are "controlling;" about women who "would rather have collective misery than individual happiness;" about "emotional manipulation" and being "tricked" or "forced;" about women who do not acknowledge emotional shifts and lack consistency in communicating thoughts and feelings. They joked with a serious air: about "voluptuousness," "oral sex," "physical fitness," "foreplay," "cockblocking," "breakfast with no strings attached," and their discourses of desire. They wished: for mutual consideration and skill, but also for intellectual exchange; for a partner with the ability to enjoy the present moment, and for family; for negotiation over manipulation, and the mutual freedom to dissolve unfollowed contracts; to not be viewed as saviors. And, they imagined: the advice they'd give their daughters one day about accepting and acknowledging weaknesses and ineffectiveness alongside agency and power.

***Even in putting ourselves in the open--naturally, non-ideologically, with faith--we may still find our connections strained or severed. Such organic, non-ideological disconnects are dynamic though, and it is at least clearly possible to regrow them in new context at any point.

Notes
Hilliard, Asa G. "The State of African Education" (Plenary Presentation). American Education Research Association Commission on Research in Black Education, New Orleans, LA. 2000.

Horkheimer, Max & Adorno, Theodor W. "The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception." 1944.

Hurt, Byron. "Why I Am a Male Feminist." TheRoot.com, Mar. 2011.

Oyewumi, Oyeronke. "Ties that (Un)Bind: Feminism, Sisterhood and Other Foreign Relations." JENDA: Journal of Culture and African Women Studies, Vol. 1 No. 1, 2001.

Robinson, Cedric. Black Marxism: The Making of the Black Radical Tradition. Univ of North Carolina Press, 1983.

Slaughter, Anne-Marie. "Why Women Still Can’t Have It All." The Atlantic, Jul./Aug. 2012.

Watkins-Beatty, Valethia. "Reconceptualizing the Gender of Africana Women" (Lecture). Association for the Study of Classical African Civilization, Washington, D.C. 2011. (link)

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Submissions: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

Live From Planet Earth is a hands-on, cooperative meditation — on self-sustaining, tropical, organic human being and development — rooting and producing through your generous, reparative, faithful contributions. Please support by helping us fill this measure little by little, slowly but surely: Annual ($36), ($2400), ($6000); Monthly ($3), ($5), ($10), ($25), ($30), ($40), ($60), ($70), ($80), ($90), ($130), ($200), ($500), ($1000).




the way of the janitor / what is a janitor?



exclusive feature
Brian Hughes Kasoro
{Minneapolis, MN:USA}
The Liberator Magazine 1.1 #1, 2002

(Publisher's Commentary: I wrote this 18 years ago under the pseudonym Carl Slater, from the book Black Empire. If anything else has changed, I hope Black 17-year-old kids & their parent(s) aren't waiting until they are 18 or 19 or 30 or 60 to understand deeply, detailed & fully, the lifestyles of the Hapi rivers & Bantu lakes peoples. It will probably take an entire journey through every major school of thought in Black- African-Studies unless your mother or family storyteller's memory is from central Africa; still difficult to do today before undergraduate but probably, ultimately necessary in order to see change grow. We can't overstand the shackles of Whiteness, Racism, or Imperialism until we deeply, detailed & fully respect the scientifically original humanity's humane being--the quicker the better. Both logic's & instinct's full maturities require this full understanding of human life. The fewer life choices made before fulfilling that understanding, the more likely your chances of fully living from planet Earth. We can take our time with everything else. Open the closet and lay all the relevant tools out; as soon as possible, not at your earliest convenience. If Kanye's rural permaculture corporate commune brand is the new Ralph Lauren, Nader, or Jill Stein, then we'll know once & for all that the first republic, even with its amendments, will probably die over being reformed. Yet, both death & reform require life, so remaining the same classic, despite everchanging superficial remixes, is the need to keep it one hunnit at all times; always sooner than later. You are the master, the temple, the broom; you live, you're nature. Nobody, but your mama--creator, creati(on/ve) partner(s)--will help you live from planet earth, so if s/he (they) didn't tell you to do so yet then this here is probably one of your only chances. Liberation is not reactionary, it's regenerated outward from "cleansed" soil. Join us.)

Janitor: a noun. The word is used to describe one who is dedicated to maintenance and cleaning. Perhaps one of the lowest "animals" of the corporate American "food chain," the janitor must be humble. I've never once seen an arrogant janitor, mostly due to the fact that cleaning the trash and filth others produce is far from something to boast about. But what if there were janitors whose occupation did not consist of mopping the floors of Corporate America. Perhaps we could think outside of the boxes that we often create in order to comprehend things, and see the janitors who are instead mopping the mental and spiritual filth from the minds of our brethren.

The root of the word janitor--"Janus"--is Latin based, and is defined as one who is a "gatekeeper" or a "doorkeeper." More precisely, one who is employed to guard an entrance or a doorway leading to something or somewhere. Our word for the first month of the year is directly connected to this Latin root. The word January comes from, and is related to the Latin root as being our "gatekeeper" for each new year. It serves as the doorman of every following month; guiding each of them into the up-and-coming year.

Often when we think of, pray for, and wait in expectation for our "savior" or for someone to lead us, we envision him (her/them) as one who will come in a blaze of fire, crowned and dressed the part of a "true" leader. But just as Jews doubted the arrival of Jesus, and Christians have doubted the arrival of Mohammed, the world will have trouble accepting the arrival of a new janitorial-like leadership. If indeed "the first shall be last and the last shall be first," then who better to lead the people into the "gateway" than a bunch of "janitors?" The hero(es) we are looking for will most likely not come in the "blaze" we expect them to come in, nor will they come boasting their arrival. Leaders do not declare themselves leaders; they are declared by the will of the people. We must keep in mind that our new leadership may come as "janitors;" dirty, underpaid, and by no means crowned or dressed to play the role of one who saves. However, perhaps it is the unavoidable destiny of the people, for them not to recognize the coming of true leaders.

Many of us have been conditioned to accept only the images we have been given as reality, limiting our imaginations and the boundaries of our minds so that we cannot even fathom changes to our societal "norms." We must be careful not to deny that which we wish for. We cry for summer, then complain about the heat. We get cooler weather, then cry for the heat of summer.

What we wish for, are incorruptible, fearless leaders, who love the people more than they love themselves and are willing to sacrifice their lives for us. We cannot be foolish enough to persecute them when God sends them. We will continue to hope and pray for leaders who are employed only by God, who are attempting to live righteously and follow God's laws, and who are committed to being true servants of the people. We want leaders dedicated to cleaning up the community and helping the people find the (gate)way to the most positive--therefore we must not be surprised when our "janitors" arrive.

In these days of uncertainty, one of the only things absolutely certain is change; it is inevitable. A new leadership will have to come, because torches are not meant to be placed on mantles, they are meant to be passed down. Quite often an individual will find that which he needs in the most unlikely of places. The janitor's closet is the "last" place we look to find our future leaders--perhaps we could take some divine advice and make it the "first."

Submissions: scripts at liberatormagazine.com

Live From Planet Earth is a hands-on, cooperative meditation — on self-sustaining, tropical, organic human being and development — rooting and producing through your generous, reparative, faithful contributions. Please support by helping us fill this measure little by little, slowly but surely: Annual ($36), ($2400), ($6000); Monthly ($3), ($5), ($10), ($25), ($30), ($40), ($60), ($70), ($80), ($90), ($130), ($200), ($500), ($1000).