Archive for Christmas

The Bridge: Gifts For The Black At Christmas

Posted in African Americans, Black Men, Money/Economics with tags , on December 20, 2011 by Black Man

By Darryl James

Recently, I’ve been hearing Christians complain that Jesus is being taken out of Christmas because some people like to refer to the holiday as Xmas.

The funny part of it all to me is that these ignorant Christians have no idea that it Jesus was forced into the holiday to begin with.

The same Christians who complain that Jesus is being taken out of Christmas also celebrate the Yuletide season, without knowing where the Yule logs or anything else came from.

The original Pagan Yule holiday was a 12 day celebration of sacrifice and worship of the god Yule. Over a 12 day period, worshippers would make blood sacrifices in fire to Yule and burn a huge log—a Yule log. Sometimes those blood sacrifices were human!

The Roman Catholic church wanted to reform as many people as possible and have them join the church so Pagan rituals were massaged and added to Christian tradition.

The church took the 12 day celebration of Yule and began it on December 25th, claiming that day as the birth of Christ. The 12th day, January 6th, was proclaimed “Epiphany,” the day the Three Wise Men came to visit the baby Jesus.

That gift of knowledge should really give new meaning to the song “The 12 Days of Christmas.”

The economy is in the toilet, people are losing their homes and jobs and yet, some of us are still shopping until we drop.

Now that you have spent next month’s earnings of gifts that will last a few weeks, it’s time to focus on gifts that will keep on giving.

There are a few things that Blacks can give to themselves, which will continue to give throughout the year, making us a stronger, more unified and powerful people.

In another Black Top Ten List, I’d like to propose some things that Black people can give themselves for Christmas or for Kwanzaa. Some of these gifts are reflective of the Nguzo Saba—the seven principles of Kwanzaa.

Top Ten Christmas Gifts Blacks Can Give Themselves:

1                 A Black Women’s Rights Movement.  My sisters, the women’s rights movement duped you into thinking that it was for you, but it was not.  It was for white women and you were pimped. If you want a real revolution, create a Black Women’s Rights Movement and many of your brothers will be first in line.  Black women have been speaking about their rights and talking about Black men as their oppressors, which is ridiculous. Oppression is a product of power, and quite frankly, Black people in this nation have not exercised power in any intrinsic manner since the 1960’s.  Let’s exercise our creativity (Kuumba) and create something that will benefit us all.

2                 A Million Man Investment Club.  Following the lead of The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan I propose we bring one million Black men together to invest ten dollars each in one company.  It’s too easy to do.  That’s ten million dollars and that is empowerment and reflective of Ujamaa (cooperative economics).

3                 Black Love.  We hear the song “Give Love On Christmas Day,” and we like it, so why not give that love to ourselves as a people?  Tell someone you love them and then turn around and show someone that you love them.  Finally, look for ways each day to demonstrate your love for yourself as a Black person.  For a list of things to love about us, refer to my column called “Thanks For Being Black,” which lists the Top Ten Things To Love About Being Black (www.bridgecolumn.proboards36.com).

4                 Black Pride.  There is no reason why we should have disparaging images of us in film and on television in 2011, but yet, many Blacks defend the images whether they come from white racists or Black self-hating sellouts. If we exercised more pride in ourselves, these images would be impossible to endure. There are a plethora of things to be proud of as a member of the most oppressed race in the world, and we need to focus on those things every day to spread the feeling of pride that will allow us to move forward in the new millennium with faith in ourselves, reflective of Imani (Faith).

5                 Black Unity.  How can any of us progress and feel good about it, when so many of us are not progressing?  Our gift to ourselves should be to care for the least of us, so that we can all move onward and upward together.  This is reflective of Umoja (Unity).

6                 Peace in the streets.  There are many brothers in the streets working for peace among the warring gang factions across the nation and they need the support of the entire community.  You can talk about how bad it is in the streets, or you can find out what you need to do to make it better.  I don’t want to talk about peace in the Middle East until there is peace in the Black community. Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me.

7                 Self-Awareness.  My gift to my people would be to make them aware of the most critical issues facing us, and then to focus on those things without being confused by politics of religion, class, sex or political parties.  I would also give them the gift of history, so that we could remain mindful of whence we came. If you know where you came from, you can more easily determine where you are going.  This is reflective of Kujichagulia (Self-Determination).

8                 Mutual Support.  As a people, we have everything we need to manufacture, distribute, buy and sell the goods and services we seek from others.  If each of us supports another of us, we can begin to recycle Black dollars and resources more productively. This can be done in the spirit of Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility).

9                 A good conversation.  Many of us just need someone to talk to who will listen and understand.  Let’s stop talking at or about each other and start talking to each other.

10              A collective consciousness.  Today, many of us scoff at the idea of most of us coming together for common purposes (Nia), but no matter what the socio-economic differences, we are still all the same people with the same challenges and the same work lying before us. This is also reflective of Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility.

So, this holiday season, instead of wishing for expensive material items, let’s all wish for and give gifts that will continue to keep giving long after these current lives are over.

Happy Holidays!

Darryl James is an award-winning author of the powerful new anthology “Notes From The Edge.”  James’ stage play, “Love In A Day,” opened in Los Angeles this Spring and will be running throughout 2011. View previous installments of this column at http://www.bridgecolumn.proboards36.com. Reach James at djames@theblackgendergap.com.

The Bridge: The Roots of Christmas & Jesus, Part 2

Posted in Black America, Black Interests, The Bridge - Darryl James with tags , on December 14, 2011 by Black Man

By Darryl James

Religion and/or spirituality are personal choices and lifestyles that should be unifying forces, not divisive elements.

I notice that whenever a person runs from divergent beliefs it is because they are not as grounded as they say they are.  While I respect all religions, I find it disturbing that Christians, out of all religious people in America, can be the most closed-minded and judgmental.

As human beings of the same planet and of the same God (no matter what name you use for God, there is but one), we should seek to align ourselves with people who have good hearts and who do good work–not simply people who blindly follow things they do not fully understand. There should be no unification based on ignorance.

As a man of God, I am at once disgusted and saddened by the lunatics and overbearing heretics who claim to represent God and who claim to know Jesus (Yahshua, the Black revolutionary).  As a scholar, I already know that they have more than likely never read the Bible for themselves or studied history and therefore, have no real clue as to the reality of Jesus of Nazareth.

It is my greatest wish that people who wish to represent Jesus would study to learn who he truly was.

Jesus was a Black revolutionary who believed in all faiths for all people. He was not a Christian, but a Hebrew. He also rejected the concept of himself as a messiah or more of a son of God than any of us.

Jesus also rejected the concept of Church because he knew that it would exclude some of the people he loved the most. The sad part is that people have come to use his name and misrepresent him while they do things he would never do–like judge others based on differences.

Jesus worshipped his father with people of all religions (there was no Christianity during Jesus’ time) and walked with people of all walks of life. Yet, today, many ill-informed Christians claim to love him and desire to follow him, but turn ignorance toward differences.

If you really read the Bible, then you will know that Jesus was not trying to convince people to worship within any religion, and he certainly wasn’t trying to push people to worship him.  If you claim to aspire to be like Jesus, you should realize that you only do that when you are tolerant of other belief systems.

Knowledge of the Bible and of history will reveal that what Jesus was trying to deliver to other humans, more than anything else, was an understanding of conscious evolution, which means that he had mastered the power of critical thinking.  What would Jesus do?  Well, he wouldn’t hate people because they hold divergent faiths.  Believe that.

In organizations such as the Green Beret, the slogan goes, Many are called but few are chosen.” Such is also the case with universal conscious evolution.

Jesus states in Matthew 7:14: “Strait is the gate and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”

Jesus is saying that “narrow is the way,” and “few there be that find it,” which means that the true path will not be followed by the majority.  In other words, whatever is popular, is more than likely NOT the correct path.  Also, by saying “few there be that find it,” Jesus is illustrating that the path is not a mass pursuit, but that each individual should determine for self the way which “leadeth unto life.”

As A HEBREW HIMSELF, Jesus advocated for intrinsic spiritual enlightenment and conscious evolution, not blind and exclusionary participation in any one religion. Also, like many other prophets and revolutionaries, Jesus was not very popular during his time, and neither were his doctrines.

Remember, Jesus was not a Christian, and promoted only love for humanity and for his father, God, not for any religion.  Christianity was manufactured following his murder at the hands of crazed religious zealots, who curiously, were promoting THEIR religious beliefs when they killed him.

Please allow me to quote three immortal thinkers:

According to Mark Twain, “If Christ were here there is one thing he would not be…a Christian.”

“There are people in the world so hungry, that God cannot appear to them except in the form of bread,” said Mahatma Ghandi.

And, finally, from the new school of conscious evolution and critical thinking, Darryl James preaches that “There are perhaps more atheists created from the unwitting repulsion generated by religious zealots than the careful work of the devil himself.”

The conscious evolution promoted by Jesus, Mohammed and other historical visionaries allows humans to transcend the clannishness of religions in order to focus on the universal love found in the true Kingdom of God.  There is no evolution in promoting one religion over another.  If all paths lead to God, then your path is as valid as my own, unless of course, you have spoken directly to God–in which case, you are either delusional, a prophet, or full of crap.

Religion, faith and spirituality are individual pursuits that are very elusive in their purity.  There is no evolution in pushing the same vapid thoughts to the masses without critical thinking and a historical perspective.

Take that into consideration the next time you send out your insipid Jesus emails or otherwise deliver such messages unwarranted without a care in the world for your brethren who did not ask for them.  How mean spirited and witless is it to continue to flood the masses with information that you yourself more than likely don’t really understand?

Those truly serious and dedicated Christians who have read the Bible know that Jesus never advocated the celebration of his birth. His message was to remember what his death represented. In that same Bible, such celebrations as Christmas have been identified as heathen activities, which makes people look foolish for claiming that people have taken Christ out of Christmas. Originally, he was never in it.

That having been said, the current season of Christmas has become more about love and togetherness than anything, which is why it is held by a number of people of all faiths.

This Christmas season, spread love, spread holiday cheer and spread the spirit of giving and sharing, which does not mean jamming your religion down the throats of the masses.

Quite frankly, in doing so, you are moving away from the conscious evolution pursued by Jesus of Nazareth, and are therefore, DANCING WITH THE DEVIL.  Nevertheless, our God has given you the freedom to do so, just as Hitler, the slave masters, and the warmongering leaders of the free world were allowed to make their own choices on God’s green earth.

Just don’t lie and claim to do it in the name of Jesus.

Happy Holidays!

Darryl James is an award-winning author of the powerful new anthology “Notes From The Edge.”  James’ stage play, “Love In A Day,” opened in Los Angeles this Spring and will be running throughout 2011. View previous installments of this column at http://www.bridgecolumn.proboards36.com. Reach James at djames@theblackgendergap.com.

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