International Libations for the Ancestors, Saturday, June 14, 2014
What an absolutely beautifully spiritual experience we had down at the river in Mwangusha Forest during our ritual to honor our Ancestors during the International Libations event today! Being out in nature like that invited our Ancestors into that area and filled us up completely with love and blessings.
I was so honored to be a part of that blessing which was a merging of several African Spiritual Traditions that simply illustrated that our traditions boil down to one thing in the end...love of the Creator and reverence for the Ancestors! Different languages and generations, but the same heart and spirit.
I hope that you who are planning to celebrate in the diaspora have the same spiritual experience in harmony, peace and love. We put out some powerful vibes that flew into the universe today Y'all! I KNOW You will do the same!!
Love and Blessings from the foothills of Mt Meru,
Reflections from Oakland, CA, USA
Thanks Sister Charlotte for the report. I shared it this morning with those gathered at Lake Merritt in Oakland. This year was our largest to date. We also had our youngest participant this time as well. She was under five years old. We shared stories of fire and water, earth and sky as the warmth of each heart made the circle intimate and powerful.
I shared an ancestor story I'd just read in Angelique Kidjo's book: "Spirit Rising: My Life, My Music." One women said that her grandfather was born in 1862, so she was reminded often how close to the Black Holocaust or Maafa she was/we are.
Two brothers brought drums.
As I dashed to the corner to cross the street with no time to spare, I saw a brother in white just ahead of me and two sisters on the corner--they were in white--I knew they were going to the same party (smile). As we waited for the light to change we chatted about the Ritual and how it started and what year it was for us.
We arrived just in time. The three people there had already started to pour. Some had never poured libations before and one brother in his description of what a libation is said that it was a way to deepen our connection to spirit, since to pour libations is to evoke an element which makes up 90 percent of our bodies. Similarly the ancestors are our family, a part of us too.
Some people called just a few ancestors, others called many. We then had the opportunity to reflect on another element-- fire, as Sister Afua, who shared ocean water with us to use in the libation, had a candle with Egyptian myrrh incense which helped people go deep, deep to Kemet and reflect on the wisdom of our ancestors like scholar Dr. Asa Hilliard.
For those who arrived after the 9 a.m. Libation, we opened the circle for more libations, then read the Ngozo Saba aloud in groups of three. Earlier Sister Afua shared writings from Dr. Karenga on "love."
Love and Truth seemed to be the two themes today; imagine a libation the day after the Honey Moon appeared in the sky, a Friday the 13, a day which reflects a woman's menses cycles and the moons between (13).
After the libation, many people walked or drove over to the other side of the Lake for Omnira Institute's Juneteenth Commemoration . There were more libations there, prayers in African and Diaspora languages, freedom songs, drumming, and dancing.
When I arrived an Indigenous elder was drumming. I could hear him before I saw the people. He spoke of those men and women and children who crossed the Atlantic, how brave they were and how strong they had to be.
It was a good day, when I got home I rested after I ate and then went for an evening walk along the beach. It was a great evening for a walk. I was searching for the moon and could not find her. I called people to ask if they'd seen the moon and everyone near Lake Merritt was out. It felt like they were all at the Moon Party and having too much fun to take a call (smile).
October 7, 2014 is the 19th Annual Maafa Commemoration in San Francisco. Visit http://maafasfbayarea.com