Dr. Maulana Karenga
This year as we again observe the days set aside to mark and remind us of both the tragic passing and praiseworthy endurance of victims of HIV/AIDS among us, we, of necessity, continue to search for solutions. And that search, wherever else it takes us, always leads us back to ourselves. For the effective confrontation and curing of this horrible human epidemic, so devastating to us as African people all over the world, ultimately depends on us, regardless of the medical discoveries and other interventions. That is to say, it depends on what we do in relations of shared responsibility in love and life, to save and secure our lives, improve our life conditions and above all, strengthen our relations among ourselves and thus, our capacity to achieve our goals.
Indeed, the hub and hinge on which the whole of human existence turns is relations at every level of life. …
It is a revealing measure of the meaning and importance that our ancestors in the classical African civilization of ancient Egypt placed on knowledge, teaching and learning that they called their educational institutions, per-ankh, the house of life. Indeed this emphasis on education as indispensable to life is reaffirmed, augmented and extended in their name for human beings, i.e., rekhyt, which means wise and knowing beings. This definition of human beings carries within it also a moral understanding. For it conceives of humans, not only as wise and knowing beings, but also as moral agents who have an ethical obligation to know in order to realize their full potential, and in the interest of themselves and the world, apply their wisdom in life-affirming and life-enhancing ways.
So, it is within this ethical and social understanding of education that we of the African American Cultural Center (Us) joined LAUSD Board Member, …
With all due respect to the eminence and awesome insightfulness of W.E.B. Du- Bois, it is not only de-centered and dislocated Blacks who suffer a “double-consciousness,” but also self-centered and supremacy-committed Whites, who constantly claim a common humanity but have racialized the world, and who advocate democracy but are unmistakably dedicated to racial domination at home and abroad. In his seminal work, The Souls of Black Folk, DuBois discussed what he defined as a double-consciousness among Blacks, troubled and traumatized by the Holo- caust of enslavement and subsequent racist oppression. He defined this state of things as a “sense of always looking at one’s self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of the world. . .” Moreover, he fur- ther defines it as a feeling of “two unrecon- ciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body.” It is a struggle to be both …
Surely, as it is written in the sacred texts of our ancestors, the Husia, “to do that which is of value is for eternity. A person called forth by his work does not die for his name is raised and remembered because of it.” And so it is with this man of immeasurable meaning to us all, our beloved brother and attorney for our people, John Morgan Caldwell, Jr. Thus, we have come to this sacred place to bear witness to his great weight and worth in the world, and to speak and hear of the limitless value and varied kinds of good he brought and left in our lives and the world.
The passing and journey into eternity of John Caldwell offers us an important opportunity and time to pause and pay rightful homage to one most worthy among us, and to think deeply about the rich harvest of
If the possession and pursuit of money can change even the focus of faith from social justice to personal prosperity, we cannot wonder how concerns about funding and maintaining favor can contribute to redefining, not only the memories and meanings of the 1992 Los Angeles Revolt, but also those of our history and struggle, and even of our being Black. Clearly, it’s not just money, but also loss of the will and courage to confront and the funded and cultivated habit of seeking safety in compromise, cautiousness and ethnic self-erasure, spitting in the wind and waiting for directions from others.
In any case, the safe-sounding comments on what the Revolt meant and means and what people experienced and their evaluation of how far we have come from that event and its aftermath, clearly demonstrate the calculated cautiousness that now defines the dialog. In remembering the Revolt, we were told by
As Earth Day approaches this year, it provides an important opportunity to focus on critical environmental issues in a post-Katrina era of devastating storms and flooding, increasingly disastrous climate change, continuing toxic contamination of land, water and air, the ravaging of rain forests, the racist sacrificing of the health and well-being of unfavored peoples and the addictive consumerism of a self-medicating society, busily making itself insensitive to human suffering and the problematic conditions and future of the world. Surely, a rightful approach to the environment begins with rethinking our relationship with the world, our place in it, our obligation towards it and the cost, casualties and future-diminishing consequences of our current deadly course and the thinking and practices which undergird and inform it.
We must question the human-centered arrogance that led to the self-assigning of humans, in the name of God, gun and the questionable good of “man”, the right …
In thinking deep and determined about the strategy and struggle for justice for Trayvon Martin and all the other Black boys and men, and persons and peoples of color similarly targeted, abused, maimed and murdered, we are compelled to recall the essential teachings of Amilcar Cabral about the long, toll-taking and relentless struggle we must wage, not only for victory, but also to sustain ourselves in the process. Cabral tells us that to wage serious, sustained and victorious struggle, we must “mask no difficulties, tell no lies, and claim no easy victories”. Indeed, on the way to liberation, the streets are strewn with casualties; the roads are full of ruts, detours and deceptive signs; and the way forward often blocked and always lined with minstrels and merchants of fantasies and false hopes of every diversionary, divisive and disabling kind.
Moreover, we cannot wage real, righteous and sustained struggle and not …
There is an unlimited library of lessons in the lives and teachings of our ancestors, those who, as Seba Ptahhotep says in the Husia, “listened to the Divine”, spoke truth, did justice, and worked tirelessly to secure the well-being of our people and the world. So it is with Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., awesome preacher, prophet and dream weaver whose martyrdom and sacrifice we commemorate this month. And so it is with Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, educator, institution-builder and enabler of the people; the Hon. Elijah Muhammad, divine messenger, molder, and reminder of our divine image and essence; Mrs. Fannie Lou Hamer, way-maker, movement mother, and midwife of history; Al-Hajj Min. Malcolm X, master teacher, fire prophet, bringer-of-the-uplifting word, and all the others who taught us the Good, the Right and the Possible. For they all belong to this most ancient spiritual and ethical tradition we share as …
The savage and senseless murder of Trayvon Martin drives another nail in the coffin of “post-racial” confusion and double- talk about the devastating racial and racist reality of life and lived experience in U.S. society. So, we pause and pay homage to Trayvon’s shortened youthful life, to mourn his unnatural and undeserved death and to share as best we can the immeasurable loss and incalculable grief continually suffered by his mother, Sybrina Fulton, and his father, Tracy Martin, as well as other family members and friends. And we also commit ourselves to stand and act in solidarity with them to bring Trayvon’s killer to justice, hold the police accountable for coddling and covering up for the killer, and to put an overdue end to the racist practices that have led to targeting, assaulting, arresting, false convictions, wrongful imprisonment and killing of so many other Black boys and men in Sanford, …
Habari gani. On behalf of my friend, wife and companion in all things good and beautiful, Tiamoyo; the advocates and members of our organization, Us, the African American Cultural Center, and the National Association of Kawaida Organizations; Dr. Segun Shabaka, chair of New York NAKO, who accompanied us here, and myself, we bring you greetings of solidarity, support, celebration and continuing struggle on this historic occasion of the opening of the Molefi Kete Asante Institute for Afrocentric Studies.
We have come here to mark and reaffirm the meaning of this momentous event, the opening of this center of learning and life called by our ancestors, Per-Ankh, the House of Life. Indeed, this is not only the opening of another important institution, but also the independent, communal institutionalization of one of the most valuable, influential and intellectually generative paradigms of thought and practice of our times, i.e., Afrocentricity. And the founding
- Black Women, Men & HIV/AIDS: Shared Responsibility in Love & Life
March 27, 2013
- Crafting Success at Crenshaw High: Cooperatively Achieving Excellence
July 20, 2012
- The Confederate Mind of America: Double-Consciousness and Double-Dealing
June 29, 2012
- John Caldwell, Storm Rider: Essential Notes From A Eulogy
June 6, 2012
- Remembering the 1992 L.A. Revolt: A Calculated Cautiousness
May 5, 2012
- Repairing and Remaking the World: An Environmental Vision of Justice
April 21, 2012
- Notes from the Battlefield: Trayvon, Strategy and Struggle
April 14, 2012
- King and Our Moral Mission: Transforming Ourselves and the World
April 10, 2012
- For Trayvon and Our People: Radical Racial and Social Justice
March 30, 2012
- Institutionalizing the Afrocentric Initiative: Securing A Centered Way Forward
March 23, 2012
Other Dr. Maulana Karenga
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HISTORY, BACKGROUND, FACTS ↓
Black Family Summit
A collaborative of national Black professional organizations dedicated to promoting holistic principles, policies and practices to strengthen Black families and communities.
Damu Smith Leadership Development and Organizer Training Institute
An Initiative devoted to providing training in the principles of community organizing and
Collaborative of progressive, African-centered scholars, think tanks and research centers dedicated to utilizing theoretical and applied research to address issues of vital concern to people of African descent and enhance the development of Black communities.
Shirley Chisolm Presidential Accountability Commission
Group of leading Black scholars and activists charged with monitoring the executive branch/presidential administrations of the U.S. government for progress on the Black Agenda/ issues of importance to people of African descent in the U.S. and globally.
Haiti Support Project
An Initiative committed to “Building a Constituency for Haiti in the United States,” focusing on mobilizing/organizing African Americans and other people of African descent to strengthen the process of democracy and development in the world’s first Black Republic.