Ancient BaNtu Connection: Kamitic/Kemetic Color Symbolism and African Cosmology II

11 05 2013

Hetepu Family.

Summer is almost here and I hope to be travelling to some historic places where our ancestors once stood. A few years back I visited Jamestown and Williamsburg, VA where the Williamsburg Museum actually acknowledge how the first Africans on North American shores were from the Kongo Angolan region. For those of you who don’t know and are new to my blog, the Kongo people prior to be taken to the Americas were not forced into Christianity. Many of them willingly converted to the new faith before the start of the Maafa (the Africa Slave  Trade/Holocaust).  At the Williamsburg Muesuem they actually have a Kongo rosary from the late 1600s or early 1700s. The interesting thing about this rosary was that it didn’t have Jesus on it but instead Queen Nzinga. (I wish I could have taken a picture…I really tried and even tried sketching it but lost the drawing). It was a clear fact, that the Kongo people actually Africanized Christianity prior to their arrival. So this year my family reunion is in Atlanta, GA and I hope to visit Savannah, GA to see the First African Baptist Church.

First African Baptist Church 1775

First African Baptist Church 1775

First African Baptist Church was built in 1775. It claims to have been the first church originally founded in 1773, but it is contested by First Baptist of Virginia. My interests in this church is that this is where the Kongo floor diagram was found.

Kongo Cross at First African Baptist in Savannah, GA

Kongo Cross First African Baptist in Savannah, GA

According to historians, the church was also on one of the stations on the Underground Railroad. Escapees were hidden under the church and the holes in the floor boards acted as vents. It appears that in typical African thinking to identify where the runaways were they marked the spot with an X.

Kongo Cross used for Ventilation during Underground Railroad

Kongo Cross used for Ventilation during Underground Railroad

But, I was wondering if there were more signs of the Kongo influence that have gone unnoticed.  Since the money to build the church was donated by slaves who were saving to purchase their freedom and everything was hand built by them also.

Court of the Kongo Kingdom and First African Baptist Sanctuary

Court of the Kongo Kingdom and First African Baptist Sanctuary

A look at Fist African Baptist sanctuary is very similar to the Kongo court.  Can you see the Kongo Upper Land and how it was converted using the archway?

First African Baptist Sanctuary

First African Baptist Sanctuary

The lights above give an allusion that something glorious is taken place, while something within is sacred.  This is where the idea appears to have originated from.

The queen is depicted in the position Funda Nkata, a very common pose among the noble class and religious authorities that indicates dignity or authority.

The queen is depicted in the position Funda Nkata, a very common pose among the noble class and religious authorities that indicates dignity or authority.

Notice how the enclosure begins or opens up at the bottom.

Kongo Yowa Cross

Kongo Yowa Cross

If you will recall, the Kongo Cross or Cosmogram begins from the Musoni moment as well.

Maa Aankh Cosmogram

Maa Aankh Cosmogram

Also, in the Kamitic / Kemetic traditions, Amun Ra is said to be the True Creator. Correction, not Creator but the Originator because the Kamitic thinkers liked to personify concepts in order to better understand them. Amun Ra as you can see is not a god nor is he The God.  The God in the Kamitic / Kemetic language was called Nebertcher or “Lord of Everything”.  Amun Ra we see simply means the Hidden Ra (Energy or Force).  Now, a closer look behind the pulpit of First African Baptist and there are stain glass windows of their pastors.

First African Baptist Sanctuary stain glass windows

First African Baptist Sanctuary stain glass windows

Notice how it forms a cross, but here’s where it stretches back to Kamit/Kemet (Ancient Egypt). Notice that there are nine marks or small discs encircling the image. Again, it should be noted that these were made around the late 1700s and early 1800s by ex-slaves and enslaved African Americans.

First African Baptist Sanctuary stain glass windows

First African Baptist Sanctuary stain glass windows

 This same number also appears in the patchwork ceiling, which resembles a quilt.

First African Baptist Sanctuary patchwork ceiling

First African Baptist Sanctuary patchwork ceiling

The number nine is a sacred number in Kamit/Kemet because it refers to the Kamitc Tree of Life also called the Paut Neteru, which was introduced by Ra Un Nefer Amen in his Metu Neter series. The number nine is also sacred in various African traditions as it refers to the gestation period and thus the completion of a cycle. When you look at the ceiling you see that each segment is composed of nine smaller segments. It is another way of drawing the Kongo Cross using diamonds and squares.  It basically is another illustration of an individual’s life term.

White Hedjet Crown

White Hedjet Crown

The fact that the ceiling is white gives another meaning, which reveals African cosmology at its best in North America. This is because remember, the color white in African thinking symbolizes the ancestral dead.  Remember, this is a symbolic concept that early Africans as far back as Kamit / Kemet created, which is why Osar’s (Asar, Ausar, Osiris in Greek) is known as the Lord of the Dead (Ancestors).  The name of Osar’s backbone or column is called djet, the symbol of strength. Even the root term of Osar’s crown ‘djet’ refers to inner strength.   Are you starting to see the picture?

Djett: Osar's Backbone

Djett: Osar’s Backbone

When we put together the color white with the concept of completed cycles on the ceiling. What we have here is the Kongo Cross turned upside down. The larger squares symbolize those who completed their cycle in the land of the living. That’s right. What we have above is an African view of Heaven. Where one would hope to die and see their deceased loved ones, but there’s a double meaning. This means the reason the pastors each have nine marks surrounding their image is because the Africans found another way of honoring those who lived a full term.

First African Baptist Stained Glass Window

First African Baptist Stained Glass Window

The other meaning or I should say the most important interpretation is that the ancestors above are looking over (protecting) their descendants, thus the church itself has just become a Kongo Cross or Maa Aankh, and in case you’re wondering.  Above the ceiling of course is where the Almighty God Nebertcher or Nzambi is imagined to be over it all, hence the Lord of Everything.

FAB Ceiling

Of course, all of this is just my theory but, when you look at the floor of the sanctuary, which is red or reddish brown.

FAB Sanctuary

FAB Sanctuary

What comes to my mind is the land of the living or TASETT on the Maa Aankh.

TASETT - The Red Lands. Literally also known as the desert region of Lower Kamit or Egypt. Metaphorically, it symbolizes our Lower Self and the Land of the Living (Physical Realm).

TASETT – The Red Lands. Literally also known as the desert region of Lower Kamit or Egypt. Metaphorically, it symbolizes our Lower Self and the Land of the Living (Physical Realm).

It should be clear that our ancestors thought about God, their ancestors, and the heavenly realm on a daily basis as indicated by this quilt, which also resembles the patchwork ceiling.

Woman holding African American Quilt from 1700s

Woman holding African American Quilt from 1700s

Now, another interesting fact that I have found about African First Baptist is that even their logo is a Kongo design.  Of course, it is not known if the artist was aware of this or not (most likely not).  Whatever the case, that is not the point.

FAB Logo

FAB Logo

 The point is that our ancestors really did leave instructions for us in stone.

Colonoware

Kongo Cross on Colonoware

We just need to take the time and investigate our culture, practices and traditions, instead of running behind everyone else’s.

Basic Kongo Cosmogram

Basic Kongo Cosmogram

No we do not need imitate, mimic, resurrect or reconstruct an exact replica of what our ancestors did because culture is not static, it is always evolving.

This is what the Kongo Yowa Cross (above) and Maa Aankh (below) indicate.

Maa Aankh

All we have to do, is search for God and we will find our ancestors there waiting to point us in our cultural direction.

Hope this helps.

Hetep.

Like this post? You may want to check out: Ancient Ancient BaNtu Connection: Kamitic/Kemetic Color Symbolism and African Cosmology I,
So Early Christian Stole From Kamit/Kemet Now What? Part 1 or So Early Christian Stole From Kamit/Kemet Now What? Part 2





Let My People Go!

7 07 2012

Hetepu (Peace) Family,

Here’s an interested fact I came across.  Because one of the major pillars of peoples’ enslavement to the dogmatic, literal interpretation of the bible, is the story of Moses and the Children of Israel crossing the Red Sea.   Did you know that according to the Torah, when the Children of Israel were fleeing the pharaoh that they called out to God and begged for his help? And God asked,

“Why are you calling me?“

Afterwards, God told the Children of Israel, who were faced with either being killed by pharaoh’s army or drowning,

“Go jump in the water!”

According to Kabbalistic scholars, God’s question and response to the Children of Israel was a code telling the people that they themselves had the power to escape the predicament they were in on their own.  The whole story was an allegory never meant to be taken literal, but to inform people that they didn’t need God’s assistance. They just needed to connect and use the divine energy that exists within them.

When you think about the whole story now, maybe the reason Moses told the biblical pharaoh to “Let my people go!” Really was a request or command meaning release my people from Mental Slavery. Maybe this is the real reason Moses was viewed as a biblical hero and a spirit guide by early African Americans prior to the Civil Rights Movement. Maybe this is the reason why Moses was identified as being a shaman in Afro-Brazil.

Hmmm…something to think about. What do you think?

Hetepu





Happy Birthday: Another Initiation Passed

16 03 2010

This week I am another day older thanks to Kamitic/Kemetic spirituality. Sometimes I wondered how I was going to make it, but it was truly this Kamitic/Kemetic Way of Life that saved me.  I remember when I was 15 looking at the depressing news and hearing the most discouraging words of power from the media during the crack cocaine 1980s, “Young black males won’t make it to 18″, then it went to “21″, “25″. Well, I am 30 something! I made it and now I am trying to help others to get out of  that destructive cycle.

I never understood what this cycle was until I went through my experience and my ancestors taught me about the maa aankh, a Kamitic/Kemetic cosmogram inspired by the Kongo Cross.  You see according to the maa aankh.  The destructive cycle that a lot of young people (especially young men) fall into is called Ra, which is associated with the point Tu-Kula in Ki-Kongo. Both of these points are red and they correspond to the midday sun.  Red is the color of caution, danger, vitality and emergency and on the maa aankh it is associated with the  envious brother of Osar (Asar, Ausar, Osiris) named Set. Set for those who don’t know is the author of confusion, war, chaos, destruction, you name it, if it is evil he has his hands on it. His original name is Set and later he became known as Set-an and finally Satan.  His color by the way is also red.

Ra leads to Ra Atum, which is the point of completion, the end, death and transformation.  Ra Atum is associated with the Luvemba point which is the color white. White is the color of our elders’ gray hair, it is the color of the ancestors, and the cool color of the Lord Osar.

In the natural sense it is okay if you have mastered what is necessary in a particular cycle for you to change, be transformed or die, because it only means that you will be reborn from your experience (hence, the return of old souls being reborn as babies).  But, when you die at an early age and haven’t learned anything or what you were supposed to learn.  We die prematurely both spiritually and physically. Looking back at how I made it and survived the 1980s, I see that I had to learn how to temper the fire (anger, attitude, rashness, rebelliousness, etc.) and have a cool head. I had to learn how to balance the heat with coolness.   I had to listen to my elders who were much wiser and had more experience than I, so that I could avoid dying prematurely. It was by doing that, I was able to escape those turbulent times, pass the initiation (test) created by life and now metaphorically speaking wear the double pschent crown, like Hru (Hrw, Heru, Horus).

For a complete discourse and in-depth analysis see:
MAA AANKH: Finding God the Afro-American Way, by Honoring the Ancestors and Guardian Spirits.





Who or What are the Ancient Egyptian Gods?

15 03 2010

Originally posted 2/1/10 from the Land of Kam website under the title
“The Paut Neteru (Netcharu, Netjeru):  The Emissaries of the Holy Spirit – Ra”

Who or what are the netcharu? Well, let me first tell you that the first time I wrote about the neteru, netjeru or netcharu, it was based mostly upon scholarly research and theory. I had a little brush or experience with these divinities but no real relationship with them. I was just very zealous and like most, I was just happy and wanted to get the information out there about the Kamitic tradition.

Ok, for those of you that haven’t heard, I underwent a serious change in the past few years. I was gravely ill and almost died on two occasions (three is the charm number signifying that you better make some changes or else). I basically survived because I had to for a lack of a better term, “Sho’ N Prove” by putting what I had learned into action.  I had no get serious and find out quickly what worked for me.   I had to get down with some real juju, real fast and with no one in the so-called “spiritual” mindset to help me. I really had to do some things.  Meditation wasn’t getting it…no fluffy bunny stuff for me.  I had to get seriously FUNKY! It was through this experience I made a very interesting discovery.

The one thing that I learned was that the roots of the Kamitic tradition is essentially ancient African shamanism. This was interesting for two reasons: The first reason is because it dispels the myth that the Kamitic people had a pan-religion, meaning they believed in the same thing, worshiped the same way, etc. as often depicted and described by most authors, books, movies, etc.  In other words, everyone did not belong to the same priesthood or tradition because there were various traditions that existed and many of these traditions differed per geographical region.The one thing that the Kamitic people did have in common is that they universally believed in the existence of one God, whom they referred to as Nebertcher – “The Lord of Everything”.

The second thing that made understanding that the roots of the Kamitic religion is essentially African shamanism interesting was that like most African religions and traditions, the belief in ancestors was very strong. This meant that there was a unique relationship that the living had with their dead. It should be noted that most of the grand edifices of Kamit are actually memorials dedicated to their ancestors.

Now, when I was laying up on the hospital gurney, it was my ancestors that helped me to change my perspective about the neteru, which I was informed to call netcharu (such as in nature).  The generic word for God is Neter or Netchur, which is why people commonly refer to natural events as Nature. The energies/spirits controlling those events the Kamau called the netcharu.

The netcharu I was informed were similar to the other divinities but they were basically deified ancestor spirits, similar to the Basimbi of the Kongo. I was shown this because like I said, I was literally on a death bed and when you are close to death you see things completely different and not from an intellectual perspective, because you’re not concerned with what’s right or wrong. You’re only concerned with “What WORKS” when you’re on a deathbed. And, I am not saying that anyone is right or wrong.  I am just telling you what I saw and what helped me to escape Death’s grasp.  So, I was informed that there are a number of netcharu that are similar to the Yoruba orishsa (but for me they weren’t the same) that exists but the main ones and their Christian/Roman Catholic(1) correspondences are:

First there is only One God. The common name for the Supreme Being is Nebertcher – “Lord of All”. Under Nebertcher there is:

  • Osar (Asar, Ausar, Osiris) the Lord of the Dead is the guardian spirit of peace, wisdom, purity, knowledge and fertility. Associated with the Resurrected Jesus and La Virgin de las Mercedes.
  • Oset (Aset, Ast, Auset, Isis) the Mother of Revolution is the guardian spirit of positive change and motherhood. Associated with the Virgin Mary, Virgin de la Regla and Virgen of the Miraculous Medals.
  • Hru (Hra, Heru, Horus) the Heir of Osar is the guardian spirit of victory, success and triumph. Associated with Samson, King David and St. Barbara.
  • Djahuti (Tahuti, Tehuti, Thoth) the Lord of Change is the guardian spirit of divination. Associated with King Solomon and St. Francis of Assisi.
  • Nebhet (Nephtys) Lady of the House is the guardian spirit love, beauty, pleasure, money and peace. Associated with Mary Magdalene and La Virgin de la Caridad del Cobre.
  • Sokar (Sokher, Seker) Lord of the Cemetery is the guardian spirit of resurrection, renewal and illness. Associated with Lazarus.
  • Npu (Anpu, Enpu, Anubis) the Messenger/Traveler between the Living and Dead, is the guardian spirit of guidance. The master of the cross-road.  Associated with the Moses and El Nino de la Atocha.
  • Maat the Gatekeeper of Life/Death is the guardian spirit of balance, righteousness and sanity. Associated with Joshua and St. Norbert.
  • Hruaakhuti (Ra-Hor-kahuti, Bedhuty, Herukhuti) Lord of the Double Horizon, is the guardian spirit of justice. Associated with the disciple Peter and St. George the Destroyer of Dragons.

The Kamitic devil (sort of speak) is called Set.  Set is the spirit of War, chaos, destruction, confusion, imbalance. You name it. He has his hand in it, which is why he later became Set-an and Satan in the Christian tradition.  It is too bad that the early Christians didn’t completely understand the Kamitic tradition and just changed the names while copying it word for word. If they had, they would have caught that Set, the red one who is King of the North, is the spirit of sensory overload, excess, chaos, destruction, etc. So, when it comes time for Christmas (Winter Solstice Dec. 21-25) they would be cautious of the jolly Red Man (spirit) in disguise that makes this season for many – the worst time of the year, due to burglary, depression, homicide and suicide.

The netcharu I was shown are the eldest and earliest of our benevolent ancestors. They are very high up, so high that they are considered the founders of clans and tribes. Like true essences, it is impossible to truly possess them because it is like possessing the sun in the palm of one’s hand. The closest that we can come to possessing them, is possessing an ancestor that worked with this spirit.  And, when I say worked with this spirit, I mean possessing an ancestor that has encountered or dealt with this spirit because they were a priest, priestess or some how a devotee of that particular energy/spirit. In our ancestors’ times, a priest, priestess or devotee of a particular spirit, was one that had to learn how to work with a energy/spirit in order to overcome a trial, tribulation, etc. The energy/spirit taught them in their dreams, visions, hunches, etc. how to achieve certain goals provided they do certain things for the spirit. This same relationship exists in the Black Church today even though it is masked with rituals like sacrament, baptism and offering.

There were a lot of things that I was shown as I lay on the gurney listening to the numerous patients cry out to Death to take them from their misery.  One of the things that I learned was that, it is said that when we physically die, our ancestors (usually a familiar one) comes to us after our soul leaves the body and assists us on the other side. This I believe to be true because I was visited by a group of spirits. It was through this experience that made me conclude that the Kamau (Ancient Africans of Egypt) used animal parts and so forth to illustrate the functions and responsibilities of these numerous spirits or entities that exist around us all.   What this means is that we all have an Npu spirit – that is a spirit (or group of spirits) that guides us provide us with direction and so forth. We all have Djahuti, Hru and Hruaakhuti spirits and they are not just imaginary, archetypical beings. They were physically real, living people, with real feelings, beliefs, etc. and are real spirits with real power and guess what real taboos.  This is why they are still fond of the things of the earth or physical things. It should be noted that while we all have netcharu no two spirits are alike. Meaning, one individual’s Npu might favor pipe tobacco, while another prefers cigars.  Although, they may have different characteristics, they will both have the same purpose, which is to assist, guide and help one find their Way.

Who and what are the netcharu? They are guardian angels but not in the thinking that most people believe in the west. You see, most people in the west are under the influence that our guardian angels only appear to steer us away from harm. They completely miss the point in the Bible that when Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden of Eden, a great guardian (the archangel Jophiel) with a fiery sword was put at the entrance. Most interpret this to mean that God placed the archangel at the entrance to keep man and woman from ever returning to the Garden of Eden.  God is not that cruel.  It is my belief that God placed the archangel there to protect the Tree of Life. In others words to prevent the unrighteous from using that was so sacred wrongfully.

This is what the netcharu do, sure they steer us away from harms way but their main objective/purpose is to protect and guard the sacredness of the Spirit. How do you know when you have offended one of them and have crossed over to the Red Zone ruled by Set? Oh, everything goes wrong, you feel burned, you have nothing but problems everywhere you turn, etc., etc., etc.  Everything is out of whack! There is imbalance everywhere it seems and no peace. How do you keep from offending the netcharu? You work with your ancestors, since the netcharu have been gone for such a long time and forget how physical life can be, who help teach you the taboos as it relates to the Spirit.

1. Many will question why I included the Christian and Roman Catholic syncretism.  The reason is because there are different spiritual technologies at work. Living in the West, many of us have become accustomed to “plug and play” spiritual work based upon our intellect. This eventually leads to becoming a culture vulture, an individual that adopts the cultural ways of others without having any true understanding of the content behind the form. Since most of us have had some dealings with Christianity and/or Roman Catholicism, our spirits will be familiar with these icons. It is through these icons they can help us to understand our ancient ancestral masks.

See Part 2 of this post:
How to Communicate with the Netcharu (A Personal Experience)

For a complete discourse and in-depth analysis see:
MAA AANKH: Finding God the Afro-American Way, by Honoring the Ancestors and Guardian Spirits.








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