and give thanks for your reasoning. Upon reading your reasoning, and the responses posted to it so far i&i have noticed what appears to be a source of creative tension that exists in the movement. I would state from the outset that i believe that this tension is largely illusiory and simply amounts to being a difference of perspective, and therefore of timing. I would also state that the two 'camps' that i think exist are by no means mututally exclusive, and that i am aware of the pitfalls of generalising in this way.
There seems to me to be two broad approaches to the livity, the political/practical/emancipatory and the mystical/philosophical/spiritual. the emphasis of the emancipatory approach would seem to be in practical action towards the redress of wrongs that have been, and are being, comitted towards black people world wide. This is vital and important, as rasta is fundamentally a black trod, to which the likes of me is lucky enough to have some peripheral involvement. The method of reaching higher overstanding and mental emancipation would seem to be inseperable from works towards black repatriation (in all of its possibilities) and pride. The more mystical rasta path seems to teach that it is important for i&i to develop our overstanding, and from that basis completely reorganise our lifestyle to one that is in harmony with Jah's creation (the livity).
Now as i&i stated at the outset these paths are not mutually exclusive, and are in all probability just different approaches to the same end. For in the case of rastas with a commitment to emancipation this commitment will lead to a need to emancipate oursleves, and to an overstanding that while black concerns are paramount, there are many others who are also crying out for freedom.
For the mystic rastas the development of overstanding of oneself will inexorably lead to an overstanding of injustice, and to an intense identification with the causes pursued by the more politically astute sistren and brethren.
This is obviously a rosy view of things, i&i am by nature optimistic. People will always disagree, particularly over the specifics of the how progress is to be made. i suppose that what i am trying to say is that the division that sometimes occurs between rases of different perspectives, and therefore priorities is not in the long run a division at all. These are just complemenatry activities and ways of overstanding, both of which informs the other. It is not that africa is being left out of the equation, or that people are ignoring the higher heights, it is just that everyone starts the trod at a different point in the road. The road itself remains the same. It is important to have different 'entry points' to the rasta trod. For i&i as a white guy to start preaching about repatriation and black identity would reek of colonialism. i&i think you have all had enough of that. So while i do all i can to support and encourage the aspirations of black people, i think my wisest course is to overstand that this aspect of rasta is one that is largely for black people to pursue on their own. So, due to inclination and to the political realities of rasta, my own interpretation is more of a spiritual one.... but this is not to say that i&i am unconcious of the importance of the african struggle, it is just that my role in it is one of support rather than activism. i&i believe that it is important that we see that this separation is an illusion, and know that in the end we are moving to the same goal, Zion.
love and life
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