Africans and the Christian Bible
Posted By: Ayinde In Response To: Re: Questions (gman)
Date: Sunday, 9 October 2005, at 8:41 a.m.
In Response To: Re: Questions (gman)
Eja and Bantu Kelani have addressed other aspects of your contribution so I will just develop on one aspect of what you wrote.
gman said: “Nowadays we see two tendencies, one to emphasize the Judeo-Christian aspects and de-emphasize the African ones (as exemplified by, for eg. the Twelve Tribes of Israel, or at least by many of its members) and another to emphasize the African elements and "purge" rasta of the judeo-christian elements (as exemplified by people like Mutabaruka, the admin of this board, and perhaps yourself if you identify as rastafari).”
It is not like I am ‘against’ other Black Africans who use the Christian bible and see Haile Selassie as ‘God’. Rastafarians of different sects deal with us all the time and I do not wholeheartedly agree with any one sect. They all have strengths and weaknesses in my view.
I am opposed to the way some use the Christian bible, and their beliefs developed along that line, to disrespect other Africans and African concerns. I see some Rastas who hold on to the Christian bible dismiss African Egyptian history and other African traditions without even bothering to investigate to see the values in them. When they behave like that, I know where they are coming from. They bought the stories in the bible and without careful research they want to hold on to the Christian bible. I do not fuss with them for that; I do not support them; I disagree, but I understand them. But they will have to appreciate that other Africans are quite right to reject the Christian bible in favour of more traditional African sources.
The history is clear. Most Africans did not ‘freely’ choose Christianity and their book. It was forced on Africans, as part of the Slavery and colonizing experience. In that regard people are right to condemn and dismiss the book and its institutions. People can interpret the Christian bible anyhow they want, but once they interpret it differently to mainstream Christianity then they are not supporting the Christian bible the way it was intended. They should rewrite their own stories and stop trying to push the same book.
The Christian bible was intended to consolidate political power under Emperor Constantine – to help him unify the remains of the Roman Empire. It has always been used as a political tool against the best interest of Black Africans.
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