A Black Woman: Looking at Blackness Through the Eyes of Howard Thurman’s Jesus and the Disinherited
“Do not envy the oppressor, And choose none of his ways;” Proverbs 3:31 NKJV
I had to look back and examine myself, not through the eyes of my disinherited self first as Howard Thurman so beautifully conveyed, but I had to look at myself before my brutal captivity and inhuman travel from my homeland that I would never see again.
I needed to look back at the narrative of me before the 400 years of my ancestral enslavement on the American and Caribbean shores. There in the cradle of civilization called “The land of the Blacks” was my motherhood, my Queenship, my rulership, my intelligence, my connection to the Creator of the Universe, and never will I forget my oneness with my Black King, my man.
There was no fear in me, no deception, no hated, only love. Love was my guiding principle. I was taught that love was the ruling idea of the circle of all life. My love was pure and innocent. It was the genus of my creativity, my sensuality, and the sharing of my gifts to expand the world. My Black King, with me always at his side, had no intimidation of me, no insecurities regarding my love, my beauty or my intelligence. I cultivated him and he cultivated me. My King and I were fully conscious in our understanding that our rulership together would be the glory and legacy that we would leave as a model to generations unborn.
He and I were indeed kissed by the sun, and manifested no shame as we wore our Blackness with dignity and as the gift that we knew it was meant to be. My inheritance was life, peace, prosperity, and wealth. My understanding of this richness was that it was to be shared with all; it too was my divine gift. There were no exclusions of humanity due to shades of hue. I was in tune with the chemistry and biology of melanin. My soul and connection to universal wisdom was that I was one with everything.
I was and still am powerful Black woman. I am a daughter of the Most High God who was born with an inheritance; but there came a shift in psychology. A new mind invaded my land and my wealth. A mind that was not enlightened with oneness. A mind that was full of fear, hate, deception and empty of love. This mind was scattered, deranged, deluded, psychotic, sociopathic, sadistic, narcissistic and schizophrenic. I witnessed this mind that lacked oneness with the Creator of the Universe destroy the fabric of communities around the world. In fact, this mind thought that it was God. My King and I were a threat to this crazed ego that pretended friendship of peace, yet used its power to demean, pillage, ravage, rape and destroy me, my people and my land.
This mind introduced a psychology that hated my Blackness, and communicated on the world stage that my being, hue and melanin was inferior, inhuman, and that I was designed and destined to be sold for human ownership. So ripped away from my land, my man, separated and shackled in chains aboard a ship headed to a strange shore, I was subjected to a new psychology. This new psychology gave my captors permission to beat, rape, impregnate, separate and sell the life that came through my womb away as property. This new mind destroyed my man, dethroned him as a King, and labeled him a brute beast. His power, understanding, love, friendship and peace was replaced with conditioned hatred of himself, of me, and at times of his own seed. Envy of our oppressors’ power and success took over his mind and ways.
My man, my King, wanted to experience again his intelligence, wealth and power. Through this captivity, my King and I lost something. We lost each other. We lost our connection. We lost our oneness. We lost our genuine love for humanity beginning with each other. I am his Black Queen, and he is my Black King. It is now time for him and I to go back and restore our community with the right mind, the Jesus mind, as we learn how to love and build each other again. It is time for the disinherited Black woman with her Black man to share our pain, and struggle to regain our spiritual power even though we still live in a strange land.
I say to my King, look at me, remember me. I too have been kissed by the sun. Abandon the oppressors’ psychology and ways. I am not to be feared, deceived, or hated. You and I are the principle of love, and the embodiment of love’s movement. I understand your pain. Your pain is my pain too. I am a Black woman and your Black Queen. I am here to help us regain our inheritance!
I offer ideas that can support our desire to move towards manifesting change in our families, neighborhood, organizations and spiritual communities:
- Acknowledge that we have been psychologically conditioned in our mind to hate, fear, deceive and mistrust each other as Black people by the ruling dominate culture.
- Develop think tanks (small groups) to begin having strategic conversations about how we were systematically indoctrinated to hate, fear, envy, and mistrust each other. Explore ways to develop a new psychology ( patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving) in-line with our historical self.
- Forgive one another for ways that we have been the instrument of each other’s pain.
- Confess the we took on the ways of our oppressor that manifested in our families, neighborhood and spiritual communities of worship.
- Develop an individual and collective plan of action that will support members of our families, neighborhoods, organizations and spiritual communities to refrain from deviant, inhuman, and less negative emotional reactions against ourselves and others.
- To every Black man, treat every Black woman as a Queen. Value her as a powerful spiritual gifted being and life giver. This is her inheritance!
Thurman, Howard. ( 1976). Jesus and the Disinherited Beacon Press, Boston Massachusetts.