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Friday, March 1, 2024

Episode 5: African Spirituality in the True Story of the Black Panther

J2S – Uncovering the Superiority of African Spirituality in the True Story of the Black Panther (Episode 5)

In the Real History of the African Black Panther Queen, It is no news that African history has been wiped out and replaced by a whitewashed version. Clueless to many of us, we take the history we have been conditioned to believe as true, whereas we remain closed-minded to our real history and reality.

Let’s back up a bit, after my mental breakdown that led me on my journey to Anambra State again to seek the answers that I needed, my spiritual life turned for the better. Before my trip to Anambra, I had an incident that was both spiritual and mental, which severely rocked my mental state.

It was then clear to me that serious lifestyle changes needed to take place in my life to attract the things I wanted out of life. For over 32 years as a Christian, I had never been or felt as close to God as I was since my journey in Igbo Spirituality started barely four months prior. Bad habits and addictions that were so hard to let go all this while felt so easy to discard. Internal peace and sobriety took precedence. I became my solution through the power of belief, knowledge, discipline, and commitment to a new self. A change in my mental thinking pattern uncovered a different side of me that was more relaxed. And had focus on seeking solutions from within.

The significance of our African Spirituality isn’t instant magic, our lives don’t change without us putting in the effort over time. However, the concept of God’s time (oge Chukwu) holds true, with consistent positive mental and spiritual practices being what instigate the new reality we seek. As esoteric as that sounds, the concept of religion and spirituality is deep. The concept of autosuggestion and repetition of prayers, mantras, and chants; sets our subconscious mind to action, positively or negatively, depending on how our own conscious mind directs it.

 

The Real History of the African Black Panther Queen

It is no news that African history has been wiped out and replaced by a whitewashed version. Clueless to many of us, we take the history we have been conditioned to believe as true, whereas we remain closed-minded to our real history and reality.

On arriving back to Lagos, my wife and I headed to the cinema to watch the latest installment of Black Panther. Before that day, I had watched a video on TikTok where Dr. Umar Johnson ridiculed the movie for its depiction of the ‘black” man being overcome by Mexicans who also possessed what made Wakanda unique and great, vibranium. He also added to the spoiler that even after being fought by these underwater Mexicans, the Wakanda Queen settled for peace, while the Mexicans accepted the peace treaty for the purpose of using them in the future for reasons we are yet to uncover. By this, he meant to imply our gullible nature in the face of our oppressors, which saw our ancestors get colonized in the past.

I already went into the cinema with a biased mindset and taunted my wife playfully about how the movie was “mid”, and a poor depiction of the “black” man. Little did I also know about an unheard historical event of the real African Queen Black Panther.

The African Queen Sarauniya

The story goes like this, a Queen named Sarauniya – a title for Queens of a region near present day Niger in the 1400s – refused for her people to be Christianized by the French after the Arabs had tried and failed to Islamize the region around the seventh century. The Arabs, still present in the region at the time advised the French that they could take over Niger, but that they would not be able to take the villages ruled by Sarauniyas. The response from the French to the Arabs was, “We will see between their God and our God who is more powerful.” The French then prepared a larger army and headed to their village for war, and they defeated the army of the Sarauniya.

After the defeat of her people, Sarauniya was stripped naked and chained at the village square to humiliate her in front of her people who were forced to watch as the French were about to execute her. All this is to prove that African Spirituality could not be compared to Christianity. Thus, they were going to behead their Queen in their presence as a show of their superiority. Out of respect for their Queen, the people bowed their heads and covered their eyes to not see her in that state.

Sarauniya then said to the French, “If you claim you are more civilized than us and you are going behead me based on your law. It is in our law that you allow me just one grace to go where I will speak with my ancestors for the last time.” They accepted and allowed her, and when she goes to speak to her ancestors in a room. Time passes leading up to an hour, and everyone was eager for her to come out, especially the French who wanted to get it over with. Before the hour passed, the doors flung open, and what came out of the room was a black panther to the astonishment of everyone at the village square.

Sarauniya had shape-shifted into a panther, leaving a greater testimony to her people, as the French were unable to exercise their misguided power on her by beheading her publicly. Proving to her people that African Spirituality isn’t subjected to or smaller than Christianity. A guard of honor was given to her as the black panther merrily rode through the crowd and disappeared into the forest.

 

The Movie Black Panther and its Significance to “Black” Africans

As much as many “black” people in diaspora and in Africa get excited about the movie, it was meant to portray Africans and Africa in a colorful and powerful way. Also, the real story holds more value to Africans as it celebrates who we are and where we really come from. Fiction is fun, but facts are uplifting, inspiring, and enlightening.

Some of us try to downplay the real significance of Black Panther, by describing it as just a movie based on a comic book, often adding that it is not that deep. Whereas we are clueless about the fact that the stories that have been twisted in these comic books of the Black Panther were gotten from Vusamazulu Credo Mutwa, who even in death is still being exploited without credit in America.

 

Who is Vusamazulu Credo Mutwa?

Vusamazulu Credo Mutwa was born on the 21st of July 1921 and died on the 25th of March 2020. He was a Zulu Sangoma, which means a traditional healer from South Africa. He was an author of books on African mythology, traditional Zulu folklore, extraterrestrial encounters, and his own personal life encounters and experiences. His last work was a graphic novel called the Tree of Life Trilogy. Also based on his writings from his most famous book, Indaba My Children.

In 2018, he was honored with an Usiba Award presented by the South African Department of arts and culture, for his works in indigenous wisdom. While a traditional healer, he was more than a sango or nyanga. He was Africa’s living library, the highest-ranking Sanusi, and a custodian of the ancient records (umlando). He is also a bearer of our continent’s history, through a long lineage of an oral tradition of high priesthood. To put out his works, he required supreme lion-hearted courage to break the blood-oath “Code of Silence” – and hand over his knowledge to the world. He did this because he knew that this ancient wisdom was vital for humanity’s survival.

 

My Take on the Next Phase of Our Development as Africans

It is ridiculous we live in this age of information and enlightenment and remain in absolute mental darkness as Africans. It is even worse when we know where we come from and what we have lost as a people.

Fiction is fun. But we aren’t in a place to rely solely on fiction for entertainment. We are underdeveloped mentally from years of slavery, colonization, systemic racism, apartheid, etc. This has made it even more crucial for us to seek our real history and stories, and to be finally proud of what belongs to us.

Our role in the development of Africa must start with the denouncement of foreign thinking and ways of life. We must embrace our cultures and traditions and evolve them to suit our current realities. Our art and entertainment should be creating real stories that educate us on who we are, where we come from, and where we should be headed. Taking our place in the world as a civilization that civilized the West twice in the past.

As beautiful as the movie Black Panther was, we need stories that do not glamourize or indulge us in disjointed fictional tales of our history. But rather stories that inspire us to be and do more for our mental healing and development on our journey to self-renaissance.

 

Watch Our for Our Next Episode…

@ WokeNation TV

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