Moving Forward

Peace, peace. I do hope this post finds you well. This weekend has been quite eventful. My family and I celebrated my oldest daughter’s 11th bEarthday so you can imagine the running around that I had to do . Luckily for me, my daughter did not have many bEarthday wishes so I was able to make her smile and spend some much-needed quality time with the Tribe (my name for my children).

Well, near the end of last year, I made some changes to my plans for this year—major changes and I have dedicated much of my down time to reflection, self-work, womb work, meditation, yoga, exercise, etc. I am doing the work to allow me to continue to work for others and help others reach their highest potential. Through the periods of self-reflection, I have had to deal with some issues and emotions that are not very pleasant—feelings of regret, stagnation, hurt, disappointment. But, I am doing so much better and am feeling more grounded than I ever have before. I realize that if I am going to do the work that I came to do , I must heal myself, work  on myself, and continue to push the limits of myself.

Through this journey, I have unfortunately lost people and at times caused others to feel hostile towards me. It is obvious to me that I evidently am doing something right for people to be up in arms about my lifestyle. I am unapologetic about the path I have chosen and I am going to be going even deeper this year and going forward. There are people who are cheering for me, seeking me for guidance, and searching for me all simultaneously. I much rather focus on the positive aspects of my so called unconventional lifestyle than the negativity that seemingly attempts to evade my sacred space. So, I will continue to carry crystals in my pocket, sage my space when needed, meditate, give offerings to ancestors, be guided by the moon, and commune with the Sun. I am on a journey and it is just beginning…..

 

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

Peace 2016!

Wow I have to say that this year gone by quite rapidly! We are literally staring the year 2017 down the throat and I am super HYPE!! But before I continue, let me just say that I hope you all are well and as always much love and peace to you. Now, about the coming year, I am not one for resolutions but I felt compelled to challenge myself to a few things in the new year.

  1. I challenge myself to take more risks. I admittedly have played it safe in the past but this coming year will be a year of me stepping outside of the norm—going places I have never been, meeting new people, eating new foods, trying new things. Opening yourself to new experiences allows you to grow in different ways. And I realize I have again grown comfortable so I know it’s time to do something different.
  2. I challenge myself to continue to seek new opportunities to give back to my community. This year, I have found it very challenging to be as active as I was in the city. I now reside in a very rural area and if you are not aligned with a church, often you are shunned or questioned but I am stepping up to the challenge and breaking the status quo. My people need me and I plan to do various community service projects throughout the year.
  3. I challenge myself to love more. In the past when I have loved, I have been hurt but hasn’t everyone. I will not allow past hurts and disappointments to hold me captive to my authentic self. I am genuinely loving and I have so so much to give. I will love on myself more first and foremost and will continue to love others as well.
  4. I challenge myself to be open to being alone. I know you may be thinking that why should one want to be alone but I say being alone and being lonely are two entirely different things. What can I say, life happens and I am fine with it but I know what I want and I will choose me before I settle for less than what I want and deserve. So, 2017 will be a year of finding more of me and being okay with that.
  5. I challenge myself to go deeper into my spirituality. Yes, I have an altar and give offerings, meditate, say affirmations, etc but I am not always consistent. It’s time for me to kick everything up a notch and go deeper.

As you can see, none of my challenges included me getting more money, more things, a new man, or anything tangible. My challenged are all about growth. I have grown to realize that the more I go inward and expand, the more my outer reality changes for the good. I do hope you all are thinking of your own growth and are actually interested in progressing. Because, if you are not moving forward, you are most definitely standing still! I am so happy you have chosen to read my blog, connect with me, and support me this year! Next year will be even better—just you watch!

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

What is a Revolutionary?

Peace, love, and light fam! As always, I hope this message finds you in a peaceful space and place. I have been thinking and reading a lot about the concept of revolution, the role of revolutionaries, as well as what is perceived as revolutionary acts. We are in a very peculiar time, a time of apprehension, and acute awareness of a very changed world and country. With the election of Donald Trump, much has been brought to light as far as to the regular Joes who really believed that most people were not prejudiced. They truly had the notion that their neighbors were cool until this election season. Many people showed their true colors and an air and atmosphere of hostility exists in so many communities and cities abroad.

I have been teaching and spreading the message of the broadened concept of revolution via a hashtag #BeingRevolutionaryIsNotWhatYouThink for some time now. I had to take a seat and really meditate on what being a revolutionary really is. I think that the concept is most certainly multi-faceted. It is not all about physical fights even though I know and understand that there is a time and place for revolutionary activity to involve physical combat. But, being and living as a revolutionary is varied. We all have a place and position to play. Growing food on land that you own is revolutionary, educating your children on true history, not the miseducation that is pumped through the classrooms of the public school system is revolutionary, embracing and infusing our culture into our lives is revolutionary, feeding and clothing our less fortunate brothers and sisters is revolutionary. It is not simply spreading information. Knowledge is useless unless it is applied. Can you make the information that you provide beneficial to the people by showing and proving? How can it be applied? I could go on and on and on but you must get my point by now.

Find your place and do what you can to help liberate your people. If you see a need and you are able to fill the need, do it! Don’t sit around and complain about what needs to happen, be the solution. We have enough lecturers. We need boots on the ground. Our people are waiting  for you. We are the saviors we have been waiting for. I know and overstand that every single time that I blog, disseminate information, sell healthy bath products, assist a sistar with finding more healthy ways of living, teach my children more of our history, challenge my fellow comrades to do more, I am behaving in a revolutionary stance. I am a lover within this war but I love hard and tough. Some of our people need correction. So many are seeking the limelight but it is an absolute waste of time if you are not using the light to help the people. We must not be selfish in our pursuits. We are too reactionary. I have been seeing so much bickering online and I am left feeling depleted. I know we will not be on the same page in all things but to be openly bashing others in the struggle is unacceptable. I see a whole lot of bitching and moaning which is deflecting from what is truly important.

Now is the time for strategic moves. The revolution is now. There is much going on; from the bombing and warring in Aleppo, to the election of Trump, to the last actions of Obama, and so on and so forth. We are literally inundated with information and all types of activities that it can be overwhelming. It is my belief that we must take actions in our immediate locations and be of assistance for bigger issues as the need shows fit, such as issues continuing in Flint, MI. There is so much we can do. Time out for the bullshit. So, the ball is now in your court. Are you riding the bench or are you in the game? The team needs you. Time is always of the essence. And the time is now.

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

 

“I for one believe that if you give people a thorough understanding of what confronts them and the basic causes that produce it, they’ll create their own program, and when the people create a program, you get action.”

-Malcolm X

 

Working On Self

Peace and love fam and happy Monday! As always, I hope you had an awesome day today. I have been in reflection mode. It seems more and more of my days are being spent this way—quietly in my own thoughts. Today, I was thinking about the value of stimulating conversation and being exposed to good, positive energy.

I realize that I have wasted so much precious time on meaningless conversations and interactions. I also realize that I have participated in these conversations and interactions and could have chosen to change subjects or removed myself and I didn’t. But, now that I know better, I must do better. I have been very fortunate to connect with some great people and in turn, my experiences have begun to improve. They challenge me to think, to explore, to love more, to be open to new experiences.

As this year comes to a close, I am focusing on doing better in many areas and working on improving myself. There are people who are not around anymore that I never would have imagined would be absent. There are new people in my life who I could have never imagined would be in my life. And I am grateful for it all. Life is very cyclical and I feel I am coming full circle. I am choosing experiences that will help me on my journey of self-improvement. It is time to focus on raising my vibration and maturation on my spiritual walk. If it doesn’t resonate with me, I must remove myself.

I have found so much joy in being more selective in who I choose to be in the company of and in doing the things that are in my best interest. I have had to become more selfish with myself. I am looking to gain energy from interactions that I am involved in. At a certain point, I became depleted because I was constantly giving to people who were not giving anything to me in return. And when I say giving, I do not mean gifts or anything tangible, I mean giving positivity and great energy back to me. Remember the old saying “you cannot pour from an empty vessel”?  Well, let’s just say my vessel only had a few drops left.

I am looking to begin 2017 on a high note—full of abundance, creativity, and progress. It is time to step into my own! I am acutely aware of the state of my people but I choose to shed light not throw shade. I am here to nurture, to heal, to guide, to love. I have so much work to do. But, before I can give all that I can and am, I have to be fully in tune with myself. Let the self work and growth continue!

 

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

Love Yourself Without Regret

Peace fam! Hope all is well. I woke up this morning feeling like “blah” lol. Have you ever gotten up from sleep feeling like doing nothing at all? Well, I call that feeling “blah” and that is exactly how I felt. There is so many things I should and could be doing but I just wasn’t feeling it at all. Nowadays when I feel like that, I allow myself space to chill. I am naturally a “workaholic” and often neglect myself by not getting proper rest. So, I allowed myself to just BE this morning.

Afrikan women are often expected to work and nurture and give without exhaustion, regret, or complaint. But, we need to learn how to just be. We need to sleep in some days, rest our minds and bodies, recharge our batteries, and be with ourselves unapologetically. As this year winds down, there is still much to do but one of the most important thing we can and should do is to reflect on where we are and also where we want to be. We need to nurture ourselves through the transitions in life lovingly.

When I was in my 20’s, I never slept properly. I worked hard, played harder, and slept hardly any at all. But, now that I am in my mid 30’s, I realize the havoc I was wreaking on my heart. My heart needs healing, from hurt and from lack of proper nourishment. On the journey to wellness, I found that although my physical body may look awesome, so much lies beneath that I need to work on. There is much I have not dealt with, heartaches that I ignored, rest that I have been deprived of.  So, as 2016 concludes, I have made a pact with myself to do the work necessary. Ashaki deserves to be loved by Ashaki. I will never become the greatest version of myself if I do not learn to love myself fully.

I want to encourage you to do the work necessary to reach the optimal level of health for yourself as well—emotionally, physically, mentally, spiritually. You are a precious being and deserve the best! Rest more, love more, do what you love more. Give to yourself abundantly. And give to yourself without any regret!! Have an awesome weekend loves!

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

5 Year Loc Anniversary and So Much More!

Peace peace fam! Man oh man, what a crazy time this is. I have been attempting to write my celebratory post for my five year loc anniversary for almost three weeks now (crazy I know) but so much is going on so I am just going to do an update, speak on my growth, and some other topics that have been on my heart.

So, the week of Thanksgiving was my five year loc anniversary. My hair, my hair, my hair…what can I say? It is growing and I am thinking of combining , my locs —again. I love the thick look so we shall see. I have found that the manicured loc look is not for me at all. I love my knatty dreads, I love my thick roots, I love when they are unkempt, clean but unkempt lol. I am comfortable with myself finally. I am still growing and learning myself. I have learned that the process of self-discovery is a journey and that I will always be learning myself because I am constantly growing and changing. And the journey is beautiful!!

So, as of right now, I am working on a new book—hooray! I am also working on several different projects, one of which is an online health and wellness course that I am creating to help people take a few simple steps toward a healthier lifestyle. I am very excited about the upcoming prospects and opportunities that may arise because of the work I am doing. Everything that I am pursuing at this moment is helping me to live my life on my own terms. Life is to be lived!

In the five years since I began my locks, so much about my life and what I thought life should be has changed. I have connected with some beautiful souls as well and have grown in so many other ways. Now, although I am always seeking new information, it is high time that I apply the knowledge to my life, which is exactly what I am doing right now. I have important work to do in my community and abroad. There are many who can benefit from the light that I carry and I fully understand that now.

I want to encourage you to find the work you were created to do and go full force! I have found that finding your purpose is so important to your personal well-being. Once you know the work that you were meant to do and start, life becomes more beautiful. A paycheck should not be your goal. Money and material possessions will not bring the long-lasting joy that we seek but doing purposeful work that has meaning is priceless. Think about it.

 

Have an Awesome Weekend!!

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

My Tribe: An Ode to ATCQ

Peace, love, and light fam! It is my hope that all is awesome with you as always. I am still on cloud 9 after the release of my favorite hip hop group’s final album. If I need to remind you of who I am referring to, let me make it clear—the group is A Tribe Called Quest and the album is “We Got It From Here….Thank You For Your Service” and it is absolutely, unequivocally my favorite ish right now!!

If it sounds like I am a super fan please know that my love of Tribe defies any description. Some may think I exaggerate when I say their music saved my life, but it did. When I was living in a very dysfunctional situation and felt as though there was absolutely no hope for me, Tribe told me to keep going, that it was ok to be “Stressed Out”; that being a nerd, a linguist, was absolutely dope. So, this blog post is dedicated to A Tribe Called Quest.  I will share my feelings on them, some of my all time favorite Tribe bangers, and my thoughts on the new album and why I feel this purchasing this album is necessary for anyone who claims to be a real “hip hop head”.

So, let me say this, I am a lover of all things hip hop. I grew up during the Golden Age of hip hop and though I was undoubtedly a youngster during the 80’s, I was always mature when it came to music. My family is musical so I was exposed to the awesome music of Bloodstone, Earth, Wind, and Fire, Marvin Gaye, Howling Wolf, Ella Fitzgerald, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and so many others. I have very sophisticated musical tastes even to this day. I fell in love with Tribe when I heard Bonita Applebum in the summer of 1990. I will not reveal how old I was , but I knew that I absolutely loved those guys with the locked hair and the tie dyed shirts. It was a hip hop love song and I was enthralled with them.

My favorite Tribe songs are of course Bonita Applebum, Electric Relaxation, The Hop, Jazz (We’ve Got), Check the Rhime, Sucka Nigga, Lyrics to Go, and Footprints. I love others but these seem to stay in my daily rotation. Phife Dawg was my favorite member of the group and as you all are aware he has transitioned from the physical. His spirit, however, is alive and well.

Their newest release is epic! They effectively applied their original formula and attacked numerous topics and issues within our community. The track titled “We The People” has a powerful  message, speaking of the affluent against the poor and issues we face daily. There were two tributes to Phife  on the album, one titled “The Donald” was bittersweet but so poignant and heartfelt and “Lost Somebody” was a tearjerker for me. I love the album and its message but it is heartbreaking to know that this is it for Tribe. No more albums will come forth. I am, however, very hopeful. Tribe has given rise to great artists and will always be the heartbeat of hip hop. Q-Tip, Phife, Jairobi, and Ali if this blog ever reaches your eyes, please know that this Sistar loves you all–deeply, honestly, and sincerely. Hmmm, I think it’s time for a poem to these pioneers. They deserve it, still trendsetting after all these years.

 

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

Enough is Enough…

Peace, love, and light fam! Can you believe that we are nearing the end of 2016? I certainly cannot but 2016 was quite a year on my end! Anyway, this past week has been very trying for me which is why I have been mostly absent from my blog space, as well as YouTube etc. My laptop took her final bow and I have not gotten a new one yet but, I will soon!  So many things are on my mind but one thing that is particularly nagging me and that is the barrage of bashing of black women by black men online.

Let me start with this, I know that these men do not represent the majority (or I sincerely hope not!). Nevertheless, it is an issue that seems to be ongoing and not stopping anytime soon. I don’t know if they have mother issues, a string of failed relationships, or just terrible experiences with the sistas and personally, I don’t give a damn if they have! How dare any black man spew such hatred to the one who birthed him? There is so much wrong with this dynamic.

First of all, the Afrikan diaspora has been under constant attack since the first invaders hit the shores of our beautiful continent. We have NO room for disunity! We have enough outer enemies without there being battling between our own. The war is on and some of the brothers feel as though they are somehow exempt by choosing to lay with a woman that does not share the same experience as he does. No matter how many women he chooses to procreate or have relationships with, he is still an Afrikan and still a part of the struggle, whether he is fighting against the system of racism or fighting for comfort within the system of racism. Some of these men actually are bigger white supremacists than you could imagine.

Secondly, where is this hatred coming from because it could not have just started. And as a mother/sister/daughter, I have to make certain that I am not absorbing the negativity that I see and hear into my own psyche because it can be damaging. I almost feel as though the men who are attacking us are damaged themselves and instead of dealing with their issues, they have instead chosen to attack those who are closest to him—his mother, sister, lover, cousin.

And I will wrap this vent session up with a few points. It is heartbreaking to see some of the memes and discussions about how undesirable we are, how untrustworthy, how annoying, how disagreeable, how “everything negative that one could conceive” we are.  It is as though a huge target has been placed upon us and they are taking aim. Now again, I do know and understand that these men are not the majority but in the day and age that we live and with the continued attacks against our people, one would think that they would put their pettiness aside and rise above the bullshit. And yes, I said bullshit because that is exactly what it is.

Now, please do not misunderstand. I am in no way naïve. I know that not all black women are living to their full potential. I know we have work to do; we have women who would rather twerk than cook, whose full time job is going to child support court or the Department of Social Services.  But there is work to be done amongst the black men as well because we continue to have men who will not take responsibility of seeds that have created, whose full time job is playing Madden, and who have been in jail more than they have been free. We all need pruning!

In all honesty, I have had some absolutely terrible relationships, had a very dysfunctional upbringing with a less than warm step father,  yet you will not hear me utter “Niggas ain’t shit!”  I absolutely adore black men! They are my brothers, suns, fathers, grandfathers, uncles, cousins. They are the strength of the community and are so needed.  Our community is in desperate need of weeding! Let’s weed out those who seek to destroy the nation.  Make them accountable for their actions and make consequences for their wrongs. The black woman has suffered long enough. Damn can she catch a break!!

 

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

 

 

 

 

Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired

Peace, love, and light. I hope all is well in your world this morning. It seems my days are running together but I am doing the best that I can to keep the most important things in perspective. Nevertheless, I always feel as though I am neglecting something. I have been meditating on a few things over the past few days that I feel like sharing.

As most of you know or maybe you don’t, I am all about the progression of my people within the Afrikan diaspora. I am learning that I am a rare breed among most people within my community at large though. Most of us have become so comfortable with our current condition that we cannot move past or let go of status quo. Most take personal issue with anyone who challenges the current state of our community. I am also learning up close and personal the effect that complacency is having on our people’s condition. It is nearly impossible to mobilize a resistant people. Many claims to want to change, but refuse to take any steps to actually cause change.

It is a difficult life—wanting better for people who don’t see any issue with their current life. Many turn a deaf ear to the truth and ostracize those that highlight the issues. I foolishly believed that there were more “of us” than there actually were. But, there is hope. Hope can be found in the youth. Our children are much more open to change and in the words of Huey Newton “The revolution has always been in the hands of the young. The young always inherit the revolution.”

I know you may be thinking, “why is she ranting this morning?” Well, let’s just say my disappointment has overflowed and I needed to let out my thoughts on our condition. Facebook and Instagram are not the forum for revolution. Don’t get me wrong, both sites are wonderful modes of communication and sharing information but we need more boots on the ground. We claim that we are so tired but are we so exhausted that we can’t take any actions to make our children and our children’s children lives better. What does our future look like if we continue on our current path? Most of us are looking to some savior to come but 500 years of oppression in this country should show us that the chance of that happening is non- existent. No president and no one else is going to remedy our ills. Meditate on that. Where are we giving our energy and time? Einstein once said that the definition of insanity doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome. Are you ready to do something different?

 

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

Surviving Disaster

Peace, love, and light fam! It’s has been too long but as we are all aware, life always changes. So, my family and I are just finding a bit of normalcy after weathering Hurricane Matthew. The community where I live currently suffered so many losses and so many have lost everything, some even their life. The storm has caused me to seriously take inventory on disaster preparedness, as well as what is truly important in my life. So, I want to take this time to share a few of the things that has been on my mind as well as some disaster survival tips.

  1. Purchasing a generator is a good investment. I have had it on my mind for a while but a generator would have saved my family and I a lot of food as well as inconvenience.
  2. My father used to say “It’s always better to be over prepared.” Purchasing flood insurance may not be on the top of some people’s agenda but, this hurricane caused so much flooding and many people did not have flood insurance.
  3. I always keep an abundance of candles but we could have used more flashlights and of course batteries. (However, if we would have had the generator, none of that would have been necessary)
  4. Keep important documents and keepsakes in one box for easy transport if one must evacuate suddenly, as did happen to some people in the hurricane
  5. Having an emergency fund is of the utmost importance. It is difficult enough when trying to navigate when disaster strikes, but nearly impossible if you have no money.
  6. Having alternate sources of energy is also very important. My family and I have a propane tank that we use for cooking outdoors. We were able heat water for bathing and we also cooked meals using the propane. We cooked on the grill as well, as most people did too.
  7. Always have a disaster plan in place and a way to communicate in the event everyone is not at home or unable to get home in times of disaster. I work in healthcare and though I was not working the day of the storm, many of my co-workers were and some had difficulty getting home after their shift because of damage and flooding. Every family member, especially adults or those who drive, need to have a meetup point if you must evacuate and a means of communicating.
  8. I mentioned earlier in having a box with necessary documents, but having what I like to call a “breakaway bag” is also a good idea. The backpack will have a few changes of clothes, underclothes, hygiene items, comfort items such a favorite toy for a child, and anything else that you may need if you have to leave home unexpectantly.

These are just a few things I have been thinking on over the past week. The unity and sense of community I have seen has been heartwarming. My heart does ache for all of those who have suffered severe losses. I hurt for the families who have lost loved ones in the flood. But, we must keep in mind that circumstances could have been so much worse. Most of my community has their power back on and the linemen, city workers, and volunteers have done much to repair the community and also make sure that everyone has the necessary items needed such as bottled water, cleaning supplies, clothing, food, etc. Much work is still left to do but I am sure that everything will fall into place. We just have to take it one day at a time.

 

Hetepu,

Ashaki Ma’at Mirembe Ali

 

 

 

Photo Cred: http://beautifulandawesomewallpapers.blogspot.com/2012/11/sunset-beach-wallpapers-and-backgrounds.html