Sunday, March 2, 2014

Spirit of a Man

Not sure why exactly some of us despise Ayanla Vanzant to the point where we accuse her of exploiting folk who seek emotional healing. When you ask them to elaborate they can't explain their position, just contortions of the mouth and hands that add up to nothing. Like a person who tells you they don't like so n so, and when you ask them why they just shrug their shoulders/make a lemon face but it adds up to nothing. These are the same Black people who won't accuse Maury povich and Jerry Springer of exploiting yet they call out mothersista. My guess is that these are the ones at the family table who are more afraid of DOING THE WORK than keeping appearances, doing the work than perfecting their masks; more threatened by doing THEIR work than lifting the community.

My other guess is that we've gotten so good at being victims that we don't know how to be victors. It's such a foreign reality to so many of us that we'd rather stay in complain mode rather than actually doing something about our condition. That's why traditional Church is more appealing to them because they get to blame their crashes on the Devil and do away with accountability. Unless your pastor/minister encourages serious introspective/looking at our role in our predicaments, you're just filling space/not using space; existing/not inspiring even your self.

 I was first introduced to Ayanla when a sistafriend suggested I read 'Spirit of a Man'. I was just entering my 30s and still full of rage. Rage towards my parents. Rage towards White people. Rage towards Black people. Just a walking time bomb. Like so many emotionally scarred young men who were told to suppress their feelings/act like you got it all figured out on the outside, I was imploding. What ayanla's book did for me was first explain my rage to me because often times you're too in it to see it. In a period where male bashing was the trend, mothersista honored my manhood and lifted my spirit; gave me specific keys to doors that I needed to open in order for me to rid the rage and find peace in my life. In a way, she helped shape the way I write my own help books.

Look, I'm not trying to tell you who to go to for your drink of water. But let's at least look at why you'd reject fresh clean water over dirty laundry. Our haters hate us for our ability to rise above their insecurities. The hater at the family table hates you because they can't break/can't steal/can't comprehend your amazing connection with the ancestors. When I don't like someone, I'm specific about it-- she brings me drama, his energy's toxic, she confuses women's empowerment with male disempowerment, he thinks Black power is hate power. Tangible things that I can put in my hand and show to you. Maybe even get rid of them with you.

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