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Black Movements and Leadership

September 15, 2003
by Ayinde

If Blacks form movements and institutions to address the critical issues that affect Black people, then good leadership is very important, and those Black aspiring leaders should know themselves through the greatness of Africa's glorious history, and its contribution to world development. Such Blacks should examine themselves, which becomes easier if they reflect and rely on their deeper direct experiences.

These Blacks should be able to empathize, and not sympathize, with the sufferings on the worst levels because they would have had direct experiences of it. Such Blacks would always be receptive to the voices of those who experience the worst in the system, and it would not be easy for them to push aside the views of the ordinary people after having arisen from the depth of the struggle.

That is how I would select a leader to address the issues that affect most Blacks. That person should be wise (knowledge and integrity), and must also have the most direct experiences of the problems that afflict the blackest of Blacks.


I have meditated on many things, most of all myself, and I cannot agree with how Haile Selassie approached several issues. But that does not diminish his standing in the African community. I have not met anyone who was perfect in our history, but I have found many who did their best, and that is enough for me to respect them.

I am comfortable with the knowledge that many of our historical personalities did the best they could within the context of the knowledge that was available at the time. However, I feel we can do much better by emulating the best examples of all our ancestors, and not only focus on one personality to ascribe absolute authority and abilities.

I have not seen or experienced any power greater than our common self, and the powers therein are in all people in different measures. As such, I speak from what I know, and I don't engage beliefs that are not true to my experiences.

I am not denying the importance of Hail Selassie, especially the inspiring purpose he served at a crucial time, but I did not learn or develop my self to hold Haile Selassie as supremely important above the collective wisdom of all our ancestors, and us here today.

Haile Selassie was/is important, and the world would have been lesser without him, but in my eyes his value is/was not the pinnacle of human abilities, and I do not ascribe superhuman abilities to him. I see greatness in the collective works of many of our ancestors, and not just one of them. The world would have been far worst if many of our ancestors did not play their part.

Of course, people can look to Haile Selassie, Marcus Garvey, Ben Jochannan, and many of our esteemed elders for inspiration and knowledge, but most of all they should look for the power and truth within themselves, where the best of our ancestors communicate to us. If they look hard enough through personal growth, then they will find that one Universal essence that binds all things together.


I experience JAH (oneself) as MY supreme life force/Universal essence.

The most ancient Rastas who developed within the laws of nature did not hold any individual above that one universal essence, and my personal experiences led me to the same.


Most Blacks use the term, 'my own people' to mean other Blacks, but I can use a different yardstick to evaluate whom I call my own. 'My Own People' are people with integrity, and the issues that I raise are about defining integrity. 'My Own' is measured on the basis of character, and stating that a White cannot legitimately lead a Black movement is not about choosing on the basis of RACE but choosing on the basis of MERIT. As I have explained countless times, Whites or other fair-skinned ones cannot have the depth of ongoing direct experiences from which to draw. In my view it is about choosing from amongst those with the most experiences, as experience with integrity is what it takes to KNOW our issues.


  1. White Supremacy in Black Movements
    August 16, 2003 - By Ayinde

  2. No Colorless Rasta Movement
    August 18, 2003 - By Ayinde

  3. New Dimension To 'Supremacy In Black Movements'
    August 25, 2003 - By Ayanna

  4. Black Supremacy Is Racism?
    September 04 2003 - By Ayanna

  5. Black Movements and Leadership
    September 15, 2003 - By Ayinde

  6. Some responses to: No Colorless Rasta Movement

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