There’s a scene in the movie Black Panther wherein T’Challa is challenged by M’Baku for the throne of Wakanda. They must fight, either until someone submits or death. M’Baku’s great might favors him and he begins to gain ground, crushingly head-butting T’Challa nearly unconscious. A voice trembles the foundation of T’Challa’s being and calls, “SHOW HIM WHO YOU ARE!” It’s his mother, Queen Ramonda of Wakanda. T’Challa awakens from the stupor and a fighting spirit animates his defenses, even after a spear is thrusted into his clavicle, and excruciating pain is etched into T’Challa’s face he responds, “I AM PRINCE T’CHALLA! SON OF KING T’CHAKA!” He rises with all strength and subdues M’Baku into submission, maintaining his family’s throne.
The key point from this story; know who you are. Oke Dibia Ochuaja Dr. Uwa often reminds us, “life is a Serengeti and as African people we must know who we are.” A lioness or lion you may be, however if you don’t know who you are, you may succumb to defeat by a pack of lying hyenas who told you, you are a mouse. Imagine that. Look closely at the state of our people and in many cases you will see such is reality.
So, who are you? What if you don’t know. What if your memory was disrupted from enslavement, colonization, adoption, or some other circumstance? What if you think you already know who you are, but you are in fact incorrect. Here are some hint questions to determine if you’re on the right track.
To what name do you respond? Before the foreigners arrived what were the names of your many great-foremothers and forefathers? Were they English names like James, Nancy or Sunday? Possibly Arabic names like Fatima, Mahmood or Ibrahim? Or maybe Spanish like Ana, Leticia or Felipe? Unlikely…
When your many great-foremothers and forefathers greeted one another? Was it “Hello, good morning?” “As-salamu alaykum?” “Hola, cómo estás?“”Bonjour, comment vas-tu?” “Shalom?” What mother tongue language did they speak?
Think of your motherland, the pride land from which your bloodline hails from, is it the Kingdom of England, or the Ottoman Empire, modern day Arabia? Are you a child of the Kingdom of Franks, modern day France, or Imperio Español, the Spanish Empire? Or are you a child from Mesopotamia, a lost child of Isreal? Highly improbable…
When your many great-foremothers and forefathers called on The Divine, ChinEke, (The Supreme Being), were their utterances the names God? Lord? Allah? Jesus? Yahweh? Elohim? or was there another name primordial to African (Indigenous) cosmogony, prior to foreign invasion and occupation?
Understandably these may be difficult contemplations to confront within; but if you sit with the questions long enough and seek the truth, the truth will find you. Finding and living the truth is your next journey. Oh and you will stand out amongst the herd, but as do lions. Were you not created unique, meant to stand out, so no problem.
May you have the courage and support like our young lion, our young Brotha Chikasielu who’s parents are ensuring he Knows Thyself. It’s direly important to know, because your roots keep you deeply rooted, in a very shaky and volatile world. Like a tree you are meant to grow astonishing heights, while being strong enough to withstand the storms of life, and continue living for generations if you actualize your Chi’s akaraka (Divine destiny).
When you embrace your Ndichie (Ancestors), your culture which is your lineage, your bloodline, your birthright and great inheritance, no matter where you find yourself in the world, you will always,
SHOW THEM WHO YOU ARE!
Chiism Live Broadcast: In this segment, we feature Chikasielu, the young Nigerian child committed to projecting the Igbo language, world views, and philosophies to the world. He is proficient in Igbo and determined to be an inspiration for other children, and parents to ensure that the Igbo language and culture are preserved for future generations. You do not want to miss this episode!