“You are only free when you realize you belong no place—you belong every place—no place at all. The price is high, the reward is great.”


South Carolina

Alas, kinship isn’t identity—and for some reason, this image has been going around as representing Geechee/Gullah culture in South Carolina and Georgia for a while. Maybe it’s because the photograph was included in an exhibition on Lorenzo Dow Turner, whose research spanned both Sea Island and Bahian culture.
But the photo is actually the famous Brazilian Candomblé priestess Mãe Menininha (1894-1986)—in the front-middle—and her attendants at Ilé Axé Yá Masse temple, in Salvador, Bahia, 1940-41. (It appeared on Tumblr with the correct attribution here three years ago; I’ve reblogged it myself.) Let’s take a minute to appreciate the reality:

The temple that Mãe Menininha headed, the Terreiro do Gantois, is one of the oldest and most respected Candomblé temples in Bahia and is recognized as one of the more orthodox or traditionally African Candomblé centers. The Terreiro do Gantois was actually founded after Mãe Pulquéria diverged from an older temple, Engenho Velho, thought to be one of the oldest Candomblé temples in Bahia. Founded by three freed African women, Engenho Velho traces its history back at least to the 1830s and perhaps even one hundred years earlier…
Mãe Menininha dedicated her life to Candomblé during a time when African religions were still repressed in Brazil. She suffered imprisonment and violent persecution by the police due to her involvement with Candomblé. Her resistance to these discriminatory governmental policies against Afro- Brazilian religious practices was essential for the survival of Candomblé as an important part of Brazilian culture…
“Magic is not so much something which you do occasionally behind closed doors or in the space behind your closed eyes, but a way of living your life — a way of approaching the world you move through and everything in it.”
“To some extent they bear the same relation to each other as did in Ancient Greece the Olympian and the chthonian gods. Just as beside the Olympian Zeus there was a chthonian Zeus, so Voodoo has a Legba rada and a Legba petro. These two spirits, although alike as brothers, yet have different natures. Legba petro is apparently ‘stiffer,’ more violent than his rada alter ego. These are nuances rather than radical differences, but they do give a distinctive colouring to the way in which the faithful represent the loa of these two groups. The word petro inescapably conjures up visions of implacable force, of roughness and even ferocity—qualities which are not a priori associations of the word rada. Epithets such as ‘unyielding,’ ‘bitter,’ and even ‘salty’ are applied to the petro while the rada are ‘gentle.’”
“Eshu Elegba (known to his Yoruba devotees by either name, as Christians uses Jesus and Christ interchangeably) is at the nexus of a pantheon of orisha grouped into a dozen or so “hot and cool” cults. His place within these cults varies. Worshippers of the hot/hard orisha (Ogun of Iron, Shango of Lightning, Shapona of Smallpox) say Eshu is their brother: vain, handsome, sexually prolific. Devotees of Oshun, mother of cool terrestrial waters, say she is married to Eshu and possessed of his cunning. Muslim and Christian Yoruba maintain that he is simply Satan, the devil. Yoruba oral tradition gives ammunition to all these cross-interpretations. The oriki (praise poetry) say he is ‘the biggest creature with a big wooden stick,’ yet he is so tiny that he must ‘stand on tiptoe to put salt in the soup.’ He is both first and last born, old man and child, cunning and capricious. Old or young, he disregards ‘the normal code; he enjoys the natural license of the innocent and the privileged license of the aged. As a child he is the experimenter who breaks the rules. Thus…the Yoruba say he is the youngest of the orisha, but the father of them all.”

The “Gullah” is a name given to slaves who were brought to the South to work on the rice plantations. During the 1800s, lowcountry rice was known as “Waccamaw Gold.” The South Carolina Lowcountry from Georgetown area to Beaufort was the one of the largest producers of rice in the world, second only to China.
They came from places that are now known as Angola, Gambia, Liberia, Nigeria, and Senegal. They brought their folklore, traditions, and beliefs with them. Gullahs practice a unique blend of Christianity, herbalism (herbal medicine), and folk magic (some call this black magic or hoodoo, also known as Lowcountry Voodoo). Many of the descendents of these men and women still call the lowcountry home. It is believed that roughly 250,000 Gullah still live on sea islands on the northern tip of Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. In Florida, and Georgia, they are also known as Geechee. But some dispute the accuracy of this count, citing a much smaller population.
It is uncertain where the name “Gullah” came from. Some believe that “Gullah” was shortened from “Angola,” a region on the West African Coast. Some believe that the term derives from a Liberian group, the “Golas,” who also come from the West African Coast. Still others believe Gullah was the language spoken by slaves and that the term later came to encompass their culture and way of way, as well.
Most of the Gullah are deep in the Lowcountry but there is a Gullah community on Sandy Island, which is thirty miles southeast of Myrtle Beach. The 12,000-acre island is mostly state-owned, but twenty-five percent of it remains privately owned by Gullah descendents. Electricity didn’t reach the island until 1967 and there was no running water until 2001. Many attempts have been made to develop this lovely island both for residential and commercial use, but that has not happened and hopefully never will. Kids are transported by the only remaining public school boat in South Carolina over to the mainland where they attend school. They live in three island settlements: Mount Arena, Annie Village, and Georgia Hill. The largest population of Gullah descedents, about 30 families, live in Mt. Arena. Wildlife includes lots of deer, bear, reptiles, and birds, such as ospreys and eagles. The island, which sits just three miles west of the Atlantic Ocean, is full of maritime forests and wetlands. The Gullah collected healing herbs from the marshes and forests and many of the inhabitants still rely on these remedies.

Osanyin is the orisha of herbal medicine. This is one of the most neglected orisha in all of the world’s indigenous systems. As a result, the Europeans’ most powerful weapon against melanin-rich people has been the usurpation of their healthcare. There is no greater power. The control of the FDA and health insurance companies have made it so that it is difficult to escape his authority over your health. If there is only one goal that we have in the liberation of our people, it is the reclamation of our control over our own healthcare. Even in the so-called orisha worshipping community many of you are bedazzled by babalawo who travelled to Nigeria. They know countless rituals and love nothing more than to “consult Ifa for you” for a nominal fee. However, if you ask them about their knowledge of herbs they will focus on the chanting of words of power and more mysticism. They generally have done little worshipping of Osanyin. While there are various specialties for all babalawo today, in the Pre-Maafa Yorubaland, you could not call yourself a babalawo without extensive knowledge of effective herbal medicinal practices. The babalawo, or Father of Secrets, first role was not a diviner, but a healer!

Osain (also known as Ozain or Osanyin) is the orisha of wild plants, healing and magic. He is a powerful wizard, master of all spell craft and is found out in the wild, untamed areas of nature. Without Osain, none of the ceremonies in the religion can happen; it is his magic that is used to conjure the shrines of the orishas. Osain is commonly understood to be Shango’s godfather who taught him how to spit fire and throw lightning. Osain’s magic is so powerful that no one can unravel his spells. Consequently he is petitioned for any purpose where unconquerable magic is required.
Osain is often depicted as an extremely disfigured, impish man. He has one eye, one hand, one foot, one tiny ear that can hear even a pin drop, and one ear larger than his head that hears nothing. He keeps all of his magic in a calabash that he hangs high in a tree, out of reach. His shrine can take various forms including a beaded gourd that hangs from the ceiling, or an iron cauldron full of his mysteries. It is considered taboo for women to walk under his gourd shrine. Osain has no dedicated priests, but every follower of the orishas calls upon Osain when conjuring “omiero”, the magical herbal elixir used for consecrations and initiations. Osain’s ritual numbers are 7 and 21. His necklace is of mixed colour beads. Animal sacrifice is used to propitiate Osain within the African Traditional Religions. Sacrifices for Osain include: he-goats, rams, roosters, quails, pigeons, guinea hens and all hunted animals. Altar offerings for Osain include candles, and rum.
In the syncretic practices of Cuban Santeria, in which African orishas are associated with Catholic Church saints, the representative of Osain is Saint Sylvester. Osain is also closely associated with the mpungo Ngurufinda from the religion Palo Monte, as the two are virtually identical. Hoodoo pyschic readers, spirit workers, and root doctors who are adherents of the Yoruban and Yoruban-Diasporic Religions and who petition the orishas on behalf of clients may work with Osain when there are pending issues involving protection, breaking jinxes, reversing, road opening, court cases, law keep away, spiritual rites of initiation, revenge, curses, hot footing, herbal preparations, and more.

— Association of Independent Readers & Rootworkers











nah, they portray her as white because she was white. 

Next they’ll demand history books to be re-written in order to not be racist.
Wait, I think they’re already doing that.

Cleopatra was part of the Ptolemaic dynasty, who were Macedonian Greeks who served Alexander the Great before his death. Because they followed the Egyptian custom of marrying siblings they had little to no actual Egyptian blood in them. Thus having an actual Egyptian woman portray Cleopatra would be historically incorrect.


I laugh at people who don’t know Cleopatra technically wasn’t even Egyptian.

People believe what coincides with their opinions.

I knew she was white but I didn’t know she wasn’t actually Egyptian. Hmmph. The more ya know

Scientists find Cleopatra’s sister and possibly her mom probably were Black African women

Cleopatra’s mom probably was African—black sub-Saharan African on her mother’s side if she and her sister Arsinoe had the same mothers. They shared the same Greek/Macedonian father. Check out the article, BBC NEWS | Also in the news | Cleopatra’s mother ‘was African’. See the uTube video, Cleopatra’s sister Arsinoe had African ancestry - YouTube. Egyptians and Nubians in ancient times had been marrying one another, say most archaeologists.
The only problem is scientists found Cleopatra’s sister having African features, but don’t know whether the two sisters had the same mother. Cleopatra also had two brothers. And the scientists conclusion is based on African skull shape from drawings of a skeleton found in a tomb in Ephesus, Turkey assumed to hold the bones of Cleopatra’s teenage sister, Arsinoe.

I mean it’s not like the damn Egyptians painted her as being a brown-skinned woman or anything

the constant white washing of historic figures is SO goddamned pathetic. like, i get second hand embarrassment watching white people reach into their anus’s for these lies

This post made me want to vomit until I got to that smack down jfc