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Slavery Shatters African Name

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In African Tradition, regardless of how an individual's final name (and not nick-name) came about, ones private name describes the essence of the person; exposes the profound reality of the Being who carries it; and communicates the character or the reputation of the person named. Knowledge of the concepts contained within African names have always been powerful because they imply acquisition of the qualities indicated by the name--qualities that could then be manipulated and influenced by evil people. Therefore, that sacred name needed to be kept secret for a period of time after birth or completely from those persons capable of using "Black magic." For Ancient Africans--who deemed God's name as the archetype and original standard for all names-- any name deviation from Actual Reality was blasphemy. Having the “wrong” name was at the core of how “curses” began. To be assigned a “cursed” name was equivalent to entering a fate of bad luck throughout ones life and it was rarely possible to live down that curse.

The victim and all concerned attributed their troubles to the “hoodoo” name (the name that brings bad luck). Unrealities in dealing with God's name were carried into the Bible's third of the Ten Commandments: “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God” (Ex. 20:7). The reference is not to cursing but to any use that deviates from God being the sovereign source of all things.

The evil and sadistic European captors insatiable desire to always be in control and to win at the expense of others; to make an allout effort to attack and destroy a Slave’s sanity, starting with the self-esteem of each; and to establish a sense of White superiority and White Privilege was behind their naming frenzy of the Slaves. Furthermore, renaming was a means of controlling the minds and refashioning the identity of the Slaves. These helped start the intensive forcible brain-washing indoctrinations which replaced the Slaves’ basic African convictions with those of the dictators. On a lesser scale the same pattern applied to violating the Dignity and Divinity of humans by improper naming--a violation exploded by the European naming and renaming obsessions and compulsions of whatever belonged to the Colored peoples of the world. They believed that to name it placed them in a position of outright possession, domination, or at least control.

Such was clearly illustrated during African American slavery by Europeans replacing the sacred names of Africans with demeaning European names--an effect so devastating as to be seen in today's struggling Black Americans. This is what European stereotypes of Black people are about--i.e. implanting self-demeaning labels in brainwashed minds and constantly reinforcing those labels until they are internalized. As a result of being played over and over in the mind, similar to that of a tape recorder, the implanted labels express as "second nature" self-defeating thoughts, feelings, expressions, and deeds. To stop being suppressed into being satisfied with the status quo of poverty and to stop being disconnected from the naming practices of African Tradition, Black people must resist Europeans' defining them--e.g. by bad stereotypic names; by stereotyped careers (e.g. athletes or entertainers); or by being funneled into "special" classes; or "Negro" jobs, characterized by inadequate pay.

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