Monday, December 26, 2011

History of Reggae

English rule began in Jamaica in the year 1655. Between 1700 and 1786, more than 600,000 African slaves were brought to Jamaica.

Slaves were abducted from various regions of Africa (West Africa & Kenya) and brought over to the New World in large boats, packed to the teeth with the Africans. This is the climate that existed in colonial Jamaica (as well as throughout the New World) when African and European music first met.  Slave traders, when crossing the Atlantic noticed that music was very heavily engrained into the African people. Music from Africa was extremely different from the European style of music, and slave traders noticed these differences immediately.

African music is nonnotated. It is passed on through oral tradition, and this accounts for much of the improvisational techniques that can be found in the music as well. European music, excluding some folk music is usually written down in the accepted form of musical notation. That way it can be repeated exactly the same way over and over again. Music with no notation is left for the performer to remember and perform in a different manner each time.

African music also features drums, which are in most cases central to the music. Use of drums either accompanies songs using the call and response pattern, or makes up its own song.
The music of the African was based on a completely different set of ideas, and all of these ideas came over to the New World with the captive slaves in the boat.

Plantation masters encouraged dancing, and as a result many African forms of dance entered the New World. An example of a dance form that probably came from the coast of Guinea, and from the Kingdom of Arda is the Calenda, or Kalenda , the Chica, which eventually evolved into the Rumba, or Mambo in Cuba, and the Banboula a Jamaican dance that was named after a drum used in the Calenda dance.

The Slaves had a lot of interaction with the whites, and began to learn some European traditions from them.  Slave musicians brought European traditions to their own people and the result of this was an intermingling of African and European tradition.

The European roots of Jamaican music and dance are still very strong to this day good things have arisen out of this mingling of African and European music and dance.

Jamaica is the birthplace of Reggae music, which comes directly from African, European, and other musical forms of the West Indies that have similar influences. Reggae music employs many different philosophies and opinions.

African music is incorporated into Reggae music. For example, the call and response patterns are still there. Many reggae artists make use of repeating phrases and interact with a larger group singing in harmony. Also, Reggae music is frequently based on a repeating melodic and rhythmic patter which remains steady throughout the song. These are African attributes that can be traced directly to African music.

A feature of the music that is uniquely African is the heavy role of percussion in the music. There are usually multiple drummers in Reggae performances, playing different and overlapping rhythms. Another African tradition is the use of sliding pitches, and untempered scale tones. Often a Reggae artist will use their voice to create these effects, or in some cases horns will assume this role (as well as the role of instrumental call and response).

Most Reggae songs are based on scales that the Europeans used. Also, there is a very strong presence of tempered pitches. Most of the instruments are tempered, including guitar, piano, organ, etc. Some reggae tunes are loosely based on traditional European melodies, however reconsidered, they still come from that European tradition.

There can be no argument that this music came out of struggle.

Reggae music is an optimistic answer to the history of oppression that draws upon the past, and uses it as a resource. In order for there to be a good future, the past must be considered and accepted. There is no way to right the wrongs of history, but there is a way to promote awareness of these wrongs in the hope they will not be repeated.

The harmony that exists in reggae music between African and European tradition is a symbol for how it should exist in the world.

So what did you do?

Nothing really.

In Amsterdam.

Just Me, Myself and I.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Every once in a while.......I say a little prayer

Father Sun, Mother Earth, Sister Moon and Brother Star's.
The Winds and the Water's that flow cross the surface of Mother Earth.

The Spirits of My Ancestors, The Supreme being and the Universe.

I bow before the Love and Light you bring forth 
And, I say thank you.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Christmas message

Is wondering how many people actually know what Christmas is about These days?. Most of the quotes and comments I see posted are on shopping, presents and how much it costs. Just stop for a moment and think of all those who aren't so fortunate. 

Whether it be Jesus, Father Sun and the Winter Solstice or any other higher consciousness you pray to I wish you a Christmas of Love, Light and Peace filled with Warmth and Spirituality 

Big Daddy K XXXXX

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Beast.

Keep your distance from the beast and the garbage that he sells. The Beast is a creature who comes in all types of forms and he's looking to deceive ya and he knows how to hide his horns.

                                                             "The Devils dope" Payday Monsanto.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Acts of Faith - Words by Iyanla Vanzant

There is this thing going around. 
If you are not careful it will attach itself to you. When it does, it will drain you of everything you have. It will suck you dry and leave you to die. 
This thing is called the Spirit of the Ego. It attacks your brain. It can drive you insane. It never lets you rest. It is constantly telling you what to do. 

Do this! Do that! Do it faster! Do it better! Do it quick! Do it now! Do it today! Do it for me! Do it for money! Do it or else! Do it again! You better do it! You better not do it! They saw you do it! You should do it!You should not try to do it! You can't do it! You'd better do it! Don't you ever do it! 

There is only one way to rid yourself of the Spirit of the Ego. Close your eyes, take a deep breath and repeat (as many times as you like).

Mother Earth, Father Sun, what would you have me do?

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Empire retreats

Just for a moment let's rejoice! But, let our hearts remain heavy - I for one know this means there will most probably be civil war and more death, more misery for ordinary struggling people and their families and children. I pray to the Universe and ask sincerely that the Iraqi people will finally gain their freedom from Oppression without further bloodshed. I could ask for more but I think they deserve that at the very least.

What if this happened to your family

This film shows the horror that is visited on families across the world everyday largely in Africa, what makes it all the more poignant and perhaps shocking is that it's set in the nice tranquil confines of the English countryside.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

My Conclusion

I came to the conclusion many years ago that Although some people believe absolutely, it is pointless trying to knock their faith so, I merely accept that they have their truth, whether I agree or not is another matter but I am happy for them nonetheless. I only wish that they too could accept that others have another truth. Furthermore I have always thought that if you are truly happy with your relationship with your creator then you will not find those who question or show you info that contradicts your belief to be offensive.

Seems obvious but it took me a while

The Universe hit's you on so many different levels

Difficulties, problems and stress are the way that the Universe keeps you growing and changing.
If you keep finding yourself in the same dramas, situations, problems etc, year after year (lifetime after lifetime) the reason is simple: you haven't yet learned the lesson life's teaching you and 'm going to put on the naughty step and you can do it all over again until you do.  i

The Flowchart of exploitation


The Greed of Humanity

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Supersized red moon - Lunar eclipse

Mother Earth will Eclipse Sister Moon from Father Sun today starting at about 14:36GMT;-)

Whats so cool about a Lunar eclipse is that a solar eclipse, can only be viewed from a certain relatively small area of the world, a lunar eclipse may be viewed from anywhere on the night side of the Earth.

Typically a lunar eclipse lasts for a few hours, a total solar eclipse lasts for only a very short period of a few minutes at any given place, due to the smaller size of the moon's shadow. So as its the Yule Moon we may be in for a treat;-)

How it works:
lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes behind the Earth so that the Earth blocks the Sun's rays from striking the Moon. This can occur only when the Sun, Earth, and Moon are aligned exactly, or very closely so, with the Earth in the middle. Hence, a lunar eclipse can only occur the night of a full moon.

I would advise delaying the signing of any new contracts for the next few days until Sister Moon becomes a waning gibbous - people might think your a little crazy but there was a time before wrist watches that the Lunar cycles governed daily life.

How the bailout really works

How Very Simple

Truth and perfect solution!

It’s a slow day in a little Greek Village. The rain’s beating down; streets deserted.
Times are tough, everybody’s in debt and everybody lives on credit.

On this particular day a rich German tourist’s driving through the village, stops at the local hotel and lays a €100 note on the desk, telling the hotel owner he wants to inspect the rooms upstairs in order to pick one to spend the night.
The owner gives him some keys and, as soon as the visitor has walked upstairs, the hotelier grabs the €100 note and runs next door to pay his debt to the butcher.
The butcher takes the €100 note and runs down the street to repay his debt to the pig farmer.
The pig farmer takes the €100 note and heads off to pay his bill at the supplier of feed and fuel. The guy at the Farmers' Co-op takes the €100 note and runs to pay his drinks bill at the taverna.
The publican slips the money along to the local prostitute drinking at the bar, who has also been facing hard times and has had to offer him "services" on credit.
The hooker then rushes to the hotel and pays off her room bill to the hotel owner with the €100 note.
The hotel proprietor then places the €100 note back on the counter so the rich traveller will not suspect anything.

At that moment the traveller comes down the stairs, picks up the €100 note, states the rooms are not satisfactory, pockets the money and leaves town. No one produced anything. No one earned anything.

However, the whole village is now out of debt and looking to the future with a lot more optimism.

The Universe, London and my Family

Sister Moon is full and very beautiful shining her bright light across the night sky to her left - Orion.

The full Moon is wonderful and Orion has always captured my imagination in relation to ancient Egypt and its secrets. These I feel to be good omens, the Universe smiles upon me, Yes yet again.

One cycle ends and a new path beckons and, tomorrow I will receive spiritual replenishment even if only briefly when I stand before the chair of KS.

I finished my contract today in Amsterdam and flew "Home" to London.
I spent the evening with my family Mum, my Sister, Brother, his wife and his 3 beautiful children who are really over excited at the thought of seeing Uncle Wayne;-) all of us back in England at the same time taking bread together.

The assortment of food like our heritage is a mix of Jamaican and English, delicious Brussel sprouts with rice and peas with roast chicken followed by a nice cup of Earl Grey tea but, made all the better as its made by Mum.

It's funny how when I think of my Brother and Sister I still see them in their Teens;-)

Being home in London just got even better due to the love and warmth I felt with my family tonight.
It has really helped lift my soul and spirits almost much as when I'm with Moni;-) For now, it feels great to be back.

I'm looking up at Sister Moon and the Universe.........Thank you;-)

A big, fat, huge, enormous smile on my face;-)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Crusade, a Massacre, Dualism and Star wars.

Some years ago I discovered Catharism whilst reading a book about the Albigensian crusade in the 11th century which was launched by the Catholic church against the Cathars in the Languedoc region. 

The crusade ends at Bezier St Mary Magdalene in the citadel a medieval fortress where the Catholics slaughtered nearly 20,000 people in one day both Cathari and Catholics. The ensuing knights had asked the Cisterican Monks leader Arnaud-Amaury, Abbot of CĂ®teaux leading the crusade how will we know the heretics from our own he replied "Kill them all, the Lord will recognise His own".

The doors of the church of St Mary Magdalene were broken down and the refugees dragged out and slaughtered. Elsewhere in the town many more thousands were mutilated and killed. Prisoners were blinded, dragged behind horses, and used for target practice. Arnaud wrote to Pope Innocent III, "Today your Holiness, twenty thousand heretics were put to the sword, regardless of rank, age, or sex.".

Catharism is based on a much older belief system from the Bogomils and Manacheism under a form of dualism.

There are 2 Dieties Rex Mundi (King of the world) is the god of the Old Testament an he is in fact the Devil and the other is the God of Light.

Rex Mundi - The Devil
Created a material world and is evil - He demanded "worship me in big cold buildings every Sunday and offer prayers to me". The God of the Old Testament is all that which is physical, substance, matter, chaotic and powerful.

The God of Light
The bringer of Light, Love, Order and Peace. A being or principle of pure spirit and completely unsullied by the taint of matter. This diety is a Femine diety known a the Shekhinah to Judaism and Christianity.

This entity is composed of five other elements of light:Reason (phase), Mind (heart), Intelligence (idea), Thought, Understanding (meaning).
The Shekhinah can also manifests itself as a form of joy, connected with prophecy and creativity.
They held a belief that our bodies and this world are merely a prison for our souls and therefore since we are made up of light and darkness - we are therefore a battleground for these powers: the soul defines the person, but it is under the influence of both light and dark and when we die we will then enter to the next level and if we have not learnt the lessons here we go around until we may progress to the next level as light to travel through the Universe.

Furthermore Catharism teaches the purpose of our life on Earth is to transcend matter, perpetually renouncing anything connected with the principle of power and thereby attaining union with the principle of love. Perhaps not all of them transcended matter, but Some Cathari also believe our purpose is to reclaim or redeem matter, spiritualising and transforming it.

These beliefs of the God of the Old Testament being evil are in direct opposition with the Catholic Church and to a large part Christianity in General which believes God not only created matter but was born into the material world in Jesus Christ and that's why they carried out the slaughter of of the Albigensian Crusade .

The Universe
The sun, moon, and stars are all created from light recovered from the World of Darkness. The waxing and waning of the moon is described as the moon filling with light, which passes to the sun, then through the Milky Way, and eventually back to the World of Light.

Fallen Angels
Light is recovered from out of the material bodies of the male and female evil beings and demons, by causing them to become sexually aroused in greed, towards beautiful images of the beings of light. However, as soon as the light is expelled from their bodies they fall to the earth and are known as fallen angels which are related to the story of the fallen angels in the Book of Enoch and Nephilim described in Genesis (6:1-4). The evil beings continue to swallow up as much of it as they can to keep the light inside of them. This results eventually in the evil beings swallowing huge quantities of light, copulating, and producing Adam and Eve.

Jesus and the resurrection
Jesus was sent by the God of light to awaken Adam and Eve (Humans), and to enlighten us to the true source of the light that is trapped in our material bodies. Adam and Eve, had children and produced more human beings, trapping the light in bodies of mankind throughout human history as I described earlier. Jesus is a manifestation of spirit unbounded by the limitations of matter a sort of divine spirit or feeling manifesting within human beings.

Hell and Purgatory
They rejected the idea of Hell and Purgatory, which were and are dogmas of the Catholic faith. This world is the only hell and there is nothing to fear after death, save perhaps rebirth as it meant they have not been able to transcend matter and must live again through reincarnation.

The Resurrection 
They agreed largely with the Christian interpretation of the Doctrine of "resurrection" (cryptically referred to in Isaiah 26:19 and Daniel 12:2) as a doctrine of the physical raising of a dead body from the grave but not fully due to beliefs of rebirth.

The God of Light has made other attempts also to reveal to mankind the true source of the spiritual light imprisoned within our material bodies.

The Holy Trinity.
The Holy trinity is encompassed in modalistic monarchianism the Father, Resurrected Son and Holy Spirit are different modes or aspects of one God, as perceived by the believer, rather than three distinct persons in God Himself.

Cathars did not believe the Bible is wrong. To them it's all about interpretation after all they embraced the Gospel of John. instead it's a story of our struggle between a good, spiritual world of light, and an evil, material world of darkness. 
Accept be happy for those that have found their truth - remember this is their truth, an interpretation of the bible as outlined by Martin Luther in the context that each man is entitled to his own interpretation of the scriptures.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

More data has been created over the past 10 years than since the beginning of humanity.

Internal email is a waste of time, don't believe me ask management specialists Atos.

Thierry Breton caused a sensation last week when he told an interviewer that he planned to ban internal email at the information technology services giant, Atos.

His comments sparked a series debate across the mainstream media and the blogosphere. The idea was described as both "bold" and "stupid", with some writers betting that the proposal would be ditched before the self-imposed 2014 zero-email deadline.

He is the former chief executive and chairman of France Telecom, served as France's minister of economy, finance and industry for two years and lectured at Harvard Business School before joining Atos three years ago and success could herald a turning point for email, failure would prove damaging for his company's credibility.

In his interview with the BBC he explained the reasons behind his decision:

"I did it to enhance the quality of working conditions for our 80,000 employees. This is part of a global initiative that we initiated in ATOS almost three years ago called "Wellbeing At Work". Their mission, in addition to their normal job, is to provide new ideas to enhance working conditions.
They put on the table the fact that most of the young people that we were hiring were not using email anymore after graduating from universities".

He genuinely thinks his employees welcome the zero-email policy plan. They were instead mainly using instant messaging tools and social networks like Facebook - and for most of them, when they joined Atos it was first time they had ever worked with internal email tools like [Microsoft] Outlook.

As a Programme manager working for Technology companies I spend way too much time on internal emails and not enough time on management the project.

"So when we put all this together I started an in-depth study with our consulting practice to see how many internal emails the 80,000 employees of Atos were receiving. We found on average it was over 100 emails per day, after further analysis, we realised they found 15% of the messages useful, and the rest was lost time but they had a fear that they would miss something and we realised they were spending 15 to 20 hours a week checking and answering internal emails".

He also explained that he himself didn't use internal emails even when he was the chairman of France Telecom but, he does use instant messaging - and of course external email.

"Since making this announcement we've experienced a 20% decrease in our own internal email.”

I believe he also is correct when he says that internally you use it more and more as a communication tool, or to store your own content, or to protect yourself from your boss or whoever - people don't use use it the way it was intended to be used.

I think we'd all agree that the vast majority of internal email are a waste of our time and ATOS say that a 20% decrease in internal email just because people have become more careful.

He believes that businesses will probably continue to have internal emails for the next 10 to 15 years but, some companies will move quickly to these internal social networks and instant messaging tools - and again this will be pushed by the young generation who also don't have such a dependency on emails.
New tools are being developed and used now that will replace internal email - a cloud computing environment, social networks, instant messaging, micro blogging, document sharing, knowledge community - these offer a much better approach for an information technology company.

I for one will now begin to adopt this policy in future engagements and I'm sure it will enhance the quality of my projects.

See the full story on the BBC

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Zwarte Piet is Rascism

Let me introduce Zwarte Piet - Black Pete a Sambo/Golliwog-figure that's part of Dutch culture.

On the fifth of December in the Netherlands. "Saint Nicholas", and its manifestation; racism.

The letters in the newspapers and on the internet are in general very emotional, reflecting a fear that ‘Dutch’ culture is being ‘threatened’ by ‘foreigners’. It's a holiday is a celebration for children. It’s ‘tradition’. I have been told by Dutch people that I am the one who is making it racist and if you start a discussion about it with other Dutch people as I have you'll be told he's black as he comes down the chimney - which suits them as then they cannot be accused of being rascist and they don't have to think any further about it.

The refusal to listen to counter-arguments and reply to those with substantial criticism reflects an insensibility for the opinion of a minority and it questions the portrayed image of the Netherlands as being “the most tolerant nation in the world”  and every accusation of racism is beforehand answered with denial.

Before I'll discuss this controversial black figure I will discuss his white master, Saint Nicholas/Sinterklaas.

Sinterklaas was a bishop born in the 3rd century near a city called Myra in Byzantium now called Turkey. He died on the sixth of December After he died the Byzantium church declared him a Saint. The legendary bishop is remembered during an annual holiday that is widely celebrated in the Netherlands & Belgium. In offices, schools and homes. The idea is to give each other presents and to write poems filled with irony and humour, offering you the chance to poke fun at each other. Children are taught to believe that they receive their presents from Saint Nicholas who is accompanied by a black servant called 'Black Pete'. Adults will dress up as Saint Nicholas and Black Pete (a white person painted in black face).
Saint Nicholas "arrives" from Spain in November by boat in Holland together with his black servants (as the Dutch like to call them).
It is on national television and opens the festivities. The stores are filled with candy, books, decorations and toys covered with representations of coal black skin and ruby red lips and an old white male with a funny hat.

Legend is told that Nicholas is the patron of children, sailors, merchants and female virgins so the Byzantium church declared him a Saint. One such a story is the tale of a poor nobleman who is unable to offer a dowry for his daughters, so they may marry. He decides that his daughters will have to prostitute themselves in order to survive. Saint Nicholas prevents this from happening by throwing bags filled with money through the poor nobleman’s window at night. Each bag contains enough for the dowry of a daughter and makes it possible for them to marry. Many of the legends take place in the so-called 'Land of the Moors' as Byzantium was at war with the Arab Muslim during the 9th century.

As stated earlier the black slave-characters that accompanied Saint Nicholas originally symbolised the devil, a ‘joker’ who was submissive, frightening and disobedient all at once and was associated with Moors/Muslims who were seen as the devil. When Saint Nicholas re-appeared at the end of the 18th century after being banned by the Protestants he returned alone, without Black Pete.
He wears the costume of the child-slaves that worked in Europe at that time, the pages. Carrying a large bag and his rod he threatens to take children that behaved bad. In an era of slavery and colonialism the racial ideas of that time were translated onto this figure.

The combination of the small Black Pete and horse-riding Saint Nicholas, represents the triumph of good over bad, Christian over heathen, and later; Christianity over Islam. The contrast between the Saint Nicholas and Black Pete stands in a long tradition of rascist representation in which Europeans portrayed themselves and Africans as essentially different: Europeans as rational responsible, civilised, mature and as masters. Africans as irrational, wild, childish and as slave'. Saint Nicholas is being portrayed as everything Black Pete is not. The Saint is an old white, wise, and articulated man. Pete is a young, black, simple, cheeky (classically followed by a reprimand from the Saint), boy.

In the 21st century the black figure is still with us, dressed in the same outfit. The role is usually played by a white woman or man who wears black or brown grease paint on their faces (Saint Nicholas is always performed by a man). He or she wears large golden earrings, a curly wig and red lipstick. Right now they wear brown grease paint more often because “the blackness frightens children”.

Once the transformation is completed, a change in voice and behaviour usually follow. He or she will speak improper Dutch with a low voice and a Surinamese accent. In other words; a racial stereotype is reinforced. While the stereotype and its origin, are obvious, many people (also respectable scholars) contend that the figure has either no racial connotations, or the racial connotations should be viewed as being positive.

Black Pete symbolises the devil who was usually associated with people of Moorish decent. The current Black Pete is simply a variant of this devil-figure. The fact that the current Black Pete is a racialised variant of the devil figure and people (esp. children) are still being taught, through the celebrations and rituals, to "easily associate" evilness and Black Pete with people of colour, is exactly the problem here.

The oppression of Africans was legitimised by an ideology, a discourse translated in ‘scientific’ and religious theories about blacks that ‘proved’ they were inferior, destined to work as slaves. Contemporary Black Pete is a caricature of a black person.

When we deconstruct the myth of Saint Nicholas and Black Pete we discover the conviction that blacks are inferior, a conviction that does not stand on its own but as we all know is still translated as truth in certain academia, popular media and politics. By including race thinking in the ritual it becomes part of the attributes of a power structure. In it's recent form it shows us how power relations can be read in Dutch multicultural society. This is not only evident through the ritual itself but especially through the public debate about the imagery of the white master and his black servant.

In Suriname the myth of the white saint and his black slave was difficult to contest or criticise. For example, in 1970 writer Astrid Roemer was a High School teacher who refused to celebrate the holiday at school. She talked to her colleaques and the principle of the school, but they refused to listen to her arguments. The day of the celebration she did not appear at the school. She was fired the next day.

In the seventies a lot of Surinamese people migrated to the Netherlands due to the political circumstances in their home country. Their presence led to a re-evaluation of the ways the Dutch dealt with their colonial history and their images of black people. Again Black Pete was scrutinised, only this time in a context where the majority of society was white. A friend of mine from Suriname told me that white people have used it as an insult to Blacks on the streets in Paramaribo by shouting "Black Pete" at them.

About Me

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Just passing through and enjoying life. I use this blog to keep hold of my thoughts & opinions. In general anything that interest me.