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Rastafarianism Julie, Hillary, Alex, Lisa. What is it? Movement of black people who know Africa as the birthplace of all mankind Rastafari wants all people.

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Presentation on theme: "Rastafarianism Julie, Hillary, Alex, Lisa. What is it? Movement of black people who know Africa as the birthplace of all mankind Rastafari wants all people."— Presentation transcript:

1 Rastafarianism Julie, Hillary, Alex, Lisa

2 What is it? Movement of black people who know Africa as the birthplace of all mankind Rastafari wants all people to know that we are Africans and to develop pride and integrity in ourselves About 1 million followers worldwide

3 History Began in Ethiopia in 1930 Based on the teaching of Jamaican black nationalist Marcus Garvey –Considered the 2 nd John the Baptist –Taught the Africans are the true Israelites and have been exiled to Jamaica and other parts of the world as divine punishment –Founder of back-to-Africa movement Named for Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia –Name means might of trinity –Followers believed Selassie to be the personification of God –Died August 27, 1975 His divinity did not die with him Ras Tafari lives on through individual Rastafarians

4 History Leonard Howell– One of the early leaders –Doctrines helped shape theology, arrest helped shape organizational structure –Arrested in 1933 for preaching a revolutionary doctrine –Harassment of Howell by the police might be why Rastafarians have decided to remain leaderless Six principles –Hatred for the White race –The complete superiority of the Black race –Revenge on Whites for their wickedness –The negation, persecution, and humiliation of the government and legal bodies of Jamaica –Preparation to go back to Africa –Acknowledging Emperor Haile Selassie as the supreme being and only ruler of the Black people

5 Lifestyle Live peaceful lives Do not need material possessions Devote time to contemplating the scriptures

6 Beliefs Avoid materialistic white culture –They call it Babylon God is referred to as Jah Believe in Avatars –Heile Selassie was the last incarnation of God after Moses, the Hebrew Prophet Elija, and Jesus Avoid meat, coffee, salt, tobacco, alcohol and seafood Use the 10 Commandments as a Code of Conduct

7 Modern Rastafarian Beliefs In 1973 Joseph Owens published a more modern approach to Rastafari beliefs. In 1991 Michael N. Jagessar revised Owens's ideas The key ideas in contemporary Rastafari are: –The humanity of God and the divinity of man –God is found within every man 1 and 1 –It is very important to see all historical facts in the context of God's judgment and workings. –Salvation for Rastafarians is an earthly idea, rather than heavenly.

8 Modern Beliefs Cont. –The supremacy of life –Human nature is very important to Rastafarians and they should preserve and protect it. –Respect for nature This idea refers to the importance and respect Rastafarians have for animals and the environment, as mirrored in their food laws. –The power of speech –Evil is corporate –Judgment is near –The priesthood of Rastafarians Rastafarians are the chosen people of God and are on earth to promote his power and peacefulness.

9 The Church There is no clergy –Believes are autonomous There is no church building, followers worship in small groups in homes –They gather around a chalice containing ganga

10 Traditions and Symbols Dreadlocks –The biblical Nazarene vow prohibits shaving and combing hair –The locks symbolize the roots of man and his link with spirituality Star of David The Conquering Lion and the Lamb

11 Traditions and Symbols Cont. Rasta Flag –Red is for the blood of those killed for the cause of the black community, or just blood –Green is for grass and represents Jamaicas vegetation and hope for the eradication of oppression –Gold is for wealth

12 Traditions and Symbols Continued Ganga –Aka hemp, marijuana –Used as a holy sacrament –Legend says that this herb was found growing on King Solomans grave –Thou shalt eat the herb of the field (Genesis 3:18) –eat every herb of the land (Exodus 10:12) –They smoke ganga to meditate and for its curative properties

13 Texts The Rastafarianisms main text is known as the Holy Piby or the Black Mans Bible –Version of the Christian Bible that has been altered to remove all directions believed to have been made by white leaders during its translation to English. Another text is the Ethiopian epic the Kebra Negast

14 Holidays November 2 nd - the coronation of Selassie January 6 th - ceremonial birthday of Selassie April 21 st - Selassies visit to Jamaica July 23 rd - Selassies personal birthday August 1 st - emancipation from slavery August 17 th - Marcus Garveys birthday

15 Sects There are three main sects which all agree on basic principles of the divine status of Selassie and the importance of black images of divinity –Nyahbinghi Order Named for Queen Nyahbinghi of Uganda & is the oldest of the orders –Bobo Shanti Founded by Prince Emanuel Charles Edwards Bobo means black and Shanti refers to the ashanti tribe in Ghana –Twelve Tribes of Israel Most liberal sect and members are free to worship in a church of their own choosing. Member of one of the 12 tribes determined by birth month.

16 Bob Marley A prophet of Rastafarianism Reggae artist Influenced by Peter Tosh who was his teacher/mentor

17 Peter Tosh Taught Bob Marley everything he knew He was a saint in the sense that he had a purpose He liberated Jamaicans mentally and physically

18 Rumors about Rastafarianism One rumor is that the religion is simply an excuse to smoke marijuana. –This is very far from the reality of the religion. – They view Ganja as a sacrament allowing a direct experience of God. Another rumor is that Rasta is racist and anti-white, –This is unfortunately true in some cases. –Most have rejected the notion that the white man is evil, and instead disagree with materialism associated with whites.

19 Sources Alternative Religions. 29 April 2008. nism.htm nism.htm BBC. Religion and Ethics. 29 April 2008. Ras Charles and French Dred. An Introduction to Rastafari. 20 April 2008. WebUtopia.Org. Culture of Rastafarianism. 20 April 2008. Rastafarism. 20 April 2008.§ion_id=1072239264§ion_id=1072239264

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