I am seeing a very disturbing trend of lately, where Asians are going to Afrika to teach Asian martial arts to certain segments of the population. One supposed Monk, who has by passed poverty and orphanage in many Asian countries, has going to Malawi to teach orphans Chinese Shaolin Kung Fu there.
I show the map so you can overstand the strategic positioning of Malawi to Mozambique, Tanzania and Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe, a country already being wined and dinned and pimped by China.
However, my concern is not so much political, as everything is politics, but the overt cultural assimilation or erasing of Afrikan culture and the introducing of Chines culture, as Kung Fu is being taught in Afrika.
It is not that I object to Afrikan children being taught self defense to bolster not only physical protection, but strong personalities and minds….no of course not!
I do have a problem with how much the various Asian culture is so interwoven inside their martial arts, that scores of Afrikan children and young people are becoming Chinese in cultural dress., thoughts and worldview.
All this through the introduction of a foreign martial art, that is being promoted above and beyond the native martial science of each Afrikan country.
This is N’golo..the Afrikan predecessor to capoeira
One of the fore most Master of Martial arts on the planet, but also the ambassador of Afrikan Martial arts in the west–-Aha Kilindi IyI
I have practiced Japanese, Korean and Chinese martial arts in the past and one of the things I noticed is the strong promotion of their culture into the arts. I have also trained with black martial arts instructors, who have also promoted Asian culture. This is why cultural awareness has to be a strong foundation if we are to rise up out of colonialism
History: by Shaha Mfundishi Maasi
THE LIBERATION OF CONSCIOUSNESS THROUGH AFRICAN-DESCENDED MARTIAL CULTURE IN THE AMERICAS: THE TRUTH ABOUT KUPIGANA -NGUMI
“If a thing is possessed of form, Nature and Embodiment, it must have power. Power is the strength to be able to function efficaciously; it is the strength behind the achievement of all phenomena. Concerning all things, what achieves effect is power”…
Takuan Soho.writings of the Zen Master to the Sword Master.
THE COMMITTE FOR A UNIFIED NEWARK CFUN:
From it’s inception in the late 1960s, Kupigana-Ngumi was never intended to be a form of “Black Karate” as claimed by some, who by the way, were not involved in the work and struggle of those times to raise the consciousness of Black People. Nor was it intended as a vehicle for self-aggrandizement.
Kupigana-Ngumi is an outgrowth of the Black Empowerment Movement, which evolved from the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s through the mid to late 1960s. Simply stated, the Black Empowerment Movement was a response to the deplorable state of mind of most Black people in America and throughout the Diasporas at that time.
Though confined in the early days to black communities throughout the United States, the effort to empower disenfranchised Americans of African descent eventually modified the scope of liberation and democracy throughout the world. New Ark New Jersey stood at the epicenter of this movement, and the committee For a Unified Newark facilitated the early efforts under the
Leadership of noted playwright, poet and activist Leroi Jones (Amiri Baraka).
Imamu, as we referred to him in those days, made an indelible contribution to the culture and
Consciousness of Black People, and was the inspiration for the Black Arts Movement which began in 1964 with a core of writers, artists, and activists. BARTS (Black Arts Repertory Theatre School) the brain child of Baraka, was established in 1965 in Harlem after the assassination of Malcom X. Initially funded through several of his plays and concerts featuring Sun Ra, John Coltrane, Archie Shepp and others, the BARTS initiated a turning point in the consciousness and
Self-determination of numerous young Black artists across the country including this writer.
Spreading rapidly through festivals, conventions and cultural centers, The Black Arts Movement (BAM) created a “Black Aesthetic” that would transform the scope and expression of Martial Culture as presented by both Maasi and Tolo-naa in their schools on the East Coast and the Mid West. Kupigana-Ngumi was devised as a tool to awaken consciousness! A means of displaying self-determination (Kujichagulia). A way or path to learn of, gain appreciation of, and practice those elements of African Culture found throughout the African Diaspora.
From the early years of captivity, Africans in America have practiced aspects and elements of traditional art and culture of Africa. Although taught through the slave system that they should be ashamed and suspicious of their native customs, Black People MASTERED many “African -derived art forms. These art forms continue to this day as vibrant forces in African American
Society. Referred to as “African-descended Martial Culture in the Americas by Professor Thomas Green, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Texas A&M, numerous examples exist today of African Warrior traditions that have been preserved and modified within Black folk culture. As an African descended through the Jamaican Branch, I recall clearly the manner in which my grandfather would wield a machete (known as ‘CUTLASS in the islands). Whether clearing weeds or bushes, his cuts were focused and precise. His posture was rooted and strong as he manipulated the cutlass with his powerful hand and forearms, developed through many years as a stonemason. A craft that he learned as a young man in the mountains of Above Rocks Jamaica. Through observing him I witnessed the culmination of conditioning and skill.
The role of Martial Arts in African American Cultural Nationalism has been noted extensively by
Professor Green, indicating a field of study grossly ignored by those who claim that Ngumi is a
Vain attempt at notoriety, and a fraud perpetrated upon the public. A statement which displays a glaring lack of understanding of Martial Culture, and a lack of sophistication regarding martial literacy.
When one attempts to understand Martial Culture strictly from the confining standpoint of technical practice, they will one day sooner or later find themselves in a blind alley. This is a contributing factor to the frustration and self-limiting aggression witnessed throughout the Martial Art community. For many practitioners, Martial Culture begins and ends with technique. We know that good sound technique is indispensible in the formation of Martial skill. However, Martial Culture is composed of:
In order to have a comprehensive understanding of Martial Culture one is well served to begin with the philosophical basis followed by study of principle. Philosophy provides the WHY, principles provide the WHAT, and the practice provides the HOW. If one begins and ends with the HOW, then misconceptions are certain to arise, and the question of authenticy is certain arise because judgments are being made along the lines of physical movements, which are only the tip of the iceberg. In Martial Culture only knowing how, does not prepare one for leadership.
During 1968 through 1969 this writer has numerous opportunities to discuss the principles of liberation through Black Art with Amiri Baraka as we criss crossed the United States on his lecture tours. His statements gave me insight into the liberating nature of art, and it was during this time that I began to conceive of Black Martial Culture as a device for mental and spiritual liberation. Not from an Asian standpoint, but from a universal standpoint rooted in African philosophy and principles.
*The above referenced state by Eugene W. Metcalf helped to shape my thinking during this
Period of formation.
Check out the website here, and read the book if you can get it.
The disembodied voice in the beginning of the following video is that of Bruce Lee