Historynotes Re: PERSONAL UPDATE FROM RUNOKO RASHIDI: HISTORY NOTES EDITOR
- Hotep Brothers and Sisters!
My Father is now an Ancestor. He was a proud man and died with dignity, and I was fortunate enough to see him one last time before he left us. Losing a Parent is a dreadful experience and it is almost impossible to prepare one's self emotionally for it. Thanks for the all the prayers, kind words and encouragement you sent my way. I needed all of it.
I returned last Wednesday, September 22, 1999, from two solid weeks of lectures in Missouri and Nebraska. I learned at least as much as I taught. Isn't that the way it is supposed to be. Excellent responses from students, faculty, adminstration and community. Among the highlights were an all-day seminar on the African Origins of Major World Religions, a major lecture on the African Presence in Asia, and a half-day presentation on the History of the Sudan. About forty Sudanese brothers showed up for the latter presentation. They were from the deep south of the Sudan. I joyfully turned over a good portion of the day's program to them. Fascinating information. They spent considerable time talking about the Arab invasions and occupation of Africa and the enslavement of African people. They kept asking "Where are our African-American brothers and sisters?" They could not understand why we are not supporting them in their liberation struggle. I felt so ashamed and embarrassed for us. We absolutely must do more to publicize the enslavement and oppression of African people in Mauritania and Sudan.
I'm now off to New York, Washington, D.C. and California for more lectures and the promotion of my July 2000 tour to Aboriginal Australia. I hope that some of you will be able to join me for what should be a once in a lifetime experience. In the meantime I've been sending out lots of Historynotes. Special thanks to Brother Kwaku X, Brother Kwesi Ohene, Sister Alecia Carter, Brother Djehuti, Sister Re, Brother Aristide, Brother Anthony Conley, Brother Donal, Sister Barbea and the entire family. Didn't mean to leave anybody out. I am particularly grateful to Brother Kenneth Richards. This is a wonderful brother out in Sacramento, California who has put together an absolutely fantastic web site. Just punch in the word "Lucumi" in any major search engine and see if you don't agree completely as to the excellence of his work. Also, don't forget to check out the ASCAC (Association for the Study of Classical African Civilizations) web site for upcoming regional conferences.
Call me at (210) 648-5178 if you need to leave a message. Pray for me, stay strong and keep up the fight! Thanks for everything and talk to you soon.
Runoko Rashidi (Historynotes Editor)
As usual, brothers and sisters, I've been very busy, running here and there. I trust that you have been receiving (although somewhat irregularly) and consistantly enjoying History Notes. The postings have been a little erratic both because of the newness of the technology to me and because of my lecture and travel schedule. Hopefully this will be resolved in the near future. In the meantime I'm off to California for lectures, fund raisers, video recordings and television programs. More importantly, however, I am going to visit my father. My father, eighty-five years old, who has never seen me on television, never heard me lecture, never listened to me on radio, never inquired about my travels, never thumbed through one of my books or read one of my essays, is gravely ill with cancer and is not expected to pull through. For many years, I fear, he thought of me as a failure. All of this because of my love for and dedication to the uplift of African people. For my father, like many of our fathers, I'm afraid, this love and dedication is largely a waste of time and energy. Nevertheless, he is my father and I owe him at least one last visit. Please send out a prayer.
I return to my computer on September 6, 1999. From September 8th to September 22, 1999 I am scholar-in-residence at a major university in the mid-west. Throughout this period I will do my best to keep you informed of personal developments and the progress of our people globally. During this period feel free to call and leave any important messages. I'll return your calls asap.
In the meantime, keep the faith. Africans Unite!