As a writer, researching the latest trends, topics of discussion, news and data are a part of my job. Writing for a black publication is definitely my cup of tea and supporting my black men is certainly a plus. Sad to say, in my research, month after month, there are reports and research pointing to the failure of Black Men in the areas of health, mental health, wellness, finance, and even relationships. Do I believe everything I read? Absolutely not! Hence why I became a writer, in hopes of diffusing nonsensical BS that is constantly thrown, using daggers of defeat and dismay.
US News, recently published an article contributed by Kaiser Health News titled, "Racism Derails Black Men’s Health, Even as Education Levels Rise" that ended with this statement.
"The Need to Prove Yourself - The cumulative effect of discrimination takes a toll psychologically and physiologically — but so does the anticipation of it. "(https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2021-05-19/racism-derails-health-of-black-men-even-as-education-levels-rise)
I do agree with the article, however, I want to talk about the power of the Black Man's mind against negative effects. For centuries, black men have utilized the power of their mind to lead tribes, kingdoms, spiritual communities, wars of defense; strategically planned escapes, and takeovers; invented life changing items, machines, and necessities for better living; formulated organizations, led movements, created businesses and business opportunities; and have been the model and template for sports, music, etc. Often imitated but never duplicated. There is nothing a black man cannot do if they put their mind to it.
World Renowned Author and Spiritual Advisor, Olori Erelu Iya Abiye Gro Mambo Angela Novanyon Idizol says, "The mind tells the body what to do" in her upcoming book, "Inside the Voodoo: Papa Dumbala". Gro Mambo often speaks on how in African tradition, we were taught that the mind can yield peace, wisdom, understanding, knowledge, and the ability to tackle even the most difficult tasks and hurdles in life. In her books and lectures, she speaks about how the mind can heal the body and even change the functionality of a person, connecting the person on a higher spiritual plain. African tradition speaks to knowing and understanding the power a person is born with, which has been lost in our black communities since the embracing of other cultural ways.
Black men are the world's original leaders and should understand that. Every obstacle put in place, either by the hands of someone else or ourselves, black men can overcome it. From having the highest rates in diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, HIV and other STD's - to having the highest rate of incarceration and death. This can be changed.
For National Wellness Month, make it a point to think about the power of the mind. Look at your life. Where you see weakness, doubt, hurt or disappointment, concentrate on the complete opposite and change your thinking. Set goals and a higher reach, not based on society and all that we have endured, but what you were born to do and the power you were born with. Seek counsel, wisdom and understanding the traditional way. Learn about African spirituality even if you have been a Christian all of your life. The old saying, "Go back to Africa", should be a mindset of going back to the ways of old that gave us strength, faith, determination and the power to overcome. Black men can be successful business leaders, not just owners, but leaders! Black men can be powerful voices in our communities, cities, states and abroad. Black men can be pillars of strength for our children. Black men can.