The Black Man's Guide to Reality
Part One: The Beginning
I recently watched Rutendo Matinyarare's interview on Joshua Maponga III's show titled Was God in Africa before Islam and Christianity? This was a jaw-dropping 30-minute interview that touched on so many aspects of African reality.
When I say African, whether you're on the continent of Africa or from the continent of Africa, if you're African-American or African European, essentially the diaspora, the knowledge from this interview applies.
And if you're not African, these gems are still valuable because what we're talking about here is a deep understanding of human history, religion, and reality.
The following article will be me pulling out some of those gems from the interview. This will be a three-part series similar to my topic on Kyrie Irving.
Throughout the interview, there are four primary themes discussed.
Nature and Spirituality: How caring, understanding, and working with nature is spiritual
Bible and Religion: The origins of the Bible and its role in religion
The Evil Creature: An force that does nothing but steals, kill, and destroy
African Life: The current reality experience by Africans all over the world
With these four themes, we're going to look at this interview, and we're going to start with the part one analysis known as "the beginning."
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Nature and Spirituality
To start the discussion on nature and spirituality, Rutendo first discusses how God communicated with humans before the Bible.
Rutendo states the following:
"If this book that has got what is the word of God, how is God communicating with the other tribes that we're not using writing as a system of communication with God? Because in southern Africa, we've got cultures that believe in wari and why he was communicating directly to his people through spirit mediums and through the rocks."
Here Rutendo was calling out that God was speaking to people before the written word. All cultures worldwide have ways of communicating with God, all before the written word came out.
The Africans communicated to God using rocks. Others were hearing from God using mediums. Rutendo mentions wari, which may be familiar to the Yoruba practice of ifa.
Native Americans, Indians, Irish, and every other culture had their way of communicating with God before the written language. Are we saying that they are wrong?
The many ways God can speak to us
The host, Joshua, chimes in on the discussion. And he paints a picture of God speaking to people all over the world before the written word:
"Allow me [to interject] between the two of you right there. I want to clarify the point number one there are two bibles that I believe in; actually, let me make them three. The first one is the what I call the natural Bible with the natural text according to the book of psalms 19, which is nature."
Joshua is absolutely right. We cannot say God did not communicate with people before the written word. God very much did so speak to people through nature which Psalms 19 says.
So, before there was the written word, we have to understand that God was speaking to all people, mainly through nature – through the natural word.
How nature speaks to us
Joshua continues to elaborate on God speaking to us through nature. In the interview, he has a hat on, explaining how hats don't just appear out of the sky. Essentially nature doesn't just "big bang" its way into existence. There's an intelligent design to nature that speaks to a designer.
"I'm an artist, yes. I create things, yes, and it will take me lots of faith to think that this hat can just fall from the sky, yes? It takes me sitting down weaving grass, and it is there. So as a creative person, I know you need a creator and a designer - to a designer to have a design. Yeah, I don't doubt it.
So the first book is which is the book of the heart, where at a certain level of spirituality, you get it. Trees can talk to you, you get it, and they can whisper to you. Oceans, and so forth, and for me, the natural part without text, talks of the people who could have lived with such a clean diet, clean lifestyle clean, who could actually hear God and needed nothing else."
We don't live in the world anymore that Joshua describes, and I describe it in my upcoming book. From the advent of electricity to chemtrails being put in the air in the hope of climate change, we are no longer in that clean lifestyle of our ancestors.
However, there are things that we can do to still hear from God because God still speaks through nature and through our hearts. But only if we listen.
God speaks to us through nature, through reality. I look to understand this throughout this publication, especially the esoteric wisdom section.
The Heart and the Textual Word of God
Once we understand God can speak to us internally through our hearts and externally through nature, we now see the last way God can talk to us, which is the written way.
"and that Bible is true because within that Bible, killing, murder, stealing, sleeping in someone's wife, all those things were created in your heart then becomes the script that is written. Where now, those that have experienced theophanic encounters in various levels of their spirituality collect to themselves and write and write some certain text. But again, this depth must be compared with this other text."
Yes, books like the Bible say that killing and stealing are wrong. Yes, they come from a particular place of truth written by someone whom God may have spoken to them in their heart.
Individuals who communicate with God and through nature, who have had these theophanic experiences - which can be induced by natural herbs such as ayahuasca - were moved to write books and texts.
But one thing to call out is that the written words of men must always agree with what God says in nature and in our hearts.
This concludes the section on God in nature and spirituality. Next, we’ll turn to the most referenced text, known as the Bible.
The Written Text of God. The Bible and Religion
The Different Translations of the Bible
Here during the interview, there are conversations on the different translations of the Bible. Rutendo picks up the conversation and begins to examine the history of biblical written text.
"Secondly, there is also this concept that says if this book was taken and was originally written in Aramaic, and when it was written in Aramaic, it was translated into, um, it was, before Latin, it was actually Greek, as the Septuagint and the scepter generated 70 so-called prophets. Yes, they wrote the Septuagint and created the very first books in Greek.
And from there, it was then taken by Constantine and then would create it into the vowel gate into Latin. Then for 600 years, it disappeared was held by the roman catholic church that Constantine served, and all of a sudden, it comes back again six seven hundred years later as a full book."
This is one thing that everyone must address regarding the Bible. The Bible has gone through many iterations and has been influenced by many political and territorial campaigns.
This severe examination needs to be considered - the influence of the many hands that have formed it.
Rutendo then examines the main hand, the most recent hand, that formed this text.
The Roman church and “The Truth.”
"It comes back again six seven hundred years later as a full book in which the books that were written as the old, as the new testament, by people like paul, were put together, collated over 300 years and then put together into one book.
Then this was kept by the very same church that presided over the very first colonial system, that colonized Israel, that colonized the Hebrews - and then it comes back as a full book that's coming out of this evil establishment called the roman catholic empire and the roman catholic church, to be brought to people as the word of God.
Now my question is, why would this evil be so interested in giving us the truth? Why would they give it to us?"
From a historical perspective, we must understand the possibility that the Roman church - the world's most dominant empire- used religion to manipulate the masses.
Multiple historians and former religious leaders have said this, such as Rev Walter Mwambazi in his TedTalk 5 Major Reasons Religion Is the No.1 Cause of Poverty in Africa.
We must understand that religion is a very effective tool to control the population. This is a factor in human history.
Rutendo then examines the Bible and begins to ponder why things may not add up.
Contradictions of the Bible, slavery, and a black Jesus
Rutendo makes the following observation of the Bible:
"How do you reconcile trying to speak about the rising of Africa while using this book, this doctrine, this concept of Christianity? That's what we're talking about. How do you gel the two because there seems to be a contradiction?
I used to fight that as a Christian to say there is no contradiction. It is one and the same thing if you just stop looking at Jesus as a white Jesus. But there are questions that keep getting raised that, yes he might, he might be a black Jesus, but the promises that are made in this book, the ones that are supposed to manifest themselves, they are not manifesting."
Essentially, it comes down to this: why are nature and its people - these African nations - being destroyed by the word of God? Why are African nations being killed when they're following God's word, the same word given to them by the Roman Church? Why are the promises of God in the texts not happening?
Ultimately, why are Africa and Africans worldwide suffering when we're the most religious Christian population on the earth?
This raises a lot of questions and a lot of confusion.
Confusion in Christianity
Rutendo then admits the following:
"What has happened is whenever I'm trying to have my African conversation with people, I have to start looking at it while divorcing from the Christian aspect, from the spiritual aspect. Because I myself still have a lot of confusion and have to discover the truth there before I speak about it."
When we look at Africa and the natural state of Africa, we can clearly see how it's being destroyed even though Africans all over the continent follow what the book says.
So now we must ask ourselves, is this text aligning with what God is saying in nature and in my heart?
This is where we begin to divorce true spirituality from religion. Religion can be seen as politicized, dogmatic spirituality.
We must realize and comprehend that we need to fully understand the aspects that came together to give us this religion of Christianity.
This takes us to our next theme, the theme of the Evil Creature.
The Evil Creature that destroys Nature
We must understand that there is a creature who seeks to kill, steal, and destroy. Rutendo states the following:
"Well, and this book was compiled by the very same enemy who colonized the Hebrews. Who destroyed the Hebrew empire, who took Hebrew land and literature, and then, he went and sat with it, and then he did what he did, and when we look at how everything else that has destroyed nature, that has destroyed the world, that has destroyed humanity, it has come in writings.
The writings of science, the writings of economics, the writings of accounting. All of them have been corrupted by this creature that has a desire to dominate, a desire to destroy nature. A desire to the prince of this world, but it's not the prince of this world, but it's a creature."
What is the likelihood that the same text we reverend has been tainted by this creature of evil? Because if you look at the nature that God created, we can see that it's been destroyed and that this book is being used to destroy it.
To summarize, there is a creature, an evil creature that has the desire to destroy nature. We'll discuss this more in later parts.
But lastly, Rutendo talks about African life and Christianity.
In this interview, there are three individuals. We've talked about Rutendo and spoken of Joshua, the host. Then there’s an African Christian theologian who’s also on the panel.
The Christian theologian states that the Bible offers love, peace, and grace. Ruetendo chimes in to say the following:
"Because what people are saying is that these gifts that you say are free, mercy, love, yes, all those are things that do not benefit people that are living in hunger. They are foreign. Not only that, even the children, the children of nature, the children of this continent, do not need love and mercy. They are dying of hunger. They don't have shelter."
It goes back to the age-old contradiction: why are the children of nature suffering when they're being offered free gifts such as mercy and love?
Why is nature suffering? Why is it being destroyed?
Spirituality is vital to African survival
Rutendo makes the following statement:
"We cannot speak about any nation, any continent, without the spirituality because the spirituality is the foundation of everything, and what I'm noticing is that our spirituality, in its own respect is where our biggest problem starts. We have lost African spirituality. Africans do not even understand what is their spirituality."
We need to go back to African spirituality, before the religion, before the text. We need to go back to when God spoke to the people's hearts and, through nature, his creation.
When God spoke to the people's hearts and through nature, that was known as spirituality. It became a religion when it became contextualized, politicized, and weaponized.
All Religions benefit while Africa suffers
Rutendo hammers down on how religion has tampered with the African's spiritual connection:
"And when you look at how it is that Christianity has become a very central player in the south, in the spiritual space of Africa. It has actually not brought Africans together, but it has divided Africans because when the Christian comes into the equation, he does not want to speak to the African traditionalist, to the African spiritualist, to the African who doesn't believe in Christianity, automatically. And then with the Muslims, who also came onto the continent and they divided the continent.
So the spiritual aspect is becoming tricky for me, especially when the book, the manual of its particular spirituality, be it the Quran or the Bible come, into the equation, they begin to cause problems. One, because people don't understand them; two, there's a chance that they've been tampered with; and three, they have got concepts and doctrines that sometimes go against Africanism."
Africanism before religion was one where people moved and worked alongside nature. This was worldwide with all other indigenous cultures.
As we stated earlier, ancient civilizations worked with nature, listened to their hearts, and worked alongside nature. This was true spirituality.
We've let these texts come in that don't align with Africanism, yet they've taken the place of African spirituality.
This is a topic that must be continually and further addressed.
Call To Action
This concludes part one of the series. If you enjoyed it, please like it and share it.
Please subscribe to know when part two is released. Ase.
Unorthodoxy is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.