4 Powerful Ways to Develop Your African Spirituality Now
African Spirituality is one of the most mis-understood concepts in the Black Conscious community. Ask 3 people to define it and you will get three different answers! In this article, we clarify the topic and offer members of the community real, practical ways to develop their African spirituality now!
What Is Spirituality?
Before we can discuss African spirituality, we must first clarify the term: Spirituality is the state of your soul, emotions, beliefs, mindset, and connection to the infinite. These factors make up your spiritual anatomy called your ‘light body’. Just like your physical body, your light body can grow stronger or weaker based on your actions. This article will clarify the difference between religion and spirituality, and give you practices that you can use to develop your African Spirituality – with or without religion.
What is the Difference Between Religion and Spirituality?
If you want to get into a debate in the Black Conscious community, bring up the difference between religion and spirituality! Religion and spirituality are indeed two different things – despite what some will tell you! Religion is simply a system designed for spiritual development. Some systems are better than others at achieving this goal.
Unfortunately, some so-called religions have become so corrupted that they have stopped being systems and have become systems of indoctrination. This process of indoctrination creates divisions within our community, and leads to battle lines being drawn between “believers” and “non-believers’.
This is the current condition of religions like Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and other religions that have been corrupted by the West. So much of western religion has become dogma that there is little benefit to the Black man and woman in studying them.
Instead, return to your African roots.
Study the Yoruba, Kemetic, and Vodun traditions. Your new found knowledge- along with other spiritual practices like meditation and fasting – will put you on the fast track to spiritual enlightenment.
We recently held an open conference on just one small part of African spirituality – the soul according to Kemetic Science. Check it out here for an example of how enlightening it can be to study your truth!
Here is how to develop your African spirituality!
Study African Religions
It is possible for you to develop your spirituality without religion. But to do so, you must take responsibility for your own education and growth. That means studying indigenous African religions and applying the lessons that speak to you. There are hundreds of major African religions on the continent, but the most well known are:
- Akan religion
- Dahomean religion
- Hausa animism
- Igbe religion
- Legio Maria
- Opon Ifá
- Vodun (VooDoo and Santeria)
- Zulu mythology
When we use the term African religions, we are also referring to spiritual systems developed by Africans outside of the continent. These systems include:
- The Nuwaubian movement
- The Nation of Islam
- The 5 Percenters (Nation of Gods and Earths)
- Moorish Science Temple
If you are particularly interested in Kemetic Science, I encourage you to take the course below. its cheap, very detailed, and will give you the knowledge you need much faster than reading thought books. Click the image below to take the course.
There are elements of truth in all of these spiritual systems. Your path could lie in any one of these (or none at all). It is therefore your mission to find the path that speaks to you the most truthfully, and then walk that path unapologetically!
Here are 5 books on African religion that anyone interested in African spirituality and indigenous African religions should read:
- The Egyptian Book of the Dead : The Book of Coming Forth by Day
- Introduction to African Religion
- African Origins of Major “Western Religions” by Dr. Ben
- The Handbook of Yoruba Religious Concepts
- Knowledge of Self: A Collection of Wisdom on the Science of Everything in Life
Practice Afrocentric Meditation
Meditation is one of the most powerful ways to develop your African spirituality! The oldest Aboriginal cultures of the Earth used meditation as a tool for spiritual fortification and every religion uses meditation for spiritual development.
To help you get started with meditation, we have written a full, step-by-step article that you can read by clicking here.
Practice Afrocentric Fasting
Fasting might be the single greatest natural healing therapy missing in today’s Western lifestyle. Abstaining from solid food for a extended periods of time is vital for developing emotional balance, improving your ability to absorb energy from the food you eat, and detoxing your body. While those results may not seem related to developing your spirituality, they are. Here is how and why:
Fasting Develops Emotional Balance
Emotions are a part of your light body, and should therefore be developed along with the rest of your spiritual anatomy. But the foods you eat can either stabilize or destabilize your emotions. Diets that are high in sugar and processed foods have been linked to depression and other mental illnesses. Fasting gives your body the opportunity to ‘reset’ itself, and cleanse your body of the chemicals that are responsible for emotional instability.
Fasting Gives You More Energy
When your body isnt breaking down food to use as energy, it breaks down fat. That process increases your metabolism by 3.6-14%. After a few days of the fast, higher levels of endorphins appear in the blood, making you more alert and giving an overall feeling of general mental well being. This result takes 3 – 5 days to achieve, so don’t expect to experience this endorphin rush on day 1 or 2. In fact, the first 72 hours will leave you feeling sluggish and weak. Push through the fast with morenga or green teas while your body resets itself and you will reap the rewards soon after.
Fasting Detoxifies Your Body
Detoxification isyouor body’s process of eliminating toxins that you eat, drink, and breathe through your colon, liver, kidneys, lungs, lymph nodes, and skin. Fasting gives these organs the time and energy they need to repair themselves and clear existing toxins that may be backed up in your system.
If you are new to fasting, start with a three day juice, tea, and water fast. Recover for 2 weeks and return to fasting for a full week. It is recommended that you not fast longer than 7 days, and that you return to
There is a reason that spiritual leaders like The Honorable Elijah Muhammad write books like How to Eat to Live: Your body and your spirit are connected. The foods you eat have a direct impact on your spiritual strength and progress. Once you break your fast, it is important that you not lapse into the same poor eating habits that you broke. Instead, use your fast to transition yourself into more sustainable eating habits. In fact, use the time you are fasting to stock up on holistic foods that you will have available as soon as you end your fasting period.
Eating consciously means consuming foods and drinks in ways that reflect your self-love and strengthens your spiritual ability to accomplish things in the physical world. That means reducing your meat, sugar, and processed food consumption. While becoming a vegetarian (a person who does not eat meat, but can eat animal products like milk) or vegan (eliminating all animal products from your diet) might not be practical for you initially, reducing meat consumption can have positive effects on your well-being. Some meats should be avoided altogether:
The World Health Organization has classified processed meats – including ham, salami, sausages and hot dogs – as a Group 1 carcinogen which means that there is strong evidence that processed meats cause cancer. Red meat, such as beef, lamb and pork has been classified as a ‘probable’ cause of cancer.
A major challenge that I encountered as I transitioned into a more spiritual diet was understanding what I could eat, and how I was supposed to prepare it. I found myself going hungry because I couldnt swing through the drive thru of my favorite fast food restaurant anymore and also didnt know what I could make for myself. I ended up buying some vegan cookbooks, and that is how I found Queen Afua (who we interviewed for our podcast here). She wrote a book called The City of Wellness: Restoring Your Health Through the Seven Kitchens of Consciousness that should be on your shelf if you are serious about your spiritual growth.
You can get a copy of the book by clicking here. It will give you the knowledge you need to stick with it!