Black Joy Holiday

Blackness has been one of the things that have kept me grounded this year. Reflecting on Black History, we as Black people, have such an amazing intrinsic resilience to ALWAYS overcome. No matter what may be going on in the world around us, we have historically continued to strive to shatter and exceed all limits that may be placed on us.

From the murders of Black people across this country to the COVID-19 Pandemic, these past two years have been exhausting. One thing that I have held strong to is my pride in my heritage. That is what helps generate hope in me and around me. That hope will help me to make it through anything. 2020 has shown us something about the state of our world and we need hope to survive.

The holiday of Kwanzaa was built on that core principle. Kwanzaa celebrates the beauty of Blackness and the principles that we should seek to stand on. It is a way for us to stay connected to our heritage and those who have paved the way for us to be where we are today. These help us to have Black pride and identity that will continuously keep us motivated and encouraged. Dr. Mulana Karenga offers seven principles: Umoja (Unity), Kujichagulia (Self-Determination), Ujima (Collective Work & Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity), and Imani (Faith).

It captures the love of family, the love of self, the love of our community, and our love for who we believe in. It captures the very essence of Blackness and the love we have for our community. In this time, where we are distancing ourselves from each other, we should strive to spend this time better ourselves and prepare for all that tomorrow has to bring. Kwanzaa is celebrated December 26th - January 1st and it is a great way to start your year off on a positive note. To learn more about Kwanzaa and its founder, check out Kwanzaa’s Official Website. To see how I celebrate Kwanzaa, follow me on Instagram.

Myriah Martin

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