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Today’s topic is on the 1st principle of Kwanzaa which is Umoja (oo-MO-hah). But before we get into it, let’s briefly talk about Kwanzaa.
Kwanzaa is a 7 day, non-religious Black American and Pan African holiday that is primarily celebrated in America.
Kwanzaa was created by Maulana Karenga in 1966. Karenga is a professor and chair of Africana Studies at California State University, Long Beach.
From what I have gathered, Kwanzaa was inspired by African harvest celebrations that promote family, community, and culture.
In my immediate family we did not know a lot about Kwanzaa growing up. But over time I began to get educated on what Kwanzaa was about.
After learning more about Kwanzaa over the last few years, the principles of Kwanzaa line up with the principles that I live my own life by.
The 7 days of Kwanzaa are celebrated from December 26th to January 1st. In this short series, I’m going to go over the Nguzo Saba which is also known as the 7 principles of Kwanzaa.
The first principle of Kwanzaa is Umoja which means Unity.
Umoja means unity. It is defined as striving for and maintaining unity in our family, community, nation, and race.
Unity is extremely important in life. When we are united as one we can overcome any obstacle.
When I think about the inspiring community in my gym prior to the pandemic, we were seeing great progress across the board. We were united in the goals of getting stronger both physically and mentally.
Everybody at The Center fed off of that positive energy and things that seemed impossible became possible.
Think about a sports team who is truly united. When all the players share the same goal, the team ultimately has more success.
When the players are all focused on the same goal, they have a much higher chance of becoming champions. Becoming a winner and a champion does not happen by accident.
However, when the team is divided by ego, pride, and ignorance, they will never win the championship.
Without unity, we are divided and when we are divided we fall.
In 2020, America has been more divided than it has been since the 1960s. This is evident with how many people are treating each other which is with a total lack of respect and no couth.
I have always strived to have unity in my relationships. There can be respectful disagreements and different points of view, but the ultimate goal is to have unity.
A divided family, community, nation, or race cannot make any real progress. And staying stuck in the quicksand is no way to move forward.
Strive for unity within your family, community, nation, and race.
When we stand together, we can hop over any hurdle we face.
I’ll holla at you next time.
The People’s Trainer