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25910 Posts in 9966 Topics by 982 Members Latest Member: - Ferguson Most online today: 85 (July 03, 2005, 06:25:30 PM)
+  Africa Speaks Reasoning Forum
|-+  SCIENCE, SOCIOLOGY, RELIGION
| |-+  Spirituality (Moderators: Tyehimba, leslie)
| | |-+  Need Help Defining Ancestor
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Author Topic: Need Help Defining Ancestor  (Read 84578 times)
RasAtum
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« on: November 28, 2005, 12:50:21 PM »

Hotep

It has been my overstanding that "ancestor" only applies to blood relatives?  What about my grandfather?  He is my grandmother's second husband and the only grandfather I've ever known.  We are very close.  We bonded when I was a small child and now he has moved on to his Next Life. He never had any biological children (my grandmother already had 16, so that was enough) and there is no one to call his name.  He was a very good man and a hard worker who loved me very, very much.  Is it proper for me to pour libations for him?
Also, what about adopted children?  Can they call the names of the family's ancestors to which they were adopted?  Thank you.
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Bennu Ausar
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« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2005, 03:16:09 PM »

Is your question in reference to a specific religious or cultural belief system? The answer may vary depending on the context of the question.
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RasAtum
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« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2005, 02:06:17 PM »

Thanks for your response.
I suppose my question is whether or not there is some exception for people who have joined other families (as is the case with my grandfather) and if there is any way of "initiating" this person into my family post mortem so that I can pour libations for him.
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Bennu Ausar
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« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2005, 12:32:59 PM »

I think the answer will depend on the tradition that you follow. I personally believe that you can pour libation to anyone who is deceased. This is not to say that the ancestor will be "initiated" into your family per se, but we are taught that when one reincarnates he/she usually will come back in the blood line of their immediate family or within the spiritual/familial circle where a special connection was cultivated. Pouring libation serves different purposes (see the Pouring Libation thread on this site), but any ancestor can benefit from the process if the purpose to to send him/her light or even if you want to cultivate some type of communion with the ancestor.

Hope this helps...
Peace
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RasAtum
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« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2005, 02:45:17 PM »

Thank you Benu Ausar! There's a lot of information on this site.  It's horribly snowy this weekend so this will give me time to read up. 
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OlOrisa_Olokun
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« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2005, 10:12:51 PM »

The only non-relatives that you should pour libation to or pray at your Ile'Run (Ancestor Shrine) is to those that cared for you as family. Adopted parents, close family relatives.

You should not pour libation or communicate with suicide victims, people that died as young adults (anybody before 45 years of age approx.)

You should never pour libation or communicate with ancestors that you did not know. They have their OWN families to care for, support and work on behalf of. YOUR Ancestors, even the ones you never met are taking care of you. (Even those that are adopted!)

There is NO traditional African practice where we talk to "just any ole Ancestor" we want. This is a western misnomer.
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When we have the determination to restrain our lower desires, the door is opened for us to fulfill our highest aspirations.
OlOrisa_Olokun
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« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2005, 10:26:23 PM »

An Ancestor is defined loosely as:

  • Someone you are related to or that took care you JUST like blood family would
  • A person that died as an elder
  • Died of causes consistent w/ age.
  • Was well respected, liked and honored in Life
  • Understood and lived by mortality, not "personal perogative"

We do not honor alcoholics, drug addicts, sex addicts, criminals, liars, wife beaters, molestors, lazy people, children, young adults, teens, cowards etc. as our Ancestors.

There are different grades of "dead" - only the best of the deceased get to be Ancestors!
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When we have the determination to restrain our lower desires, the door is opened for us to fulfill our highest aspirations.
Bennu Ausar
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« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2005, 03:18:07 PM »

Thanks for adding the clarity. One thing that i have noticed is that many of us Africans (African-Americans) here in America pour libation to and call upon noted ancestors who have contributed to the liberation struggle of our people (or some other respectable accomplishment). Admittedly, the purpose is not to "talk" to these ancestors, but to pay homage.
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preach
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« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2005, 12:12:19 AM »

Holy Crap OlOrisa. You said that only the best of the deceased get to be ancestors. Holy Elitists Crap. Your qualifications for ancestors remind me of the ten commandments. How do you expect anyone to live up or die to such a standard? The most influential and caring people I have ever known were not perfect. In fact they had numerous vices. 
RasAtum never let anyone tell you that someone who showed love is unworthy of reverence. Honor your grandfather
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love
Ifayomi
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« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2006, 03:18:56 AM »

Anscstors that were not what we would call "good" can also be elevated so it is not like there is no help for them. Elevate them
fayomi
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OlOrisa_Olokun
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« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2006, 09:25:44 PM »

Holy Crap OlOrisa. You said that only the best of the deceased get to be ancestors. Holy Elitists Crap. Your qualifications for ancestors remind me of the ten commandments. How do you expect anyone to live up or die to such a standard? The most influential and caring people I have ever known were not perfect. In fact they had numerous vices. 
RasAtum never let anyone tell you that someone who showed love is unworthy of reverence. Honor your grandfather
Please dont comment on things of which you are wholely unqualified and unexperienced in. I am speaking on the values set in place by our Afrikan Spiritualists since the beginning of time. My comments do not indicate perfection, they indicate righteousness and good will toward your fellow man. They also indicate whether a person is spiritually mature upon death.

Have you ever acted as a medium for the Ancestors?
Do you know what happens when an Ancestor that commits suicide or that was depressed is contacted from the Spiritual Plane?
Do you communicate with Ancestors (for yourself or others) on a regular basis?

I can answer yes to all these questions. My comments stand. Not only because I have experience to back them, but because this is indigenous spiritual protocol.
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When we have the determination to restrain our lower desires, the door is opened for us to fulfill our highest aspirations.
OlOrisa_Olokun
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« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2006, 09:27:20 PM »

Anscstors that were not what we would call "good" can also be elevated so it is not like there is no help for them. Elevate them
fayomi
This is correct. We ELEVATE Ancestors of questionable character. We do not INVOKE or HONOR them, as this is perpetuating the energy of their life and their lifestyle UNTIL they have been properly elevated.

Elevation and Invocation are two seperate tasks.
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When we have the determination to restrain our lower desires, the door is opened for us to fulfill our highest aspirations.
natural blacks
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« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2006, 07:04:32 AM »

Quote
I am speaking on the values set in place by our Afrikan Spiritualists since the beginning of time.

This doesn't mean we can't question it and change it tho. That's one of our bigget problems as black people, we are afraid to question things and redefine them as we see fit and as it relates to our experiences NOW.

I'm not saying we should change it, but just because that's how it has was in times before doesn't mean that's how it has to be for us now. We have our own minds and consciousness to develop our own thoughts and ideas and our own right and wrongs; set our own laws and methods of doing things.

I'm neither for nor against any of the arguements here, because sadly i really don't know much or even anything about communicating with ancestors (in the traditional african sense anyway), this is really a learning experience for me, but it really don't like hearing things like "...that's how our ancestors did it so it can't be changed"

But preach, i don't think he was saying we can't honor them or hold them in reverence, he was just saying we shouldn't try to contact them on a spiritual level.

Rastafari
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History has shown that it is the inaction of those who could’ve acted; the indifference of those who should’ve known better; the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most that has made it possible for evil to triumph. - EMPEROR HAILE SELASSIE I
Ifayomi
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« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2006, 09:51:03 PM »

@ OlOrisa_Olokun Could you possibly expand on elevation, etc, and the how to's if that is allowable on this forum, as I have in the past been given instruction as how to elevate my mother, this was a while back. I also feel that I should elevate my father (reasons unlisted) and also any teaching that you may share is much apreciated
Aboru Aboye Abusise
Ifayomi
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preach
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« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2006, 12:15:32 PM »

Olorisa. What are the qualifications in order to comment on your elitists crap? And who should I apprentice under to become experienced? If I answered yes to all of the questions you posted does that render me an authority on the subject?
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love
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