Kem Graduation

Reconciling with Tradition

Bakiou Generation

Herpw Bikbaye (center) welcomes the Bakiou Generation Sahtehuti (left) Iritmaat (right)

An ancient wisdom says “Little by little the bird builds its nest”.  If you have ever been given the opportunity to touch your fingers to a bird’s nest, you understand the profundity of this proverb.  Even more, if you will challenge your logic to understand how the bird is able to realize such a feat, you will be impressed by the patience shown by the bird to ensure its survival as an entity of the cosmos in which everything is subjected to the principle of perpetual transformation.  Unlike this tiny bird who, like so many others, has understood that patient, harmonious work will contribute to the perfection of this existence, it is the supposedly intelligent humans who, of all species, still think we control this world. However, time and time again our patience and commitment can be seen but not towards our own survival; instead it is put to work for the ambitions and future set for us according to the utopia of our leaders in a world where reality is constantly challenging us. We have become the only species to believe that we will gain our freedom by ignoring the natural wisdom of traditional culture in order to invest in the propaganda of what we want to see in the illusions set by colonialism. Modern man is now left confused in his delusions, only because he is led to reject his ancestors and their traditions in order to embrace the empty rhetoric of leaders promising a bright future. Until the moment the individual realizes that his leader has only set him towards self-destruction by asking him to ignore or forget what has given him life and ensures the perpetuation of that life, he is doomed…. as it has always been said in Kem (Black) civilisation, “The branch who wants to flower learns to honor its roots.”

I began by speaking of the bird and the ancestors in order to illustrate some of the reasons it has become imperative to resolutely stop for a moment in our lives and question the approach we opted to take for our Earthly existence, in order not to fail at the same point where some of our ancestors failed.  Behold!  In this light, two lost sheep have just received the salvation of their ancestors after an arduous experience full of challenges.  The M’TAM School of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) has expanded its workforce by two more people who have realized the importance of preserving their roots in a modern world overtaken by imperialism.

Given that an initiation into the traditional values and spirituality within the M’TAM schools (inside the initiatic camps of Meritah or outside in the colonial world) has never been as simple as it sounds, our newest graduates started their initiation with an original group of nine people.  All nine were determined to cross the river whose waters wash away the insults suffered by their fathers in order to make them worthy individuals of quality, free from corruption of all kinds.  But, taking into account the corruptive forces of distraction and destruction that Islam, Christianity, and politics continue to throw on the continent of Blacks, only two people have had the sublime grace of coping.  Imagine the number of our brothers and sisters who, voluntarily or not, get caught by the nets of the invader and its imperialist policies.

Iritmaat Bakiou

Iritmaat (She who lives a life of integrity) formerly NABA Lamoussa Richala

Of course, the concept of graduation always comes with an idea of celebration and indeed the climate on the evening of December 13, 2009 showed it with the rhythmic beats of traditional drums.  It was amidst this that Herpw Bikbaye Inejnema offered words of welcome to the audience in attendance and their ancestors, all of which established a unique silence in the courtyard.  After a short and informative speech about The Earth Center’s mission around the world, cheers of approval and appreciation followed.  Thus the two initiates one after the other passed the purification process that opened the door for their spiritual growth following their 18 months of intensive initiatic courses.  From her name, NABA Lamoussa Richala is now known by her spiritual name, Iritmaat Bakiou, the name by which the entire universe, the Earth, and her ancestors will recognize her. With regard to our brother and father of three children, SANON Augustin will now respond to Sahtehuti Bakiou, a name which has been assigned by the universe, the Earth, and the ancestors.

Sahtehuti Bakiou

Sahtehuti (Son of the God Tehuti) formerly SANON Austin (left) with Ougadougou Earth Center initiate, Bahiatou Traore

Iritmaat (She who lives a life of integrity), scribe and treasurer of her generation and her Merr Sahtehuti (Son of the God Tehuti) are finally united not by blood, but rather by a spiritual purpose as defined by their generation name BAKIOU (Those who serve Gods).  Sahtehuti and Iritmaat are two initiates who have excelled throughout their initiation while demonstrating bravery and discipline in order to be the pride of their ancestors and see the world with their own eyes, rewriting their own history for future generations.  Both were introduced by their task of accomplishing the first level of the Per Ankh education (Medu Myeet), of Imasha Adjed (Ka’at Ibi) and Sount (traditional healing).  The Bakiou, as their name suggests, have not taken too long before addressing their spiritual destiny.  Currently they are at work teaching two generations below them.

A celebration was held in the courtyard of The Earth Center of Ouagadougou, and the event was sizable: Earth Center priests, families, friends, spiritual brothers and sisters from the US and Ouaga joined Iritmaat and Sahtehuti who constitute the 16th generation of initiates to traverse the first level of knowledge of the schools of M’TAM in KEBTAH (The Earth Center).  They become the third generation of M’TAM initiates of the Ouagadougou school.  We exclaimed with joy in communion with the delegation of some of the elder Maanu (North and South America) Kem on their short visit to the country of their ancestors.  The members of the delegation included Herpw Merr Bikbaye Inejnema (the first manager in charge of The Earth Center), Merr Nehez Meniooh (leader of the Chicago School), Menzebah Hasati (Scribe of Maanu), Merr Rezib Tutsanaii (4th Generation of the Chicago School) and Merr Iritah Shenmira NABA (Leader of the Ouagadougou School).  It is satisfying in the sense that with patience and hard work, all of our branches will nest.

On behalf of all Kem initiates and those being initiated in all the M’TAM Schools worldwide, I would rephrase my words of congratulations to the Bakiou generation, although, really, there are no words to express our satisfaction.  With you two, there are thousands of ancestors that you represent who now come to stand as one.  I fervently wish to remind you that today your effort should be doubled as you will need it for the second level.  The road is long and remember that the destructive force did not give up, always remain aware.  “If the predator coming for your life has not tired, can you take a rest?”  May the spirit of your ancestors protect you and bring good things in your destiny.  Motherland or Death… WE WILL OVERCOME!

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