While I don't personally celebrate Kwanza its teachings have heavily impacted my life and ways of understanding my self in relation to community. I would like to honour and pay respect to its teachings today.
The first time I heard Nia was during my time supporting children at the Africentric School in Toronto. The word and meaning stuck with me and has been a part of the seed that started NiaZamar.
" Purpose or “Nia” is the essence and byproduct of intention. Intention is a mental state that represents a commitment to carrying out an action or actions in the future. Intention involves mental activities such as planning and forethought. Purpose involves the developing of the Black community to return its people to their traditional greatness."
My understanding of purpose in its most simple and authentic form is that feeling of something you need to do but can't shake. It is the ways in which we are all connected and playing a role in the empowerment and forward movement of humanity as a whole.
Purpose is not usually a job or tittle you hold. It is something you set intention into and carry out through various methods.
for example: my purpose? To share love and empowerment. my tools? Beauty and education. my titles? make up artist, hair stylist, artist, facilitator, ect.
Our connection to each other, this earth and this universe is greater then our titles. Like a train every nut and bolt has a purpose and simply through existing you also have purpose...
Kwanza teaches seven important principles such as
- Unity or “Umoja”
- Self-Determination or “Kujichagulia”
- Collective Work and Responsibility or “Ujima”
- Cooperative Economics or “Ujamaa”
- Purpose or “Nia”
- Creativity or “Kuumba”
- Faith or “Imani”
Please feel free to comment and share your understanding of purpose. What does purpose mean to you?
( I used the Black Agendas definition of purpose. They have a whole article about Kwanza on Facebook. Please feel free to check them out.)