Rasta

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Shaquille T. Sailsman
Literature and Composition
March 26,2013

Rastafarianism

The Rastafarian religion has many different elements. These elements include: history, beliefs, customs/culture, celebrations, and worshipping. Rastafarians believe in the divine nature of Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia, whose title before his coronation of 1930 who Ras Tafari (Prince of the House of Tafari). The name Haile Selassie means “Power of Trinity.” He was the Emperor of Ethiopia from 1930-1974. Haile Selassie never regarded himself as God, nor did he adhere to Rastafari. According to iconn.org, Rastafarians regard Haile Selassie I as God because Marcus Garvey’s prophecy - "Look to Africa where a black king shall be crowned, he shall be the Redeemer" - was swiftly followed by the ascension of Haile Selassie as Emperor of Ethiopia. Haile Selassie I is regarded by Rastafarians as the God of the black race.

The Rastafarian religion began in Jamaica in the 1930s. The religion was formed after periods of slavery. Rastafarians regarded Jamaica as hell and Ethiopia as heaven. Rastafarians called Jamaica hell because Africans were divided up and sent to destinations throughout the world, in most cases as slaves to whites. This is why many Africans found themselves in Jamaica. Ethiopia, the homeland, was seen as a place of fond memories of freedom and life prior to oppression. This meant it eventually became regarded as heaven.

“Rastafarians believes Jah (God) lives on in some form, and believes that one day he will bring about the return of all black people to their ancestral home in Africa,” (Breuilly, O’Brien, Palmer, 152). When Rastafarians have kids, they raise their kids to believe in Jah and after a certain age they should be able to identify who he is. They are also raised to believe that one day he will be raised from the dead and bring them back to Africa, their supposed homeland. Rastafarians dedicate themselves to preparing for this homecoming, growing...
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