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need some advice: gave my youth to the djembe and conga etc - Djembefola - Djembe Forum

For chatting and discussions.
looking for some advice. I am 33 and feel way to old to be a competent,success in academia, professor of anthropology etc. In fact I have no idea what kind of job I will end up having. I would like to learn french maybe, and Haitian Creole, and maybe an african language like yoruba or bambara. I do not know how to do that. I do not know how to do much of anything but read my books. My interests are MArx, Schelling, Hegel, Jacques Lacan, Freud, JUNG ESPECIALLY, and other german or pre socratic philosophers, plato, hindu and buddhist stuff, sufism, LOVE NIETZSCHE, LOVE AFRICAN AND CARIBBEAN LITERATURE. I have lots of african and caribbean literature and read a lot of the literary criticism about it. I am an undergraduate anthropology student with a piss poor gpa. My gpa is 2.4. I did well in school when I was younger but started to hallucinate and I had a psychic break and for a while wasnt adjusted to meds. unfortuantely for me I stayed in school and made piss poor grades, nothing can be done about that. SO NOW WHAT???!!! I also appreciate african and caribbean theorists and other people like herbert marcuse, noam chomsky, nad people like CLR JAmes, George PAdmore, Sylvia Wynter, George Lamming, MG SMith and Walter rodney and Frantz Fanon, Wole Soyinka, Amilcar Cabral, Maurice Bishop, Lumumba, Kwame anthony Appiah, and Thomas Sankara... these are some african and caribbean theorists and writers. IV really hAVE no clue what to do. I would ideally go to grad school to study african and caribbean literature or african and caribbean religion from an anthropological and psychoanalytical lens. Needless to say I am ape shit over black women and have not made love in nine years and am VERY depressed about this, so i try not to think about it. Also, want to go to haiti. scared of haiti. want to study vodun in haiti, not scared of vodun. have some connections in haiti but still worried. I also read and love anthropology books, and even catholic thinkers like Maritain and Chardin What di mudda should i do? Do I still even realistically and reasonably have a shot at this. I am 33! Also like studying ma'at and ancient egyptian and african ethics. like afro centric people like ivan van sertima, maulana karenga, theophile obenga, cheik anta diop and molefi asante.
Hmm, well my first thought is, sounds like a good time to get a therapist. You're embarking on major changes, and it's helpful to have someone in your corner as you round the turns. Someone who's good at listening, and gets what you're trying for. It may take some shopping around.

Second thought is, it's never too late to learn and teach. Don't worry about your age. I'd enroll as a freshman at 50 if I wanted to, it's of no concern. Only what you love to learn about, that's what matters.
You sound (rightfully) wary of Haiti, but drawn to African culture. Where do you live? Big cities are cultural hubs and it's easy to get lost in African music and culture in NY, LA, SF and surrounding areas. Also pocket hubs all over, depends where you are. Do you go to drum circles in your area?

Don't worry about being alone for 9 years, I've been through that recently due to health problems, and while it's difficult, it's not without benefits. People appreciate partners who are thoughtful and considerate, so focus on how it's improved you, and your confidence won't suffer. Music is a great way forward and way to connect.

You seem drawn to theory and thinking, but it can be a trap, so music is a great way to heal and become more embodied. I recommend dancing, stretching, yoga, breathing, etc, to help get out of the head and into feeling and sensation. Avoid psychedelics if you've had a split. Get grounded.

African culture leads people to be less inclined to be drawn into ideas, so if you're serious about wanting an African partner, I recommend focusing on self-care and becoming more joyful. What makes you happy? What makes you feel renewed and refreshed? Become part of the healthy culture, and you'll find it's naturally part of you. Eat better, play more, sing more, join others who are having fun. This is all advice for myself by the way, so take it for what it's worth. And good luck brother, keep us apprised of how it's going.
I hope this doesn't come off as preachy, it's just as how it came to me, no offense intended. Much love.
Yes african culture is interesting, and the novelists and poets and theorists are an inspiration. they are geniuses. to say nothing of the musicians. and the cooks. and the priests etc. the caribbean is awesome too, been infatuated by many caribbean things, including the women, not to mention a girl from mali i was really into but it was unrequited, im not sure why but at one point i was really depressed about it. she could speak english french and bambara and arabic. i have no clue how i will ever learn another language, especially african or martinique or haiti french and creole or yoruba kikongo or bambara/malinke... also not sure about my ability to survive in places like trinidad, mali, jamaica, yorubaland, lagos, matanzas etc. cuz i wasnt really raised to be street smart.

I used to think that myy biggest goals in life are to become a Jungian and nietzschean thinker, I think these two guys really understand life and thought better than 99 percent of the bs out there. cant forget marx and engels, leslie white and others. After that there is some African and Caribbean literature I really want to deeply grasp. I know reading can unground you, on the other hand i wil tell you about the lit, because it really is phenomenal and deep and an extraordinary glimpse into culture, history, aand different ways of writing english

Im thinking here of maryse conde, earl lovelace, chinua achebe, david daybedeen, ooma kempadoo, amilcar cabral, clr james, Thomas sankara, toni Morrison, amos tutuola, ben okri, kojo laing, Wilson harris, chimamanda ngozie adichie, cyril daybydeen, dionne brand, zora neal hurston, james baldwin, edgar mittleholzter, samuel selvon, roger mais, vic reid, andrew salkey, martin carter, christopher okigbo, George lamming, derek Walcott, vs Naipaul, kamau Brathwaite, leopold senghor, jean price mars, jacques roumain, jacques stephen alexis, Yvonne vera, ngugi wa thiongo and Nuruddin Farah and wole Soyinka... I like black and indian girls from the Caribbean and Africa. yes that is true. last gf ten or so years ago was a puerto rican mulata from detroit and it was awesome, we both loved hector lavoe and gran combo and other latin musicians like chucho valdez, ruben blades and edie palmierie

. starting judo and tai chi to take care of the weight issue. might even do some wing chun

the thing is the literature is really dope and i like it alot. always have loved caribbean and african things for some odd reason. it is good to learn through the literature and various intellectuals what has been going on in the third world. i am half european so i read about that too, germanic and austrian stuff mostly (dad is austrian with a thick accent) so as far as that goes i really like marx, herbert marcuse, the two revolutionary thinkers, the french guys emile durkheime abd the french anthropologist levi strauss and french psychoanalyst jacques lacan. also from my germanic side i appreciatee immensly carl jung who has researched egyptian religion, persian and babylonian assyrian and native american and buddhist and hindu texts, all to form some of the most revealing psychological insights and damn good reading that has ever been done. i once knew a black afro centric yoga guru and black psychologist at famu who liked carl jung too, but didnt always admit it.... because of him i am keen on a very important afro centric scholar: Molefi Keite Asante. he is the man, his two books on afrocentrism, his book on kemet philosophy, his african and african american history books are all essential to help see what the black view is all about. Wilson Harris is relatively obscure but has been nominated for a nobel prize a few times, i knew his grand daughter. they all hail from guyana, a fascinating south american country that identifies itself as west indian in culture like jamaica trinidad or barbados other countires i am interested in. I was best frinds with certain members of his family and allmost attended the prestigious morehouse college with them in atlanta georgia, i visited them at morehouse and met many entertaining guyanese nigerian trini jamaican and eritrean people as well as man african americans. it was a good time in my life. but that was long ago.... since then i have worked in several restaraunts, grown nauseated by the hospitality industry (while i dream of opening a trinidad haiti guyana nigeria ghana and senegal themed restaurant) and gotten back into school for something i love.

im just trying to give u more info, personally i am not that joyful, some bad things happened in my twenites. ibesides heartbreak, mental illness, and bad grades in school. i basically live with my parents. i am on disability. soon to be 34, and very worried.

but action is the plan.

my plan is to get back into school, make straight a's and do directed indipendant studies with my favorite professors, there are four: an africanist who speeaks french and bambara and is right now in guinea and ivory coast. he is white, but an initiated dozo sorceror (dozo are islamic/traditional hunters from the ivory coast that formed a militia to handle theives, highwaymen and violent crime, he wrote the definitive anthropology book on them)

then there is a professor of caribbean lit esp francophone and haitian lit, we get along well and he thinks im smart because of him i know about jacques stephen alexis and derek walcott. and i told him i knew who wilson harris was, and he said ah yes, one of the caribbeans finest writers. he said to keep in touch so one of these days i will email him

the anthro dept just hired a frenchman from duke! duke has a famous haitian studies dept, and this guy specializes in haiti, so i am hoping we will connect.

then there is the chair of the anthro dept who is an archaeologist, she has studied spanish sights in both trinidad and haiti, she is in my corner, knowsi have had difficulties with mental illness (i thought i sold my soul to the devil and will burn forever in fire)

nope cant do psychedelics, weed brough all of this on when i was twenty or so. cant smoke weed.

i dont go to drum circles but i was druming for a while with epple from pittsburg, but i ran afowl of them, said "disrespectful things" to the sistas, etc, made an ass out of myself, i am contentious, i will debate this, but if groups of black men are aganst you, then u aint in the click, and thats how it goes. i admit i was a bit unstable when i interacted with htem, on no meds, wanted to initiate into ifa and vodun, hasnt happened yet, got many books on ifa and vodun, hope it happens one day. thats one of the bad things that happened in my twenties, i got jelous of the drummers the black dudes that had been groomed for the big time afro centric professional drummer and dancer lifestyle since the age of six or whatever, im sure u know how it goes, andu know they must of thought i didnt know my own culture, was unbalance,d, and approaching it all wrong. ive read the drummers path, i know how certain african americans question white motives and ontologey etc.

i knew about the ausar auset society way before these pittsburg cats. i gave all my metu neter books to the guyanese fellow who went to morehouse. ive been deeply into black culture for a while, butn ow im trying over the last seven year or so to make sure i know my austrian and hapos burg history. jung is the best for that and i have books by austrians too, havnt read it all yet.

i live in tallahassee florida, five or six hours from the miami area

sorry if any of this turns you off, but i figured this might be a good place to get some knowledge

i do have a shrink, hes pretty good, half muskogee creek, its fun. seeing him tomorrow

thanks fellers
There's a nagging suspicion that you have no interest in advice, that your interest is to at long last dazzle with your brilliance. 8)

But I make it a point to take people at their word until it's no longer an option.

You are a young man and have every opportunity before you. I was reading much of what you've mentioned in my adolescence (Jung is the man!). Partly due to this, I became keenly aware of the social dysfunction and injustice I had been born into (my reading no doubt was also partly due to my awareness).

I rebelled and dropped out of school without even a high school diploma but decades later worked my way through community college up to the UC system. I actually lived on campus in the dorms in my late forties.

My advice? Knock off the mental "masterofsomenation" and do something.
It's all helpful, I get a better sense of where you're coming from. I'm about the same age, and I feel for ya.

I did scan over a bit when you mentioned names I don't recognize, but other than that it all makes sense to me. It makes sense to connect with others who share your passions and interests.

I dig the idea of opening a cultural themed restaurant. It's a big risk financially though, so I caution doing it on your own, and recommend starting small, making connections with likeminded people, getting connections in the community without a huge investment of time and energy like that. If it's meant to be, then they'll help you find the ways to do it. If there aren't likeminded folks around, maybe move somewhere there are more people from those areas.

Don't worry about hotshot drummers. Most of them can't get into the healing space with music, so what's the point? Sure, they can make people dance, but that's only a part of life. Most of music is about listening. Feeling. Responding. It's easy to get sick of fast theatrical drumming, but good drumming keeps you interested, using silence, lowering the volume sometimes, raising it at others. It's rare that young virtuosos can do it, they like to play fast and loud. Good for them. Yawn.

Anyway, it sounds like you have a wealth of knowledge and thoughts and interest, but not enough place to put it, go with it, etc. You're on the right track though. Might be time for some coaching?
YouTube is a great resource. I know he's got problems, but someone I recommend checking out is Tony Robbins. He's got some misguided ideas, but his basic principles are really helpful.
His method is that you spend time before each day starts getting into a good mind state. Whether it's a walk with headphones, or a run, or tai chi or whatever, and remind yourself of the positive things, things you're grateful for, and what you're capable of. Then you remind yourself of what you want to achieve, whether it's short term or long term. This motivates you, so you don't have to be "disciplined" (he says discipline's great, for about 3, maybe 4 days) by pulling you toward what you want, instead of pushing yourself.
There's more to it than that, such as adjusting what you want to be realistic, and ways to get things done, like making a huge to do list and grouping items into categories and working on 1 item from each category per day, so it's not a jumble, but a slowly progressing campaign of a life.
I'd go on but my arms are tired from typing, heh.
Hey man, relax a little and give yourself a break. I was awful in school. I went back and studied a BA and masters in african politics as a mature student at 33. Tried really hard to get into ngo work, but its hard to get in even after endless internships. I really enjoyed studying though. i wrote a piece on the ivory coast elections and the policy of 'ivoirite' through the theory of Agambens bare life theory amongst others.

Academia is tough, and i wasnt the brightest spark in the room. But you never know where it will all lead, the most obvious route of becoming a professor isn't always the best or only option.

Go with what you love and it'll all work out.
Ok cool, well I plan on reading Agamben as soon as possible. Looks fascinating. My Africanist Professor, Joseph Hellweg, wrote a book set place during some elction thing in Ivory Coast. The book is called "Hunting the Ethical State." Yes I am just enjoying studying for the sake of studying, for lake of a better phraseology. lol

I dont think I would want to be a professor just get more knowledge and discipline than I have now, and see what I can do.
Cool, I read that book. very interesting. There was another about the kamajors (donso) in sierra leone and their involvement in the war. One of there leaders was tried in court for convincing hunters that they were bullet proof because of his potions. I also liked Mike McGoverns book 'unmasking the state' on the demystification process in Guinea.
Did you ever read Meillasoux? I am probably pronouncing his name wrong, I mean spelling it wrong, he is pretty good, marxist, I am just starting a book called mestizo logics, which talks a bit about segu empire, as does meillasoux... I highly recommend MAryse Conde's two novels on Segu, they are fascinating and beautifully written.

Also about to start "The history of Africa" By molefi asante, a regarded afro centric scholar, and Walter Rodney's books "a history of guyanese working people" "how europe underdeveloped africa" and "a history of slavery on the upper guinea coast"

Whats the name of the book about Sierra LEone?

I am comitted to the discipline and moving forward. MY only concern now, that I worry over, is learning french and one day creole or an african language. I know it probably isnt true, but I feel "two old" and also not up to snuff.
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