The missing element in African-American culture is the formal and structured ritual celebrating each boy’s passage into manhood. These have frequently been called puberty rites, but, as van Gennep argued long ago, this name is inappropriate. All traditional African fast as they recover from the euphoria of relationships born of the love at prepared for responsibilities in their communities as men, and females are Our boys went through circumcision procedure and training within a group from their church. What are Rites of Passage? Rite of passage, ceremonial event, existing in all historically known societies, that is often connected with one of the biological milestones of life (birth, maturity, reproduction, and death) and that marks the passage from one social or religious status to another. In many Western cultures, the boundary between adulthood and childhood is viewed as a status upon arriving at a specific age as opposed to being related to a specific set of responsibilities within the society. The missing element in African-American culture is the formal and structured ritual celebrating each boy’s passage into manhood. As the person ascends to each stage, this allows the person to better evaluate one’s maturation against the collective standard. The Lunda people are very proud of the mukanda custom and any man who has come of age and is uncircumcised is considered a woman. The men, who ranged from 11 to 27 years old, completed an 11-week cultural self-study curriculum designed by the Cultural Wellness Center. The initiation process and details differ largely amidst societies; various masks, dance, song, test, body marking and tattooing have been employed as ritual symbolism and verification. This could be considered an extension of the previous elder/older distinction, the status one held during life is carried into the afterlife. We teach them how to untie a noose." Elliott Payne. In Kenya, a number of communities still practice male circumcision, whereby the initiates are taken to a secluded place, usually in a forest, where their foreskins are removed by an appointed circumciser who uses a special knife for the procedure. The rite concludes with the girls walking through a ceremonial arch formed by tribal elders as the surrounding community welcomes them as women. Yes, to the Algonquin people, manhood took the form of spending 20 days in a completely deranged state that included a racing heartbeat, amnesia and hypothermia. Each girl selects her favorite fighter in the contest and sends him indirect messages through friends and relatives to express her interest. Cutting away the clitoris and labia in girls as young as seven to 15 years of age represents the centerpiece of this most important rite of passage in the life of a Maasai girl -- at least until a few years ago. Ugandan teenage boys preparing to undergo circumcision. the living. Boys are signaled to begin their transition into manhood by first being separated from childhood roles and sometimes their parents (Baker, “Egbe Akokonrin Rites of Passage”). The 20 test and challenges the males go thru will test the mentality of the participants. is on the individual as opposed to the collective. This article discusses central components of traditional mentoring and rites of passage programs and the experiences of a group of African American men in Memphis, Tennessee, who have mentored for an after-school rites of passage project. It took time to get through the material. Sadly, in some African cultures as well as some in the Middle East, female circumcision is performed as a rite of passage into adulthood. “Throughout my involvement with African American men of unity, for support for my special needs son. If the Beatles had been ballsy enough to graduate from LSD to datura, their musical influence probably would have been deterred due to all of their subsequent songs sounding roughly like a donkey giving birth to a tractor. Initiation Rites and Rituals in African Cosmology Prof. Paul Kyalo School of Humanities and Social Sciences Mount Kenya University P.O Box 342-01000, Thika Kenya Abstract This essay is an analysis of the rituals in African cosmology. 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