Dreadlock Rasta!

It’s Wednesday again, and for this week it’s Beaton‘s turn. Behold he spots lengthy dreadlocks… My first impression of him was the typical one- cannabis loving, vegan and turban type of guy. With time, I learnt otherwise. He is perhaps one of the best wordsmiths I know… Talking of words, the mantra on his blog has a touch of simple sophistication “words on paper”…

Having gone through his blog, I quizzed him on the lifestyle he leads. Is he out and out Rastafarian or otherwise. To which he responded with,

I’m not a Rastafarian I don’t even have locks and I can’t speak patois
So am quite low on the Rastafarian scale also I eat meat”

Wait; what??? You are not deadlocked then what are you? His are actually lengthy hair twists- Baffling to say the least….

From his blog, one can tell that he has a strong command of the language… which explains why he can’t speak patois…

You could be wondering how the Rasta community came up with that language. Well, you are in luck… Drawing inspiration from Beaton’s hair, the first impressions people get when they meet him…and of course the “words on paper” mantra, I just had to do a little digging on the actual Rasta Language…

Rastas developed the King’s Iyaric, a language with nuanced differences from British English, which is regarded as ‘Babylon’ culture.

Rastas speak a patois, an African rhythm incorporating English language, and is difficult for the Babylon ear to readily distinguish. “I” replaces me, you, mine, ours, and us.

Rastas affirm “I and I”, leaving no separation in the identity of things. “Me” is felt to turn the person into an object, whereas “I” is about the individual. “I” also shows a personal relationship to God.

“I and I” is, according to Rastafarian scholar E. E. Cashmore, “an expression to totalize the concept of oneness, the oneness of two persons. So God is within all of us and we’re one people, in fact.

The term is often used in place of ‘you and I’ or ‘we’ among Rastafarians, implying that both persons are united under the love of Jah.

Livity: Is a life that is natural and earth loving.

Babylon: is the corrupt world of materialism, evil man’s rule, the system.

Zion: is the perfect world of balance, inividual rights and dignity. Ethiopia also is seeing as Zion.

Irie: means positive emotions and peaceful vibrations. Irator replaces “creator”. Idren or Bredren and Sistren refer to the oneness of Rastafarians and are used to describe one’s peers (male “bredren”, female “sistren”).

The dreadlocks: Rastas wear are related to the fear of the Lord, as well as the fear locksmen inspired in the early stages of the movement.

Polytricks: is a Rasta term replacing English “politics”, because so many politicians, etc. turn out, they say, to be more like tricksters.

Red: literally means stoned, or under the influence of cannabis due to reddening of the eyes being a side effect of being under the influence.

Downpression: replaces “oppression”, because oppression holds man down instead of keeping him up (pronounced “op” in Jamaican patois.) Similarly “downgression” equals “violence” (from aggression).

Overstanding: (also “innerstanding”) replaces “understanding”, referring to enlightenment that raises one’s consciousness.

Quite a mouthful huh?

It would have been a lot more fun had Ras Beaton sent in a video attempting to speak in patois, haha.

Till Next Time…. TheLeoNation


4 thoughts on “Dreadlock Rasta!

  1. Thank you Leo
    And of course you just had to tour us into a brief history of the dread lifestyle and culture and as like I love pointing out the dread in dreadlocks isnt dreadful but dread as in fear of the lord is beginning of the all wisdom
    I would never attempt to speak Jamaican Patois and I rather find some people who use it a tad pretentious this other time I was listening to a radio interview when a big shot Jamaican Danchall artist came to Zimbabwe and the DJ personality interviewing him was trying to fancy with the patois whilst his guest actually articulated himself quite naturally it was painful listening to the DJ mangle it you overstand?
    Thanks again Leo
    ~Ras B lol

    Liked by 2 people

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