Tag Archives: Family

QUOTE: Of the Week – Russell Simmons

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“You know, I love all kinds of activism.  I certainly think blacks deserve to have something whether it is affirmative action or an opportunity that should be opened up to them.  But at the same time I believe that people of color are not the only poor people in America and all over the world.”

“Respect your parents.  What they tell you is true.  Hard work, dedication and faith will get you anything.  Imagination will drive itself.  You can get anything you want, but you have to have faith behind all your ideas.  Stick to your goals and have an undying faith.”

- Russell Simmons

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EDITORIAL:

We wanted to quote Russell Simmons this week again (one of many times that we have quoted Simmons here on our blog in our inspirational quotes archive) as a follow up to our quote from Don Lemon last week.  I believe both of these public figures are inspirational to our children and the community.

It’s ok to come from different view points and have a discussion or a debate. Especially when ultimately everyone wants the same thing, people growing into the best person that they can be.  Self-empowerment (as Don said) and recognizing your self worth.  The  important bottom line here is to have the discussion.  This discussion which has been brought up several times over the years by many public figures such as Bill Cosby and Oprah Winfrey, Jay Z and Common.  I remember on the Oprah show when Jay Z was on, and they politely disagreed with each other about his lyrics.  But you believed that they walked away with respect for each other even though they viewed the topic differently.  I love interviews like this because it brings up a discussion.  It is an important discussion to keep having.  Whether agreeing or disagreeing have a discussion with your kids and each other and keep it moving.

I really like the second quote above by Russell Simmons “Respect your parents…” The message really helps to mold your/our way of thinking.  And if not your parents, your grandmother, or your aunt or older brother, sister etc.  To discuss helping people, improving yourself, helping each other, treating one another with kindness and respect, I can’t think of a better or more important discussion to have.  Even if it starts with a disagreement it might end with an agreement or at least an understanding.

And just one last thing, living in New York is one thing, but living in Harlem is a bigger feeling of community, and focus and passion towards helping those that need it.  At least this is the Harlem that I have come to love.  People here in our community black, white, spanish, artist, corporate, community organizers, politicians, rich, poor, moms, students whatever, all seem to step it up a notch or two and this is a great thing.  I was speaking with someone the other night at a Harlem event (at the HarlemGarage) and we were discussing Detroit (the woman I was speaking with was from there) and the turmoil that Detroit is going through right now.  She said she wants to go help in some way.  We both shared an enthusiasm on how we might help – help is really where it all begins.  That’s what I’m talking about.  People that give a sh#! (pardon my French) and walk the walk don’t talk the talk.  I think Russell, Don, everyone that I’ve mentioned above  are perfect examples of people who care and act.  And if you disagree, just wikipedia any one of them.

Keep it moving, have faith, keep having the discussions.  We all want the same things, though we may get there in our own way, style and time.

A brutal attack on a Columbia University Professor and resident of Harlem

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I was very upset to hear the news about this hate crime that happened last weekend.  A hateful mob attacked a Sikh man who says he was mistaken for a radical Muslim.  This is unacceptable.   Teachers and parents must educate their kids on the religious differences in our community and the diversity in the world.  As the Daily News, DNAinfo and BuzzFeed have reported, a Sikh-American Columbia University Professor was beaten in a hate crime this past Saturday while the suspects yelled “Osama”.  Any citizen should have the freedom to dress as they wish and be accepted for it.  Especially if it has to do with their religious  beliefs.  This is America,  Land of the Free and Home of the Brave.   Yes, Osama Bin Ladin was a bad guy, a terrorist and he did horrible things and was punshed and killed.   This has nothing to do with an innocent American, doctor and professor who is part of our community and an educator at one of the top Unniversities in the country.  This is the sort of story you may expect to read from a back woods unnecducated small town in the midwest or unfortunately small areas down south where racism, predudice and ignorance still exists.   But not in a comopolitan, multi racial, well educated and worldly city such as new york.   We are smarter than this.  Come on people!  It is the parents and teachers and communities  responsibility to educate our children.  This should not have happened and it should never happen again.  The gentleman who was attacked, Dr. Prabhjot Singh was quoted in BuzzFeed as saying “This is my community, I live in Harlem, I see patients here,” he says. “It’s not the side of Harlem I’ve come to know and not how I’ve been embraced.”

In the Daily News they report that “Columbia University professor Prabhjot Singh has written about violence toward Sikhs in America — and on Saturday was the target of a vicious assault just blocks from his Harlem home.”

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photo by Lombard, Mariela, Freelance (Daily News)

The attack is under investigation by the Hate Crimes Task Force says the New York Police Department.  BuzzFeed writes: Dr. Prabhjot Singh, a Columbia University professor, had just dropped his wife and his 1-year-old son off at home on Saturday night when he went for a short walk with his friend to the north of Central Park in Harlem, he explains. They were walking past a group of 25 to 30 young men, many of whom had bikes, when he heard, “Get him!” as well as “Osama” and “terrorist” being yelled.  This is when the Professor was knocked to the ground and punched repeatedly in the face and head which left him with an injured  jaw, a lacerated lip and badly bruised until bystanders finally came to his aid.

The criminals in this beating need to be found and prosecuted.

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What is Sikh? Sikhism 
(Wikipedia)

Philosophy:  Main articles: Sikhism and Sikh gurus

Sikhism considers spiritual life and secular life to be intertwined:[34][35] ”In the Sikh Weltanschauung…the temporal world is part of the Infinite Reality and partakes of its characteristics.”[36] Guru Nanak described living an “active, creative, and practical life” of “truthfulness, fidelity, self-control and purity” as being higher than a purely contemplative life.[37]

The 6th Sikh Guru Guru Hargobind re-affirmed that the political/temporal (Miri) and spiritual (Piri) realms are mutually coexistent.[38] According to the 9th Sikh Guru, Tegh Bahadhur, the ideal Sikh should have both Shakti (power that resides in the temporal), and Bhakti (spiritual meditative qualities). This was developed into the concept of the Saint Soldier by the 10th Sikh Guru, Gobind Singh.[39]

Protecting the religious and political rights of all people and preventing discrimination is an integral part of the Sikh faith. The 5th Guru Arjan was martyred by the Mughal ruler Jahangir on 16 May 1606 for refusing to convert to Islam. The martyrdom of Guru Teg Bahadur 9th Guru to protect Hindus from religious persecution, in Delhi, on 11 November 1675 AD, is another example of upholding minority religious freedom; he gave his life to protect the right of Kashmiri Hindus to practise their own religion when they were being forced to convert to Islam by Aurangzeb, the Mughal emperor at the time.

According to Guru Nanak, the goal is to attain the “attendant balance of separation-fusion, self-other, action-inaction, attachment-detachment, in the course of daily life”,[40] the polar opposite to a self-centered existence.[40] Nanak talks further about the one God or Akal (timelessness) that permeates all life[41]).[42][43][44] and which must be seen with ‘the inward eye’, or the ‘heart’, of a human being.[45]

In Sikhism there is no dogma,[46] priestsmonastics or yogis.

Guru Nanak was the founder of Sikhism. Guru Nanak summarised the basis of Sikh lifestyle as: Kirat KaroNaam Japo and Wand kay Chako, which means work diligently and honestly, meditate on the holy name (Waheguru), and share the fruits of labours with others. The idea that human beings must work for a living and play an active role in society is the basis of this philosophy. The guiding principles of the Sikh faith are Truth, Equality, Freedom and Justice.

The Sikhs revere Guru Granth Sahib as their supreme teacher, ‘Guru’ means the enlightener. The tenth Guru ended the line of personal Gurūs and transferred his authority to the dual agency of the Sikh scripture Gurū Graṅth Sāhib and to the Guru Khalsa (also Panth). The Panth or the community of followers was to be the physical manifestation of the Gurū, while the Guru Graṅth was to be the scriptural guide for this body of Sikhs.[47]

Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, Delhi, India. Volunteers prepare roti bread for the worshippers.

Sikhism is an extremely pluralistic religion. The Guru Granth Sahib, in addition to the revelations of the Sikh gurus, contains revelations of various saints and sages of that period. The Mul Mantar, the opening hymn of the holy Guru Granth Sahib, expounds the nature and attributes of God:

There is one supreme eternal reality; the truth; immanent in all things; creator of all things; imminent in creation. Without fear and without hatred; not subject to time; beyond birth and death; self-revealing. Known by the Guru’s grace.[48]

*Photo at the top of this post from BuzzFeed Via blogs.ei.columbia.edu

It’s 4th of July Harlem – Get outside and enjoy your Holiday Weekend!

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Happy 4th of July Harlem!  It’s going to be a hot and sunny weekend with temps in the high 80′s / low 90′s see NYC 5 Day Forecast.  The 37th Annual Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks will start at 8 pm EST live in New York City on the Hudson River.  Macy’s Barges Map shown here from 24th Street to 42nd Street.  Special holiday events are scheduled all throughout the city including  Harlem Tavern‘s second year anniversary and 4th of July bash.  With temperatures expected to reach in the low 90′s Friday and Saturday you can stay cool at one of the NYC Public Swimming Pools including Harlem Lasker Pool in Central Park.Central Park.

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Also Morningside Park, Marcus Garvey Park & Pool and Washington Heights along the Hudson in the 140′s are great areas to enjoy your “staycation” in New York.

Get outside and enjoy your Holiday weekend!

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Sundae Sermon + St Nicholas = Super Success!

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The change of venue didn’t deter the crowds at the first Sundae Sermon of the 2013 season…in fact there were more good people grooving to good music than ever.

On a gorgeous sunny Sunday, St Nicholas Park resounded with pumping dance beats spun by legendary dj’s Louie Vega, Kevin Hedge and, of course, Stormin’ Norman himself.  Folks swaying, kids playing, everyone meeting and greeting–Sundae Sermon is truly a Harlem classic. See you at the next one!

CHECK OUT THE VIDEO HERE…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k34CI-auoT8&feature=youtu.be