Black Love Day (in honor of Black History Month)

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View from back of a young beautiful couple doing heart shape with fingers looking at the sun setting behind the mountains, reflecting light in the sea water. Valentine day love concept. Focus on hands

Every year on Feb. 13 the unique power of love within black culture is celebrated on Black Love Day.

In 1993, Ayo Handy-Kendi, the founder of the African American Holiday Association, created Black Love Day as an alternative to Valentine’s Day for black Americans. While love is a universal concept, Black Love Day is about embracing black culture and practicing the following five tenets: love for the creator, self, family, black community and the black race.

Black Love Day also aims to increase peace, stop self-hatred and foster healthy relationships between black and white Americans.

This year’s theme is “Finding Spiritual Joy Thru Black Love,” a means of “inspiring hope in a time of trauma, fear, and COVID burn-out by acknowledging the Creator as our source,” the Defender reports, adding that “choosing joy over fear and viewing love as self-help within the Black community” are at the core of the holiday’s mission for 2022.

As further explained by Sekou Mama Ayo via the AAHA website:

“Without question, the world is facing uncertain times and extreme challenges, so our 2022 theme envisions a collective focus on the first tenet of BLD: ‘Love for the Creator’ — to inspire hope, resilience and joy to reduce fear, grief and trauma. The times require we stay prayed up to our Higher Power, so we can feel Black Joy despite the times.

Stop pointing at the government but instead point up and within for self-determination. Yes, Black people have struggled disproportionately than White people due to COVID related deaths, illnesses and economic down-turns. But, we can’t afford to get COVID ‘burned out.’

Yes, we’re overwhelmed by violence, grief, trauma, racism, but in the best of times and worst of times, when facing historical, major challenges, the Creator sustained us and our love fostered self-help as a unified vibration of joy because love is opposite of fear.

Stay connected to each other and breathe in the Creator’s love as our sustaining power to experience Spiritual Joy through our Black Love.”

“We encourage people on this day to do something very simple—just demonstrate love for 24 hours, and celebrate and atone, offer forgiveness to ourselves and to others, and to accept the very important tenets,” Handy-Kendi .

Significantly, Black Love Day isn’t a celebration solely intended for the Black community.

“If you’re not a Black person, it is recommended to show love in action toward Black people, by working on your own racial attitudes and behaviors,” the AAHA states on its website.

Credit: AAHA

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