When a woman in a certain African tribe knows she is pregnant, she goes out into the wilderness with a few friends and together they pray and meditate until they hear the song of the child. They recognize that every soul has its own vibration that expresses its unique flavor and purpose. When the women attune to the song, they sing it out loud. They then return to the tribe and teach the song of the child to the village.
When the child is born, the community gathers and sings the child's song to him or her. Later, when the child enters education, the village gathers and chants the child's song. When the child passes through the initiation to adulthood, the people would again come together and sing. At the time of marriage, the person hears his or her song. Finally, when the soul is about the pass from this world, the family and friends gather at the person's bed, just as they did at their birth, and they sing the person to the next life.
In this African tribe, there is one other occasion upon which the villagers sing to the child. If at any time during his
or her life, the person commits a crime or aberrant social act, the individual is called to the center of the village and the
people in the community form a circle around them. They sing their song their song to them. The tribe recognized that
the correction for antisocial behavior is not punishment; it is love and the remembrance of your true identity. When you
recognize your own song, you have no desire or need to do anything that would hurt another.
By N'SHama Sterling
A friend is someone who knows your song and sings it to you when you have forgotten it. Those who love you are not
fooled by mistakes you have made or dark images you hold about yourself. They remember your beauty when you feel
ugly; your wholeness when you are broken; your innocence when you feel guilty; and your purpose when you are confused.
You may not have grown up in an African tribe that sings your song to you at crucial life transitions, but life is always
reminding you when you are in tune with yourself and when you are not. When you feel good, what you are doing matches
your song, and when you feel awful, it doesn't. In the end, we shall all recognize our song and sing it well. You may feel your
voice is a bit "warbly" at the moment, but so have all the great singers at one time or another. Just keep singing.
By Karyn Grant