My Tip? Listen to Cedric and Jessep and JAH Child. These are 3 shining examples of what Rastafari is all about.
I want to add to something Cedric said and put a little stank on it lol.
"Rastafari is a movement for Black Liberation and always will be. This is a foundation of Rastafari."
The very cause of this is an imbalance in the human spirit, heart, and mind. Europeans are our children. And they've had to fight and struggle in cold lands that were sometimes hostile and made men more hostile. And in order to keep from starving, in order to survive, they turned to barbarism. They robbed. They killed. They sold drugs and illegal goods as well as people. And the memory of that struggle is burned into their DNA. I am black. My mother was from Alabama. My father was from Jamaica. One of the best things my father could have ever done for me was to show me his home and the beautiful country he grew up in because it gave me roots even though those roots seek to find deeper roots in Africa. For me... even that was enough.
So when I see, as a black man, my people in the hood... in the ghetto... having to fight and struggle in an environment that is often cold and hostile, I see it making them, my people, more hostile. And it saddens me but it also angers me because I understand where it comes from. And they call us thugs just like how most of the world called white invaders, "white devils", and it is wrong because we lose our humanity by failing to see the humanity in our mirror reflection!
Black Liberation is absolutely necessary. Because we (all) have to struggle to get to a place of balance; a place where we stop creating coldness and stop making the land hostile for our children and for their children. And we have to help and take care of each other's children. We have to create opportunities for each other's children so that we can learn to be one people. There's no such thing as a white Rasta, not because there are no rastas who happen to be of European descent but because their "race" is not relevant to the equation! If you are rasta then you are part of a global community. And if you are part of a global community then the problems and issues facing that community are your problems and issues.
How could a Muslim live in a place where Muslims are being oppressed and not care because he's personally rich? How could a Christian live in a place where Christian children are being sexually molested and not care? So by the same token, how can you be a Rasta and live in a world where Haile Selassie fought to keep white supremacy... white barbarism... white thuggery... white predators... out of Africa and you still see Africans suffering in the places where the slave ships brought them and not care? And I'm not saying you should care because you are responsible for the deeds of your ancestors. NO!
I'm saying you should care because you are also HUMAN just like the people who are oppressed. You are human just like the people who were publicly lynched and hung in from of the children of their oppressors. By choosing Rasta, you choose CONSCIOUSNESS. You choose not to be the oppressor. So you are not, in this context, "white" because that "whiteness" was a fictional mental construct; a glass house for Europeans to live in to work together (against black people) under the belief that they were united by the color of their skin. If you want to identify as "white"? Go ahead. I'm not mad at you. That's your right. But if you don't feel this word exactly applies to you? Please don't feel forced to take it upon yourself just because you think others expect it of you. If you want to reject it, and I feel like some of you are ready to do so, that's OKAY! But I don't want you to feel pressure either way.
Even though "they" were from different lands. Even though "they" had literally killed each other before. They put that aside in order to choose a "white" identity so that they could enjoy the power and the advantages that being in the powerful majority gave them. Through the construct of "whiteness", the English were able to conquer European people so that they would stop fighting each other after centuries of war.
The cost? A common 'enemy'. Not so much an enemy but a scapegoat. A sacrificial lamb with brown skin and black hair; a thing so visually different so as to be easily identifiable as "not one of us". And so this is the mindset that created White supremacy. This is the mindset that established the Trail of Tears. They weren't devils but they had psychological demons that consumed them and allowed them to hate us just because we clearly weren't them.
But the thing about consciousness is... we know that is not the way. Hatred is not the way. Becoming just like them out of some misguided want for revenge is not the way. And that's why Rasta is a lifestyle that everyone can follow. Haile Selassie is a king everyone can respect. Black Liberation is something everyone CAN fight for and it is about equality because if black people aren't free then the human race isn't free. If white people aren't free then the human race isn't free. If Asians aren't free then the human race isn't free. So the cry for freedom, true freedom, the freedom Americans believe that America was founded upon when black people were considered 3/5 of a person just so all those pretty words didn't apply, the true cry for freedom is the cry of the human race; grieving for its own children and wanting more than anything for them to stop fighting each other.
I don't know what attracted all of you to Rastafari but I'm happy you found it. And because you found it I have to believe there is a greater spirit at work that has called you forth from the masses. Don't let anyone try and tell you that you're wrong or that you don't belong or that you can't be or that you are something else. That is the memory of centuries of hurt, pain, anger, and darkness... that still seeks to possess us and speaks through it. But those are our demons. And I am sorry that you have to hear those expressions. But you know what? Even though those demons have said things my younger self may have wanted to say at times even if I don't want to admit it, I outgrew those demons and I'm not controlled by those demons. There is a greater spirit of love that speaks through us that pulls us together; a spirit that is bigger than all the hate and envy. So just be good. Be you. Be conscious of yourself and others. Be Natural. Be connected. Be empathetic. Be revolutionary. Be Rasta.