Staying Woke vs Being Conscious

Most people think that wakefulness and consciousness are synonyms.  That is to say, we think that to be awake, is also to be conscious.  While it is most common for consciousness and wakefulness to occur simultaneously, in cognitive science however, these two terms have important distinctive definitions.

Consciousness is the state of being awake and aware, able to perceive, receive, and process stimuli and information from one’s environment.  When you go to sleep, this is an altered state of consciousness, with limited, to no ability, to perceive, receive, and process stimuli and information from one’s environment.  When Neuroscientists study the EEG brain waves of a sleeping person, they find that during a night’s sleep, a portion of the time is spent in the waking state, even though the person is not fully conscious.  Parasomnia disorders such as “sleep walking” or “sleep talking” are examples of instances where a person is in a waking state, but not fully conscious.  Daydreaming is another example of a mental state where a person is awake, but not conscious of their immediate surroundings.  Conversely, Sleep paralysis is a condition where the mind is awake and conscious, but the body is not awake and unable to become active.  What we can take away from all this is that
1. Consciousness and wakefulness commonly occur seemingly simultaneously
2. Consciousness also requires one to be awake
3. It is possible to be awake but not conscious
4. It is possible to be conscious and mentally awake but not physically awake and active

Stay woke1...

The preceding deliberation served as a primer for our discussion on the terms “Woke” vs “Conscious” as it relates to African American English Vernacular.

The term “Consciousness” in the Black community has a long and storied history throughout Africa and the African diaspora, stemming back to the early 1900s, and has to do with an awareness of one’s black identity, and nonconformity to mainstream social, political, economic, religious, and spiritual constructs.  The UNIA, Moorish Science Temple, Nation of Islam, 5 Percenters, Hebrew Israelites, Ausar Auset Society, Black Panther Party, SCLC, and BLM, are all examples of black conscious movements in America.

The term, “Woke,” is an idiom that has surfaced in recent years, essentially referring to the same concepts, precepts, and principles as “conscious”, but with more of a focus on social, political, and economic awareness.  In recent years, the term “conscious” has become associated more with a focus on historical, cultural, religious and spiritual awareness.  The Activism of someone “Woke,” tends to be of a social, political, and economic nature, whereas, the activism of someone “Conscious,” tends to be of a historical, cultural, religious or spiritual nature.  If we were to retrospectively apply the new definitions and connotations that the terms “Woke” and “Conscious” have taken on in recent years, to the aforementioned groups, then we could classify the UNIA, Black Panther Party, SCLC, and BLM as “Woke,” and the Nation of Islam, 5 Percenters, Hebrew Israelites, and Ausar Auset Society as “conscious”.

Stay woke...

After a multitude of scandals erupting in the Black Conscious Community in recent years, and many Black people feeling critical of, or unserved, underserved, or unrepresented by the modern Black Conscious Community, in some regard, “Woke,” seems like a re-branding of “Conscious”.  In 2017, the difference in the socio-economic disposition of Black People willing to label themselves as “Woke” versus “Conscious” can also be observed.

But if “Woke” has become used to refer to more social, political, and economic awareness, and “Conscious” has become used to refer to more historical, cultural, religious and spiritual awareness, then just like in cognitive science, it is most common to be simultaneously “woke” and “conscious”, that is to say, having simultaneous affiliation and interest in organizations concerned with both social, political, and economic issues as well as historical, cultural, religious and spiritual issues.

Also, just like the concept of Sleep walking and Sleep Talking in cognitive science, it is possible to be “Woke” but not “Conscious”, that is to say, have affiliation with, and interest in, organizations primarily concerned with social, political, and economic issues, and having no affiliation with, or interest in, organizations concerned with historical, cultural, religious and spiritual issues.  These individuals are aware of the social injustices in the world, but have no knowledge of their historical past or traditional systems of spirituality.

And lastly, just like the concept of Sleep Paralysis in Cognitive Science, it is possible to be “Conscious” but not totally “woke”, that is to say, having interest in historical, cultural, religious, and spiritual issues, and having no interest in social, political, and economic issues.  These individuals are fully aware of their historical past, have “knowledge of self”, and practice some form of traditional spirituality, but have no concern or activism in regards to the social, political, or economic injustices in the world.

Who knows what new terms will emerge in future vernacular, or what new areas of awareness may come to the forefront.  In the foreseeable future, “Scientific Awareness” may become a movement of its own.  Essentially, “Woke” and “Conscious” are mental states, and the ultimate goal is to become Active, with an expression of one’s awareness demonstrated through practical application.

Article by African Creation Energy

Who is the Real Black Woman? : Queens vs Hoodrats

This is  a great video by Okeba Ra Auset. She explains what the role of what a queen is supposed to be. There seems to be a lot of confusion on what is a “good woman” or a “decent woman”. How is a good woman defined? Is she someone that speaks proper? Acts like a lady in public? Goes to church every Sunday? Supports her man? Gives her man words of encouragement? Never uses profanity? Is it all of the above? I ask because there seems to be a growing division between black men and women over the last few years. Some say the stereotypical ghetto “hoodrats” and “ratchet” black women are the majority. Some say the college educated black women have good jobs,have a nice home,nice cars  and are independent women. They don’t need a man for anything. Is that true? In my life I’ve come across all types of black women. I’ve been around the hood types,loud mouth types,professional women,angry at the world types,light skinned bougie types,cute but bad attitude types etc.  I’m sure most black men have met all these different types. I think the media representation of black women is horrible. The portrayals are usually that of a loud mouth jezebel,white worshiping bed wench,overweight types,angry dark skinned type,light skinned whores and of course the ever present ghetto hoodrat.

This is a video of some black women fighting in a White Castle restaurant. This is absolutely horrible! This is not the type of behavior of a queen. These black women are clearly lost. Emotionally and spiritually for that matter.What type of women do this in public? I know most will say that they are just hoodrats,buffoons, and classless morons. Maybe you’re right. I know these are not women I would ever consider dating. Do these women even have men?  Mostly likely the loser thug type I would assume. But is this how most black women behave in public? Are “ghetto fights” on Youtube the proper representation of MOST sistas? No women in my family have ever had a fight in a restaurant,bank,movie theater,parking lot,gas station or shopping mall.  You can find lots of these fights on anti-black sites like World Star Hip Hop. World Star Hip Hop does a great job at promoting negative stereotypes of black people in general. That site is really SICK in my opinion. I’m not stupid though. I know there’s a sickness with our people. Sites like WSHH are popular because black people are very psychologically damaged. We seem to gravitate towards negativity. We have been trained to see black dysfunction as normal. So all these hood fights with black women come to represent what is natural for us. The comments on Youtube describe the women as monsters,beasts,hood bitches and sheboons.  I know many of the people leaving these comments are white racists. But not all of them. Many of the comments are from black men and women. It’s a disgusting sight to see. How low have we sunk? I also think these videos help to push white supremacy as well. Nothing causes more division among black people than arguing over silly fighting videos.  It usually turns into a blame game about who is more at fault. Is it single mothers? Is it dead beat fathers? Maybe it’s gangsta rap music. Does seeing videos like this make brothers want to date white girls? Or is that just an excuse? There’s a lot of components going on at the same time. But I must say I don’t condone this behavior at all. And it must STOP if we want to move forward as a people.  It’s clear that there is a certain ghetto degenerate mentality out there. It’s way too pervasive in black culture. It’s starting to corrupt the hearts and minds of our children. I’ve noticed it with black people under the age of twenty-five a lot. I can’t relate to them very much. Maybe I’m just getting older but I definitely feel a cultural divide between me and them. They’re attitudes,way of speaking and demeanor is very different than most black people. The ghetto gangsta mentality is very self destructive. It’s got to end.

I love my sistas. I want them to return to their true greatness. I haven’t given up yet. Unlike others,I still believe there is hope. If not,I would have given up a long time ago and got me a white girl. But that’s never going to happen. We have to pull together to do this. We have to call out this horrible behavior.That goes for black men and women.  And to all Moors,Pan Africans,Muslims,Hebrew Israelites. and Black nationalists.This is not a proper representation of black women. It’s time to end the hoodrat era. Death to the gangsta bitch,ratchet girl and interracial bed wench. It’s time for the Black Goddess to stand up and be who she’s supposed to be. Don’t let others define you.Return to her true glory. So you tell me,who is the real black woman?