Colonized Mental Illness

As black people in this world we may have been freed from colonial rule, emancipated from slavery, have been granted civil rights laws, and have been “allowed” to enter mainstream society, but some, if not many, of us are still not free within our minds, and that is the way many whites prefer it. 

Some may refer to this condition as mental oppression, internalized racism, self-hatred, or the colonized mindset. Those who are still trapped within their mental prisons are referred as Uncle Toms, house negroes or house niggers, sellouts, coons, ect. Whatever you call it, and whatever you call them, they are mentally ill due to long and brutal periods of oppression at the hands of European whites.

For hundreds of years, blacks have been taught to hate themselves and anything and anyone else associated with their culture, their heritage, and their physical appearances. They are forced to accept themselves as inferior beings that deserve any and all harsh treatment. They are made to believe that they are the lowest forms of life. However, at the same time they are taught that their oppressors, European whites, are innocent, honorable, loving, admirable, and all-around superior among the human race. 

And the sickness is still alive today

The colonized mindset exists within black communities all over the world. Some members are suffering and don’t even realize it. Some don’t see it as an issue. Yet, they are clearly sick.  

Here are some of the symptoms: 

-Admiration for anything non-black.

-Admiration for anything that promotes negative black stereotypes.

-Assuming negative black stereotypes as a means of success in the entertainment industry, and seeing nothing wrong with it or finding a sense of pride with it.

-Believing most members of your race are violent, crime causing, drug dealing, drug using, promiscuous, lazy, welfare having, degenerates who are the cause of their own problems. In other words the negative stereotypes about blacks are true in your mind.

-Constant disdain for members of the opposite sex in your own race, but have interests and admiration for members of the opposite sex in other races.

-Fear of being around your own people, but prefer to be around non-blacks.

-Fear of yourself or anyone embarrassing your race especially around whites.

-Making fun of your own people at the expense of your own people.

-Almost never seeing beauty, accomplishments, or anything positive within your own race.

-An inability seeing yourself or others like you outside the box of stereotypes and(or) archetypes.

-The desire to make bleach your skin, and to a certain extent, your hair. 

-Avoiding any true knowledge about your people, but would accept false information from outside sources (mostly white) almost without question.

-Defending any person, particularly whites, when they’ve committed a racist act against blacks or said something that is clearly racist against blacks.

-Truly believing that racism is “dead”, and thinking black people should truly get over it.

-Thanking whites for kidnapping their ancestors from Africa long ago believing in the white lies about Africa.  

Not every black person is possessed by this mindset, and there is hope for those that are. One prominent suggestion is to learn more about the history of Africa and Africans. They can not allow or tolerate the messages sent from whites about who they are. They can only expect more of same dehumanization as it seems to be white society’s obsession. Blacks must rekindle an interest in who they truly are beyond the matrix of whiteness. It will be a long and difficult path, but chances are that they may gain a sense of self-respect that has been “denied” for so long. They will have nothing to lose except their centuries worth or historical and contemporary programming. 

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33 thoughts on “Colonized Mental Illness

  1. Not every black person is possessed by this mindset, and there is hope for those that are. One prominent suggestion is to learn more about the history of Africa and Africans. They can not allow or tolerate the messages sent from whites about who they are. They can only expect more of same dehumanization as it seems to be white society’s obsession.

    Beautifully stated.

  2. I would add :seeking approval from White folks and thinking it means more than approval from people of color. Also: not getting the point when Black folks say the person looks or sounds or acts “White.” It really doesn’t matter HOW a given individual dresses, speaks or acts. Individuals invariably express themselves in many divergent ways. But “Whiteness” is a mindset and reflects itself in the presence of people of color in ways that draw comment. In that sense, telling someone they look, sound or act White is not as much a criticism (though it can be) as it is an observation. I’m just sayin’.

    1. Well, I think one thing we can not do, individually or group wise, is approach them like beasts. Although, not all will respond in the same way. Still, I think one has to be careful not to alienate them because it may result in negative responses like insults and violence. Sometimes just sitting down and talking to them casually will help exchange ideas as well as thoughts. I think it comes down to identifying with others and making them feel welcome.

      Systematically, it is much harder because this system is set up for the welfare and benefits of rich whites. I don’t expect this nation to acknowledge any responsibility for it’s acts. So, in the end it’s up to people at the grassroots level to handle this, and some are already doing great changes.

      I hope this answers your question.

  3. You are right when you refer to this as a mental illness, but like many forms of mental illness, those suffering from it are in denial. Why? Perhaps because they are afraid of thinking otherwise, the Stokholm syndrome, you name it. Like alcoholism, you have to admit to having a problem before you can address it. Then there are the ones who are quite happy in their delusions. As for knowing your history, good luck with that unless 1) You seek it yourself(those who are so far gone might not give a shit). 2) If you are fortunate enough to attend a post-secondary institution where you can take history classes speacializing in Black Histroy(even then it depends upon the lecturers stance on history). Systemically, you need more blacks in the upper corridors of finance and government who are willing to help other blacks rise. However, in my experience, there are too many kerchief heads who are covetous of their positions of being where they are at, and will view you as a threat to their position as a token.

    1. Yea. They ultimately have to decide for themselves if they want to break free. It’s kinda like ending an addiction…The last part of your comment it also true, as it’s been the norm since the beginning of mankind. In this society altruism is frowned upon, avarice has been strong, and individualism is preached even though nowadays, it’s becoming a meaningless word.

  4. I really love this. I stumbled upon this by chance and signed up just to tell you how elegant you stated everything in this blog. I was just ailing over the state of our race and am guilty of not knowing enough about my history. I am changing that and as my eyes begin to open, I notice people (like you) are seeing what I am seeing–not only that, but you are voicing it. Well done! You have in me a loyal ‘follower/subscriber’ (I don’t know, lol)

    1. Thanks. I do my best.

      I too am guilty of not knowing my people’s history, but you and I have been conditioned not to care about our history. I was in the dark for most of my life before I realized this, and there is much I need to learn about. It is a struggle when your surrounded by whiteness, but it can be done.

  5. When will the Black-American/Kushite Descendants of Slavery wake up and realize that no other culture (race) can do this for them? They have to implement and initiate their own healing and debriefing in the aftermath of colonized slavery. No one else has a clue and can no longer be blamed for their conditions. What’s done is done. The admission of guilt will never happen prior to the fall of this empire. But it does.

  6. I, too, am grateful for the time it took to put this together…thank you.
    I find myself at 59 needing to step out from the cloud of what others think and feel I should or should not be. I find, at this point in my life that I want and need to know more about my history as a Black woman, and all other cultural influences which makes me who I am. In doing so, I am answering my call to serve and share.

    I would ask that we, Black folks, think and work together, locally in our communities, and help each other be better thru knowledge and ACTION.

  7. Who can measure up to your blackness brotherwolf? Herein you too become culprit to ridiculing your own black family members. No criticism, veiled or blatant ever causes a positive movement in a people. You’ve submitted a one-sided dissertation on “what’s the matter with black folk” and I submit to you that reading this put me on the offense. We as a people have made enormous strides in coming along side our “oppressors.” We have shifted our economic status in many communities. Granted there are communities that “seem” untouched, but as the preacher says “new levels new devils.” Citing this deficit in our folk as a “mental illness” causes me to question what you know about mental illness. I live with mental illness every day. Mental illness is beyond the ill person’s control. With meds & therapy the ill person may get better, but mental illness is degenerative. What you suggest seems well within control: attaining a new mindset, encouraging positive self-esteem of ourselves and those like us, understanding cultural and ethnic history of our people, etc. all are within our control. As long as you are alive (and healthy) change is always within reach. Mental illness is a disease, not some antidotal hyperbole. Now, we can work together as black folks and we do, we are learning more about our history and who we are in the world. We are not the only oppressed people and should not seek to be a singular victim of European colonization. Borrowing from another individual oppressed by European colonization: “Be the change you seek.” Love lifts people, not criticism, sarcasm, or ridicule. If you love me, help me, encourage me, and give me positive reinforcement and a sense of worth. As long as I am living, I’m still growing up. Even God is perfecting me until His return. Thanks for your provocative discourse.

    1. Grace,

      The point of this post was not to try to ridicule my people. My intention has always been for the purpose of helping them, and seeking and telling truths is part of what I do. My blog has been my only outlet for telling truths. Me calling the colonized mind a mental illness was not meant as an insult. It was meant to acknowledge the mentality some of us have as a result of centuries of colonization. It was meant to understand what that mindset can do, and I am always open for suggestions on how to take care of it.

      1. brothawolf, your reply gave more insight on your intention than the blog: Helping people: noble and needed. When I was a young student, I had an aunt who tried to help me study. Her methods included criticizing, ridicule, and even physical abuse. I failed to learn the lessons but quickly resorted to my “fight/flight” impulse and learned to appease her with trivia and a “busy” fascade. When my father took over helping me study, he encouraged me, helped me along, brought my deficits to me as something I could look forward to learning/improving, I took joy in learning and moved well beyond both my teacher’s and his expectations. Love works. Criticism, ridicule, and hitting caused a saddening inauthenticity. With adults, it looks like people agreeing wth you so you can feel satisfied, leave them alone, etc. generating inauthentic responses that only add to the Problem. Mental Illness is a medical condition, not unlike diabetes, heart disease, or pneumonia and needs medical intervention. Devestated people tend to have psychic wounds that need spiritual mending. We go to church, most of us do: share these ideas in spiritual settings perhaps. Focus on the youth–world changers. Please forgive my initial offense at your mental health characterization. In unity, God bless you, indeed.

  8. Grace:

    Hold on Sistah (based on your Western name)! While your innocence seemingly but most assuredly reveals your ignorance to the fact that your statements about BrotherWolf’s negativity toward black his own black family members you are only practising a self-feeding age old insanity of denial. I am a social scientist who lives what I practice and advocate an my conclusions are along the same and/or similar parallels as BrotherWolf’s sight unseen. I know where you’re coming from with this and where it is going is in the same old beaten circles. A historically prescribed one at that.

    The competency of the matter is to really know true black behavioural patterns and characteristics of which I have studied from data amassed since data has been collected utilizing modern day high-speed computers and massive databases. Have you done the same? If not you have no basis what-so-ever to challenge BrotherWolf on his methodology to free the mindsets of his people from a systemic institutionalized state. The word is “Denial!”

    So long as we remain in denial about the truth there will be little to no change in the outcomes for the upward mobility of the Black-American/Kushite Descendant of Slavery.

    I could not resist commenting on this because I know the difference in not doing so and what it would mean. I’d be a part of the problem then because I do know better. This knowledge came at a terrible cost also I must conclude. Have you paid such a price to say what you’ve said?

    NOTE: This is NOT up for argument or DEBATE either. God Bless!

    -Black Culturally-Competent Social Scientist of Human Geography
    University of Washington 2001

  9. Min Patterson, you addressed nothing I wrote; to which you are well privileged. And, you are right that I did not amass data to support your hypothesis that has become “reality.” Please do not mistake my offense to the criticism of black folk and “mental illness” anecdote as disagreement with what your data has revealed to you. Your data bears no question or concern in my mind. I am fully aware of who owns these “truths” received from modern day high-speed computers and massive databases. This is not a debate or argument. I merely expressed my opinion just as you did yours on this world wide web. If I must express only your opinion I would be in denial of my own capacity to reflect. God bless you Sir. And, thank you for asking God’s blessing on me.

  10. Grace:

    Thank you kindly for your courteous response to my rebuttal. As now I se that you do have a level of intellect that is both stimulating and of particular interest to my studies. Therefore, I appeal to your good nature to escalate our dialogue to the next level and beyond until we reach an amicable consensus? People need to hear what they don’t know that they don’t know or else the insanity continues on its same ‘ole beaten path. As Brother Fredrick Douglas so elaborately stated back in 1865 as Lincoln allegedly freed the slaves through his Emancipation Proclamation, “Who knows what skin this ‘ole snake will surface in next?” I suppose you could safely call that my hypothesis because I have already done so.

    Not only have I used modern day technology to logistically rule out every possibility of err with the help of my esteemed White-Privileged Colleagues I’ve found that only a culturally-competent intellect who has had a lifetime of experience and exposure to the issues of concern in this subject matter is capable of arriving at a no-fault conclusion. What I have just said is that you nor any one else is to blame for the state of affairs in America today with the Black-American/Kushite Descendants of Slavery unless you take offence thus crippling your ability to perform the required analysis of data amassed. That’s all we have to work with and God knows this. We certainly have proven over hundreds of years that we cannot resolve this problem working together blindly. My offer is one of camaraderie should you decide to accept?

    At this late stage it does not matter who gets to do the work. It’s everyone’s responsibility if we plan to continue to inhabit planet earth. I suppose this is why certain very wealthy entity’s are working feverishly on the technology and vehicle/vessel in order to colonize on other extra-terrestrial bodies. They see what I see and do not have the resolves that I have been blessed to discover and share to more often than not deaf ears and angry hearts. Their intent I’m sure you know is well-meant but does not include us again. never did and never will. It’s up to us and that is the purpose of my research sharing. No one can ever say that I sat idly by with such a creative mind and a vision from God Himself and di nothing but argue and fight as to who was right. We’re all right! Now let’s band and move all of this righteousness in a progressive direction? OK? God will surely smile upon the two of us and all other’s whom decide to step outside of the boxed thoughts and behaviours!

    Of course you have already read the fictitious”Willie Lynch Letter,” read Dr. Carter G. Woodson’s book about “The Mis-Education of The Negro,” written and published back in 1933 and Watched the Italian movie “Goodbye Uncle Tom?”

    Please feel free to share some of your own vast library references with me accordingly? That’s teamwork and we will need a lot of it where this nation is headed. I’ve studied the historical fall of some of the greatest Empire’s in history. America is no different and is not by any chance immune to a cataclysmic demise. We have people like you and I to bring all back into the balances and grace of the universe in my professional mind and spiritual being.

    http://www.blogtalkradio.com/the_black_plight-in-america

  11. Great post. I see a good number of black people afflicted in this way on a daily basis – usually on my way to and from work. From what I see, they are infused with externalized self-hatred: they turn their nose up at me when I attempt to be friendly and say ‘hello’ or ‘good morning’ at the bus stop, but go out of their way to kiss the asses of the white people there (who, incidentally, look down their noses at me as well). They will even ‘save a spot’ in the queue for their favorite white co-commuters, letting them butt ahead of me and others. These types are the hardest to even talk to, because they refuse to acknowledge the humanity of another person who shares a similar skin color to themselves – they are fully indoctrinated and marinated in the “white is right” mentality. It’s a sad thing to see.

    1. I see this in the children I see, especially during after school time. Black children would go and hug white female teachers more often than black female teachers. To me it’s like saying “Ms. white lady, I love you.” SMH

  12. Speaking as an Irishman of European Racial Origin:
    Togha fir!
    (What a man!)

    The same mind fuck was used on my people for from 1300 onwards and you can see the result throughout the 20th Century. Only when there was a Celtic Revival to the end of the 19th Century did the Irish people find it within themselves to rise up against the then greatest military power on the planet and fight even though it was surely to be ‘to the death’.

    We won, it wasn’t pretty, it caused a civil war which still affects Irish politics and you may see the effect of this colonial mindset in Irish Ex-Pats in the U.S. and all over the world.

    The last twenty years have changed us, however. We had the greatest Rock Band in the world for a while, we actually beat other countries at sports, we won some Oscars, we negotiated a better trade agreement with China than you guys and we became (briefly) the most successful economy in Europe.

    The banks collapse hit us hard and Twenty years ago we’d have been sunk but Ireland as a country and the Irish as a people now have the internal pride and wherewithal to deal with it and 90% of Ireland’s spiralling interest debt has been payed back nearly five years ahead of time.

    Pride and self-respect works:
    Go mbeidh Dia comh fial doibhse ‘is a bhuil sé/ì duinnse
    (May God be a generous to you as s/he is to us.)

    1. Pride and self-respect does work, but with blacks here in America, pride and self-respect can not guarantee success in a white world. A black person with pride is seen as a threat to the white establishment here. The black person’s truth is seen as a threat to white people. And, something in our programming is preventing many of us to break free. Along with our history, culture, name, and spirit, whites throughout history try their hardest to make sure we stay obedient and docile. A perfect example is Republican Presidential candidate Herman Cain.

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