Amoke Kubat is reclaiming an African Indigenous Spiritual sensibility to reconnect Black people to the first (Spirit) and natural (Nature) worlds, as practice for holistic wellness. Self taught, Amoke uses artmaking and writing to continue to define herself and hold a position of wellness in an America sick with inequalities and inequities. Her first play, “ANGRY BLACK WOMAN & Well Intentioned White Girl” had two sold out performances at Intermedia Arts in 2016. It continues to tour in Minneapolis and rural Minnesota cities.
What is your personal and professional relationship to healing and self-care practice?
I have learned to be SELF-FULL. I forgive myself. As I’ve come to an understanding about my life’s choices or lack of, I put myself first. I eat breakfast and I rest when I need to. I tell people NO without explanation or apology. I mourn and let go of what doesn’t work for my wellbeing. Healing is a continuous process for me. I survived a challenging life that began when my mother died. I was 2. My life included physical, emotional, and sexual abuse.
What does healing mean to you? What is your definition of healing?
Healing is dismantling past wounding of the mind, body, and spirit. Healing is a process; the recognition of harm caused by self or another and having the interest and will to address that. Healing is maintaining the balance of a healthy mind, body, and spirit. I am a work of art. I’m not perfect but I have value and I matter to me.
How does an individual heal? How does a community heal?
Individuals heal in many diverse ways. I am not sure anyone heals individually. I think people heal best with support; that can be one to many people. There are many healing modalities, with years of education, internships, mentors, and spiritual guidance.
When you think of healing the Black community, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?
The Black experience has 500 years of harm on millions of souls and bodies. The Black community needs to do a better job of knowing ourselves, our histories, legacies, contributions to each other and the world. We need to really practice being WE and US. We must work on internalized oppressions. We must strengthen our capacities for trusting and loving us again.
How has the murder of George Floyd, over-policing in the Black community, and recent protests impacted your philosophy about healing and the tools and resources needed to support better self-care practices among African Americans?
This is my third insurrection:1965 Watts Riot, 1992 L.A. Riots and [now the] 2020 worldwide protests. This is an opportunity to make some real changes. But people have got to be real and CLEAR about how we all can envision a world and lives worth living. The very planet earth has had enough. This is the opportunity to relearn how to live as a community that is cohesive: bartering, child creches, cooperatives, child and mother centered, elders revered, and reverence for all living things. Time is more important than money. People are more important than property. REST is not a bad word. I have always been a survivalist. I have been a squatter. I have lived in 7 countries. I have lived in communes. The best I see is when people need people and desire to take care of each other.