The Statues of the Four Human Natures

Listen Siblings, I come in peace,

 “The problem with Europeans and Asians is Europeans and Asians; the solution for Africans is Africans!” — Onitaset Kumat

Below is the artwork and commentary of Europeans with some additional commentary by myself.  The artwork is from over a century ago: Daniel Chester French’s “Four Continents” (1903-1907) statue which are very excellent representations of the Four Natures of Humanity: Originalism, Orientalism, Occidentalism, and Multi-Racialism, as seen in Africa, Asia, Europe, and America, respectively.  The sculptures can be seen at One Bowling Green between State and Whitehall Street, right in front of the main entrance of the now National Museum of the American Indian which was designed by  architect Gilbert Cass–Bowling Green on the 4 and 5 train.  Each continent is represented by a woman and surrounding cultural objects.  The italicized commentary is from New York Public Arts (see link below.)  The bold represents the highlighting tradition: Red for Falsehood, Black for Interest, Green for Truth.  The photographs with his commentary are from Douglas Yeo (See source below).  We are due local institutions to teach us how to manage ourselves profitably and for a future of prosperity: African Blood Siblings Community Centers.  Write the ABS for more information.  Subscribe, share, love.

The Statues of the Four Continents represents the Four Natures of Humanity
By Onitaset Kumat

Asia and Orientalism:

A front view of Daniel Chester French’s “Asia.” On the left is a tiger, behind her an emerging cross, and a grouping representing hopelessness is on the right. “Asia” sits on a throne which is supported by human skulls.
A left front view “Asia.”
A left rear view of “Asia,” showing more of the tiger.
A right view of “Asia.” The three figures, one of which is bound, represent, in French’s words, “the hordes of India, and the hopelessness of the life of so many of the inhabitants.”
Another view of the right side of “Asia.”

When viewed from left to right, the first sculpture of the set is Asia. The central figure of this group is a calm woman, seated with eyes closed, her hands resting on her knees. On her lap there sits a small Buddha, and in one hand she holds a lotus flower, with a serpent wrapped around the stem. The bare feet of the central figure rest on a platform held up by a series of skulls. She is dressed in draping robes, and wears numerous necklaces. To her right is a tiger, sitting with its back to the viewer and its head turned, gazing up at the central figure. To her left are three additional figures: a boy kneeling, with his head down in prayer; an emaciated old man with his hands tied behind his back in slavery; a woman with a baby strapped to her back [4]. The man and the woman stand bent over, leaning against the central figure for support.

. . .

The sculpture of Asia has been seen to represent the place where the world’s major religions began, with the serene tiger as a depiction of the dominating power of religion on even the most wild creatures [12]. Giving his perspective, Cass wrote, “In the lap of the central figure is the idol, symbol of false worship, while above the right shoulder of the figure is seen the rising luminous cross of Christianity, symbol of hope, which found its birth place on the continent of Asia” [13].

Some may object that Asia was the birthplace of the so-called world religions, but there necessitates the differentiation between “Religion” and “Spiritual Systems/Sciences.”  The religions are by and large Asian corruptions of African spiritual systems.  Here’s a simple example of Dr. Clarke discussing the story of the boy in the manger, touching upon Jesus Christ, and here’s Ashra Kwesi discussing the Asar and Aset story and its corruption into Adam and Eve. 

A more in depth understanding requires acknowledgement that the likes of Pythagoras, Socrates, Jesus, Buddha, and others never wrote their own works.  This is due their undergoing the African education system which is interpersonal communications which forbids the writing down of the instructions.  Here is a portrait of that education.  The Oriental, however, has the ideology of contractualism, ergo, if it’s written down it’s true.  Hence how religions were birthed in Asia.

The statue represents Asia by a calm woman in meditation, unperturbed by the errors from corrupting our African ethical system, in that they enslave, murder, overpopulate and impoverish simply because their religion–or corruption of our culture–cultivates it.  Further research in the symbolism of the serpent may delight you.

America and Multi-Racialism:

A front view of Daniel Chester French’s “America.” “America” is seated on a throne, her right foot on the head of Quetzelcoatl, the plumed serpent from Central and South American Indian cultures. A torch in hand, her left arm is pulling her cloak over an image of “Labor” which is rolling a wheel of progress. Peering over “America’s” right shoulder is an American Indian in head dress, and sheaves of corn, symbolizing, in French’s words, “the American idea of Plenty,” are across “America’s” right knee.
This left side view shows “America” seated on a throne decorated with Mayan glyphs. An eagle, the symbol of the United States of America, is seen perched next to southwestern cacti. An American Indian is seen crouching behind “America.”
A right view of “America,” showing “Labor” rolling the wheel of progress in his right hand.
This full right side view of “America” shows an image of a raven peering down at “Labor,” in the form of an arctic/northwestern Indian totem pole.
At the back right of “America” a broken Indian pottery vessel is shown, next to a buffalo skull. The metal object on the far right of the photo is a casing for lighting which illumninates the Old Custom House at night.

The sculpture of America is to the right of Asia. It is the only one of the four in which there is action in the position of the central figure. America is represented as a young, alert woman, sitting at the edge of her chair as if ready to spring forward if need be. She holds a torch in one hand, and a bushel of corn is on her lap. Her right foot, extended forward, leans on the head of an image of the Aztec deity Quetzalcoatl [5]. Visible in the background over her right shoulder is a Native American man wearing a warrior’s headdress [6]. Another man, mostly nude, kneels at her side, in the protection of her arm and flowing cape. He holds tools in one hand, and with the other tends a small, winged wheel.

. . .

In the sculpture of America, the torch is seen as a symbol of “liberty and enlightenment,” and the corn represents prosperity [14]. The kneeling man has been named Labor, and the wheel next to him is the “Winged Wheel of Progress” [15].

America actually represents the composition of three racial groups: Africans, Asians and Europeans.  A Chronology of America is hard to pinpoint.  Usually we believe that the Asian (or Amerindian was the first resident) but it’s not entirely clear: e.g. C. C. Marquez wrote”The Negro type is seen in the most ancient Mexican sculpture . . . The Negroes figure frequently in the most remote traditions of some American pueblos . . . It is to this race doubtlessly belongs the most ancient skeletons of very distant structure of two of the Red American races which have been found in various places from Bolivia to Mexico” (Estudios Argueoligicos y Etnograficos, pp. 270-73, Madrid, 1920) and V. Riva Palacio wrote “It is indisputable that in very ancient times . . . the Negro race occupied our territory (Mexico) when the two continents were joined.  This race brought its own religious cults and ideals.” (Mexico a traves de los siglos, vol. I, pp. 63-67.  Mexico, 1887.)  “The Mexicans recall a Negro god, Ixtlilton, which means black-faced.” (Ibid. p. 163)–there are many other such references.  A good reading to this is “Cocaine in Mummies” by Master Naba Lamoussa Morodenibig.

Nevertheless, the intellectual chronology of the modern American state goes back to Africa.  This is exhibited in the above reference to Quetzalcoatl, the warrior headdress, and the bushel of corn.  Quetzalcoatl, for instance, was depicted as an African–Black with Wooly Hair.  The headdress is worth researching.  The bushel represents Agriculture.  We as African people long uniquely maintained Astro-Agricultural Communities.  You know already that the Mayans had an advanced Cosmological culture.

Atop this African foundation was Asian Contractualism.  From this African-Asian mixture (Red people), the European learned Federalism, Agriculture, and the “Rule of Law.”  The European added his Tribalism and made a “Rule of Law for Domination” (or “Legal Tribalism”) the current ideology of America.  This is how America represents Multi-Racialism.  Unfortunately, we often overlook our contributions to this national consciousness; even though we constantly inject more contributions: Feminism being one.

Europe and Occidentalism:

A front view of Daniel Chester French’s “Europe.” “Europe” strikes a noble pose, her left hand supported by a globe signifying the colonial conquests of many European countries.
This left side view shows “Europe” seated on a throne decorated with a frieze from the Parthenon in Athens, representing the history of ancient Greece. “Europe’s” right hand is resting on the bow of a ship with a lion’s head, symbolizing the conquests of Europe during the age of discovery.
A close up view of French’s representation of the Parthenon frieze on the left side of “Europe.”
The right side view of “Europe” shows more of the Parthenon frieze on the throne. The shrouded figure behind the throne represents “Ancient History” which is reading a scroll and holding a skull crowned with a laurel wreath.
This close up view of “Ancient History” shows French’s name carved at the bottom of the sculpture.

The next sculpture to the right is Europe. The central figure in this sculpture sits majestically on a throne with a relief on the side referencing an ancient frieze from the Parthenon [7]. She sits up straight, her crowned head held high as she looks somberly ahead. She wears a voluminous, draping cloak, in the style of the ancient Greeks [8], with a hem decorated with coats of arms. Her left arm rests on a large book, which is itself on top of a globe of the earth. Behind her, the throne turns into the front of a ship, and there is a Roman Imperial Eagle perched above it [9]. Behind the central figure there sits an old woman, shrouded in a long cape, and reading from a book.

. . .

Cass called Europe “an Imperial figure of the highest intelligence…” [16]. The imagery of the book and the globe has been described as representing Europe as the disseminator of knowledge [17]. The ship shows Europe’s power on the sea, and the old woman behind the throne represents history [18].

For its concision alone, the most valuable reading to understand Europe may be, besides the page on Occidentalism, or the replete and informative companion to this newsletter “Maroon and Build For Self,” “The Allegory of the Pitied Child.” Beyond this, it’s worth realizing who the Greeks and Romans were: the result of African and Asian contributions to Europe.  This is why the most important aspect of the above sculpture is the cloaked figure.  If you take away the African contributions like the “throne” (Africa had the first monarchies), “seafaring” (the Moors brought modern seafaring [and gun powder] to Europe) and “the book” (Africa had the first writings;) you’re left with the basis of European “Civilization”–“Tribalism.”  You see “Tribalism” in the “Coat of Arms,” the multitude of tribal expressions pinned on this statue, and the “World Domination.”

Africa and Originalism:

A front view of Daniel Chester French’s “Africa.” “Africa” is seen as the only nude of the four continents, in keeping with the stereotype of tribal peoples who did not wear much clothing. “Africa” is seen sleeping; the “sleeping continent” was a common way of referring to Africa. “Africa’s” right arm rests upon Sphinx of Egypt , her left arm on a sleeping African lion.
This left front view of “Africa” shows more detail of the Sphinx, its weathered face a testimony to the centuries it has endured the sand and heat. Note the elegance of “Africa’s” robe, how it clings gently to the legs of the sculpture of the continent.
Seated behind the Sphinx is a shrouded figure, mysterious and unnamed. Critic Charles de Kay said of this figure, it “expresses the mystery of the deserts and the unexplored recesses of Africa’s primeval forests.”
A closeup view of the mysterious shrouded figure and the Sphinx, part of “Africa.”
A view of the right side of “Africa, ” showing the sleeping lion which rests upon ruins of some ancient building.

Africa is the fourth sculpture of the group, located to the far right of the main entrance of the building. The central figure is shown sleeping on a chair of rocks. She is half nude, with fabric draped across her lower body. One elbow rests on the head of a lion, while the other rests on a crumbling sphinx. Her hair is in a long braid, falling over her shoulder. Behind her is another figure, almost completely covered in a long, flowing cloak. Only the figure’s eyes are visible, and it is not possible to tell whether it is a man or a woman. The hand of this figure rests on a large jar.

. . .

At the time that the Four Continents was sculpted, Americans often referred to Africa as the “Dark Continent,” and perceived it as a land of untapped resources [19]. This is represented in the portrayal of Africa as a sleeping, partially nude figure, and in the mystery of the figure behind her.

The mystery cloak figure is the figure in the European sculpture.  The European openly admits that he stole from you. 

But there’s more: The woman and even the Lion are asleep.  We may take insult to this, but the European sculptor unwittingly complimented us:

A person who knows
And knows not that they know
Is asleep–awake them

— A stanza from the Ancient African Poem “Know Thyself”

Meaning, many of us know that we do not know.  But what we seek to know is how to restore Africa.

A person who knows
And knows that they know
Is wise–follow them

Ibid.

The Knowledge you seek is the African Blood Siblings.  Allow us to awaken you.  Follow us.  Write today.  The African Blood Siblings Community Center is your need.  We wait for your awakening.

Sources:

New York Public Works (the italicized Commentary): http://www.blueofthesky.com/publicart/works/fourcontinents.htm

Douglas Yeo (the photographs and their respective commentary):
http://www.yeodoug.com/resources/dc_french/continents/dcfrench_continents.html

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