February 13, 2021, will be the 28th Black Love Day. This is 24 hours to practice the 5 tenets of love: love for Creator, love for family, love for self, love community, and love for race. This year’s theme is Healing the Wounds that Divide – Reuniting Our Strengths Through Black Love. It was started in 1993 by Ayo Handy-Kendi, breathologist and author of The Power of Breath. It is the third African American holiday after Juneteenth and Kwanzaa.
Black Love is rooted in a need to celebrate blackness. It gives people of all races 24 hours to appreciate it and allows the black community to grow stronger. It also serves as a spiritual alternative to Valentine’s Day, as commercial goods and fleeting romances are quickly taking over. Black Love Day is an opportunity to love everyone, from our Creator to ourselves, to the entire community. The togetherness that the holiday brings is meant to decrease violence and empower the black community as a whole. Because black love is black power.
Traditions of the holiday are all made to keep it a spiritual version of the commercialized Valentine’s Day. The greeting is Nya Akoma, meaning “get a heart” or “be patient.” Purple and black are usually worn, purple as the color of royalty and growth, and black for the color of the race and freedom from evil. A Ceremony of Reconciliation is done, which is a gathering of community to bring black people together and strengthen our spirituality. If gifts are done, they are more aimed towards practicing a Black Love tenet, ex: healing products, food, hand-crafted gifts, etc.
This Black Love Day, the Black Love Day 28th Relationship Ceremony Conference will be held this Saturday, February 13, from 10 A.M. to 7 P.M., and for the first time, it will be virtual. It is hosted by the African American Holiday Association, and for more information, come here: http://www.africanamericanholidays.org/blackloveday.htm.