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Haile Selassie I - Testimonies

McGill University, Canada – Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa – 1954

F. Cyril James, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of McGill University
Montreal, 5th of June 1954
“Mr. Chancellor,
I am deeply privileged to present to you, in the same of the Senate, His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I, Emperor of Ethiopia, Elected of God, Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah, in order that you may confer on him the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa.
Already renowed for his wise direction of the development of his country, he stood forth before the Western World in 1936 as a symbol of courage and of that vision without which nations perish. ‘I decided to come myself’, he told the League of Nations in calm but unforgettable words, ‘to bear witness against the crime perpetrated upon my people, and to give Europe a warning of the doom that awaits it if it should bow before the accomplished fact’.
The Western World was not quickly awakened, but when it had become engulfed in Armageddon His Imperial Majesty at once returned to Khartoum to lead the patriot forces that fought gallantly to reconquer their country from the aggressor. For many men that would have been achievement enough; but then years later, in 1950, when freedom was endangered in a distant corner of the world, His Imperial Majesty promptly gave the support of Ethiopia to another country in desperate need. ‘You are fighting not only for freedom as we know it in Ethiopia’, he told his soldiers as they set out for Korea, ‘you are also representing and defending in far corners of the earth the most sacred principle of modern international policy – that principle of collective security with which the name of Ethiopia is imperishably associated’.
Mr. Chancellor, in the name of the Senate, I present to you His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I, pioneer in the field of education; clear-visioned to promote the development of his country; skilled and unflinchingly courageous in its defence; leader among leaders – Negus Negusti – in man’s progress toward a world society in which every nation shall enjoy the blessings of peace.”
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Haile Selassie I - Prophecy

His Majesty’s Decorations

“And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder; so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.
And I will fasten him as a nail in a sure place; and he shall be for a glorious throne to his father’s house.
And they shall hang upon him all the glory of his father’s house, the offspring and the issue, all vessels of small quantity, from the vessels of cups, even to all the vessels of flagons.”
(Isaiah 22, 22-24)
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Haile Selassie I - Teachings Haile Selassie I - Video

From “The Lion and the Cross” – 1963 US Documentary

INTERVIEWER: “Your Majesty, what in your opinion are Ethiopia’s greatest needs?”
HIM: “We have already begun the program most essential for Ethiopia, that is to raise the standard of living of her people through education and better health. These would be the primary objectives. The remaining needs will not be forgotten and will also be taken care of.”
INTERVIEWER: “Your Majesty has taken a personal interest and a personal hand almost in every phase of life in Ethiopia, but does Your Majesty not sometimes grow weary, and perhaps feel that this all too much work for one man”.
HIM: “This is really not significant. One individual naturally cannot shoulder the responsibility of a whole nation. We have already told this to our ministers and government officials. Our main objective in the administration of the affairs of 22 million people is that all should cooperate and share responsibility. This has always been our program and will continue to be our program. Our wish is to serve our country as an Ethiopian. It is our conviction that the administration of the country should not depend on one person, but is rather the concern of all, each in his own way must help his country.”
INTERVIEWER: “What does Your Majesty learn from the attempted coup d’etat?”
HIM: “You can say that they have learned from us, those who attempted the coup d’etat. There is nothing that we have learned from them. If you examine their demands you will find we have already started these reforms. We would have been delighted to learn something new from them.”
INTERVIEWER: “Does Your Majesty see Ethiopia emerging as a leader or perhaps even the leader of Africa ?”
HIM: “Ethiopia does not have any intention of being the leader of Africa as such. It hopes to live harmoniously with all its African sister countries. How long did the american confederation take to become united ? I believe you even fought a war about it.”
INTERVIEWER: “Would Your Majesty care to say a few words in english” ?
HIM: “My English is very poor. The most critical issue that has felt (?) the world in recent times was the Cuba-US conflict. The statemanship and wisdom of Prime Minister Khrushchev has greatly helped to ease the situation. We’d like to take the opportunity to congratulate both President Kennedy and President Premier Khrushchev as well as Secretary General U Thant.”
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Haile Selassie I - Teachings Italo-Ethiopian War

Ethiopia the Last Citadel of Collective Security – 1936

“Do the peoples of the world not yet realize that by fighting on until the bitter end I am not only performing my sacred duty to my people but standing guard in the last citadel of collective security ? Are they too blind to see that I have responsibilities to the whole of humanity to face ? I must still hold on until my tardy allies appear. And if they never come, then I say prophetically and without bitterness the west will perish.” #QHS
April 1936
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I&I Rasta

Ganjah Tree of Life, Healing of the Nations

“Herb is the healing of the nation. In Revelation, it shows you that the leaves are for healing of the nation. It’s found in the midst of the vineyard, in the midst of Zion. It’s called the Tree of Life. And Rastafarians analyze this Tree of Life as herb, as the ganja, because it has so many qualities. It’s the king of plants. It has all the qualities that every other plant has, and it has qualities that no other plant has.”
Ancient Ras Bunny Wailer, Interview with Roger Steffens, 1994
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Haile Selassie I - Testimonies

A.Morrison, “Ebony” Magazine, Chicago USA – 1963

Ebony, U.S. Magazine
Chicago, December 1963
“Emperor Haile, standing in New York hotel suit where he granted exclusive interview, is also called King of Kings, Conquering Lion of Judah, Elect of God and Defender of the Faith. A newsman who met the Emperor in Africa once observed: ‘When he turns those eyes on you, you get a funny feeling like you were going to melt’.”
(…)
“If there is such a thing as a ‘kingly air’, the Emperor has it”, observed an important U.S. State Department official who accompanied the five-foot-four monarch on his eight-day U.S. visit”
(…)
“On a cool October morning, Emperor Haile Selassie fulfilled in part the biblical prophecy that Ethiopia shall one day ‘stretch forth its hand…’. On that occasion, the little man who for one dramatic hour in 1936 became the conscience of the world, extended the hand of brotherhood to 20 million Americans of African descent, urging them to have faith in their future as free men and to press on with their current struggle for freedom until it is won. He also urged American Negroes to recognize their stake in Africa’s fight against colonialism.
The Emperor’s eight-day state visit (his second) to the United States stirred images that still lingered after 27 years, images of a bewhiskered monarch astride a white stallion leading barefooted Ethiopians against the invading Italian army. Ethiopian spears dueling Italian machine guns. Rocks challenging aerial bombs. Flaming patriotism versus poison gas. And Emperor Haile Selassie pleading to the League of Nations for aid and accurately predicting that Ethiopia’s fall would be a bell tolling the death of the League.
The events of 1935-36 haunted Emperor Selassie during his visit to Philadelphia, Washington and New York, flitting in and out of his talks with President Kennedy and other Americans. (…)
This was my second meeting with the legendary King of Kings. The first confrontation had taken place in 1961 in the richly-ornamented study of his gilded palace in Addis Ababa. (…)
My second meeting was more brief. Emperor Selassie displayed a remarkable composure under rapid-fire questioning and was prepared to continue the interview indefinitely if his schedule had permitted. He apologized for closing the interview, explaining that New York City had arranged a ticker tape welcoming for him and he ought to be there for it. (…)
“Emperor Selassie is the 225th head of the world’s oldest independent state, a 3000-year-old nation that, as one observer put it, ’emerged when England and France were unconceived and the United States inconceivable’. But while contemplating his nation’s extended past, the 72-year-old monarch does not lost sight of the present.”
Categories
Haile Selassie I - Teachings

His Majesty’s Message to the American “Negro”

“We can never forget the help Ethiopia received from Negro Americans during the terrible crisis of 1935.
American Negroes showed great sympathy for our cause and extended the hand of brotherhood to us. This was our great hour of need. It moved me to know that Americans of African descent did not abandon their embattled brothers, but stood by us. The ties that bind Ethiopians to Negro Americans are historic and strong. I hope that these ties will persist and will be strengthened to our mutual advantage.
We follow with the greatest interest the struggle of the colored people of the United States to achieve equal rights and human dignity and we continue to follow the progress of that struggle with intense pain and pleasure.
Pain because colored people in America experience inequality and persecution, pleasure because of the efforts now being made in the United States by Negroes themselves and by the government to restore the freedom, rights and privileges to the colored people which have so long been denied them. We hope for and will continue to work for the speedy and satisfactory solution of the racial problem in the United States. We want our colored brothers in America to know that we are with them in their great struggle for justice.
We in Africa desire success in this struggle. I personally reaffirm our basic unity of purpose. What we Africans and colored Americans seek is identical. We both desire dignity and freedom and an end to oppression and discrimination based on color.
Discrimination violates fundamental human rights, it violates the laws of God and also the laws of man. I cannot emphasize too strongly the importance this problem of racial discrimination has in my mind. I believe both the Eastern countries and the Western countries will have to collaborate to remove this problem which is the scourge of mankind.
I am pleased to note that President Kennedy and his government are making great efforts to solve the racial problem.
We would like to see more colored Americans come to Ethiopia to work and help our people develop our country and improve the standards of living of our population. They can render valuable assistance. Our doors are open. Unfortunately, few Negroes have come so far, but they will be warmly welcomed.” #QHS
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Ge'ez ግእዝ Mysteries

Study Orthodox Faith through the Holy Language

“From those times to this, various books both of spiritual and material profit have periodically been compiled and written in Ge’ez. We remember with deep gratitude those fathers of old who, as time and opportunity allowed, worked with much care and labour and have left us books for the preservation of the Faith and for the increase of learning and knowledge.” #QHS
Ge’ez Books are to preserve the Faith. You nurtured yourself with enough english theology, now it’s time for all those seriously engaged in such studies to get the Original Source.
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I&I Rasta

Jah No Dead

INTERVIEWER: “What do you think happened to Selassie and his family?”
TOSH: “Nothin’ ado Emperor Haile Selassie I Man, Igziabeher, Amassagana, nothin’ can do him. He’s the Allmighty. What you hear is what you hear.”
INTERVIEWER: “But somebody came into his country and took over and cut off the heads of his family members and destroyed his regime.”
TOSH: “Well them cut off the heads of some of them and them kills plenty and them kill many people too. But then again that is what the people asked for, seen. The people was tired of the monarchy of his Imperial Majesty and wanted to be or was influenced by Westerns what they call civilization, or western way of life, seen. And many of them wanted that so Jah gave them what they wanted and now that they are suffering the consequences of influences then they are beginning to call back His Imperial Majesty and remembering the good old days when those things never use to happen. Seen, administers of propaganda spread many dangerous public mischief on Emperor Haile Selassie, seen, and we know them all but they cannot hide because they cannot tell themselves no lie, neither can they invent destructive weapons to destroy those who speak the truth because we attack them from the heart. (strums guitar) this time (laughs) seen. So when a guy thinks a well him safe, it’s right into your heart (strums).”
Ancient Ras Peter Tosh,
Interview with Doug Wendt, San Francisco 1983
Categories
Haile Selassie I - Testimonies

Chicago Defender, December 15 1923

“ABYSSINIA KING TOILS ON ROADS WITH SUBJECTS

American Missionary Saw Ras Tafari Lugging Stones for Mending of Roads.
His royal highness, Ras Tafari, king of Abyssinia, is not above going to a rock pile and carrying stones to mend a road, and doing so with the humblest of his subjects, according to Dr. Thomas Lambie, an Amerian medical missionary at Addis Ababa, Abyssinia. (…)
The king of Abyssinia has just given the site to erect the first modern hospital in his kingdom. (…) The medical missionary wrote that in his mind the stone carrying incident revealed ‘an unusual spirit on the part of an eastern king’. He said he thought this was a good illustration of the Bible command, ‘bear ye one another’s burden and so fulfill the law of Christ’. (..)
‘When we got to the race track I noticed a big crowd of people coming along (…) Some very great man is riding out today, I thought to myself. (…) Yes, it most centrainly was his highness Ras Tafari himself, the ruler of Abyssinia. He saw me at the same time I saw him. We both raised our hats and I attempted to dismount from my horse that I might do him honor before his men. Over the heads of the crowd he smilinglu motioned me not to do so and passed on.
His Majesty Bears His Burden
(…) Everyone was carrying a stone on his shoulder. They had gone to Kugbana river and each had picked up a great stone and was carrying it back to mend the road in preparation for the rainy season which will soon be upon us. Yes, the ruler was with them: but surely he would not have to carry a stone. No, he would not have to, but nevertheless he was doing so. And as I saw him going out to do some menial work, as an example and to encourage his people, the words quoted above came to my mind. <<Bear ye one another’s burden and so fulfill the law of Christ>>.
Dare anyone criticize and say, <<better to hire some one to do this work than to give his valuable time to such service>>. Abyssinia is not America or England. Our Lord in coming to earth might also have used different methods. He might have come as a ruler on an ivory throne, a place He was lifted to occupy as David’s greater son: instead, however, He washed His disciples feet. The servant should not be greater than his Lord.
And so I saw the ruler of Abyssinia, going to the rock pile and carrying stones to encourage his men, I felt he was doing a very great and kind service to them and to the country. He was teaching them not to be ashamed to work. I personally believe he is the hardest worked man in all this country. From morning until night he is engaged in seeing people, in giving judgment between disputants, and in a thousand and one duties that daily press upon him as the ruler of this great land, so that his friends tell me that he often has a tired and worried expression. In one sense he is the ruler of all, in another sense a servant of all.
An officer said that he did not ask anyone to do a work that he was not willing to do himself. (…) He has some who hinder and prevent him in his own country, and some of his greatest difficulties arise from the type of Europeans who come to this country, but I feel that a ruler who shows this spirit of willingness to help and willingness to serve will overcome all difficulties and will with patient effort place Abyssinia alongside of the great countries of the world.
Here is a lesson for each one of us. Do not set another to do something you think yourself too great to perform. Share their burden with them and thus you bear the burden for them.”