The Gatekeeper's Collective (TGC)

IGNITING THE POWER OF BLACK SAME GENDER LOVE

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Gatekeepers’ call is to support community members’ successfully contributing their respective gifts to society.


Operating from a ‘physician, heal thyself’ perspective, The Gatekeepers Collective recognize that we must first make sure to support our own alignment with, and conferring of our gifts.


On Friday, January 8, 2016, in observance of the fifth principle of the Nguzo Saba, Nia (Purpose), TGC asked participants to consider the question,


‘What Are You Here For?’


Facilitator asks, “What do we mean by purpose, or living a purpose-driven life?”


“You’re not who you say you are, you are what you think…In order to end the confusion, critical thinking [is what is called for]…”


“So, there’s this [model called] Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs…[where human beings are seen as having different levels of needs which have to be satisfied on the way to becoming self-actualizing]…I have a cousin who didn’t raise his son…His son had been really unhappy about his absence…and when he finally turned up again, in his sixties, he was talking about getting pussy, and getting high…self-gratification…That’s the level of needs he was operating at…For other people, it’s about doing things for other people…”


“When I was growing up, [people thought one’s] purpose was to get married and raise children…At my age, I have a purpose [but] I don’t know what it is…”


“No matter how complex and wonderful an engine may be, the wheel has a purpose that only it can serve…One’s purpose has to do with something that’s bigger than you…Outward…Inward…The minute you say, this is what I’m here for, the universe is [aligning in accordance]…You cannot have a purpose that is apart from the [universe]…”


“You cannot lie…There is something in you that will not settle for anything that is not you…The side-effect to finding your purpose is that you become very strong…”


“As an actor, I can choose my purpose…To tell stories…”


“Your animal brain [operates from] instinct…Your human brains [operates from] divinity…The realization of our divinity is what we are all here for…The roads are infinite…The universe presents to you opportunities to do that…If you look at your life, you will see patterns…We are in a culture that, as Black gay men, they want to shut us down…How we deal with that…Acting out sexually…Drugs…How, in a culture [that attempts to suppress you, can you realize your divinity?]…If you look at us as beings of light, [you come to understand that] how you think determines what you do…When you get on that path, you magnetize others [who are like-minded] to you…”


Facilitator engages participants in a writing exercise around purpose…


Following the exercise…


“[During the exercise, I] thought about my journey, where I’ve come from, and where I’m headed…I had to hold back tears…”


“I felt like I was writing to cry…At first I thought my purpose was to others…The more I become self-actualized, that can be my gift to others…”


“There is something quite disquieting in this exercise…You’re born alone…It isolates you…It is an intimidating question to answer…Everything I answered got me closer to something essential…”


“I find it was pretty deep for me…My purpose is not in a box…[My purpose is] limitless…”

Gatekeepers’ call is to support community members’ successfully contributing their respective gifts to society.

“This is remarkable…I have never been nurtured like l am right now in this room…”

“As a youth [I thought my purpose was to gain] wealth, enjoyment, and pleasure…[Now,] I have plenty of wisdom, knowledge, and understanding…I will pass on this knowledge through books…”


“[My purpose entails] Shaking off the internalized white supremacy…[and] the output of that process of internalized white supremacy…My purpose is unification…Unification for us is the secret of our success…”


“I love sharing, empowering others…[And] protection…I like to protect a lot of people as well…I have received a lot of protection [in my life]…I was in Ohio…I went to my first gay bar…And this person, who I had no idea would be sitting here in this room with us tonight, walked up to me and tapped me on the shoulder and said, ‘You, come with me’…He instantly took me under wing and protected me…”


“I think your purpose is attached to letting go and being vulnerable…”


Facilitator says, “I think ‘re onto something…In my experience, letting go of assumptions, defenses, the need to be right and to always know the answers, and allowing myself to become vulnerable has been key to aligning with my sense of purpose…around which I feel extraordinarily hopeful and good about us…”

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