When I started this project I knew that there could be opposition and talk in the shadows, but I also recognized the need for sharing reliable information about our rites and practices.
Scholars such as Robert Farris Thompson and Dr. Bunseki Fu Kiau, PhD. have shined their light and provided understanding about the beliefs and ritual practices of the Kongo. No amount of praise I can offer matches the value of their contribution to our tradition. I would like to acknowledge some people who are very close to me, beginning with my old friend and long-time mentor Alex la Salle (Bariyaya Ngando Fula) who is a pillar of our Community, a talented musician with his band, Alma Moyo, and is an activist, writer, and true man. Thanks, brother, for bringing me forth from the darkness into the light. I want to thank my godson, Carlos Arias (Eniyan Valentino), for drawing the firma that is part of our logo. He has struggled in his musical career, so I ask you to please support our Latino and Black artists. I want to thank Ngon Ngunda Tata Butaco for many conversations, mounds and mounds of laughter, and for encouraging me to go ahead with this project. New energies and movements are not new to Palo. I want to thank my colleague and friend, my confidant and my love, Gloria Okandekun Chaidez, for sharing my dreams and struggles and our triumphs. I love you.
I want to thank my friend and website designer, Christopher Bradford, who said we can do this and share with the world. Thanks also to my brother Julio Pizarro for doing the translation into Spanish. Without him this would not be possible. I want to thank Miguel Chaidez for the fantastic images and wonderful pictures used on this site. Last, but not least, I want to thank my brothers and sisters who seek change through the path of Mayombe. May you learn and share your truth with respect.
Some links that you may find valuable: