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Showing posts from February 24, 2016

THE KAAPSE KLOPSE (MINSTREL) FESTIVAL FROM CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA!!!

The Kaapse Klopse is a minstrel festival that takes place annually on January 2nd, in Cape Town, South Africa.  Up to 13,000 minstrels, many in blackface, take to the streets garbed in bright colors, either carrying colorful umbrellas or playing an array of musical instruments.  The minstrels are grouped in klopse ("clubs" in Cape Dutch, but more accurately translated as troupes in English).  Participants are typically from Afrikaans-speaking working class "colored" families who have preserved the custom since the mid 19th century. 
   Although it is called the Coon Carnival by Capetonians, local authorities have renamed the festival the Cape Town Minstrel Carnival as foreign tourist find the term "coon" derogatory.






History

   One story goes that the carnival was inspired by a group of African-American minstrels who docked in Cape Town in the late 1800's and entertained the sailors with their spontaneous musical performances.  The popular song Hier ko…

BUDDHIST HOLIDAYS AND FESTIVALS!!

While most in the United States gets ready for Thanksgiving in November and Christmas in December, there are many different holidays associated with the Buddhist religion, which are especially observed in Southeast, Central and East Asian countries.  Each year, throughout the world, various celebrations and festivals are held, often using the lunar calendar for exact dates.  It is not uncommon to find differing dates and traditions in regards to different countries.








   Most of the holidays pertaining to the Buddhist culture often pay homage to the life of the Buddha, as well as various Bodhisattvas.  For those of you who don't know, a Bodhisattva is a future Buddha, who has put off their attainment of nirvana (no more suffering) on hold so that they may assist others in freeing themselves from a life full of distress.  It is the goal of those following Mahayana Buddhism to become a bodhisattva, in Sanskrit, the term stands for "one whose essence is wisdom".






   A typi…