On the 21st of April in 1966, Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopa visited Jamaica.
A prophecy by Marcus Garvey told Rastafarians to “look to Africa where a black king shall be crowned, he shall be the Redeemer” shortly before Haile Selassie became Emperor of Ethiopia. Thus Selassie was recognised as the only true god and Ethiopia the spiritual homeland.
Some one hundred thousand Rastafarians came to Kingston airport in order to be present for the arrival of Selassie, acknowledged as the second coming of Jah.
THE HEAT that rose from the tarmac of Kingston’s Norman Manley International Airport was nothing compared to the level of expectation that was seeping through the thousands gathered on the tarmac that 21st day of April, 1966. The day was declared a public holiday in honour of the Emperor and people had started arriving from Wednesday night from places near and far, to form the largest crowd to have ever assembled at the Norman Manley International Airport. They came to the airport any way they could by car, by truck, by bus, by bicycle, by foot. Drum beats and chants were heard almost non-stop, providing an almost hypnotic rhythm. The smell of ganja wafted through the air completing a welcome unprecedented in size and expectation for the Emperor on his first state visit to Jamaica.
Since then, the date has been celebrated as Grounation Day, the second most important holy day on the Rastafarian religious calendar. Grounation Day is celebrated with music, chanting and prayer.
And on the 21st of April in 2012, the day was celebrated on Twitter with beautiful photographs taken all over the world:
And here are the wonderful people who took them:
Have you got a camera or a smart phone?
You should take a photograph on Saturday. It’s easy to join us!
Simply send a tweet to @SatScenes with the url and the location and all the rest happens automatically!
I’m looking forward to seeing your Saturday Scene in the next edition!