Dr. Yosef Ben-Jochannan Page 3 of 9
ving taught at CornellUniversity for over 15 years, Dr. Ben, as he is affectionately known, has lectured widelyon both sides of the Atlantic. His theme - the ancient civilizations of Egypt. Hispresentations have placed him in great demand by students and community groups,especially those of African descent. Perhaps the high regard he enjoys today stemsfrom his long, unwavering theme that the ancient civilizations along the Nile were African.We preached that the so-called major western religions were white folk's religions andoffered the historically incorrect but universally accepted blond-haired, blue-eyedrepresentation of Jesus Christ as proof that our enemy had become our deity. Wequoted Dr. Carter G. Woodson, who said in his book, The Mis-education of the Negro,that the European destruction of African civilization was done under the guise of "savingsouls." And we asked the rhetorical question, must one be dehumanized before one'ssoul is saved? In retrospect, we had allowed someone else to define our reality.Yoruba priestess, Iyanla Vanzant says your soul is saved when you accept that thespirit of God lives in you. She specifically says, "When you can look at yourself, acceptwho and what you are and love yourself unconditionally, your soul is saved. Your spiritis empowered."Dr. Ben's African Origins of the Major "Western Religions" was one of the vehicles Iused on my journey through the empowerment of my spirit."For more than five decades, Dr. Yosef ben-Jochannan, a master teacher, researcher,author, lecturer, has led what has now become a mass effort to emphasize Africancontributions to the world." African Origins of the Major "Western Religions: firstpublished in 1970, continues to be one of Dr. Ben's most thought-provoking works. "Byhighlighting the African influences and roots of these religions (Judaism, Christianity andIslam), Dr. Ben reveals an untold history that many would prefer to forget."