Posted by Krs-One in 2001:
PHILOSOPHY of Hip Hop by KRS ONE
This section is very quick and to the point simply because this is purpose of intelligence. Intelligence is not about how large you make something, or how complicated you make something appear to be. Intelligence is about taking complicated and large things, and turning them into very small and simple concepts, so that the mind can get with it quickly. Most people pride themselves in being intelligent because they speak well, or they speak big words, or they understand mathematical equations or literature that is hard for you to digest in your mind on an everyday basis. They understand it, so they think they are intelligent. Well, welcome to the 21st century, when intelligence is not about what you know, it's how you use what you know.These are the philosophies of Hip Hop. Let's start with philosophy number 1.
Philosophy number 1 with Hip Hop is: Eliminate the distance between yourself and the thing you are thinking about. Meaning, if you are a part of the HipHop culture, don't say "I'm doing Hip Hop, or I'm a part of the Hip Hop culture." You say, "I am Hip Hop. I am Hip Hop culture." Because you are.When you get up, Hip Hop is no longer there. If another artist, StevieWonder for instance, Na Jee for instance, came in and sat down in your same seat, Hip Hop wouldn't be there per se. Jazz would be there; maybe R&B would be there. When we all sit in a room together - R&B, Jazz, Rock - all sitting in a room together, but when you, the Hip Hop generation, gets up and leaves, Hip Hop is no longer there. When you arrive at a place, Hip Hop has arrived at a place. So if you're out there robbin' and shootin' and killin',and claimin' you're a part of the Hip Hop generation, look at what you're presenting the culture as. If in fact you are out there trying to help people along, trying to help yourself along, trying to become educated and skilled, more compassionate for people, and more social in your activities, and so on and so on. If this is where you are going, then this representation of Hip Hop culture will not only benefit your own life, but it will push us into the 21st century organized and totally politically powerful. Let me also say in this instance of eliminating the distances - you are Hip Hop. What does this mean as well when it comes to spirituality? In Hip Hop, there are no gods or goddesses. We are the gods and goddesses. We say to each other, "peace god, peace goddess." This concept has been lent to us by the 5% Nation of Gods and earths. However, they introduce themselves as gods and earths - women earths, men gods. In Hip Hop, because the 5% Nation is so close to the building of Hip Hop's philosophy, we greet each other "peace god," but we greet our women as goddesses. Be God, stop worshipping god. Be God. If your religion is Islam, eliminate the distance, stop worshipping Allah. and be Allah. If your religion is Judaism, stop studying the 5 books of Moses. Be the law. Be Moses. If you are Christian, stop worshipping Jesus Christ and calling his name out. Be Jesus Christ. Be Buddha. Be Krishna. The more we look at these figures over there and we over here, there will always be a conflict between us and god, or the creative force of the universe. Eliminate the distance. Now some of you might be saying "How can I be God?" When you walk down the street, ask yourself, "Are these the actions of God?" When someone bumps into you, ask yourself, What would God do? When someone cuts you off and you're driving - it's a blatant disrespect - ask yourself "How would God handle this?" However your God would handle it, handle it that way.
Philosophy number 2 is about self-creation. Hip Hop created itself. It stands on the shoulders of past traditions of all kinds, but it created itself. Therefore, "no one is going to look out for you" is Hip Hop's rule number one. Don't ask nobody for no help. Many people say "you gotta sometimes reach out for help." Well, sometimes you do have to reach out for help. But in the idea of Hip Hop, you're supposed to be springing from within yourself your help. Don't make a goal, be the goal. You are your goal. So in Hip Hop, you are doing, advancing, protecting, preserving, and educating yourself. Stop begging and whining for the United States government to do for you, when you can do for yourself. Stop giving power away to these government officials, hoping that they are gonna make the world better for you. No. We are the world. There is no such thing as a system. There is only people helping or hindering people.
Hip Hop rule number 3 or philosophy number 3, last but not least, is Hip Hop's stance on tradition. As far as Hip Hop is concerned, the world began in 1970, August, when Cool Herp brought out his turntable set and began a culture that is now called Hip Hop. As far as we're concerned, the world begins in 1970. We are all about 27 years old to date. This means that, being 27 years old, having the world start in 1970, this is a strategy. The strategy is: Of course the world doesn't begin in 1970, but when do we cut off the umbilical cord of our mother civilizations and forefathers. When do we cut the umbilical cord of our forefather's and mother's civilizations, and exist as our own civilization. Why do we have to claim European history if you're white or Spanish. Why do you have to claim African history if you're black. It is us that hold on to these things. These things don't hold on to us. The second we let go, they're gone forever. So the balance here is to have your history and your culture over there in a perspective. African culture is very beautiful. So is European culture, breaking it into German, French, etc., etc. Spanish culture. Native American culture. Indigenous cultures like the Aborigines. Beautiful cultures. But none of us are gonna move forward until we clip the umbilical cord of these mother cultures and exist today as the society we know we supposed to exist as. Hip Hop is the only American-born culture. Remember that. Everything else comes from someplace else. For the first time in American history, there is a culture that is born on American soil, that's dealing with American problems, that's existing in American experiences in American inner-cities. Welcome to your culture. This concludes our philosophy section.