Blessings, my name is Cyepress, a.k.a. Aliyah Ola Ifá
I pay homage to my ancestors and all the past selves that nourish the person I am being, becoming, have always been.
We live in a world where asking for help is demonized. It is dismissed as 'lazy', used as a countermeasure of 'merit'. We have all been indoctrinated into what @peoplesoracle names as the "cult of individualism", the "myth of free-will" being centerstage at all times in a play that continues to prove itself a tragedy...
I've had my share of trauma, I have scars to show it too- but I am not here to ruminate on my the tragic parts of my life anymore than I am to reap the blessings of the lessons I've learned from them.
Over the past four years, I have studied the Art of Resistance in Gendered Blackness, an self-designed interdisciplinary B.A. at Ithaca College, the closest I could get to studying myself and my ancestors within the confines of higher education. I reconcile the fact that I would have just graduated this past May (had I not taken a year leave of absense for my mental health) with the inner knowing that had I not taken that break, I probably wouldn't even be here, let alone be the person I am today. And I am proud of the person I am today.
*I am currently certifying with Birthing Advocacy Doula Training to be able to offer Full Spectrum Doula services, centering under-served Queer n Trans, Black n Brown folx.
*I am developing my relationship to our plant ancestors and familiarizing myself with their medicinal uses and continued relevance in pandemic times! at the Jane Minor BIPOC Garden.
*I am collaboratively working as an artist/organizer with Southside Community Center and Ithaca Murals to revamp/pay honor to the existing Underground Railroad Mural on Green St. Ithaca, NY
*I am actively writing/compiling from years of journals to publish my first book of short stories and poetry (get a taste of it on the blog!)
*I started the long awaited, frequently requested blog/ podcast, catch it at cyepresscypher.substack.com!
*I am on the path towards initiation into Ifá priesthood, and as initiation denotes, that is only the beginning to a level up in the services I can provide for the BlaQ community
As you can see, a lot of what I do is volunteer based, based on grants/fundraising, or in the budding stage and I still need to survive in the meantime. I know what I dedicate myself to will bear abundant fruit, I just need time and the peace of mind of having my survival accounted for which is hard to do under capitalism when your ancestors were thee capital and the society still marks their descendeants as such.
Your funds will help me pay for:
*Investments in my creative projects
Eye am here to remind, remember, and re-imagine an Earth where interdependence and communal living are the norm, where money is but one form of currency, where there is no fear, and always a will to live.
I named this campaign Cye's AND Cyph's wellness fund because I know that what I am here to do on this Earth is not only for me and will be fruitful to many. May Esu Aje see it through. ASE.