February post

Happy Valentine's Day

philippe prosper valentines day

I think Valentine's day is an important Holiday because of what it represents. It's a day to stop and think about probably the most influential human emotion: Love. Love is the binding factor in human society. It is designed to bind, unify, and draw out the most noble and beautiful aspects of human character. It binds father to mother, sibling to sibling, friend to friend, and at it's most pure expression, drives us towards self sacrifice. It is fitting that the Bible says that God is love. Something so transformational and transcendent can only be an expression of the supernatural and divine. Romantic love is a beautiful aspect of it, but it's not representative of all that love is. At it's heart,  love is an unwavering sacrificial giving of One self.
If you have not heard it said to you today yet, I love you. I do.  Why? Because you are a divine creation worth all the love in the Universe. John 3:16. What's even more amazing than that, is the fact my Heavenly Father embodies love, and yes, He loves you.
Here is my Valentines Day card for ya (forgive the short hand from here on out, it's my preferred method of writing because I find more conversational). I pray that this will remind ya of Dad's ( God) love today and that You will be inspired and transformed by the following passages. I love you, Philippe

Psalm 100:5 For Yahweh is good, and His love is eternal; His faithfulness endures through all generations.

Zephaniah 3:17 The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

1 Peter 5:6-7  Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you,  casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.

John 13:34-35  A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.  By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

John 3:16 God so loved you that He gave his only son so that whoever (you) believes in Him, will no perish but have eternal life.

Romans 5:8 but God shows his love for you in that while you were still a sinner, Christ died for you.

Galatians 2:20  I live by faith in the Son of God. who loved me and gave himself for me.

Romans 8:37-38
neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

1 john 4:10-11
In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.


1 Peter 5:6-7  Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you,  casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.

WHY DO I RAP?

One of the best rappers I know always asks me: “Dude, why do YOU rap? You RAP!  Why don’t you become a high-level businessman like your father, or a doctor or a lawyer, or at least go be an actor or a model man? I started rapping to get out of my bad situation man! I admire your approach tot the craft man but YOU ain't gotta RAP! This makes no sense man!”

He was right. I didn't have the pedigree of a typical rapper. I spent most of my life at private schools- my parents worked hard to provide a linear future for me- I finished school with my Master's in business- my first language is french and- most of my life my main pursuit has been martial arts. Rapping is the last thing anyone would have expected of me. Good thing I've never cared what people expected of me.

Why do I rap? It's simple. Rap is a part of me. Rap matters. It impacts lives; and I want to be a light in this arena built on lies and deadly fantasies.

The hilarious part of this is that I didn’t start liking rap until I was about 13 (growing up my father told me it was garbage and I changed the radio station every time rap music came on). I didn’t fall in love with rap until I heard the Slim Shady LP when I was about 15 years old.  I’ve always loved words and rhyme. I stayed away from rap until I stopped letting other people’s perspective of who I was determine what I could or could not do.

1)   I rap because I love rap.

I am a rap fan, and I respect the craft.  My brain is a wordplay machine. I rap because my mind thrives off of figuring out impossible, creative rhyme patterns (I wake up in the middle of the night with new rhyme schemes and punch lines - my brain is insatiable when it comes to that). I rap because I am an innovative thinker at heart, and to me, that’s what rap is all about.  I rap because I always had an innate connection with rhythm and rhyme. I probably rap because Creative Writing, Psychology, Language, Art and Philosophy are all classes that my University professors suggested I major in, and rap innately draws upon all of that.

2)   I rap because I love martial arts. (“what”... yeah)

The reason I always loved martial arts is the same reason I love to rap.  Technical rap (multisyllabic, metaphorical, wordplay filled rap) is a craft that demands discipline, creativity and a lifetime of hard work to master. I rap because the discipline of rap is, in it’s purest form, bold, poignantly assertive and at times a purposefully aggressive art form that manipulates rhythm and timing, often to satirically attack a person or thing to intellectually re-frame a subject matter, or to tell a story (when it’s not purely self exalting and materialistic). That sounds a lot like verbal martial arts to me. The audible affect of a complicated rhyme scheme that’s well timed and placed, gives me the exact same pleasure that the visual of a well performed martial arts fight scene or form does. I visualize martial fight scenes in slow motion in my mind to determine how I want to sound on an instrumental.

3)   The raw material of rap is in my genes.

As you may know, the roots of rap were steeped in social activism and revolutionary thought (e.g Africa Bambaataa, Public Enemy, Tupac,  Rakim, KRS One, Mos Def etc).  Recently I realized that  the ease with which I identify with the art form may be explained by who I am- by virtue of my heritage.

My mother’s family is full of artists, journalists and writers. My maternal grandfather was a political-revolutionary journalist who died in jail fighting against a corrupt government.  My father’s side of the family is full of presidents and military generals, which probably explains my connection to martial arts and war. On top of that, it dawned on me that I was born in Haiti, a country known for its independence and revolutionary history. (Haiti was the first independent, ex –slave, black nation.) The hilarious part is that I was actually born on November 18th, which is the day of the “Battle of Vertiere,” the day the Haitian slaves won the war against the French colonialists rule and became the 1st independent black nation.

Writing, art, war and revolution are literally a part of my genetic line and a part of my history. No art form captures all those facets better than rap. It’s a verbal martial art. Rap is not about where you come from or what kind of lifestyle you are from, it’s about who you are and what you stand for. My desire is to leverage all that I do to honor my Heavenly Father and to impact all those around me for eternal purposes. Rap rap is a martial art.

Philippe Prosper