What is rastafarianism?

What is rastafarianism?


Rastafarianism is a religion that originated in Jamaica and originated in Africa. It is the fruit of the descendants of African slaves following a prophecy: that of the coronation of Haile Selassie, emperor of Ethiopia who became a living god for them.


Chapka insures your trip to Ethiopia
Get it now


How was Rastafarianism born?

For a variety of reasons, the eyes of descendants of Jamaican slaves have turned to Ethiopia at a certain period. A movement back to African roots was in turmoil in the 1920s.

A Jamaican nationalist leader, Marcus Garvey had announced in this period that a black king would be crowned in Africa. This prophecy came true 10 years later in Ethiopia and the movement gained momentum (He was not the only one, Garvey spoke).

Haile Selassie at his coronation in 1930

The Ethiopian emperor of the time Haile Selassie, whose real name was Ras (social distinction similar to “chief”) Tafari Makonnen was then unwittingly assigned the designation of Messiah (or incarnation of God) by the Jamaicans, which led people of African origin to their “promised land”.

And paf, it’s Rastafarianism. Well, in broad strokes that’s it but if you deepen the research you will understand that it is more complex and even more advanced in fact. It is also worth noting that Rastafarianism descends from Judeo-Christianity.

The promised land is often referred to as Zion, a word that refers to a healthy spiritual sphere of peace. Its opposite is Babylon, the oppression of the Western world.

Where is the promised land of the Rastas?

It is located in Shashamene, Ethiopia, 260 km south of the capital Addis Ababa. in Selassie offered 500 hectares of land to Jamaican (and African-American) expatriates. The land is still inhabited and the cult continues.

Although the statements denounce a decrease in this religious craze of the Rastafarians themselves, I noticed that many Ethiopians “pure stock” have adopted the religion, especially on the side of the Omo Valley where it is common to meet Rastafarians.

The promised land of the Rastas

Visit Shashamane in Ethiopia

Rastas can be met easily in Shashamene. I have met some of different nationalities. I mention Jamaica in this article because the movement was born there but the entire West Indies were obviously concerned, although the heart of the movement is Jamaican. Dominican Republic, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago… I saw Rastas from these countries in Shashamene.

My visit to Shashamene

I also met a North American, an English, a Malagasy … I know there are even French people! Today, Rastafarianism is also embraced by all people who believe in Haile Selassie as God, so in itself, all countries can find themselves here!

Share this article


About the author

Picture of Tom Spirit
Tom Spirit
Hey, it's Tom! Welcolme to Spirit Travelers. I'm a nomad traveler for several years and I share my experiences by publishing content and travel guides on this blog. Find some of the most popular countries to visit but also off the beaten track destinations.

Content you might like

Why visit Ethiopia?

Ethiopia is a unique country and unlike any other in Africa. Let’s see in this article what it make it so special.

Why the war in Ethiopia

Tigray War

Understand the conflict in Nothern Ethiopia (simply explained).

Change destination

Insure your trip

Spirit Travelers readers can get a 5% discount for trips less than 3 months

Travel bank

Book an activity

Find the best flight

Book a tour

Find the best flight

Insure your trip

Spirit Travelers readers can get a 5% discount for trips less than 3 months

Travel bank

Notification pour

0 Commentaires
Commentaires en ligne
Afficher tous les commentaires