Black Fusionist Society
By Antoine Williams
Table of Contents
WHAT IS THE BLACK FUSIONIST SOCIETY PROJECT?
THE BLACK FUSIONIST SOCIETY MANIFESTO
TEN VIBES OF THE FOUNDING MOTHERS
WHAT IS THE BLACK FUSIONIST SOCIETY PROJECT?
Black Fusionist Society (BFS) is a collaborative effort in historical fiction storytelling. The goal of this project is to create contemporary digital Black folklore that lives online. The text and imagery found here are the foundation to the BFS narrative.
This is a call to writers and artists to use this imagery and text provided as inspiration to create an online Black Fusionist Society mythos. Draw, paint, write, perform, make zines, sew, sing, or whatever you feel motivated to do to further develop the BFS universe. Post online with the hashtag #blackfusionistsociety. We'll continually upload the work to our website.
THE BLACK FUSIONIST SOCIETY MANIFESTO
We are the Black Fusionist Society. We are all children of the African diaspora. We are a fusion of Blackness in all its just forms, which we celebrate, support, and defend. We do not claim royal pedigree of Africian Queens and Kings. But that of tribespeople, tradespeople, peasants, captives, slaves, sharecroppers, domestics, farmers, rebels, factory and shift workers as well as the forgotten. We wear the crown of this lineage proudly.
The Black Fusionist Society was born out of the trauma visited upon Black bodies and minds in the bloodstained streets of Wilmington, North Carolina one Thursday, on Nov. 10th 1898. That day made clear that Black bodies are prey to white supremacy. A super predator that stalks our bodies, our culture and sanity. White supremacy is a pathology that infects every inhabitable space on this planet. White supremacy needs a crisis to justify its violence and Black people are that crisis. We reject white supremacy, misogynoir and anti-Blackness in all its forms. The patriarchy, classism, heteronormativity, and ableism are all anti-Black and must be defeated. Therefore we follow the “Vibes of the Founding Mothers,” Knowledge, Doubt, Empathy, Culture, Intersectionality, Scientific Method, Failure, History & Progression, Self Care, and Equity. Any member of the Black Fusionist Society must be a child of the African diaspora and follow The Vibes of the Founding Mothers.
Our Blackness is a natural resource. One which has sprung forth civilizations, inventions, art and ideals that have shaped all of humanity. However this planet has not afforded us, Black people, access to this title of human. In terms of humanity, white supremacy’s default for Blackness is absence. White supremacy voids our humanity and fills it with their version of monstrosity. When it comes to the perception of Black people, we are not human. Our existence in this world will always be that of either animate objects or monsters. Anti-Blackness is so interwoven into this planet’s society that it can’t be undone without undoing society itself. That is why the Black Fusionist Society must work to find a new world to migrate where anti-Blackness cannot follow, which we call The Crossover. M-theory is our salvation! Our goals are progression of a better existence for our descendants and The Crossover.
In an ironic twist, a cruel joke, the progression toward The Crossover to another realm will solve the problematic presence of Blackness. The only way this planet will see Black bodies as completely human is in our complete absence. Then we will be monsters of absence.
The Way Back
A barrage of bullets tore from Gatling guns on the evening of Nov. 10th, 1898 in the southern coastal town of Wilmington, North Carolina. This signaled the onslaught of death and despair carried out by white rage that would come to be known as the Wilmington massacre which took the lives of 300 Black humans beings. At the same time, a group of domestic workers, all Black women, gathered some of the neighborhood children and fled to Pine Forest Cemetery and hid in nearby swamps for two weeks. This saved their lives. While in hiding, the women kept the children’s spirits up by telling stories and singing hymns such as “New Jerusalem” with lyrics like, “When the battle is over we will cross over to Jerusalem.” After thirteen days of hiding, five of the women snuck back into town to gather supplies. At nightfall they disappeared with eleven of the children into the nearby woods and marsh. Those women and children went on to start a secret society that came to be known as The Black Fusionist Society (BFS) in a small rural town in North Carolina, whereabouts currently unknown. These five women would come to be known as the Founding Mothers. The eleven Black children they saved are deemed the first generation––we are currently on the fourth.
The Founding Mothers developed a society that grew out of the traumatic event of the Wilmington Massacre and that centered around ten core beliefs which are called “Vibes.” They promote social justice, creativity, and science as means of defeating white supremacy and anti-Blackness. The teachings as well as aspects of anti-Blackness are personified through “Mythic Beings” that can be summoned or warded off using rituals, mantras, equations, or totems. They house all of this info in a sacred text called “The Papers.”
The Right Now
Present day members of The Black Fusionist Society are the descendants of the Founding Mothers and the First Generation. This First Generation went on to continue the teachings, ideals, and beliefs set forth by the Founding Mothers, even adding to them as some went on to become scientists, artists, farmers, writers, activists, and academics. Still today they carry on and add to the traditions and rituals started by the original group. It is believed there are some who currently live in the unnamed North Carolina town, while others are spread throughout the United States and world. The identities and exact number of current members are unknown. Every ten years all members gather to reflect, update, critique, debate and make amendments to their belief system and The Papers.
The Will Be
The Black Fusionist Society believes that white supremacy is a malevolent force––an entity, a pathology that infects every tangible and intangible space. The BFS believes that anti-Blackness is so interwoven into society that it can’t be undone without undoing society itself. Therefore to travel to an alternate dimension where white supremacy doesn’t exist to start anew is the only option.
“White Supremacy needs a crisis to justify its violence and Blackness is that crisis. When it comes to the perception of Black people, we are not human. Our existence in this world will always be that of either objects or monsters. That is why the BFS must find a new world. M-theory is our salvation.”
– The BFS Manifesto
It wasn't until 1968 that Gina Brown and Lisa Williams of the Second Generation added the idea of inter-dimensional travel to the BFS belief system. The ultimate goal of the BFS is to work toward developing technology that will allow a future generation the ability to travel to an alternate dimension. This event is referred to as “The Crossover." In 1995, M-Theory became a plausible avenue to achieve this goal. Since then, BFS physicists and engineers have been working to develop this technology, while BFS botanists, artists, social scientists, and political theorists are continuing to imagine a society without oppression.
Each generation believes The Crossover will not happen in their lifetime, hence there is an acceptance of failure, of disequilibrium. For the BFS, the true goal isn’t achieving inter-dimensional travel (even though that is preferred), it is about progress, therefore, the work toward reaching The Crossover as a means of survival. Completely dismantling white supremacy in this world and finding a new one free of anti-Blackness through inter-dimensional travel are both theoretically plausible but highly improbable. Both are just as much aspirational and hopeful as they are silly, cartoonish, and naïve. Therefore, the work, the science, the art, the fight is not for themselves. It is all for their descendants.
Sarah Brown (1877-1968)
Inez Williams (1879-1922)
Mabel Garner (1881-1960)
Sandra Ann Freeman (1880-1898)
Sophia Williams (1883-1980)
Alice Townsend (1890-1988)
Ella May (1891-1939)
Fannie May (1888-1982)
Walter Townsend (1893-1970)
Mary "Little" Pleasant (1891-1978)
Joseph "Jo Jo" Hughs (1889-1942)
Rose Coleman (1890-1985)
Bessie Freeman (1889-1970)
Ida "Teach" Johnson (1887-1970)
Jessie Brown (1892-1917)
Nate (Toot) Jackson (1893-1962)
TEN VIBES OF THE FOUNDING MOTHERS
The Black Fusionist Society has ten core beliefs or “vibes” that make up their society. Each vibe has a Mythic Being that can be summoned and for each there are various rituals, totems, or spells.
The BFS uses the day-number calendar. Each lesson is assigned a number. Up to three different lessons will correspond to any day-number. On that day, one is invited to reflect on readings and discussions associated with those lessons and how they can benefit oneself, the BFS, and Black life. Also on those days, particular rituals will take place and Mythic Beings may present themselves.
June 11th is the day-number 163 which correlates to 1= Equity, 6=Culture, and 3= Knowledge. February 23rd is the day- number 54 which correlates to 0=Empathy, 5=Self Care, and 4= Intersectionality.
2 Self-reflection, critique and doubt
5 Self Care
7 History & Progression
9 Scientific method
One experience is not all experiences. Human beings navigate this plane of existence in various forms. This plane erects barriers for each of us––some shared, others not. One must transform this plane so that we all can maneuver freely, be it physically, emotionally, or mentally.
SELF-REFLECTION, CRITIQUE, & DOUBT
Perfection is death. Progression is life. Everything must be critiqued, especially that which is foundational and gives comfort. For those are the most in danger of becoming harmful dogma. One must visit failure and success in self-reflection. One must live in the uncomfortable. Only then can one truly live.
Knowledge is built upon the labor of those before you. The pursuit of knowledge is essential to growth. Knowledge is powerful, yet amoral and therefore can be weaponized to exploit or do harm. As one learns they also gain the insight to wield it in a way that is most beneficial to self, the BFS, and Black life.
We are many things. Self is an ecosystem. No one person is a monolith. Welcome all of your selves. Build relationships with your many selves. Understand their joy and pain. They are both separate and connected. Use your many selves to build community with others.
One cannot care for others if self is in pain. We are an ecosystem. Caring for self is caring for others. One’s emotional, mental, and physical self care benefits all. Self-care is human.
We are an ecosystem. Culture is an ecosystem. There is the pine tree and there is the forest. The pine tree needs the forest just as the forest needs the pine tree. There must be balance in this relationship. One tree can never completely outgrow the forest but each tree is free to reach for the sun.
HISTORY & PROGRESSION
History is the foundation from which progression takes flight. History is meant to be studied, honored, and remembered. History should be ruthlessly critiqued. History must not be an impediment to progression but serve as a teaching tool. Progression should be ruthlessly critiqued. Progression should become familiar with doubt and failure. Progression must be approached cautiously and passionately.
Failure is human. Failure is needed for growth. Develop a healthy relationship with your failure. Embrace failure as one would an old friend. Failure is here to teach; one must be open to learn. A rejection of failure is a rejection of life.
One must explore the world we inhabit. Subjective opinion masquerading as objective fact can be deadly. One should utilize methodologies that deliver ideals that live in truth. Once the truth is confirmed then one can express their perspective.
One experience is not all experiences. However, we all share the same emotions. The ability to acknowledge the emotions, experiences, and perspective of others is truly human. Empathy is freedom. Empathy will connect one to their ecosystem. Empathy will allow one to better serve their sister and to defend against their enemy.
Mythic Beings are demigod creatures that exist within the Black Fusionist Society belief system. They may exist as benevolent, malevolent, or indifferent entities. Each of the ten Vibes has a Mythic Being. There are other Mythic Beings that represent various phenomena, conditions, structures, or ideals in society. A Mythic Being may arrive when a BFS member is in a time of need, doubt, or transition.
FALAMI, MYTHIC BEING OF EQUITY (BENEVOLENT)
The Falami are found in groups between two to five, normally with heads that shine. They share many bodily functions such as sight, breathing, eating, etc. The Falami can’t complete certain tasks unless it is equitable for all in the group. This requires conversation, debate, and compromise. They may not always be in the same vicinity but are linked emotionally and can communicate over large distances. BFS members have been linked to a Falami group as a means of understanding equity. The Falami is said to be a relative of Ebele.
MESI, MYTHIC BEING OF SELF-REFLECTION & CRITIQUE (INDIFFERENT)
A tree-like creature that grows out of a shallow lake with three blank faces atop of its humanoid trunk-like form. The Mesi may appear at times of transition, hubris, important decisions, or self-doubt. A person will sit, stand, or lie in the shallow lake and stare into one of the outstretched faces, which will reflect the person’s inner feelings. The individual will go into a trance-like state while gazing in the Mesi for a period of time lasting anywhere from ten minutes to one week.
NOMALANGA, MYTHIC BEING OF KNOWLEDGE (INDIFFERENT)
Normally in the form of a child, adult, multi-headed raven, or flock of ravens. Nomalanga has to be sought out for advice or questioning. They, like knowledge, are extremely powerful but amoral and have the potential to do both good and harm. Without the other benevolent Mythic Beings, information from Nomalanga has the potential to be very dangerous. Nomalanga is often found in the company of Faraji, Mythic Being of failure. It is believed that they feed off of the failures Faraji consumes.
WASEME, MYTHIC BEING OF INTERSECTIONALITY (BENEVOLENT)
Waseme takes the form of a sentient mobile mass of interlocking foliage and small fauna. There is said to be a woman at the center. If summoned, Waseme will engulf a person’s body. While they are enveloped within Wasme, one will confront and come to terms with all of their identities in what has been described as a dream-like state.
EMEM, MYTHIC BEING OF SELF-CARE (BENEVOLENT)
The Emem is physical embodiment of one’s physical, mental, and emotional equilibrium. Emem is one figure (usually carrying a bag or pouch) and a number of smaller ones always near. All can shift in size depending on their mental, emotional, and physical state. They must be kept in equilibrium or they will experience extreme discomfort. When visiting a person, Emem will reflect the individual's disequilibrium and work with them until it is corrected. Emem is the sister of Ayana.
AYANA, MYTHIC BEING OF CULTURE (BENEVOLENT)
Ayana can be found in the form of a person but can shape-shift to a swarm of bees or ants, a flock of hummingbirds or even a field of flowers. Ayana is the sibling of Emem and they are often found in the same vicinity.
TUMA, MYTHIC BEING OF HISTORY & PROGRESSION (INDIFFERENT)
Tuma is one entity in the form of three people who are at three different stages of life. They are constantly aging until death, then reborn as a young child to repeat their life cycle. Soon after birth, they develop a massive set of horns that reduce in size as they age until they disappear, at which time they die. They are reborn with all of the knowledge of their previous selves.
FARAJI, MYTHIC BEING OF FAILURE (BENEVOLENT)
Faraji is often in the form of a child with the head of a hippopotamus who appears at times of great defeat for an individual, sometimes accompanied by Nomalanga, the Mythic Being of knowledge. The Faraji opens its large mouth to consume a person’s failure, then gives them a totem to remember that moment. The BFS believes that failure is necessary for growth and knowledge.
NIA, MYTHIC BEING OF THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD (INDIFFERENT)
Nia may appear as a small girl, six orbs of light, or a plant that bears only six fruits. Six is believed to be a reference to the six steps of the scientific method. Nia will assist members in experiments; however, Nia can be aggressively curious and will at times involve humans in their own experiments, tests, riddles, which could cause an individual harm.
EBELE, MYTHIC BEING OF EMPATHY (BENEVOLENT)
Ebele is a benevolent being whose appearance is often grotesque to the viewer. They can be summoned to visit someone who may be lacking empathy. Sometimes Ebele will take it upon themselves to visit a BFS member who is unknowingly in need. They have the ability to share sensations and emotions with others. Once summoned, they cannot leave until the individual is more empathetic. Ebele is said to be a relative of Falami.
NEKANE, MYTHIC BEING OF MISOGYNOIR (MALEVOLENT)
Nekane is the mortal enemy of Waseme and Ebele. Nekane is extremely benevolent to cis Black men, gifting them wealth, power, and prestige at the detriment of cis and trans Black women and other Black non-binary and trans people. Cis Black men of the Black Fusionist Society must constantly fight off the trappings of Nekane and defeat it.
AZAZEL, MYTHIC BEING OF THE RESPECTABILITY POLITICS/WHITE GAZE (MALEVOLENT)
Azazel slowly turns its victims into a deformed version of themselves that is twisted to fit an anti-Black ideal of Blackness. One must believe in Azaze for them to be effective. They will appear at times of doubt to haunt an individual. Azazel will manifest in different forms––sometimes as a voice in one’s head whispering, taunting, yelling non-stop. Azazel's goal is to slowly drive the person insane.