Have we ever had a Black Queen of England?

Queen Charlotte of England
Tue, 1744-05-19

*Princess Sophie Charlotte was born on this date in 1744. She was the first Black Queen of England.

Charlotte was the eighth child of the Prince of Mirow, Germany, Charles Louis Frederick, and his wife, Elisabeth Albertina of Saxe-Hildburghausen. In 1752, when she was eight years old, Sophie Charlotte’s father died. As princess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, Sophie Charlotte was descended directly from an African branch of the Portuguese Royal House, Margarita de Castro y Sousa. Six different lines can be traced from Princess Sophie Charlotte back to Margarita de Castro y Sousa. She married George III of England on September 8, 1761, at the Chapel Royal in St James’s Palace, London, at the age of 17 years of age becoming the Queen of England and Ireland.

The conditions of the marriage contract were, ‘The young princess, join the Anglican church and be married according to Anglican rites, and never ever involve herself in politics’. Although the Queen had an interest in what was happening in the world, especially the war in America, she fulfilled her marital agreement. The Royal couple had fifteen children, thirteen of whom survived to adulthood. Their fourth eldest son was Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent, later fathered Queen Victoria.

Queen Charlotte made many contributions to Britain as it is today, though the evidence is not obvious or well publicized. Her African bloodline in the British royal family is not common knowledge. Portraits of the Queen had been reduced to fiction of the Black Magi, until two art historians suggested that the definite African features of the paintings derived from actual subjects, not the minds of painters.

In Queen Charlotte’s era slavery was prevalent and the anti-slavery campaign was growing. Portrait painters of the royal family were expected to play down or soften Queen Charlotte’s African features. Painters such as Sir Thomas Lawrence, who painted, Queen Charlotte in the autumn of 1789 had their paintings rejected by the royal couple who were not happy with the representations of the likeness of the Queen. These portraits are amongst those that are available to view now, which could be seen as continuing the political interests of those that disapprove of a multi-racial royal family for Britain. Sir Allan Ramsey produced the most African representations of the Queen and was responsible for the majority of the paintings of the Queen. Ramsey’s inclination to paint truer versions of the Queen could be seen to have come from being ‘an anti-slavery intellectual of his day. The Coronation painting by Ramsey, of the Queen was sent out to the colonies/commonwealth and played a subtle political role in the anti-slavery movement. Johann Zoffany also frequently painted the Royal family in informal family scenes.

Queen Charlotte was a learned character, her letters indicate that she was well read and had interests in the fine arts. The Queen is known to have supported and been taught music by Johann Christian Bach. She was extremely generous to Bach’s wife after Bach’s death. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, at aged eight dedicated his Opus 3 piece to the Queen at her request. Also an amateur botanist, Queen Charlotte helped to establish Kew Gardens bringing amongst others the Strelitzia Reginae, a flowering plant from South Africa. The Queen who had the first one in her house in 1800 introduced the Christmas tree to England. It was said to be decorated with, ‘sweetmeats, almonds and raisins in papers, fruit and toys. Also the Queen Charlotte Maternity hospital was established in London. Set up as a charitable institution, it is the oldest maternity care institution in England.

Queen Charlotte died on November 17, 1818 at Dutch House in Surrey, now Kew Palace, in the presence of her eldest son, the Prince Regent. She is buried at St George’s Chapel, Windsor. The only private writings that have survived are Queen Charlotte’s 444 letters to her closest confidant her older brother, Charles II, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. On 23 May 1773 in a letter, the Queen felt she was in a position of privilege yet a task. Her Christian faith was a protection and a method of endurance, as she quotes from the Bible and recognizes her role as a royal of God beyond her royal role on earth.  An exhibition took place in 2004, at the Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace displaying Charlotte and George’s collections and tastes in the arts. Queen Charlotte was the great great-great grandmother of the present Queen Elizabeth II who still lives in the expanded Buckingham House, now Buckingham Palace. Kew gardens still flourishes and is always being expanded, also the Queen Charlotte maternity hospital and many other places still carry her name in honor globally such as Charlotte town, Canada and Fort Charlotte, St Vincent, West Indies.

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Mindfulness Is More Effective Than Drugs For Both Anxiety and Depression



Mindfulness is “the intentional, accepting and non-judgemental focus of one’s attention on the emotions, thoughts and sensations occurring in the present moment”, which can be trained by a large extent in meditational practices. The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published the results of a ground-breaking study that found that meditation appears to provide as much relief from some anxiety and depression symptoms as antidepressants.

Mindfulness-based trainings have shown beneficial effects on inflammatory disorders in prior clinical studies and are endorsed by the American Heart Association as a preventative intervention. The training provides a biological mechanism for therapeutic effects.

A study in Psychoneuroendocrinology by researchers in Wisconsin, Spain, and France reported the first evidence of specific molecular changes in the body following a period of intensive mindfulness practice.

Mindfulness Meditation The Most Effective Form

Dr. Madhav Goyal of the John Hopkins School of Medicine, who led the research published in JAMA , singled out mindfulness meditation as the most effective form.

“It doesn’t surprise me at all that mindfulness performs as well as or better than medication,” says Adrian Wells, a professor of psychopathology at Manchester University and a clinical advisor to the charity Anxiety UK. The psychologist Katie Sparks agrees.

“In the group work that I’ve done with sufferers of anxiety or depression, I’ve found it very beneficial because it calms the mind. It’s not a new thing,” she adds.

That’s an understatement: Mindfulness is a meditation technique that has been advocated by Buddhism for 2,500 years. Paul Christelis, the Light Centre’s course leader and a clinical psychologist, defines it as “paying attention to your experience, on purpose, in the present moment, without judgment or criticism.”

Its crossover into Western culture has been gradual. But in 2004, its use in preventing the relapse of depression was approved by the U.K.’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice). It has rapidly gained traction since.

Gene Activity Can Change According To Perception

According to Dr. Bruce Lipton, gene activity can change on a daily basis. If the perception in your mind is reflected in the chemistry of your body, and if your nervous system reads and interprets the environment and then controls the blood’s chemistry, then you can literally change the fate of your cells by altering your thoughts.

In fact, Dr. Lipton’s research illustrates that by changing your perception, your mind can alter the activity of your genes and create over thirty thousand variations of products from each gene. He gives more detail by saying that the gene programs are contained within the nucleus of the cell, and you can rewrite those genetic programs through changing your blood chemistry.

In the simplest terms, this means that we need to change the way we think if we are to heal cancer. “The function of the mind is to create coherence between our beliefs and the reality we experience,” Dr. Lipton said. “What that means is that your mind will adjust the body’s biology and behavior to fit with your beliefs. If you’ve been told you’ll die in six months and your mind believes it, you most likely will die in six months. That’s called the nocebo effect, the result of a negative thought, which is the opposite of the placebo effect, where healing is mediated by a positive thought.”

That dynamic points to a three-party system: there’s the part of you that swears it doesn’t want to die (the conscious mind), trumped by the part that believes you will (the doctor’s prognosis mediated by the subconscious mind), which then throws into gear the chemical reaction (mediated by the brain’s chemistry) to make sure the body conforms to the dominant belief. (Neuroscience has recognized that the subconscious controls 95 percent of our lives.)

Now what about the part that doesn’t want to die–the conscious mind? Isn’t it impacting the body’s chemistry as well? Dr. Lipton said that it comes down to how the subconscious mind, which contains our deepest beliefs, has been programmed. It is these beliefs that ultimately cast the deciding vote.

Many Declaring Themselves Devotees

In the past few years, Oprah Winfrey, Arianna Huffington and Twitter co-founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone have declared themselves devotees.

General Mills, the Cheerios manufacturer, has a corporate mindfulness program with 700 members. In some business communities — notably Silicon Valley — it is so popular that you could argue that it has become a status symbol, a badge proving how busy and important your job is.

But its proponents swear by it. Ben, 32, a soccer-loving political advisor from Oxford, tries to set aside 15 minutes each day to meditate. “It definitely makes a difference when I do it,” he says. “It gives me more composure. I feel more clear-headed.” He was drawn to its promise of improved concentration — “my mind tends to wander” — but “the bigger thing I took away from it is it teaches you to take the rough with the smooth. Sometimes at work you feel, like, ‘this is just a nightmare’. But then you think: ‘It will be a nightmare for 10 days, then it will pass.'”

Kate, 34, works in fashion and has taken medication for many years to help manage her depression. “Medication was only going so far,” she says. “It wasn’t tackling me getting overwhelmed by my mind.” She’s been meditating for 20 minutes every morning for the past three years and says: “The emotion’s still there but instead of feeling, ‘Oh my God, I’m feeling really awful or depressed’, or whatever, you take a step back and think: ‘There’s that feeling. It will be there for a while and then it will go.'”

Paul believes mindfulness meditation “nurtures equanimity. It trains you to have an unshakeable balance of mind, so that you’re feeling everything but not getting swamped by it.”

Though I’ve never thought of it as “mindfulness,” I reckon I’m pretty good at appreciating the here and now. Many times a week I’ll note (just a little smugly) that I’m the only one looking up from my device and out of the window on my bus journeys to work. I’m a big believer in the benefits of quiet time, too: a few minutes now and then to acknowledge, and even indulge in, a little sadness, frustration or worry. So I arrive at the Light Centre thinking this will be a breeze.

The popularity of mindfulness coincides with a spike in the incidence of depression and anxiety in Britain. Prescriptions for antidepressants are up from 33.8 million in 2007 to 50.2 million in 2012. Job insecurity, financial pressures and attachment to technology all play their part. People work longer hours, worry more and sleep less.

Mindfulness Movement

The intention of Basic Meditation is to trick the mind into releasing itself, trick the mind into giving the thinking apparatus a rest, so that we can realize our Higher Selves, our essential oneness with whatever we consider to be divine. On the other hand, the intention of Mindfulness Meditation is secular; namely, to train the mind, in the same way that we would lift weights to strengthen a muscle, to be able to concentrate — and avoid weakly wandering around on autopilot — for longer and longer periods of time.

As opposed to “zoning out,” Mindfulness Meditation is like “zoning in” on whatever phenomenon or phenomena we choose to zone in on. We consciously focus our attention upon designated and specific thoughts or sensations that arise in our field of awareness and observe them non-judgmentally – maybe even label them. Thus, there are countless types of Mindfulness Meditations because we can choose to focus our attention on seemingly infinite phenomena.

Mindfulness is gaining a growing popularity as a practice in daily life, apart from buddhist insight meditation and its application in clinical psychology. n this context mindfulness is defined as moment-by-moment awareness of thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment, characterized mainly by “acceptance” – attention to thoughts and feelings without judging whether they are right or wrong. Mindfulness focuses the human brain on what is being sensed at each moment, instead of on its normal rumination on the past or on the future.

Mindfulness fosters compassion and altruism: Research suggests mindfulness training makes us more likely to help someone in need and increases activity in neural networks involved in understanding the suffering of others and regulating emotions. Evidence suggests it might boost self-compassion as well.

Constant stimulation offered by mobile devices — the average person checks their phone every six-and-a-half minutes — keeps us permanently alert, affecting our ability to concentrate, form memories and relax. If anxiety is the modern malaise, perhaps mindfulness is the cure.


Michael Forrester is a spiritual counselor and is a practicing motivational speaker for corporations in Japan, Canada and the United States.

8 mysterious black deaths the media won’t talk about

This is the secret to failure – never do this

12936673_974173809317386_7112378554974729448_nI speak to millions of young people every year, all over the country.  I am incredibly enthusiastic about the future and see a tremendous amount of potential in our young people.

But while I believe that the future is bright for our community, the magnitude of the brightness often varies from person-to-person.  I see some young people who are focused, determined, proficient at reading/writing/math, know how to start their own businesses and are on their way to the top.

Then, I see some young people who just aren’t ready.  Perhaps because they were never instilled with the discipline necessary to be successful, they honestly seem like they are all over the place:  An unbelievable sense of entitlement, quitting jobs after two weeks because their manager told them what to do, sleeping in their parent’s basements until the age of 35, and only using their phones for entertainment, never education.

I made this brief video as part of my Black Keys to Greatness Program for those who want to know one of the surefire secrets to failure:  Not sticking to the things you start.  I honestly believe, from the bottom of my heart, that one of the key factors in my own ability to find happiness in life was driven by the fact that my parents taught me to fight through the tough times to get to the rewards.

You can watch the video at this link.  You are also welcome to sign up for our Black Keys to Greatness Program in The Black Business School by joining us at BlackKeysToGreatness.com.  The first month is free.

Until we meet again, please be strong, be blessed and be educated.


Dr Boyce Watkins

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John Legend Is The Embodiment of A New & Improved Frederick Douglass

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Black Empowerment Bundle

Hello, I hope you’re doing well.

We at The Your Black World Network are constantly seeking new and better ways to connect with and educate members of our community.  We utilize low-cost, high-quality books, films and other products to not only provide every person of color with their own informational library, but also provide other paraphernalia that reminds you of the power and importance of connecting with your heritage.

For a the next two days, you can obtain a substantial discount on our new African People of Love! - Webmaster Newsletter - December 2010.  This bundle will conist of books and other products, sent to you every single month, that you and your family can enjoy.  These powerful tools provide engaging supplements for the educational system and American media, which often ignore the importance of black culture and history.

There is more information below, I hope you’ll consider taking a look.


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The discount lasts for the next 48 hours.  You can take advantage of the offer by visiting this link.


Until we meet again, please stay strong, be blessed and be educated.




Dr Boyce Watkins