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(RNS) The hip-hop artist formerly known as Snoop Dogg has taken a new name that reflects his religious conversion. So, did Snoop have to change his name when he became a Rasta? By Daniel Burke.

8 Comments

  1. “Speaking of Marley, Snoop Lion also said that he considers himself a reincarnation of the late musician.”

    Robert Nesta “Bob” Marley, died 1981
    Calvin Cordozar “Snoop Dogg/Lion” Broadus, Jr., born 1971

    I don’t think reincarnation works retroactively, at least not in most religions that preach it … If Rastafarianism does see it happening that way, that is worth an article all by itself.

    Maybe he was speaking figuratively.

  2. Daniel Burke

    Reincarnation, in many Eastern traditions, does not have to work in quite the linear way that you present, clasqm.

    Note, for instance, that the Dalai Lama is already said to be looking for his reincarnation, in part to prevent China from doing it for him.

    Buddhists have described reincarnation as a candle lighting another candle. I suspect that Rastas likewise might say that Marley’s flame lit Snoop’s soul before he died.

    Thanks for reading and writing,
    Daniel

  3. I think you are misinterpreting recent reports about the DL, Daniel. He is organizing his next rebirth in classic Tibetan tulku fashion, even to the point of deciding whether to reincarnate as an idetifiable DL at all. A shrewd move: if he declares the Dalai Lame line will end with him, no Chinese candidate would ever be accepted. There is no suggestion that he next DL might already have been born.

    Buddhist philosophy is rather strict on temporal sequencing, otherwise karma would make little sense. If you could receive the outcomes from karmic acts you hadn’t even committed yet, you might as well give up

    .In fact, I recently published a short story suggesting a way that reincarnation might work backwards as well as forwards, but I would hardly call it orthodox reincarnation theory.

    But back to the point: you may be right. Perhaps that is what the Rastas would say. As I said, speaking figuratively. It would be better, though if instead of us debating the issue, if we could get an official Rasta POV (I am not a Rasta, and from your phrasing, I take it you are not either).

    I know, Rastas don’t really do official. And they are not likely to say that their new celebrity convert made a little error :-) But it is an interesting question.

  4. Daniel Burke

    Thanks again, Clasqm. Indeed I’m thinking about a follow up story for which I would seek an official Rasta POV.

    To the Dalai Lama point, I was referring specifically to reports like this, which leave little doubt that, though it is unorthodox, HHDL has thought about choosing his reincarnation before his death.

    “The Dalai Lama has openly speculated about his next life, his reincarnation, musing that he might upend historical and cultural practice and choose his reincarnation before his death, the better to safeguard his exiled people.”

    From here: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/01/weekinreview/01powell.html

  5. Check out this take on Snoop Lion’s spiritual transformation: http://www.rapandreligion.com/rastafari-snoop-lion/