5 faith moments to watch for in Beyoncé’s ‘Black Is King’

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(RNS) — Beyoncé’s visual album “Black Is King,” released Friday (July 31) on Disney+, brings to life the music of her 2019 album, “The Lion King: The Gift.”
 
“Black Is King” reimagines the story of “The Lion King,” which told the tale of a young lion named Simba who flees his home after his father, the king, is killed, rediscovering himself and returning years later.

African Americans have been on a similar journey, said writer and theologian Candice Marie Benbow. 

“It is this human story of both Simba and Black people — that we are trying to find home, come back to home and live into who we truly and fully are,” said Benbow, who created the #LemonadeSyllabus social media campaign after the release of Beyoncé’s previous visual album, “Lemonade.”

Spirituality plays a huge role in that journey in “Black Is King,” which draws imagery from Christianity and traditional African religions. 

“It is this honoring that Black people have always been a spiritual people, full stop, and that spirituality is robust and that to demonize it in any way, shape or form is also to demonize yourself,” Benbow said.

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