The Kongo Kingdom was strongly kin-based. Extended families were basic unit, organized ancestry. This kin-shaped leadership helped establish political leadership and general safety. It also help keep the same style of leadership going throughout. The Kongo people were artistic and had craftsmanship. They produced fabrics and other products that were traded.
The people of the Kongo had to adapt to the rain forest they were living in. They did not have the type of resources and technology to take down the trees, like we do now. They lived near the Congo River, which was their main source of resource for water. The people that were on the coast relied mainly on fishing. The Empire was set in the area it was located for a long time due to the impassible geography surrounding them. They had an ocean to the west, a desert to the north, a jungle east, and a mountain south of them.
They believe that there is a god, who made the earth and the people, but left them alone when they were alive. They would rather believe in ancestral spirits and nature spirits for there day to day needs. These gods would include rain gods, sun gods, and dead ancestors and political figures. The spirits would look over their daily life and protect them. However, if someone was doing unjust things the spirits would haunt them and make their lives havoc. Christianity started to spread and take over in the later years. Christianity came from North Africa. Religion was part of their everyday lives and there would be worship sessions throughout the day to make sure god and the spirits were treated correctly.
A great example of how the Kingdom of Kongo's people displayed their art skills were in the royal portraits-statues of their leaders. This art was made to convey their loyalty to their leader, which was very important because the leaders came from different families and someone could easily dislike a leader for their ancestral roots. These statues were made mostly of stone, which shows the people of the Kongo knew how to work with stone and also had it as a resource. People had to spend much time to make these. The society had artists that did art for a living. This shows how much the people of the Kongo valued art.
Politics were very simple in the Kongo. Some leaders were chosen from the strong families, and they would share the power and lead. The power would be passed down from generation to generation and would rarely change. The people were loyal to their leaders and had respect for them. Simply put, there was not any politics.
"Geography." Pinterest. Web. 23 Jan. 2015. <http://www.pinterest.com/pin/400538960581803541/>.
"Geography." The Kongo Kingdom. Web. 23 Jan. 2015. <http://kongoempire.weebly.com/geography.html>.
"History Kingdom of Kongo." History Kingdom of Kongo. Web. 23 Jan. 2015. <http://www.africafederation.net/Kongo_History.htm>.