DEEVA PROSE: The Bondage Of Superstition

I was nursing my three month old son one day, when I noticed two wall geckos chasing each other on my wall.

“What!” I exclaimed to myself, “enough already, this is my fifth baby!” Then I remembered the promise I made to myself, never to give in to such silly thoughts.

Where I come from, it is a sign of good luck if wall geckoes are found in your home. It is believed that they carry the souls of unborn babies. If they are found lurking in your home, then your home is bound to be blessed with children.

It comes as no surprise then, that the wall gecko is called ‘ukpong eyin’ in my language, which easily translates to ‘soul of a child’. You can imagine my alarm at seeing two wall geckoes when I have five kids already!

I don’t know how superstitions came to be, who thought them up or the purposes they were meant to achieve but I sure know that anyone who believes in them must live by its rules and as such is restricted as much as these superstitions will allow.

Where my husband comes from, it is believed that a man and his wife must lie on the bed with their heads side by side; facing each other whenever they wish to retire for the night. If they wake up the following morning and find themselves lying in opposite directions, the consequence is that they must divorce.

So one day my husband and I got into a big fight and in a moment of defiance, I turned and laid down with my head by his feet and my feet by his head. When he woke up and saw me, he panicked. ‘What have you done?!” he screamed.

“Just what you’ve seen!” I replied cheekily, “I want a divorce!”

The poor man held his head in his hands and said, “I can’t agree to a divorce, I love you!”  Then I told him he should have thought of that before provoking me. When I realized the situation was really getting to him, I began to soften and asked him if the consequence was severe.

He said he wasn’t sure about the consequence but the elders of his land always insisted that the erring couple must be divorced or something terrible might happen. So I asked him, “Will you tell them then?” He said, “I won’t, will you?” and I said, “No, I won’t” and that settled it.

My cousin Koko wasn’t so wise. He got into a fight with his wife when she was loosely dressed. Her wrapper fell off and she got very upset and said some harsh words to him. He claimed his wife was placing curses on him and decided to teach her a lesson. He reported her to the elders of his clan.

The village elders arrived their city home and ruled that Koko mustn’t eat any meal prepared by his wife until certain cleansing rituals were performed by her. After one week of eating outside the home, he developed a running stomach and was rushing to the toilet every ten minutes. He thoroughly regretted involving the elders in the petty quarrel he had with his wife and promised never to do so again.

In some parts of Africa, if your left eye twitches, it is a bad omen. If your right eye twitches, it’s a good omen. If you hit your left foot on a rock, it’s a bad omen and if it’s the right, it’s a good sign. There are countless superstitions not only in Africa, but all over the world.

While I do not despise them as I may never know how they originated, I just do not allow them to overwhelm me or to determine my fate. Nowadays, if my left eye twitches I claim it to be a good omen…and if it’s my right eye that’s twiching, I claim an even better omen!

I do not believe anything negative can happen to me just like that because I am God’s child…and that pretty much settles it.

What are your opinions about SUPERSTITIONS?

SUPERSTITION

Article Written By: Peace Ben Williams.

No part of this article should be copied or published without the permission of the author.

The Bondage Of Superstition ©2013

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