September 21, 2022


Greetings, folks!

This is Harry Agina, and I welcome you to my series on religions. It’s titled, “On The Legitimacy of African Religions.” This is edition 3. I always say that when an issue of legitimacy of anything comes up, that means that somebody somewhere is challenging its legitimacy. And yes, indeed, African religions are being demonized, and sadly, by the Africans themselves. My key and thematic questions are: (1) Does Christianity, or Islam, or any other religion have the monopoly of access to the Almighty God? (2) What is it that makes African Traditional Religions, or any other religion illegitimate, or demonic?

This is where I introduce one of my regular or consistent subtopics. It says that obeying god’s “Ten Commandments” is your ultimate channel to God! It ain’t got anything to do with your religion, period!!! I pray the Almighty God of all the Godly religions of the world to bless you with a discernment-spirit right now. This is because I wish you to keep an open and discerning mind as you read my objective commentary on this topic.

You know, when discourses on religion happen, it is always necessary to bring up the matter of the “Godian Religion.” I will address that in due course. I only want to introduce it in passing here. The Godian Religion founders decided that it’s best to just worship God through God Himself, period! Um huh, no ‘middleman’ or ‘middle icon.’ Why not?! There’s so much hoopla about what mediums that humanity should go through to reach the same Almighty God. So, the “Godian” decided to just say, forget it; let’s just go directly to God Himself.

In the past editions, I introduced my meeting on this topic with a group of US Marines in Togo, West Africa. That was in 1992, at Togo’s “Yeke-Yeke (or Epe-Epe) Festival.” The festival is an annual event of the Voodoo Religion” in Togo. As always, I do have a link to those past editions of this series, to bring you up to date. The US Marines, six in number, and all white in race, strongly believed in the legitimacy of the African Religions. They went a step further, to affirm their beliefs. They applied, and were initiated into the Voodoo Religion of Togo, amid traditional rituals. I watched their initiation ceremony myself, live! But sadly, someone stole my bag during that seven-month journey around six African countries. Mind you, the journey was not just for African traditional religions. No sir, no ma’am. It was AfroCulturally encompassing. But anyway, I lost some of my film footage in the bag, and some parts of the event were among them. I thank God that I haven’t lost and won’t ever lose my memory. So, I can always recount the entire event any time. Besides, it has a brief chapter in my author-biographical book.

Anyway, in my interview with the Marines, they surprised me with their knowledge and disposition about the African culture and history. “In the first place, we all know that civilization started in Africa,” said one Marine, “so it makes no sense to say that African religions are illegitimate or evil.”

Since I don’t have my own film footage, I will offer you someone else’s video clip of the same Yeke-Yeke Festival of Togo. It is also pronounced “Epe-Epe Festival.” The video wasn’t from the same year, though, but the traditions/rituals are similar every year. I don’t have the permit to give it to you here on Afro-Scope site, so I must link you to YouTube, thus:

Just give it a thought, would you! The celebration and the dances that you see in that video were not for the devil. They were in celebration and worship of, and praises to God. Any mention of any other spirit is as a medium to God, just as Christians use Christ. I have always maintained that everything in the world belongs to God. We only allow the devil to possess anything when we glorify or worship him with it. If you venerate the devil in your words and deeds, then you are worshipping the devil. And if you venerate God, no matter what you’re using to do it, then your religion is of God!

Naturally, in my documentary journey, enlightened and tolerant African Christians do agree with my position. They concede that other religions do ultimately worship the same Supreme Creator, who is called God. He is also called Jah, Yaweh, Oluwa, Allah, Chukwu, or whatever else one may call Him, depending on one’s language. A Nigerian Catholic Christian had this to say about intolerant Christians in Nigeria, “That is typical. Nigerians will always go overboard in anything that we do. The westerners who brought Christianity to this part of the world are willing to concede that African religions, Islam, and the other religions are also legitimate. But not Nigerians! They want to be more Catholic than the Pope who is the father of the Catholic Faith.”

It’s always important for me to state that I am a Christian myself. And I certainly understand and believe in those passages in the Holy Bible, which present Jesus Christ as The Way. Indeed, I believe that I will make Heaven by following his teachings, which constitute his way. But not to forget the big rider, of course—this will only happen if I follow the Ten Commandments to do the right things, and have faith in the Almighty God! Remember, the Ten Commandments were issued by God before Christ himself came into the world. In essence, the Commandments were here long before Christianity and most of the other religions of the world.

Importantly, though a Christian, I do believe that there are other acceptable ways to reach God besides Christianity. Christianity is my choice, but there are other legitimate choices, too! I am willing to accept the legitimacy-claim of non-Christians, too. I am willing to concede that another man may be able to get to the same “salvation” destination through the teachings of Prophet Mohammed. That’s really what it’s all about—teachings that lead us to the knowledge of the supposed will of God, that’s it! Again, it’s all about learning to abide by the ultimate Godly principles—the Ten Commandments of God.

In other words, the religious person must be righteous or virtuous, with faith in the same Almighty God of the Christian faith. Let’s not lose sight of the fact that none of us is supposed to be worshiping Prophet Mohammed or Jesus Christ. The African traditionalists are not worshiping the spirits of their forefathers who they call upon to mediate between them and God either. We are all supposed to worship the same Almighty God, with the teachings of those media, be it the spirit of Mohammed, Christ, or the spirits of our forefathers in Africa. All those mediums were once human, and we believe that they have all gone to be with God because they were righteous humans.

When traditionalists pray, they ask for the love, support, and protection of God through the “Spirits of our Righteous or Virtuous Forefathers.” They speak of those spirits who metamorphosed into smaller gods. Ultimately, these spirits and smaller gods are interventionists, who plead to the Almighty God on behalf of the traditionalists. If Satan gets mentioned, it is only to damn him, and not to venerate him. Remember—this is certainly not to deny that some traditionalists do worship Satan. But some so-called Christians are certainly guilty of the same charge, too, and even worse, period!!!

Here’s a point to consider. Mother Theresa who died relatively a few years back has been consecrated a Saint by the Catholics. So, here is another pertinent question in my little argument: If Mother Theresa could become a saint; then why the heck is it so difficult to accept that some people in Africa attained, and some continue to attain the Saintly heights? Why is it hard to accept that their spirits could be mediators between man and God, too? It’s an insult to even consider that Africans today and in the years long gone never attain sainthood! And, if we can come to an agreement that Africans have saints, too, then there’s nothing to argue about anymore! African Traditionalists simply invoke the spirits of our virtuous saintly forefathers (as mediators) in prayers to God Almighty. The Roman Catholic Faith does go through Mary, Mother of Jesus, who was also human on earth, to get to her late son, before they finally get to God.

This is where I leave you for today. But before I go, I’ll entice you to the next editions with some coming features. I do have a theory on “Supreme Smaller God,” which you don’t wanno miss. Not to forget that I still have a treat for you on the process of praying in traditional African religions. Those, and more, are in the dish for ya, on this series, “On The Legitimacy of the African Traditional Religions.” Until the next edition, it’s bye for now, from ‘Me,’ ‘Myself,’ and ‘I.’

Ooops! Now, look at my silliness! I’ve just messed up my goodbye bid! Now I do owe you an explanation if you have never read my analysis of my ‘Blog Trinity’ of ‘Me,’ ‘Myself’, and ‘I’ before. Sorry, but I can’t spare the time to get into that now. So, please check for my old descriptions, and ‘Follow’ us, and ‘Subscribe’ to us so that you will know the next time it happens, soon! Besides, we do plead that you subscribe, and follow us, pretty pplleeaassssse! In case you didn’t know, the icon that looks like an envelope is what you click and fill out the short form with your email address, to subscribe. Then you will instantly receive our notification each time that we blog and vlog anything.

That way, you will always know when we have your favorite topics. I specially implore our teaming non-African fans to subscribe. You love our InterCultural-Exchange contents; don’t ya? Of course, you do! Everybody should learn about every culture of the world. Our contents are AfroCultural, Informative, and Entertaining—that’s InfoTainment for ya! Bye for now!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *