THE PLACE OF ANCESTRAL VENERATION IN IGALA -AFRICAN RELIGION AND CULTURE
Asian Journal of Arts, Humanities and Social Studies,
African people believe that death does not put an end to man’s existence but it is a transition to the next world i.e. spiritual world. They also believe that the departed ones enter into a spiritual state of existence. The dead are believe to be every where at all time. The ancestors are always revered and held in high esteem. They are believed to come next to God in spiritual realm. They come next in importance to the Supreme Being. Other spiritual beings may be spoken ill of but the ancestors are held in awe. They are believed to know more than the living and are addressed as elders. Through libation prayers are offered to the ancestors. For one to become an ancestor, he must die a natural death, the person must have lived moral life while on earth, the person must have married and have an offspring. Africans and the Igala in particular, venerate the ancestors because of the crucial roles ancestors play in the lives of the people. Inspite of the important roles ancestors play in the lives of the traditional Africans, some people still nurse the idea that ancestral veneration is irrelevant, outmoded and something properly fitted into the era of barbaric primitiveness. They claim that the practice will soon die a natural death because the practice can no longer withstand the influence of Christianity and Western education. This paper adopted historical method. The aim is to preserve ancestral veneration for our fast decaying society. After dialectical examination of some written works, it was revealed that ancestral veneration is at the center of Igala religion and that Africans did not worship ancestors but venerate them.
- Ancestor’s hood
- religion and culture.
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