HOW BEST TO HAVE A KNOWLEDGE OF WITCHCRAFTING IN NIGERIA
Witchcraft is the supernatural interference in the natural community lifestyle and behaviour. It is a universal phenomenon which has a strong root in community beliefs. Before civilization and technology, almost all community cultures permitted the use of supernatural means of assistance. This assistance was in form of consultation with supernatural groups like the witches, to enquire or atone any phenomenon that surpassed the communities’ physical explanations. Such phenomena were generally on economic, war, health and political issues.
In the pre-colonial days, what is now known as Nigeria consisted of several ethnic groups with different culture and customs. Nigerian communities embraced witchcraft as a consultative medium of getting explanations to incomprehensible phenomena within their areas. The peoples were unaware of the causes of diseases and other natural phenomenon, hence, they consulted with supernatural groups or societies like the witches for explanations. Besides, some Nigerian communities especially the Yoruba and Igbo speaking tribes and people in the Southwest and Southeast, were known for the worship of Esu (the devilish supernatural). They believed that witchcraft was created by God (the goodness supernatural) to maintain balance in the world system. The coming of Christianity and the spread of Islam in the modern time, seemed not to have any significant impacts in the belief system of Nigerians in witchcraft. Before the coming of the colonial masters, witchcraft had been part of the culture and beliefs of the people.
One of the key conflicts degenerated into what was known as witch-hunting. Witch hunting was not only based on religious issues, but, economic and trade were some of the underlying motives for witch-hunting. Witchcraft became a discourse of power in the communities in which it was present as both conceptualization and action. Sexual jealousy of a new co-wife was often assumed to be inspiration for the use of witchcraft. The way women’s use of witchcraft was perceived to express men’s fear of women’s active agency and resistance.
However, Witchcraft in Nigeria was as old as humanity itself. It had being an issue that affected the people greatly. It was rooted in the custom and lifestyle of each of the communities. Magic, sorcery and witchcraft, had always been part of tribal issues and religion which affected almost all the Nigerian peoples at some stages of their history and still is on-going.
Witchcraft was without doubt one of the national human issues that kept unfolding because many phenomena were and are still scientifically unexplained. Because it was part of the history of the people, Nigerians never asked questions whether witchcraft was real or not. The peoples believe that witchcraft to them was real. Latour pictured witchcraft as an act of supernatural interference in the natural order of life to favour an individual. It was further pointed out that witchcraft was a supernatural endowment that was attached with a consequence.
Now, with the raise of technology prowess, people have join witchcrafting without prior knowledge of it departmentalization, because many have been carried with activities of body sensitivity without understanding is a tool of witchcraft. For instance, reality shows like Big Brother, hip hop video display of symbols and some activities that call for it in term of product advertisements and branding and sale of product in the marketplace which jiokcareers explained in the writeup on faith and business in the marketplace as highly spiritual. Our day to day activities have been surrounded with witchcraft that is the internet. Everyday we knowingly or unknowingly come in contact to witchcraft but due to some blind measures of the scripture they are bent to really understand how to overcome the auspicious nature of it.
We should be careful on how we refuse to seek a dimension of eternal grace against condemnation of the next world because we are faced with a lot of department when it come to concept of witchcraft.