Name bearing has been a thing of great concern to mankind; especially it is hidebound to the people of Africa. It is so important that naming ceremonies are hosted for a newborn child. In some traditions, they consult divine powers to seek the name the child shall be given. They would want to identify the child.
Today, name, apart from being an identity, has turned into a fashion. Some people feel that the name one is bearing has great effect on the person and controls the person’s destiny in life. And if that may be true, then, Nigeria has to be changed to a new name because a lot of uglies have been recorded in the country.
But that subscription is dicey in the sense that the white men bear some shoddy names that an African can’t imagine, let alone giving them to their wards, yet they prosper more than those whose names are similar to that of the great man of morality, Jesus Christ, in Africa.
It is heartwarming to know that ‘our destinies are in our hands’ but disheartening to notice that a lot of Africans see anything that has to do with Africa as Satanic and evil. A lot of people would not want to be associated with any tradition or culture that has African flavour except they are directed by a white man or the white man’s agents to do so.
Africans feel inferior so much about their way of living; they are biased so much in the sense that the untold hardship and poverty racking the continent are attributed to the misdeeds of their forefathers and the African religion they held with morality.
This fact leads to the Christians’ ‘land deliverance’ in all the climes of African sub-regions. The fear that ‘whatever your father did shall pass from one generation to another’ has become pestilence in the heart of many Africans. People run helter-skelter these days for divine intervention. People are delivering the land but hardly any person wants to deliver the heart.
The heart is where all the evils ransacking Africa are nurtured, not in name. Is it the so called misdeeds of the forefathers’ that covered the minds and hearts of today’s African leaders to be gluttonous and misrule Africans with scorpions? Who in Africa has done what the white man’s forefathers did? Yet they are prospering.
Anywhere in the world you go today, there are people of African descent who cannot trace their root, an act occasioned by the wicked act called slave trade introduced by the white man. African mentality is so colonized to the extent that it needs another kind of colonialism to decolonize it.
Bearing a name in Africa is causing a lot of havoc! Women are the culprit. None want their children to be associated with Africa, thereby naming their children names they don’t know the meaning of – English or Latin – all in the name of Christianity.
But if a child is named Chidi, Sola or Musa in the church as his or her baptismal name, won’t the clergy accept that? How many white men bear the name from Africa or even the so called Christian names? No matter how Malcom X tried to trace his origin in Africa, his name still remained Malcolm X and not Lekan, Chidi or Bola.
It is time Africans decolonized their heart! It is time Africans traced their root and know that the name given to a child explicates the significance of what happened or transpired the period the child was born and not to determine the child’s destiny. Do white men not answer Bush, Wood, Toad, Frog, and so forth yet they prosper?
Africa’s names have metamorphosed from epic to modern African names and now to European. African languages are also on the verge of extinction, if not in oblivion, for the white man’s.
A lot of Africans do not feel proud to speak their mother tongue in the public. When asked their names, they call names that are even irritating to the ear starting from the pronunciation instead of their native given names. An African may write under the foreign name but has to be called by Africa’s local name because name is not a fashion but an identity.
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