Efik mythology

In Efik mythology, Abasi is considered to be the Supreme Creator (God). His wife, Atai, is known as the mediator. It is believed that Atao convinced Abasi to allow two humans (one man and one woman), also known as their children of the corn, to live on Earth, but forbade them to work or reproduce. The children were required to return to heaven with Abasi whenever he rang the dinner bell. These rules were established so that the Efik people would not surpass Abasi in wisdom or strength. Eventually the children disobeyed and Abasi killed them both. Abasi and Atai were disgusted and gave the humans two gifts, chaos and death.[1]

Health

It was originally believed that Abasi and Atai live in the Sun. Abasi is the spirit of health. The tribesmen would often chant aloud to the sun in hopes that Abasi would hear their cries and heal them.[2] It was believed that Abasi gave certain tribesmen the ability to heal the sick through necromancy. Whenever someone in the tribe was ill, the chief would summon the witchdoctor. Within a healing ceremony, the tribesmen would start a fire. All the people of the tribe were required to gather around as they sang songs of worship to Abasi.

Nature

As time went on, the Efik people started believing that Abasi was the spirit of nature. Eventually this caused the people to begin worshipping the sun in the belief that it was Abasi himself.[3]

Local beliefs

It was also believed that twins were a disgrace to Abasi. It was thought to be evil for a woman to give birth to twins; the woman would be burnt alive and the twins were taken and left for dead in the desert.[4]

Major influences

The Reverend Hope Masterton Waddell came among the Efik people on 10 April 1846. The Efik people specifically requested for the evangelization of their kingdom in writing and the letters are dated 1 December 1842 and 4 December 1842 from King Eyo Honesty II and King Eyamba V respectively. Mary Mitchell Slessor came to Calabar in 1876. The Atai referred to as the wife of Abasi was the third Edidem of the Efik people. He was the king who led the Efik people out of the country of the Aros into Uruan country.

References

  1. ^ Benge, Geoff (28 July 1999). Mary Slessor: Forward into Calabar (Christian Heroes: Then & Now). YWAM Publishing. p. 203.
  2. ^ Jackson, Dave (1 May 1994). Trial by Poison: Mary Slessor (Trailblazer Books #12. Bethany House. p. 144.
  3. ^ Basil Miller (June 1985). Mary Slessor (Women Of Faith Series). Bethany House Publishers. p. 144.
  4. ^ Livingstone, W.P. Mary Slessor of Calabar.
Akwa Akpa

Akwa Akpa, known to European colonists as Old Calabar or Duke Town, was an Efik city-state that flourished in the 19th century in what is now southern Nigeria. Although it is now absorbed into Nigeria, traditional rulers of the state are still recognized. The state occupied what is now the modern city of Calabar.

Atai

Atai may refer to:

Atai Ulaan, a Buryat mythological figure

Atai, wife of Abassi in Efik mythology

Atai Mons, a mons on the planet Venus named for the spirit Atai

Atai (river), a river in Tangail District, Bangladesh

Atai (chieftain), a Manchu chieftain and uncle of Nurhaci

Ataï, a Kanak grand chef killed in the 1878 rebellion in New Caledonia

Atai, an alternative spelling of Atay, a Turkic name

Atai, a local name for Maghrebi mint tea

Atai, Advanced Tax Analytics and Innovation (PwC)

Efik

Efik may refer to:

Efik people, an ethnic group located primarily in southeastern Nigeria

Efik language, their language, a variation of the Ibibio language

Efik mythology

Efik people

The Efik are an ethnic group located primarily in southeastern Nigeria, in the southern part of Cross River State. The Efik speak the Efik language which is a Benue–Congo language of the Cross River family. Efik oral histories tell of migration down the Cross River from Arochukwu to found numerous settlements in the Calabar and Creek Town area. Creek Town and its environs are often commonly referred to as Calabar, and its people as Calabar people, after the European name Calabar Kingdom given to the state [in present-day Cross River State. Calabar is not to be confused with the Kalabari Kingdom in Rivers State which is an Ijaw state to its west. Cross River State with Akwa Ibom State was formerly one of the original twelve states of Nigeria known as the Southeastern State.

The Efik people also occupy southwestern Cameroon including Bakassi. This area, formerly a trust territory from German Cameroon, was administered as a part of the Eastern Region of Nigeria until it achieved autonomy in 1954, thus separating the Efik people politically. This separation was further extended when as a result of a 1961 plebiscite the area voted to join the Republic of Cameroon. Most of the area was immediately transferred, but in August 2006 - Nigeria handed over the Bakassi peninsula to Cameroon.

Ekpe

Ekpe, also known as Ekpo (Ibibio: Leopard), is a Nigerian secret society flourishing chiefly among the Efiks of the Cross River State, the Oron, of Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria, Arochukwu and some parts of Abia State, as well as in the diaspora, such as in Cuba and Brazil. The society is still active at the beginning of the 21st century, now playing a ceremonial role.

There are two distinct but related societies. The primary one in the Cross River, Arochukwu, Akwa Ibom areas, and the secondary one among the Southern and Eastern Igbo groups.

It is general belief amongst the Efik native tribe, although hardly ever substantiated, that the members of the Ekpe society invented the Nsibidi.

List of love and lust deities

A love deity is a deity in mythology associated with romance, sex, lust, or sexuality. Love deities are common in mythology and may be found in many polytheistic religions. Female sex goddesses are often associated with beauty and other traditionally feminine attributes.

List of religions and spiritual traditions

While religion is hard to define, one standard model of religion, used in religious studies courses, was proposed by Clifford Geertz, who defined it as a

[…] system of symbols which acts to establish powerful, pervasive, and long-lasting moods and motivations in men by formulating conceptions of a general order of existence and clothing these conceptions with such an aura of factuality that the moods and motivations seem uniquely realistic."

A critique of Geertz's model by Talal Asad categorized religion as "an anthropological category." Many religions have narratives, symbols, traditions and sacred histories that are intended to give meaning to life or to explain the origin of life or the universe. They tend to derive morality, ethics, religious laws, or a preferred lifestyle from their ideas about the cosmos and human nature. According to some estimates, there are roughly 4,200 religions in the world.The word religion is sometimes used interchangeably with "faith" or "belief system", but religion differs from private belief in that it has a public aspect. Most religions have organized behaviours, including clerical hierarchies, a definition of what constitutes adherence or membership, congregations of laity, regular meetings or services for the purposes of veneration of a deity or for prayer, holy places (either natural or architectural) or religious texts. Certain religions also have a sacred language often used in liturgical services. The practice of a religion may also include sermons, commemoration of the activities of a god or gods, sacrifices, festivals, feasts, trance, rituals, rites, ceremonies, worship, initiations, funerals, marriages, meditation, invocation, mediumship, music, art, dance, public service or other aspects of human culture. Religious beliefs have also been used to explain parapsychological phenomena such as out-of-body experiences, near-death experiences and reincarnation, along with many other paranormal and supernatural experiences.Some academics studying the subject have divided religions into three broad categories: world religions, a term which refers to transcultural, international faiths; indigenous religions, which refers to smaller, culture-specific or nation-specific religious groups; and new religious movements, which refers to recently developed faiths. One modern academic theory of religion, social constructionism, says that religion is a modern concept that suggests all spiritual practice and worship follows a model similar to the Abrahamic religions as an orientation system that helps to interpret reality and define human beings, and thus religion, as a concept, has been applied inappropriately to non-Western cultures that are not based upon such systems, or in which these systems are a substantially simpler construct.

Religion

Religion is a cultural system of designated behaviors and practices, morals, worldviews, texts, sanctified places, prophecies, ethics, or organizations, that relates humanity to supernatural, transcendental, or spiritual elements. However, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitutes a religion.Different religions may or may not contain various elements ranging from the divine, sacred things, faith, a supernatural being or supernatural beings or "some sort of ultimacy and transcendence that will provide norms and power for the rest of life". Religious practices may include rituals, sermons, commemoration or veneration (of deities), sacrifices, festivals, feasts, trances, initiations, funerary services, matrimonial services, meditation, prayer, music, art, dance, public service, or other aspects of human culture. Religions have sacred histories and narratives, which may be preserved in sacred scriptures, and symbols and holy places, that aim mostly to give a meaning to life. Religions may contain symbolic stories, which are sometimes said by followers to be true, that have the side purpose of explaining the origin of life, the universe, and other things. Traditionally, faith, in addition to reason, has been considered a source of religious beliefs.There are an estimated 10,000 distinct religions worldwide, but about 84% of the world's population is affiliated with one of the five largest religion groups, namely Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism or forms of folk religion. The religiously unaffiliated demographic includes those who do not identify with any particular religion, atheists, and agnostics. While the religiously unaffiliated have grown globally, many of the religiously unaffiliated still have various religious beliefs.The study of religion encompasses a wide variety of academic disciplines, including theology, comparative religion and social scientific studies. Theories of religion offer various explanations for the origins and workings of religion, including the ontological foundations of religious being and belief.

Sub-Saharan Africa

Sub-Saharan Africa is, geographically, the area of the continent of Africa that lies south of the Sahara. According to the United Nations, it consists of all African countries that are fully or partially located south of the Sahara. It contrasts with North Africa, whose territories are part of the League of Arab states within the Arab world. The states of Somalia, Djibouti, Comoros and the Arabic speaking Mauritania are however geographically in sub-Saharan Africa, although they are members of the Arab League as well. The UN Development Program lists 46 of Africa’s 54 countries as “sub-Saharan,” excluding Algeria, Djibouti, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Somalia, Sudan and Tunisia.The Sahel is the transitional zone in between the Sahara and the tropical savanna of the Sudan region and farther south the forest-savanna mosaic of tropical Africa.

Since probably 3500 BCE, the Saharan and sub-Saharan regions of Africa have been separated by the extremely harsh climate of the sparsely populated Sahara, forming an effective barrier interrupted by only the Nile in Sudan, though the Nile was blocked by the river's cataracts. The Sahara pump theory explains how flora and fauna (including Homo sapiens) left Africa to penetrate the Middle East and beyond. African pluvial periods are associated with a Wet Sahara phase, during which larger lakes and more rivers existed.The use of the term has been criticized because it refers to the South only by cartography conventions and projects a connotation of inferiority; a vestige of colonialism, which some say, divided Africa into European terms of homogeneity.

Traditional African religions

The traditional African religions (or traditional beliefs and practices of African people) are a set of highly diverse beliefs that include various ethnic religions. Generally, these traditions are oral rather than scriptural, include belief in a supreme creator, belief in spirits, veneration of the dead, use of magic and traditional African medicine. The role of humanity is generally seen as one of harmonizing nature with the supernatural. According to Lugira, "it is the only religion that can claim to have originated in Africa. Other religions found in Africa have their origins in other parts of the world."

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