Traditional Yoruba Society: The Truth Behind ‘blood Money’. - Culture (4) - Nairaland
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|Re: Traditional Yoruba Society: The Truth Behind ‘blood Money’. by OShepherd: 8:39am On Aug 31, 2017 |
Many of us got acquainted with the concept of blood money from Nigerian movies and some of us have seen it in real life.
In the traditional Yoruba society, blood money tales are very common from time immemorial but how did blood money or money ritual come into being? Why do people who do it die young? Is it a myth? Why does the money go away when the recipient dies? When is it blood money? When is it money rituals? So many questions…
In 2013, I was in Modakeke in Osun State. I related well with the locals—many of whom are hardworking, resilient and easy-going. They mind their own businesses. The average Modakeke person, although religious in modern terms, has deep roots in traditional religion. In the town, I noticed some lived in affluence; some in poverty. I saw old men with their wives sitting in front of their mud houses and enjoying the breeze and quiet. Food is cheap, air is clean. No generators to disturb your life. Life is quite easy and peaceful. A lot of the people are contented. A little stereotype though, if you see 20 cars in the town, 16 will be Volvo, 2 will be Benz 190 and the remaining 2 for Mazda or Toyota.
However, I cannot but notice the flamboyant lifestyles of a certain group of people—the students. Some used exotic cars with customized number plates, driving in and around town in convoy, some lived in hotels…I was curious so I asked a local and a friend of mine. “it’s blood money” he said. I began to quiz him. I asked why and how did blood money come about. He explained that in the ancient community of the Yorubas, it was common for the locals to seek answers into the future of their unborn or new born child. The deities did not disappoint. They will reveal a bright future for some and a bleak future (beyond natural causes) of agonizing poverty for some. If the latter was the case, the elders in the family will do a money ritual on behalf of the child and it will be kept a secret unto their graves.
As the child grows, anything he touches turns to gold and because the society was less selfish, he (usually the first born son of the house) would raise others in the family and community. But as time passed, the love of material things grew, patience waned and people began to seek things beyond the ordinary—the birth of blood money. The former did not require human sacrifice; the recipient is ignorant of the money ritual was done because the secrets will die with the elders in the family. The latter requires human sacrifices; causing pain and death to innocent people. This is one of the reasons they don’t live long. It is a deadly shortcut. He said that’s why I would never see a traditional Yoruba priest do blood money for himself or his family. There is a man in a certain state who has over 30 houses and many children. This man wears rags, he lives in room in one of those houses and uses a 21” TV. He doesn’t have a car. He is nearly a mad man. Back to the local’s narrative, he said blood money feeds on greed, impatience, lust and an inordinate desire to make it. He said they have to die young because they have moved the future to the present. They have tweaked the balance of life. He concluded.
Although the above is just a man’s account, I find it interesting and educative—at least a background knowledge needed to study such in the future.
Na wa o
|Re: Traditional Yoruba Society: The Truth Behind ‘blood Money’. by FzanyAjibs(m): 10:28pm On Jun 01|
Men are simple things. They can survive a whole weekend with only three things: beer, boxer shorts and batteries for the remote control.