Not quite long I came across this picture and I thought of briefly dropping a comment or two.
You might be wondering what it was all about, believe me, I asked the same question myself.
I remember reading a thread on masquerades sometimes ago and I was able to get a few points in addition to what I understand them to be initially.
Masquerades have been in existence for a long time; lots of centuries maybe. They are said to be mystic in nature and also regarded as dead ancestors (hence, the name “Ara orun” as the Yorubas call it). It is upheld as a precious tradition that deserves respect, which must be preserved as gift from our forefathers.
Having said that, I was perplexed when a friend told me that a female corps member was beaten by a masquerade (probably aided by his followers) in a part of the country. The reason(s) for that act I don’t know, but really, is there supposed to be a reason to justify such an action? Is it right for our dead ancestors to beat up their own offspring?
I really appreciate the efforts of the police — this time at least — on the issue as a matter of fact (from the picture as well). As we all can see they have done a great job (holds laugh). To me, this is one picture I’d like to put in the category of favourites. Even after paying a few thousand naira as compensation by the town, thirty-solid-six lashes were also dashed to the said masquerade (that’s what I heard…don’t know if it’s on the bum or on the palm), a commensurate sanction if I may add.
I know I sound like a foreigner with little or no regards for culture and tradition right now (I’ll understand if you think that), I can only hope you get really flogged one very beautiful day (say en route to your sweetheart) and maybe — just maybe — you’ll share my view and perspective.
The question I’ll appreciate an answer to is this:
“Why should a custom and practice that is teemed with so much misconduct and irregularities be allowed to thrive so well?”
If I’ve asked wrongly I’ll say I stand to be corrected.
I won’t categorically say it should be abolished. I can’t. God knows I respect customs and traditions too; the stunts and dances especially thrill me. However, I can only advocate and solicit for a soft, smooth and nonsense-free modus operandi. That I can do. That I have done.
I don’t care if Ara orun joins the entertainment industry. There’s nothing bad if dead ancestors amuse their descendants, amass wealth and fame, or get several awards…so long we won’t be a casualty in any way.
I have no other thing to say…
…but as far as this picture is concerned, Ara Orun got served!
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Adewoyin Joseph || @Jossef69