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Christianity in Nigeria as Portrayed in Things Fall Apart - Essay Example

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Instructor Date Christianity in Nigeria as Portrayed in Things Fall Apart Introduction of Christianity according to Chinua Achebe in his book, things fall apart, was characterised by conflicting interests between the Europeans and Nigerians. This was attributed to the fact that they were used to worshipping of gods and trying to change their way of worship was like undermining their interests…
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Christianity in Nigeria as Portrayed in Things Fall Apart
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Christianity in Nigeria as Portrayed in Things Fall Apart

Religion to a primitive man is a critical issue and is mostly practised in a primitive manner. They practise all throughout the year and it sin opt a one day event on the week as seen by the Europeans. To them all activities that occur in society have to be followed by religious ritual activities and this was being opposed by the Europeans who felt that a specific day had to be set on the week where everybody would worship God (Achebe 94). The complex rituals were regarded as being primitive by the European missionaries and they felt that through introduction of Christianity they would teach them how to worship only one God. This was considered to be a great crime by the Ibo whom according to their culture thought that the Europeans were trying to disrespect egwugwu who was a representative of the ancestral spirits for the people. One of the warriors in Ibo gets converted and even kills his ancestral spirit leaving the whole clan weeping since according to them a great evil had been done. Those who get converted into Christianity are excommunicated from the Ibo society while others escape death narrowly. Introduction of Christianity would take time since in the Ibo culture religion was granted many responsibilities in the society which Christianity had omitted. Culture was conflicting with the interests of the Christians. For instance, Nneka had given birth to four sets of twins all of which had been abandoned in the evil forest a cultural trait that the missionaries were against. There was strict attention being paid to taboos and rituals and this was not the case with the missionaries who continued to recruit more people into their church including the pregnant woman who was recruited in the 28th day when the villagers expected them to die after clearing the evil forest. Such issues were being rejected by Christianity making it a challenge for people to accept Christianity (Achebe 104). They feared punishment from their personal chi and an end to their generation. There exists a very narrow space between an individual and their identity with their ancestors. This is attributed to the fact that they consider their ancestors to be intermediaries between them and their gods. Mr. Kiaga for instance has been recruited to Christianity and is encouraged to recruit more Africans but is afraid that the father can learn of it. The land of the living existed among the individuals and this was a hurdle that the Europeans had to handle first before introduction of Christianity. They were expected to do away with such aspects and this alone created conflict long before they thought of introducing and converting people into Christianity. However all was not fruitless as they succeeded in converting a few Africans with whom they worked with though the society could not accept them as they were regarded as being evil and outcasts. This is because they were not respecting their personal god (chi) and the ancestral spirits (Achebe 105). The ancestral spirits were ordered to punish them. The conflicts began to be widespread with the Christians experiencing the challenge of obtaining land in order to build a church. The outcasts, low ranking men who had no title in the society were among the first individuals to be converted into Christianity. ... Read More
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