November 05, 2017 Elijah Ogidi-Olu 0 Comments

For what it’s worth, this is neither the initial title of this article, nor what I was going to talk about when I sat down to compose this. I was going to address a recently overly discussed topic in my faith. The issue of tithes. “Why not adjust your lens and talk about a broader topic?” the tiny voice in my head asked. So here you are, my friend, reading something else entirely.

Warning: Keep an open mind as you proceed.

My name is Elijah, and by the application of common sense, you can guess that I’m a Christian. My best friend’s name (from childhood) “was” Akeem and by the application of common sense, you can also tell his faith (I used “was” because he goes by the name “Joshua” now, by choice). At this point, grab a beer if you’re an atheist and watch as I poke some people where it’s most sensitive.

You know, as a kid, I sometimes found it hard to settle in Sunday school, and I’ll ask myself – “What if my churchy parents were atheists, or Imam and Alhaja. Would I still be in a church?” Innocent me was just wondering. As kids or teenagers, one of the questions I can bet nobody asked at any point was “Ok, now you’re eighteen. I understand you’ve been practicing our religion till now but what religion would you personally like to practice?”

Whatever religion you grew up with, 90% says you learnt by observation/absorption. If your parents/guardians/etc were on the Islamic side of the fence, you automatically became a Muslim. If you grew up with Christian folks, you follow suit. Buddhists? And you’re probably a monk in the making. I thought about this a long time ago and realized most of us are nothing but RELIGIOUS ROBOTS.

It’s all TABULA RASA right from conception and we’re slowly being programmed by various factors around us. Some things are taught, while some things are caught. The former is easy to challenge (we sometimes challenge them ourselves) but the latter, not so easy. If not religion, what can make some adults debate like elementary school pupils? If not religion, what can make humans blow themselves up and expect to be ceremoniously welcomed to the afterlife by 72 sumptuous looking virgins? If not religion, then what? Damn!

Everything we know now, we learnt. You grew up to realize ‘this’ is your religion. So you’re being taught how to pray, things to recite and memorize, the essentials of your religion, the do's and dont's, the core values and taboos, the level of research your questions can go and the areas better left untouched. But we will be stupendously stupid to sit down and suspend our brains, anytime it’s time to discuss religion.

If you’ve not gotten to a point of personal decision in religion, then sit down and be humble. You have no business discussing any religion. If you also can’t continuously dig and make research and be fantastically enlightened on whichever side of the religious fence you are in, then you’re nothing but a Robo capped religious clown. So shut up and join the first group.

The most powerful way to learn is by absorption, and that is why initial religious beliefs, though not taught in black and white, has a very tight grip on the minds of a lot of people. Everyone has a right to their beliefs and unless you understand what’s happening on “their” side of the fence, don’t stereotype or sit down in your umpire seat and judge anyone. Why?

Simply because everything we know, we learnt.


Shout-out to Akeem/Joshua and every other person who have switched from one religion to another (That’s a huge personal decision). I hope y’all made the right choice at the end of the day.

Mature Minds Talk

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