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Introduction To Indigenous Traditions Essay

1226 words - 5 pages

Indigenous religion has been recorded throughout human history, starting from African religious through to Native Americans. {1.} Indigenous Religion have existed throughout human history. But scholars have regarded IR as “primitive”, conjuring images of savaging, superstition, childish simplicity, etc. (Baum, 2012, p.30). This indigenous religion has been recorded across the globe and is from Africa to Native Americas, to Asia, etc.

Across the globe stories defer in regards to the worship of deities, rituals and their ethics, as well as social organizations. According to the lecture notes (REF), the aboriginal traditions in African can be viewed as practices of communities, which has been isolated from major world religious view. The African indigenous religion has contained similarities as well as differences.

{3.} Indigenous religion has existed in Australasia and has been influenced by Hindu and Buddhist traditions, for well over 1000 years. In many places, they have coexisted with Islam for about 800 years and with Christianity for about 500 years. {4.} In Africa, the indigenous religion has been handed down from generation to generation by the forbearers of the present generation of Africans (Awolalu, 1976). As part of the tradition, Africans have made their lifestyle by living and practicing the religion.

The people exploring Africa and traders on the continent, collects information from uneducated people who lack proper terminology to describe what the practitioners are doing at that time. However, missionaries gave better narratives of indigenous traditions because they stayed long enough to understand them.

Collecting historical information, through multi – faced approach like writers often depend on oral text and sometimes field research by anthropologists who provided another powerful insight into indigenous religions (p32 -33). African religions shared a common focus based on what they called a supreme being just like the western God and the subordinates. {6.} According to Awolalu (1976), indigenous African religion is a religion whose historic founder is neither known nor worshipped. Some of the fundamental beliefs include the belief that this world was brought into being by some of all beings known as the Supreme Being.

Indigenous Responses:

In the indigenous African religion, the supernatural God and spirit world are very important. Religious belief and practices are central to all aspect in Africa. Although this is the case, these beliefs and practices are not restricted to any holy day in a week but are observed in most common daily activities as well as in special ritual ceremonies. Indigenous African religion operates with a system of values, attitudes and beliefs. In addition to these, rituals are important in the practices. Such rituals are important in events like births, marriages, deaths, farming including planting and harvesting.

Most African religions believe in one supreme God. This God is seen as the one...

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