Women, Faith, Work and the Uncivilized Civil Society

The Orientations Are Lies

We are in the 21st Century but societies still carry with them unhealthy and archaic instructions from the 7 C.E. We have seen women treated like slaves, little children and abject servants and we have also seen women in high places justify these barbarisms. In the last millennium, many of our cultures vilified and treasured women in a symbiosis that made it hard to condemn the intent and appear less masculine.

Through the culture of the Bride Price, the woman is sold and in the new union, her husband’s success is hinged on how big and fat she gets afterwards. In Igbo Language, she is called Ori-Aku (eater of wealth) and it is not her responsibility to cater for the family. All she needs for the union to be glorious is to know how to cook, to respect her husband, to take care of the children (obviously from the money the man of the house provides) and there is usually extra flavour if the hymen was met intact.

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The chauvinism that existed at the time was as ego-driven as it was domineering. In today’s world, even with the evident evolutionary change in culture and social life, even though most of these are positive, there are still many societies where that nasty male chauvinism still hovers around.

After prolonged battle and plea for equality, countries in the Middle East are just granting their women ‘special’ privileges like driving and going to the stadium to see a football match. This is proof that civilisation is not in building fine edifices but a thing of the mind. Man still operates out of the lower brain and like the olden days, religion still wields enormous power. When you have popular religions selling the same message of masculine superiority backed by no logic and with vast followership, the system will always be in that order.

The woman has been subjected to second place, the man is first (no matter how cerebral) and subconsciously she has bought into it and attempts at trying to preach equality or commonsense is met by the scorching religious crucibles that moulded her. It is the will of God and God must be respected because his words are true. You can hide any pill under religion and our new form of civilisation will try to respect your faith.

The patients are happy with the headache and the doctor has no business being around. And when she awakens, she often awakens wrongly. In most cases she becomes too angry with the system and tries to replicate the torture received on the sex that did the damage. She hates men for the structural sins and also sells hate to all the teens. She is wounded and her healing process captures the creating of more injuries but this too is barbaric.

In Northern Nigeria there are houses still tagged with the Hausa words ‘Ba Shiga’ which means in English ‘No Entrance’ and usually it is the chambers and quarters of the wives of the Alhaji, Mallam or Mai Gida who married men. The sign is written to warn outsiders of the consequence of hanging around. This is a footprint of religion and the idea came with the veiling system. Good women in the faith are not allowed to expose any body part so that the husband is not pissed while she remains consecrated.

A woman’s body is only hers and husband’s to see and whoever goes against these divine instructions is ostracized or treated like the infidel. On the other hand, a man can expose his packs, hair and other sensitive body parts without breaking any moral code. In the name of religion, this is glorified and any mad man who dares to pontificate a different idea would be lucky to receive just verbal assaults.

The idea that women ‘must’ submit to their husbands is often floated and both the two major religion in Africa, Christianity and Islam, subscribe to the illogical. Ironically, Christianity promotes the idea that the man and woman become one after they are married in church. If they are both one and must work as such, why should there exist slave and master conditions?

If marriage is the celebration of life and love, why should one person, simply for being of different sex, submit (here, submit is best interpreted as being under control or being a Zombie) to another person? Isn’t the word itself inconsistent with equality and quality of life the concept of marriage seeks to achieve? Why should the ability for rational decisions be sexualized? Is there, in existence, anything in a man that makes a woman less qualified, less intelligent to construct rational solutions?

There is nothing bad when two people come to an agreement on how they want to run to their house. More women enjoy cooking than men and there are also activities men enjoy doing more than women. A relationship is run on such areas of strength and a perfect symbiosis, like the oneness Christianity preached, is established but when conditions are set prior to the knowledge of both sexes, with no respect to couple’s strength and weaknesses, like the contradictions obtainable in religions, then such relationship becomes a slavish one and shouldn’t be encouraged.

Today’s woman has to battle with being a good wife, a modern person and still respecting archaic doctrines. Many of religion’s ‘truths’ are simply words written by chauvinistic men who declared their crude personal beliefs as objective truth under ‘spiritual inspiration’ and like a Socratic problem; it is hard to distinguish the man from the God and vice versa.

Last Friday, as the celebrations went on, hypocrisy was tagged along. Ladies posted sweet quotes with words like: strong, independent, virtuous, you know, in that order, and for a moment you will think all of them are truly so. In Nigeria for example, for many women, relationships are Full Time Jobs and while Bae’s salary is also her salary, her salary is her salary. For many girls, a broke girl is simply a girl without a boyfriend or ‘Maga’.

These have become so fashionable to the extent some of these ladies, who actually have no jobs or independent means of livelihood, believe that their bodies are of a certain class and you must operate within the class to roll with them. It is no longer strange when broke girls refer to struggling guys, who couldn’t meet up to their false standards, as broke guys. The theory that sells is that a girl cannot be broke even if she has nothing or planning to have anything.

According to some Nigerian women, brokenness as a word is something that can only be associated with the male folk. To them, words like ‘poor woman’, ‘broke girl’ are grammatical anomalies. They don’t exist. These thoughts, entitlements and dependencies are products of centuries of false orientations. Our society was at a point in time hijacked by crude men who shaped her in their dull image.

The man was crowned head of the family, the provider, the one in charge of meeting demands and the woman was just a helper, an Ori-Aku (or Mrs), whose sole contribution to the growth of the family is in preparing of meals, bathing of the children, scrubbing the dirt and using her husband’s wealth to make the home a palatable place. Gradually, it became culture and was put into writings and because they also knew the power of faith on people, they never allowed opportunities for establishing divine correlations pass them by.

Men and women grew to believe it and those who didn’t buy their theories were bullied with the strongest tool at the time — physical strength. The defiant were locked up and in some places pelted with stones to warn others. A man and woman could commit a crime but while the man’s punishment is a little penance, the woman is destroyed mentally, psychologically and if her punishers are generous, she is allowed to live to with the shame. As time passed this knowledge was also passed around and as egocentric men fought and won wars they spread the notion to the better behaved civilian territories they conquered.

Mental incapacitation happened for a long time and their message penetrated the minds of women and they speak in those tongues. Both male and female children were given an illogical and unfair orientation and they were corrupted with pseudo truths even before they were matured enough to think for themselves. They grew up and the same thing that happened to others before their time happened to them and daily, they work hard in keeping the wheels in motion. They marry, procreate and teach these ‘truths’ and the cycle keeps moving and whoever dares to interrupt this flow of things becomes the devil.



About Poet 124 Articles
I am Rey Alaetuo, a conscious Poet and health care professional living in Lagos, Nigeria. I've written three collection of Poems, I am an exponent of humanism and a vigilant Poet. I am deeply interested in the propagation of positive human values and behaviour.

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