Friday, April 19, 2024

Is Religion Helping People Find Peace in The Most Unsettling Circumstances?

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Some mornings, the distant sound of a church speaker reaches my room, echoing the voice of a preacher. Once I get up to the voice typically, I say aameen to the voice – despite the fact that I’m not a Christian – because the preacher is all the time praying. And I think about the congregation earlier than him, all sweaty, eyes squeezed closed, screaming amen! to the prayers.

Irrespective of how pricey the cement will get, you’ll construct your own home this 12 months! Irrespective of how reasonably priced medication get, you’ll by no means fall sick! Irrespective of how excessive the greenback rises, you’ll purchase your automobile this 12 months! Irrespective of how robust the financial system is, you’ll by no means lack! Ni oruko Jeesu!

Faith has come beneath plenty of criticism in Nigeria, notably as a result of nearly all of believers consider that every little thing occurs by the desire of God. At current, Nigerians really feel apprehensive about tuning into the information, unsure in regards to the bleak updates awaiting their ears. Latest months have introduced unfavourable experiences for the residents; the financial system has worsened, crippled by inflation and subsidy removing, resulting in hovering costs of commodities and a big drop within the worth of the Naira in opposition to main foreign currency echange. Survival looks as if an unattainable feat. But, believers proceed to view these occasions as God’s handiwork, regardless of the underlying points stemming from poor management.

However I’ve been reflecting on how faith provides its believers hope and one thing to carry onto in occasions of adversity. I can’t assist however think about the importance it holds. It’s clear that with out faith, folks would have accomplished the unimaginable because of continuous losses of their companies and diminishing buying energy.

1000’s of products have been misplaced or perished because of hovering costs. The load of money owed tightens round some folks’s necks like a snake, starvation gnaws at their stomachs. But, after they enter their respective locations of worship, they hear comforting phrases from their leaders and preachers who inform them every little thing is from God. They’re reminded that God has a means of testing His believers, and it’s He who restores ease after hardship. This instils hope in them to maintain on dwelling by way of altering occasions. It’s this identical hope they’ve clung to for the reason that days when petrol was #60 per litre till it turned #600 per litre. 

The impact of that is the way it can lead believers right into a state of delusion. Whereas a rustic’s issues usually lie within the fingers of the federal government, the conviction that every little thing is a check from God strips them of the appropriate or consciousness to demand higher, rightly, and to carry leaders accountable. At my mosque, the Imam advised us that complaining about hardship is considerably of a sin as every little thing is God’s doing, and complaining means we’re difficult God’s will. As a substitute, we had been urged to maintain religion and strengthen our perception as a result of God will finally make life higher. Even when life does get higher and one can afford to construct a house with costly cement, it doesn’t erase the truth that the development concerned hardship or might have been constructed at a decrease value and thru fairer means. Non secular leaders, just like the Imam at my mosque, are a part of the explanations residents could battle to demand higher governance when leaders falter.

Now, one may ask, if spiritual leaders don’t espouse this perception to believers and encourage them to demand higher, how viable is that method, particularly contemplating earlier calls for that ended tragically with lives misplaced? So when spiritual leaders supply hopeful phrases and prayers, it turns into the one anchor they will maintain onto. Regardless of the seemingly unreachable mild on the finish of the tunnel, they grasp onto the faint glimmer, even when it seems like an infinite journey in the direction of a lightweight that won’t exist.

In Nigeria, faith acts as each a beacon of hope and a double-edged sword. Whereas it brings solace and energy to many grappling with every day struggles, it might additionally lull believers right into a passive acceptance of circumstances past their management. The fervent prayers and guarantees of divine intervention supply consolation within the face of financial hardship and political turmoil. But, this reliance on religion hinders the demand for accountability and alter from these in energy. When spiritual leaders attribute hardships to God’s exams, I consider it stifles the urgency for societal progress. Nonetheless, in a spot like Nigeria, hope appears to be essentially the most reasonably priced forex, providing a lifeline for a lot of and promising a glimmer of sunshine in robust occasions. Placing a stability between discovering solace in religion and advocating for progress requires a nuanced method to navigating the intertwining complexities of perception and motion.

God assist us.

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Characteristic Picture by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels  

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