Monday, 19 July 2010

On the rise of juvenile witchcraft stigmatisations

A horrible development

It is sad and disheartening to hear that there is a rise in child witchcraft accusations in Africa [1]. I have never been able to watch the harrowing depictions on child witchcraft exorcisms that have appeared in documentaries in the recent years.

Worse still is the violence meted out to these accused children with the aim of cleansing them of their witchcraft powers.

I cannot understand if witchcraft were metaphysical, paranormal or spiritual how physical torture with increasingly bizarre rituals of unbelievable cruelty can be the means of negating the power and influence of witchcraft.

The hold of superstitious gullibility

The fact that certain of these charlatan exorcists can be religious leaders holding sway over frightened, superstitious and gullible congregations is bad enough – these crowds aid and abet childhood cruelty with the thinking that they are doing good.

Anyone who allows reason and common-sense to influence their judgement would very well know that if indeed these children were witches, wizards, sorcerers or more, they could easily have pooled their powers to wreak havoc amongst their tormentors teach them a veritable lesson they will never forget.

Helpless against a baying mob

These helpless, hapless, deprived children who are usually orphans, handicapped, destitute or different, especially albinos who for no reason of theirs have encountered misfortune and should find a more sympathetic, humane and compassionate society are rejected and what better way to reject them than to cast them as practitioners of witchcraft then engage in a public lynching of the children dressed as an exorcism.

Religious leaders themselves, frauds and agents of devilish concepts with their eyes on filthy lucre find a ready audience who are ready to believe any tale about their lot in life being hindered by the activities of their wards. There is money to be made in pointing accusing fingers and almost nothing can be done by the child to fight back against false accusations.

Either way, once accused of witchcraft, you are stigmatised and can never be innocent of it in the eyes of those who are lead to believe such atrocious claims.

Nothing Christian about this

From a Christian perspective, even Jesus said [2], suffer (allow, encourage) little children to come unto me and every child that suffered any affliction was humanely and compassionately healed r delivered; not brutalised as we find done today by apostles and evangelists of malevolent wickedness, gratuitous sadism and criminally actionable grievous bodily harm.

To which Jesus did say, perpetrators of violence against children can expect nothing better than drowning in the sea by hanging a millstone [3] round their necks. The preceding verses [4] talked about the need for childhood innocence, trust and humility, hardly anything about childhood witchcraft a concept that have developed for no justifiable reason than to feed the iniquitous ministries of people pretending to run a legitimate church.

Prosecute the practice mercilessly

This rotten practice has to stop and it can only stop when followers begin to follow good and sound doctrine.

Meanwhile, civil authorities [5] must not be afraid to visit the full force of the law on anybody who abuses children especially those who do it under the guise of witchcraft exorcism or some bizarre religious persuasion; the life of these children is hard enough, to make it a living hell is just unconscionably evil and an abdication of society of its responsibility to help the vulnerable.

Just because we cannot love the children or dare to like them for whatever reason does not give the license to make injurious accusations that offer the opportunity to visit the wickedest imaginations of evil violence on them.

Sources

[1] BBC News - Rise in African children accused of witchcraft

[2] Luke 18:16 | bible.cc

[3] Matthew 18:6 | bible.cc

[4] The Little Children - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

[5] Witchcraft: Akpabio Warns Churches

Other references

UN publishes IHEU statement on witchcraft in Africa | International Humanist and Ethical Union

Beliefs - A Nigerian Witch-Hunter Defends Herself - NYTimes.com

Dispatches - Saving Africa's Witch Children - Channel 4

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