Idọbalẹ agba ni iṣ’ọmọ lẹgbẹ keredudu-keredudu.
Respect for age is the fountain of blessings for youth.
This is a posture that involves falling flat on one’s face as a sign of respect and submission. It has been a peculiar part of the culture that any male that does not practice it when considered necessary is seen as very disrespectful and having shameful character and morals. The origin and reason may have been forgotten with time or perhaps one has to look at the root of the word doba’le and/or search deep within the Ifa literary corpus to shed more light on it. However, the practice is being watered down as a result of the adoption of oyinbo lifestyles from oyinbo colonialists and missionaries. Personally, I consider handshakes to be a candidate for consideration as a public health nuisance. Prostration is still observed by some Aku Christians during prayer and worship which he considers as normal instead of during special occasions, and in deference to an Oba. For females the greeting, also known as ikun’le, is done by bowing on one or both knees.
Interestingly, in the bible are records of many incidents in which greeting, deference and worship involved a similar or exact style of prostration. There are probably over a hundred verses from Genesis to Revelations where it is mentioned either as prostrate or fall on the face or bow to the earth or even worship.
However, it seems the people who call themselves Jews today and fraudulently occupy the land they call Israel only prostrate during prayer and worship while some do it on certain days. I am yet to come across any mention of the practice being associated with other activities like greeting elders including their priests, and non-religious events like weddings. Could the reason be that they are impostors and thus it was alien to them when they invented Judaism?
It is also alien to the Igbo culture of which some of her people have claimed to have descended from the Jewish tribe of Gad. Some Igbos have been reacting with condescension to the Aku for posturing thus in showing respect for elders. If these look with scorn at those who prostrate then how would they react to the biblical records of the patriarchs and prophets doing same?
I have more questions like
- Are there any other groups of people within the Niger-Congo and Afro-Asiatic language families that practice prostration as part of daily life like the Aku?
- Do the Lemba, Abyssinians, Falasha and other “African” Jews prostrate likewise?