The Covenant And Its Overarching Goals (Ịgba Ndụ)

The Covenant And Its Overarching Goals (Ịgba Ndụ)
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A covenant is a sacred agreement between Okike, man, spirits, and their children, extending to their forthcoming and unborn generations. It can have sets of specific and favorable conditions, thereby eliciting promises to bless, protect, fight for, guide, guard, prosper, multiply, among other promises, as our ancestors and us obey certain conditions. It is usually a formal, solemn, and binding agreement. Therefore, making and keeping covenants qualifies us to receive the blessings that have been assigned to a generation by man and their ancestors.

Why are covenants important?

In spirituality, a covenant involves Chukwu, our ancestors/Ndị Ichie, Aja-ani, Alusi, Ndị Mmiri, Ogwugwu, Akwali Ọmụmụ and many spiritual guides, which entails covenanting in general, in the historical and ancestral sense. It is the solemn promise to perform or refrain from performing a specific action. The covenantor is obligated to carry out certain spiritual rites monthly or yearly, either through carrying out a blood sacrifice using animals or abstaining from eating certain meats, foods, etc. in honor of such a covenant, which is a sacred agreement between Okike , ancestors, deities, and their living children. Spiritually, there are specific conditions and promises that qualify us to receive the blessings involved. When we choose not to keep covenants, we cannot receive the blessings and promises. The same holds true for covenanting in the imported Christian religion.

The main purpose of a contract

Every covenant made is established on the basis of a relationship, conditions, and promises, including the consequences, if those conditions are unmet. Overtime, indications show that each person in the covenant promised to give his or her own life to keep its terms. Therefore, to break a covenant is to invite one’s own death as a penalty. There are no more serious relationships than those that are a commitment to life itself.

The four elements of a contract

There is the covenant, the covenanter, the covenantee, and the witnesses.

1. Two or more parties are involved. Those involved commit themselves to a binding agreement that involves promises or oaths.

2. It usually has some kind of physical sign or symbol.

3. It involves a witness or witnesses.

4. It is usually sealed.

A ceremony or a ritual is performed to enforce it. There are two types;

A. Conditional covenant: It is an agreement or a covenant between two or more parties that, in fact, are equal.

B. Unconditional Covenant: It is a covenant between two or more unequal parties, for example, between Okike, a deity, and his people.

A covenant’s components

1. Those involved commit themselves to a binding agreement as it involves promises or oaths.

2. It usually has some kind of physical sign or symbol.

3. It involves a witness or witnesses.

4. It is usually sealed with blood.

5. A ceremony or a ritual is performed to enforce it.

6. It has serious and negative consequences experienced by those who break it and benefits for those who keep it.

Reasons for Entering into Covenants in Igboland

The role covenant plays in Igbo society is that of enforcing social control.

A. It tries to eliminate deep seated hatred and calm frayed nerves on issues concerning land disputes, communal or individual squabbles.

B: The process of Igba ndu makes sure that the people who are in a dispute don’t hurt each other with physical or spiritual attacks.

C. Covenant helps to strengthen the bonds that exist between individuals, groups, or communities.

D. It plays the role of adjudication as the final process of arbitration in which the parties concerned, witnesses, ancestors, and the gods are involved in the process of ensuring peaceful coexistence. Hence, when administered, it becomes the final process of peaceful resolution as the parties concerned have involved the spiritual world in adjudicating on their behalf.

Checks for witchcraft, spiritual or physical attacks, and puts a stop to the activities of the wicked against the good people in society.

F. One enters into a covenant seeking protection.

G. One can use the covenant to ask Chukwu to remove sickness from family members and the person involved.

H. Covenanting is based on the liberty to ask for the blessing of prosperity, wealth, and other material blessings.

I. One can decide to request long life, children, or any other thing according to their heart’s desires in accordance with Chukwu, the deity, and their ancestors’ wishes.

Items required for the covenant  (Ịgba Ndụ)

These items depend on the type of covenant. Items like kolanut, palm wine, hot drink, ỌFỌ,  blood, plantain stalk, cockrel, kaolin (nzu), fresh palm frond, snail, yam, tortoise, etc., plus material objects, the deities, witnesses, elders, the incantation made by the priest or Dibịas. However, the covenant is administered in the shrine where necessary items have been prepared and an incantation made to invoke the ancestors and gods to witness it. The people involved will swear not to harm each other either physically or spiritually, as any one who goes against the covenant, the gods and ancestors will dispense justice. In another instance, a hole is dug and a plantain stalk is used to cross the hole. The people concerned are made to cross the makeshift bridge, with a declaration that whoever breaks the covenant will fall into the pit, which signifies endless problems.

Benefits of the Covenant

1. Exceptional growth and promotion

2. Restitution of everything stolen by the enemy.

3. Be honorable in the eyes of your adversaries.

4. Increased assets as the covenantee keeps to the covenant reward is sure to come from the deities, ancestors, and deities involved.

5. Greater accomplishments and success in the face of adversity or impossibility.

6. Spiritual and physical acknowledgment when you do not merit it, because of the covenant, one is covered.

7. Prominence and preferential treatment from one generation to the next as long as the covenant is renewed and the laws are followed.

8. Petitions are granted even by ungodly civil authorities.

9. Rules, policies, regulations, and laws are changed to one’s advantage as there are higher forces in charge due to the covenant.

10. Victories in battles because the elements involved in the covenant fight for you.

11. Giving thanks, either yearly or monthly, depending on the agreement made during the covenant, opens the door to goodness such as glory, better jobs, promotion, grace, and unmerited benefits, among other things.

The implications of breaching a contract

1. a curse or stigma passed down through generations

2. Sickness, infertility, disappointment, madness, bareness, broken marriages, broken relationships, and mysterious illnesses.

4. Discord in families

3. Death.

Solution to Breach of Contracts

1. Afa consultation and divination

2. Rituals and rituals of appeasement

3. Reestablish the covenant.

4. Keep and honor the covenant.

5. Appease, dissolve, and renounce the covenant after appeasement rites are carried out by the parties involved. If there’s no need to keep and honor the covenant any more, then renegotiate to dissolve it.

©️Dibịa Nwangwu Uchendu.

BA(French); PGD; M.Ed(Educational Management)

[email protected]

+2348132412687.

WhatsApp MSGs Only.

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