Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Religious Bigotry Redefined By The Church

Recently I went to church spotting a black jalabiya my wife bought for me on a trip to India. I wore it so proudly because I am a fan of Arab fashion. I say this proudly for the right reasons. They are elegant and yet not revealing, gorgeous yet comfortable.

Little did I know that the sight of me looking like a young Alhaji from Northern Nigeria - thanks partially to my dark skin - sent an entirely different message to my “brethren”.

Few days ago I was told that as a worker in the church I should watch my dressing! Hello!

I was told that as a Christian I must be conscious of the “fact” that by wearing Jalabiya, I was promoting Islam in the church and this would mislead others.

This was the most devastating nail on the coffin of religious tolerance which I always knew was dying in Nigeria.

My heart raced to my recent struggles with understanding Nigeria’s brand of politics that only focuses on religion, ethnic zoning, quota...etc without regards for values, competence, manifesto and capacity.

Since General Muhammadu Buhari became the presidential candidate of Nigeria’s main opposition party, the issue of religious insensitivity has come to the fore as reflected in the discussions leading to his possible selection of a fellow Muslim as vice presidential candidate.
The term ‘Muslim-Muslim ticket’ became very popular.

It didn’t matter if a Muslim like the outgoing Lagos State Governor, Raji Fashola, would help make an Intergrity-Competence ticket. Many Nigerians only saw the Muslim-Muslim ticket.
Well, now that he eventually settled for a Christian, a pastor to make things very “perfect” for the Christians, I guess suddenly all is well. Right?

I have a lot of respect for the eventual VP candidate, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, whose antecedents, I must say, qualify him as the type of quality leader Nigeria needs. However, I think it’s unfortunate that he is seen by many Nigerians more as a Redeem Pastor than as a world class technocrat that he is.

Being a Pastor in one of Africa’s biggest congregations, the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) is the major reason many will vote for him and in any case, that was the same reason many voted the incumbent President, Goodluck Jonathan.

President Jonathan, though not a pastor, particularly played the religious game more than any President I have known in my adolescent to adult years.

With tens of media men in attendance, he would visit the headquarters of the same RCCG for the monthly ‘Holy Ghost Service’, to enjoy the public intercession and anointing of the General Overseer, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, whom I consider to be one of the most respected ministers of God in the world.

As much as I sometimes feel Mr President only honours his God with a special place in his life and mandate, one may be right to call his moves some high level 'famzing'.
Either ways you see it, the 'public church going' worked on us and that is why he keeps “doing it”.

At least Jonathan won the 2011 election with a landslide margin against the proudly Muslim Buhari, although I have never seen the retired General going about kneeling before Islamic clerics or publicizing his Jumat attendance. Not even during Sallah celebrations or towards any of the elections he had been part of.

Now, Buhari towards the 2015 elections – his fourth attempt at Presidency – has been labelled as the religious bigot trying to rule Nigeria at all cost in order to enforce Sharia all over the nation.

If there is any politician who has been the biggest beneficiary of this religious sentiment that has swallowed the issue based politics that Nigeria needs most, it’s been the Christian among the two contestants.

I am worried because we may never get the right leader if we tie leadership to religious sentiments. With my recent experience, I just cannot help saying we are overdoing it.

I am more worried for the Christians because they have been the worst victims of extremism and consequently the more scared of the two major religions. Sadly they are gradually becoming the same problem they dread.

Here I had been, pondering on the disaster disguised as religion, which has eaten deep into the
country and has battered all the dreams of our founding fathers, of a nation where peace and justice shall reign, them someone tells me he doesn’t wish to see anything associated to another religion in the church.

If this mindset is what the church is producing, then I wonder how God's kingdom would come on earth. I wonder how they would ever truly "pray for the peace of Jerusalem".

My people perish for the lack of knowledge, says the Holy Bible (Hosea 4:6) and it simply reminds me that many of Christians would miss heaven not because of popular sins like fornication, greed, adultery, anger, idolatry, slander...etc, but because of the lack of tolerance for the “sinner” or “unbeliever” that Jesus died for.

Wikipedia simply puts the jellabiya as a traditional Egyptian garment native to the Nile Valley. I want to believe whoever supplied the information knows better than I do.

So, I have a question, how did my brethren know that the linen robes that Jesus wore were not similar to the Jalabiya that I love to wear? Jesus NEVER wore suits, trousers, ties, collars and all the fashion items approved in the church today, and that is a fact.

I have thought of placing an order for four new jalabiyas. Now do I go ahead and damn the reactions or I should just conform “for peace sake”?

Follow @Keniknows

Friday, December 12, 2014

Buhari And The Magic Number 4

The winner of the APC presidential ticket, General Muhammadu Buhari, makes his 4th attempt at becoming the Nigerian President.
The year being 2014, Buhari wins the presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress, APC.
With 7,214 accredited delegates, Buhari scored 3,430 votes amounting to about 47% of the total possible votes.
I reckon that the top 4 aspirants in the primary election all scored votes with the number 4 after all votes were counted?
Buhari 3,430 - Kwankwaso 974 - Atiku 954 - Okorocha 624.
Going down history lane, General Muhammadu Buhari was born on December 17, 1942
He was the military ruler of Nigeria from December 31, 1983 to August 27, 1985, this means that he spent only the entire 1984 as the Nigerian Head of State.
Now he is attempting to become Nigeria's 4th democratically elected President in the 4th Republic.
Could General Muhammadu Buhari be 4th time lucky?

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Your Smart Phone, Your Smart Future

Recently, I delivered a 3-hour presentation on 'New Media Content Development & Journalism' at the Lagos State University School of Communication.
Not only did we equip the students with online tools for employability, we also shared the 21st century Social Media Business opportunity.
This is a revolutionary social network business sweeping across the world and freshly launching on the African continent.
As a young Nigerian with a deep passion for the younger ones, I hadn't seen a more success-driven group of young people in recent time.
They embraced the possibilities of financial liberty, bombarding me with an avalanche of questions about how to do the big time legitimately and making the best of their smart phones to "google" every information provided... I was glad to let it all out, that is my purpose - SHARING.
Now, IMAGINE taking our Social Media Business Seminar to more students and young professionals. Imagine the number of young Africans who would be empowered by taking advantage of the continent's fast growing online community.
Thanks to China, because of the affordability of smart phones, the internet has now become accessible to millions of people across the world, especially in developing economies and that is where the opportunity is.
Research has shown that by the end of 2014, 65% of the world's primary personal computing devices will be smart phones.
By the year 2020, 80% of the adults on earth would own a smartphone.
NOW is the time to get on the train, to rule that future.
Let's get 2020 started HERE

Friday, October 24, 2014

Oral Sex: What's God Got To Do With It?

I have realized that some of the issues we ignore actually matter to us but we are just conformists who won't face our realities. Shame.
I have heard many people, especially young, engage in fierce debates on this topic but never seen a resolution, or a mutual agreement on the morality of oral sex.
For clarity, oral sex, according to the dictionary, is “sexual contact between the mouth and the genitals or anus; fellatio, cunnilingus, or anilingus.” 
I guess we are on the same page already... you may want to consult your dictionary for the definition of those last three words.
I would have thought that judging if oral sex is right or wrong should be subject to where you are coming from as an adult, as we all have different social and cultural backgrounds.
However, most arguments on this subject are usually tied around religion, faith or spirituality. Then I find myself asking several times; what has God got to do with our man-made sexual preferences? At least that was what I thought oral sex was.
I became curious about what my Bible or God had to say about 'fellatio' and its likes; especially since many marriages and relationships are ailing because someone wants a blow job and somebody can't give it.
Some have called it a demonic practice sold to the world by western perverts, but worthy of note is that while its easy for many people to condemn homosexuality using the biblical story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, oral sex wasn't one of the sins recorded in this instance, according to Genesis 19.
Looking at this passage and other parts of the bible, could this absence of disapproval for oral sex mean an approval of it? Maybe I am too hasty!
Is there anyone; king or prophet, in the Bible who knew or spoke a lot about love and sex? Your guess is sure perfect – King Solomon. With 700 wives and 300 concubines, I don't think anyone knows better than this dude about sex and relationships.
Our book of romantic poetry, Songs of Solomon Chapter 8:2 reads; "I would cause thee to drink of spiced wine of the juice of my pomegranate."
The name pomegranate derives from medieval Latin pōmum "apple" and grānātum "seeded". So I would merge that and say “Apple-Seed”.
The presence of 'apple' in this only reminds me of its relations with love and sex, especially when I read that according to the Qur'an, pomegranates grow in the gardens of paradise (55:68) and the Qur'an also mentions it three times (6:99, 6:141, 55:68) as examples of good things God creates.
Songs of Solomon 4:16 again says; "Come, thou south; blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out. Let my beloved come into his garden, and eat his pleasant fruits." 
Seriously? “My garden?”
Then the great poet known for his creative use of figurative expressions writes in Songs of Solomon 2:3; "...I sat down under HIS SHADOW with great delight, and HIS FRUIT was sweet to my taste."
Ladies seriously! What position could you possibly sit for you to be UNDER HIS SHADOW?
Well, I don't know much. These are just scholarly and theological materials from different sources and I simply put them together in pursuit of knowledge.
If you ask me what side of the argument I am, I would say who cares if you give your spouse a head, or if she gives you a blow job in return?
If the Bible is silent about it or would not clearly condemn it and our cultures are divided over it, is personal conviction then not the next to turn to? Should health and hygiene not be the next factor to consider?
Is mutual consent, then, not supposed to be the defining factor on whether you would give it or get it in return?
Uhm.... The problem is that sometimes I imagine if I would want to risk my face being under the skirt when the trumpet sounds.
Well... those are my thoughts, feel free to share yours!

Follow @Keniknows

Monday, February 24, 2014

VIDEO: Sanusi Wants To Go Into Tomatoes and Vegetable Farming

Few hours after "losing" his job as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Sanusi Lamido Sanusi speaks to Channels Television in Lagos, Nigeria.