THE spiritual world can be one complex web that most just cannot get their heads around. While we have the liberty to explore and hold different beliefs in terms of our spirituality, it becomes a problem when spiritual matters encroach into the physical and influence behaviours that are at variance with the laws of the land. Spirits cannot be convicted or jailed but those that act under the so-called influence of supernatural powers, and in the process break the law, are subject to the wrath of the laws of the land.
Elsewhere in this issue we carry two articles whereby two individuals acted in a bizarre manner and blame their actions on spiritual advice of ancestral spirits. In one of the incidents, a man caught abusing a goat alleges that he did that on the advice of a traditional healer and he would continue to do that since he was convinced that was the route he had to take to get out of poverty.
While his story might appear quite laughable, there are many people that have been made to do ridiculous things all in the name of traditional spiritual guidance or healing. There are many that have gone to the extent of killing relatives in the search for human organs that their sangomas would have asked them to bring for performing certain rituals. Some of such people’s cases are before the courts, and it is quite worrying that we continue to witness such.
Could it be such people would be lying that they were acting on instructions? Should those that have such influence over the people not be made to face the music?
It gets even more complicated if the instructions are alleged to have come through a dream, with ancestors allegedly ordering someone to act in a certain manner, even if the act may appear unreasonable, or even illegal.
A woman reported to be a traditional healer is reportedly in her third month in the bush following instructions from her ancestral spirits, she says. However, what worries us is that she has taken even a toddler with her to live in the bush, exposing the child to weather elements and unsafe water, among other risks.
We believe there is a law that protects the welfare of children that would outlaw such practices that could be viewed as a form of abuse.
In as much as we respect freedom to believe in different things, these beliefs should never contravene the laws since the physical being will definitely face the music.
It is worrying to find someone that broke the law such as the goat rape man, vowing that he would look for the goat again to complete his ritual, showing the hold that his beliefs have on his behaviour. What else would such people be willing to do just because some spirit said he must do in order to resolve certain issues in his life?
Let us ensure that we are not blinded to the extent of being made to do the unreasonable all in the name of tradition or beliefs in some higher beings. Those that influence you into illegal behaviour will never come to your aid when the law catches up with you.