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October 2020

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7 min read

The ‘believe’ is simple, yet it remains one of the hardest things to do especially when your supposed source of inspiration fails you one, two, and many times that you lose count. In my case, I’ve let ‘believe’ be and continued to pay no mind for whatever outcome it brings. Here’s a narrative about my life as a religion nonconformist, I decided to share this part of me because …

Do you believe in God? What if I told you I do but rather than accord him all the praise and worship, I’ve turned a blind eye. I hope you don’t get me wrong… here’s what I mean…

religion nonconformist

“Fisayo, are you a Christian?” my answer was a blatant No, when my supervisor enquired, this was shortly after I declined to lead the staff prayer one early Monday morning. I bet she thought all along I was one because tell you what, I sure look it.

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The Sunday of that same week we were alone at the bank for ATM duty. Then she asked, “so you are a Muslim?” No, I answered. Her countenance began to switch…“the other day I asked if you were a Christian and you said no, now you are no Muslim? What religion do you belong to?”, she queried. I told her that  I am not a religious person. She was shocked and at the same time interested in knowing why.

religion nonconformist
She was shocked and at the same time interested in knowing why

“So you don’t practice any religion? Why?” I responded “Why not? I don’t want to”. She said she had never met anyone who doesn’t belong to a religion and speculated something happened that made me vow never to attend church again. Hmmmm…how laughable…

Read- He Is God, I Can’t Defend Him

I get similar reactions every time someone learns I’m not affiliated with any religion. An unfun fact of it all is that I was raised by my parents as a hardcore Christian, a Jehovah witness to be precise. I used to take my bag and umbrella and knock from door to door regularly. It was my way of life growing up.

Jehovah witness nonconformist

What Happened Along The Way

As time went on, I began to learn for myself, thanks to being a Witness anyway, the mandatory bible study lifestyle paid off, it inculcated in me a craving to explore the bible even more. By nature, I am inquisitive, some things started to make no sense to me so I started digging for answers by involving myself with various religious books, not only that of Christianity, I read texts from Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, and more.

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My faith in Christianity started to shake especially because the stories from other religions appeared similar to that of the bible and even a bit more logical. Take for example, according to Buddhism, Buddha before he was born, lived his previous life as a hermit and also a prince. He surveyed the world determining where he will be born. Upon his birth, he immediately started walking and talking, and a lotus appeared under his foot at every step. This is a paraphrased version of what the texts say about Buddha though. As outlandish as this seems, there are vague similarities to what Christians have been taught about circumstances surrounding the birth of Jesus Christ. I mean the immaculate conception, the neon angels appearing in the night sky singing, the star, and so many others. 

religion nonconformist

Due to numerous studies, all I could conclude was the pioneers of these so-called religions that exist were all in an unhealthy competitive race of who could write the best fables and propagate their narrative faster. Christianity which happens to be the most practised is also guilty. While Christians are quick to dismiss and tag other religion’s stories as untrue, they wholeheartedly embrace the fables in the Bible. Hence, my religious foundation started to crumble.

There Is A God But…

Don’t get me wrong, I believe there is a God, I just don’t subscribe to the fact that he has any interest or business in my life or yours. I mean if he’s interested in our lives as the Bible says, why is there so much suffering and violence in the world? Shouldn’t he be able to put a stop to it? The bible makes us believe we were created in his image and likeness this means we are no different from him right? Ok so put a normal human parent in his shoes, will a parent look away from the lack of love and torment his/her child is facing if they had the power to avert it? The bible also says that God is love, why will the very personification of love stand on the sidelines watching his most precious creation suffer for so long all in the guise of trying to teach us a lesson. If Jesus Christ’s blood is supposed to cleanse us and redeem us, why have we not felt the effects of his shed blood after more than 2000 years? 

Religion nonconformist violence
Why is there so much suffering and violence in the world?

For all the time I invested in studying the bible, I couldn’t get satisfactory answers to these, so I lost interest in religion.

Read: Why Is God Planning To Eternally Tortue Many More

I believe there is a God because of the earth and everything therein… someone must have put all these in place or perhaps a host of many spirits or forces came together to form the earth and the leader being the so-called God we acclaim all our worship to. What I don’t believe in is everything the Bible says about him, his loving nature, and all…I don’t think his real personality was properly documented otherwise we would have had a proper explanation for all these happenings. 

religion nonconformist

How The Folks Reacted

Another question people ask me when they get to know this part of me is “And your family, do they know about this?” Well, when my parents noticed my increasing apathy toward religion and our religious routine, I had to split the beans. They were surprised and wore a look of being betrayed yet they sat me down to encourage and strengthen me spiritually. Unfortunately for them, it fell on deaf ears because of how strong-willed I am. However, years later,  they have grown to respect my decision. Although once in a while my mum throws some barbs at me, which I’ve learned to deflect with silence. 

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I live right, I try to do right by people. Remember I was a Christian and I’m familiar with all the tenets and principles stated in the Bible. These ethics did not depart from me, But I don’t pray since I don’t believe there is a supreme being who listens. I just hope for the best. Lol…….sounds cheesy right? I love the way my life is because I am free. For me, religion constricts the mind, makes your view narrower. Your actions, thoughts, choices are all controlled.

religion nonconformist
Unfortunately for them, it fell on deaf ears because of how strong-willed I am.

Did You Get Me Wrong?

In case you’re perplexed, I’m not an atheist. An atheist believes there is no God at all. I believe God exists. There is too much empirical evidence to believe otherwise. Our body structure, the wonders of creation, all the matter cycles ( water, nitrogen, carbon, and phosphorus) are too intricate, too complicated to have come by chance. Between the time of creation and now, a lot of things changed which remains largely unexplained. 

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My lifestyle is something I am unapologetic preaching to whoever cares to listen but sometimes I observe a sort of stigma from religious folks or they immediately start to follow me up so I can belong to their doctrine. I also observed that people tag it as a socio-moral crime to not believe in God or be a religion nonconformist. Does identifying with a particular religion say so much about who we are? Does it define our personhood? Your personhood!?

religion nonconformist

To the Christians/Muslims (or whatever religion) out there, why do you emphasize so much importance in believing in God? If you are a non-conformist or an atheist, I’ll like to learn about your experience too, especially the events surrounding the last straw before you backed out from religion completely. Let’s talk, perhaps I could find my way back home reading your nuggets on religion. Kindly leave me a comment below.😅👇👇

 

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8 min read

The truth is more important than anything else, even if it goes against popular opinion. Finally, the revolution is being televised, #ENDSARS protest is here, but are we walking the right path in advocating the change we need? I will say Yes but not in the entirety of it. 

Before I go on, I’d love to applaud the bravery and patriotic spirit of everyone sacrificing their time, finance, and platform for the #ENDSARS movement. You are proof that the indomitable spirit of Africa and Nigeria is alive and lives.

Over the cause of the #ENDSARS movement which has outlived more than a week now,  there are a few loop-holes we have remained unconscious to and if keen care is not adopted, these holes will become so wide enough and eventually swallow us. Maybe we are blinded by the bandwagon policy, nonetheless, it will save us the trauma of crying over spilled milk if we can nip them in the bud.

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Valid Leadership Factor:

I understand that years of bad leadership and sabotage have led to the mindset of mistrust and utter vigilance when it comes to assigning leadership roles but the truth is having a leader or a set of representatives in this protest will allay the burden. While I applaud the awareness shown and drawn by the movement so far, this momentum will lose effectiveness if a person or group of people knowledgeable and trusted in their field do not come forth and direct the efforts properly. Change is effected behind closed doors or before a table; meaning this protest can easily become frustrating, not only because the government plans to frustrate us, but also because unlike most labor groups; we did not call them for a sit-down to practically negotiate terms and timelines. We can shy away from it for as long as possible but the truth is we will eventually come to terms with assigning representatives. So why wait too long when it can be now? 

Read: Feminism; Home Vs Workplace, Where Should It Begin?

#EndSARS Protest

Empathy vs Apathy (Name Calling):

 Something can mean the world to you and mean nothing to the next person, hence the saying ‘live and let live’. Throw all the tantrums, protest all you want, let there be bloodshed, some people will still feel nothing. It’s a personality trait and majorly because experience has not taught them how to behave in such a situation. Sometimes it can take longer for the individual to come around to feel the same way, or they may never. A case in point is the calling out and “dragging” of America/international artist/creative Beyonce. I cannot begin to list the lengths to which the arguments or reasons for calling her out is not only silly but in all honesty, the height of entitlement. We claim she took advantage of our culture in creating her album and documentary Black Is King. We forget that if nothing else, this was a simple business deal beneficial to all parties. She showcased the beauty of Africa; paid all artists/crew and all other expenses charged. Even helped to showcase our culture in a good light as opposed to the misconceptions that we live in mud houses or sleep under the moonlight or on trees(opportunity in tourism). In summary, she owes us nothing. Her choosing to speak out, like other foreign individuals who have, is a matter of choice. Whether we listened to her songs or not, we didn’t make her, America did and she will be Beyonce with or without us. Keeping in mind that these foreigners have issues they deal with in their own countries. While I celebrate diversity and interest in other cultures, this movement was born to take back power and show that Nigeria and Africa can be great again, so why run to a fellow citizen for aid instead of an intergovernmental agency? 

Read: A Quagmire Is Enjoyed With Friends Inside

End Sars protest calls out Beyonce

Why are you there?

I mean the protest ground? As much emotion I know this point will stir, I ask this because the reason for your presence determines your actions. Example “Throwing money at the protest, partying, playing pool, hookups”. I understand that as Nigerians, the need to find ways to enjoy yourself and have fun is higher than the exchange rate but think. If the foreign bodies and agencies were to see videos of the protest, which do you think would have more impact and move them to lend their voice? You watching football, clubbing and enjoying musical performances or sitting observing silence for the victims and dead, holding talks about empowerment and Black power/Pan-Africanism or ways to take the movement forward. Now one can say, how do we entertain ourselves staying out all day? The protest must not last a whole day. Maybe certain important days can be set for that. Because in all honesty, a lack of productivity affects the entire economy, not just a few. In the end, partying can be a legitimate reason for police to clear the crowd as constituting a nuisance. If you happen to meet someone and form a meaningful relationship from at the protest, then it’s all fine and good, not that being the hotspot for meet and greet. 

#ENDSARS Protest

Why do you scream “EndSARS”?

Is it for the brutality you fear? Those murdered? Greed? Clout? Some of you rather than proving yourself worthy have shown how much of an opportunist you are.  Like every movement, man by his nature finds ways to benefit from a situation. I’ve seen not one or two but many accounts on Twitter tweet “sub for online protesters, RETWEET AGGRESSIVELY BUT YOU MUST FOLLOW FIRST”. Is Nigeria a joke to you!? You turn an on-line protest into a follow-for-follow jamboree? It’s better you don’t protest online at all than play a deceptive card. STOP IT!

EndSARS protest

Gender, Social, Tribal, and Religious Wars:

As much as we have a common goal, the truth is that we easily let religion, tribe, and social gap cause a rift. Tweets and remarks too quick to generalize a tribe for not standing with you or trying to thwart the efforts should stop. An example is seen in the vandals that came to damage cars in the Abuja protest. Some comments were quick to vilify a certain tribe. Also, the social gap wars, calling out children of important persons in the society, and criticizing their manner of protesting is unkind. Are you proud of everything your parents stand for? It’s the same for the rich kids too. If they want to be part of the protest then why not? stop resurrecting old wounds!

end sars protest muttering minds

How Long Before We Get Tired?

When Buhari promised us ‘change’, I doubt he envisaged the reverse being the case. We are the ones dishing the change with this revolution but how long can we keep him on his toes? How long before we get tired? The reason I appreciate the carefully thought-out “5 Point Demand” is because it prevents excuses that may arise as to why the government is not complying with demands. I suggest that an addendum to the 5 point plan should be a stipulated time frame for all the requests to be met. This will equally free us from the jinx of a nonstop protest that can lose effect or affect more people in the end. When we make our personal plans, we put a time-frame on them to connote a sense of seriousness, don’t we? let’s do the same with our demands. The energy to protest might seem contagious at the moment, but how long before we are bored of it. Start by imagining there was no protest food…lol.

#ENDSARS Protests muttering minds

After This, What Next?

I do not in any way defend the vile actions of the dissolved SARS group, as some of the stories of their actions are both unfathomable and wicked but if the group is completely eradicated, are we saying we do not want a body checkmating armed robbery, internet fraud as well as other crimes in the country? Then this might as well be Christmas in October for the so-called internet fraudsters and criminals who lead us into this pit in the first place. We are being disrespected, blacklisted, and treated badly in foreign countries and as much as we are pained to say it, the majority of it is our fault. Some may say it’s because “they don’t like us” partly that may be true but with all our cries and calls to foreigners and those who took up the cause for our sake, called out our president or faced insults from others like they were the cause of the SARS, will we, in the end, have no shame and return to the cyber crimes when this is all over?  Whether we like it or not, bad eggs still roam among us, so what’s the way forward? Oh, you think because of this protest Nigeria is thoroughly cleansed? Don’t be deceived by the goodwill displayed in the protest centers, some of us are good at acting the part. The protest does not write off the bad behavior of the pickpockets in Computer Village, does it? Does it eradicate jungle justice, majorly championed by our generation? Absolutely No. so what’s the way forward? 

Read: Is Nigeria Really The Headquarters of CyberCrime in the World?

 #EndSARS protesters

In the end, it is not just about taking back power, it is knowing what to do with it. Developed countries like America are still facing new issues, so we should know that we as a people, business, brand, policymakers, and citizens we have a long road ahead of us and should think as broad as possible, as well as read vastly.  In the end, no one else will save our country but us.

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I’ve raised so many pointers in this article and would like your candid opinion in the comment section. What do you suggest as the way forward? Do you agree with all I’ve written? importantly, I’d like to know your reservations. One pertinent question which I decided to save for the last is the hostile reaction showered on people still going about their businesses/promoting their craft at this time. I’ll like to ask, does it mean that if the protest lingers for a month or more, no right-thinking person is allowed to trade online? Promote their music or art? Let’s talk! Kindly leave your comments.👇👇

 

 

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5 min read

Do I think she pushed it too far? Hell Yeah!
Do I think this movie is underrated? Heck No!
Do I advise everyone and not just females to see this movie? For obvious reasons, yes!

From my title, it’s obvious the above statement revolves around’Òlòtūré’, the currently most talked about Nollywood crime drama which is fast becoming a household name for addressing human trafficking and exploitation of the female gender in Africa, using Nigeria as a clear case study.

oloture muttering minds review

Inspired by Premium Times investigative report on human trafficking and prostitution, the Netflix original is directed by Kenneth Gyang and produced by the award-winning Mo Abudu of Ebonylife Films. It features A-list actors and actresses in Nollywood; Sharon Ooja who plays the lead character ‘Òlòtūré’, Blossom Chukwujekwu as Emeka, Omoni Oboli as Alero, Beverly Osu as Peju, Kemi Lala as Blessing, Ikechukwu Onunaku as Chuks, Omowunmi Dada as Linda, to mention a few talents.

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‘Òlòtūré’ means endurance/patience but this visual had me lost in translation. Patience where? Endure how? Wow!😱 So this how our beloved aunty Òlòtūré on her own accord shot herself on the foot… huh? Like really? I don’t even know how to go about this piece without giving you any spoilers but I’ll try😉.

oloture muttering minds review

Imagine one moment you have a budding career; your life seems to be co-operating with you like you have everything aligned in your favor and then you woke up one morning and decided you need more excitement in your life. Hmm….Aunty!….Uncle!🙄 Wisdom which is profitable enough to direct should teach you better not to test ‘Fate’ because that bitch is so unpredictable. Her mood swings like a motherfucker! You’re likely not to get what you envisaged.

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Young and ambitious, I get it! But not knowing when to stop is what I cannot comprehend😪. The lead character Òlòtūré had me sitting at the edge of my chair while she played with my feelings during the course of outdoing her role as an undercover prostitute in a bid to expose a human trafficking syndicate. And like her co-player Emeka, describes her as having more bravery than sense, I totally agree😐.

oloture muttering minds review

Unfortunately, Òlòtūré got more than what she bargained for. The mouth cannot explain what her eyes saw. The violence, the exploitation, the physical and mental abuse the ladies had to face on a daily basis were beyond her expectation.

 

No Spoilers, Just Lessons!

Know When To Stop- Like I told my circle when we had ‘Òlòtūré’movie review at our club, WE NEED TO KNOW WHEN TO STOP! Every decision you make is not just about you. It has a way of affecting a lot of lives connected to you. I know someone somewhere reading this piece right now will say “But it’s my life, I can do what I want with it”. I know it’s your life but please, Brother…Sister…do the right thing with it, make better life choices. Imagine the decision Ehi (Sharon Ooja) made to keep pushing it which ended up affecting a lot of lives around her – Her friend, her friend’s sister, her lover, her family, her friend’s family and on and on the train kept going.

Read: Success! Will You Forgive You?Oloture Muttering Minds review

Success Is Not Always the Best Revenge- Yes we get it; an undercover agent needs not leave any stone unturned yeah? That aside, I could see through Ehi’s eyes, she wanted revenge in form of success and somewhere in her head, she was determined to achieve it so badly not minding what was at stake. The rape fuelled her crave for vengeance even more; relating it to real-life context, I bet she couldn’t wait to grab Sir Philip (rapist) by the balls and say “got ya!” she really wanted to prove a point but apparently, in this case, success was not the endpoint for her😒.

The Cast

First, I’ll like to say that the lead character, Òlòtūré played by Sharon Ooja deserves an accolade. She delivered her role brilliantly; it was a breath of new air seeing her on our screens play a daring role other than her trademark ‘baby girl’ role.

Read: My First Sex Experience Series

Wait! Did I mention already that they could not have cast a better set of actors for this movie? Best believe it. Well, this is how I feel about the main characters in ‘Òlòtūré’;

oloture muttering minds review

  • Òlòtūré/Ehi (Sharon Ooja) – The young, ambitious, and naïve working-class ladies. Can’t wait to get a big break in their career. They always get in over her head.
  • Emeka (Blossom Chukwujekwu) – The senior colleagues that fall in love with the young, pretty junior staff in his charge. They are also ambitious and looking for a big break. Their emotions always end up getting a better part of them.
  • Linda (Omowunmi Dada) – The unlucky ones who never getaway.
  • Alero (Omoni Oboli) – Aunty wey sabi (knows all). The wicked and greedy madams that think they know and have seen it all. Most times, they are ex-prostitutes too.

  • Beauty (Adebukola Oladipupo) – The very young innocent ones that have no idea what life has in store for them.
  • Chuks (Ikechukwu Onunaku) – The abusive old school pimps
  • Sir Philip (Patrick Doyle) – The highly aced politicians with sick fantasies.
  • Linda’s Mother (Eunice Omorogie) – The clueless mums that have no idea what their kids do.
  • Jubril (Yemi Solade) – Our ever incompetent NPF!

oloture muttering minds review

 Yes, you’ve just seen Oluture through my eyes! Convinced? Well, I didn’t want to do a review on this movie, but “Seductive Mystique” (Naked Minds inside joke🤭) made me. Y’all know how convincing she can be lol.

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If you haven’t seen Oluture, I recommend you do it. And if you’ve watched it, I’ll like to know your take on the film, ranging from the lessons you picked, your favorite characters, cinematography, and yeah yeah, the end of the movie. I came across a lot of remarks concerning the way it ended. The majority of comments I’ve seen so far championed that the end didn’t give the needed closure. Hmmm… you feel the same way? Do you think Òlòtūré went too far? would you have done anything different in her shoes? Let’s talk. I’ll sit in the comment section with my bottle of cold Hibiscus flower juice aka Zobo while waiting for your view on ‘Òlòtūré’ Leggo😄😄👇👇

 

 

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