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5 intriguing taboos in Yorubaland

Taboos in Yorubaland

The Yoruba people are the second largest ethnic group in Nigeria and are located in the South West.

Taboos are actions or customs that are prohibited or restricted to people, and they could be peculiar to certain people, certain genders, or everyone. The taboos are mostly derived from myths or consequences; they have seen people suffer because they performed some of these actions.

The taboos of a tribe are peculiar to them, as their cultural values and identity are distinct to them and their culture. No matter how inconsequential it might seem to others, it’s something that they hold in high esteem and strongly believe in. It differs in different tribes and cultures as the culture, that is, the way of life of certain people, differ. They have several taboos that are prohibited in Yoruba land, and some are prohibited to kings, some to men.

One taboo peculiar to a king is that a king should not look into his crown. The crown of kings in Yoruba land is something sacred, wielded with so much power, and the crown is held in that regard with so much reverence. It is believed that if a king looks into his crown, he’ll die or suffer other severe consequences. It is synonymous with the King committing suicide if he looks into his crown.

Another taboo in Yoruba land is pounding an empty mortal or sitting on a mortal. It is prohibited to pound an empty mortal because it is believed that you’re pounding your children when you do. This is mostly to reduce noise, but it is prohibited.

3. Pregnant women in the afternoon

Pregnant women are prohibited from walking in the afternoon, especially around 1 pm in Yoruba land. It is believed that wandering spirits can possess their babies. So, they’re restricted from walking around in the afternoon.

Another intriguing taboo in Yoruba land is that you cannot beat a male child with a broom. When you beat a male child with a broom, it is believed that their manhood will disappear or reduce, preventing them from having children or being sexually active with their wives. This is strongly frowned upon in Yoruba land.

Lastly, During the Oro Festival, the Oro cult members perform their ritual at night. It is taboo for people who are not part of them to come out or to see them, and it is especially taboo for women to see them. These taboos are taken seriously in Yoruba land, although some do not have real-time consequences, and hence, they’re being taken lightly in recent times.

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