Thursday, September 10, 2015

Nigeria's "Satanic Foundation?"

It is no big secret that the country of Nigeria has had significant economic problems for much of its modern history. The country fought a civil war that ended in 1970 and was controlled by military juntas until 1999, when a democratic government was finally established. Given all that turmoil, it's unsurprising that the country's development has been hindered. But Femi Fani-Kayode, who has served as Minister of Aviation and Minister of Tourism, has another explanation. In a Facebook post, he explained that Nigeria has problems because it was founded by Satanists.

Fani-Kayode, who also served as the Minister of Tourism under former President Olusegun Obasanjo, said the manner with which Nigeria was created in 1914 was the reason the country was still struggling.

He said both Lord Fredrick Lugard, who was the first Governor-General of Nigeria; and his wife, Flora Shaw (later Flora Lugard), who gave Nigeria its name, were worshippers of Satan.

Fani-Kayode said, “It is generally agreed though not commonly admitted that both Lugard and Flora Shaw were Luciferians who practised the black arts and all manner of satanic rituals.

“He (Lugard) was a ‘High Priest of the Freemasons’ whilst they were both avid followers of Aleister Crowley, the leading satanist of his day and the self-styled ‘world’s most wicked man.’”

“This explains a lot. It also explains why Shaw gave us the name Nigeria – a name which has questionable roots. Anyone that doubts this should consider the literal translation of Nigeria into Latin: it means “the area of darkness” and there is a deep spiritual and mystical reason why she gave us that name.

I went ahead and looked up the biographies of Lugard and Shaw and found no evidence whatsoever of them being Satanists. Lugard may have been a Mason, as Freemasonry was common at that time among the British aristocracy. However, no matter how many tracts Jack Chick spits out, Masons are not Satanists and never were. Furthermore, I can't find any evidence that either of them ever corresponded with Crowley. It's possible that such evidence exists in Crowley's diaries, but I haven't seen it.

So unless someone with access to the Crowley archives corrects me, I think it's safe to say that this whole thing is basically made up. The name "Nigeria" has no occult roots and was simply derived from that of the Niger river which flows through the country. The origin of the river's name is uncertain, but it dates back to long before Aleister Crowley came on the scene. Ptolemy made reference to a "Ni-Gir" river in Africa.

The whole idea that anyone who is rich and powerful must be an occultist is completely laughable to practitioners like me, and these accusations sound like the same sort of thing. Occultist is a fringe subject and has always been a fringe subject, and I've seen no actual evidence suggesting that the percentage of practitioners is statistically higher among the wealthy and powerful than it is among the general population.

And just to be clear, I'm not trying to argue that only the poor and powerless use magick, as a commenter awhile back asserted when I made this point previously. My point is that only a small percentage of the population has ever been interested in seriously practicing magick. Even in Africa where belief in magick is widespread, people generally go to professional spellcasters rather than doing it themselves.

Maybe Fani-Kayode is right that it would be helpful to rename the country, but not for the reasons he states. It would constitute a break from the nation's colonial past, and it would help to counteract the fact that most people in the west these days just associate Nigeria with advance fee scams and the like rather than legitimate business opportunities. But Satanists and Aleister Crowley wouldn't have anything to do with it.

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