A prime example of the consequences associated with judging a religion as “right” or “wrong” concerns the treatment of twins in Igbo society. The Igbo believe that twins are evil, and if one gives birth to twins, they must cast them away to the Evil Forest. The Christian missionaries detest this heinous crime, and arrest anyone who commits it, as Achebe writes on page 174, “They [the court messengers] guarded the prison, which was full of men who had offended against the white man’s law. … These prisoners had thrown away their twins.” Because the Christians judged the Igbo religion as “wrong” or “incorrect,” they were influenced to remedy what they perceived as a dangerous situation, which led to a hindered relationship between the Igbo and the Christians, as demonstrated when the Igbo prisoners sing:
“Kotma of the ash buttocks,
He is fit to be a slave,
The white man has no sense,
He is fit to be a slave.” (Achebe 175)
Another example of the consequences of viewing religion as “right” or “wrong” occurs when the Christians challenge the Igbo religion beca...
... middle of paper ...
... who will hold his head up among my people. If any one of you prefers to be a woman, let him follow Nwoye now while I am alive so that I can curse him.” (Achebe 172)
This quote demonstrates that Okonkwo clearly views Christianity as inferior, as he tells his children that if they are going to join the “inferior” religion, to do so now so that he may curse them.
To conclude, Achebe juxtaposes Christianity and the Igbo religion to emphasize the consequences of judging opposing religions as “right” or “wrong”; “correct” or “incorrect.” Certainly, we can learn from the mistakes of the Igbo and Christian peoples in Things Fall Apart in order to foster a more inter-cultural world. The benefits should be glaringly obvious, for if nobody judged religion as “right” or “wrong,” it is realistic to believe that perhaps the tragedies in the Middle East would never occur.
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