Saturday, May 1, 2021

Nigerian Ibo (Igbo) Fertility Prayer

Fellow men, we shall all live,
Earth Goddess, hear.
Whoever plants, let him dig up and eat,
Earth Goddess, hear.
We shall give birth to sons,
Earth Goddess, hear.
We shall give birth to daughters,
Earth Goddess, hear.
We shall train them, Earth Goddess, hear.
When we are old they will feed us,
Earth Goddess, hear.
Whoever sees us with an evil eye,
When he plants may the floods sweep his mounds away.
Whoever wishes us evil,
May he break his fist on the ground.
We are broody hens, we have chicks.
We do not fly up,
We look after our brood.
We do not eye others with an evil eye.
This big-headed thing (child) that came home yesterday,
He is yet a seed.
If you wish that he germinates
And grows to be a tree,
We shall be ever thankful.
Earth Goddess, hear;
He will grow to be like his stock.

Aylward Shorter, W.F.

This prayer is part of a hand-washing ceremony that Ibo women perform at the birth of a child. The women pray for fertility for crops and children. The women beat their hands together while reciting, "Earth Goddess, hear."

Dawn Pisturino, RN
May 1, 2021
Copyright 2021 Dawn Pisturino. All Rights Reserved.


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