MUTUMA MATHIU

By MUTUMA MATHIU
More by this Author

Kenyans are reportedly setting up hatcheries for jinns and breeding creatures from the underworld in corrupt enterprises to extract the maximum wealth, success and happiness with the least effort.

It started with stealing from the public purse, then came the wave of stock market speculation and other get-rich-quick antics, then pyramid schemes, quail eggs, gambling and now witchcraft.

Kenyans have gone into black magic with passion — if what I am hearing is true. Folks believe that if a marriage is doing well, then the parties “must be using something”.

If you get promoted at work or get a pay rise, back in your village people will look at each other knowingly, nod and say: He has got himself some powerful dawa.

People are casting spells on their businesses and consulting witchdoctors to help them to get ahead in their careers.

Rather than working hard, they try to rear jinns and other demonic beings to win them unfair advantage.

Advertisement

In the leafy suburbs, witchdoctors unashamedly advertise their magical prowess. Want to still your husband’s roving eye? Call this number. Want to break the run of bad luck in your life? Come see this great mganga from Zanzibar.

Even church people are carrying amulets, chicken nails, wrapping wet animal skins around their waists and other tools of darkness.

They are practising some type of spiritual infidelity, whereby they worship in church by day but seek out the intervention of the underworld in the dead of the night. We’re back in the Stone Age!

I’m not a conventional Christian. As a matter of fact, I’d not risk introducing myself as a conventional anything.

But I’m deeply spiritual; I do love the Lord — in my own way — I’m getting to like my pastor; I love and respect my bishop, Philip Kitoto.

I can’t say a long and eloquent prayer like my mother, but I have daughters and a live-in ‘pastor’ for that.

I’m a rational human being, I believe in science. My relationship with the metaphysical is almost purely intellectual.

I might be scientific in my outlook but I’m old enough, and I know enough to know that we don’t know enough to discount the existence of God.

As a matter of fact, if you take a look at the marvels of the universe, even a simple review of the images from the Hubble space telescope on YouTube, you realise how frightening it is to conclude that all this happened as an accident and for no purpose at all.

The science of big things — the cosmos and its mysteries — is an eloquent argument for a cautious acquittance with the idea of intelligent design.

As is the science of small things, quantum physics. If I ever go back to school, it will likely not be to read some vanity PhD on the use of the hanging participle in African journalism; it will be to read physics.

We live in a world governed by the laws of what, in my ignorance, I think of as classical physics.

At the sub-atomic level, these laws break down in ways that are so complete and complex one wonders how these two separate systems can co-exist.

For example, we know that an object can’t exist in two places at the same time; yet that is what quantum superposition is all about; a particle can be in two places at the same time.

Can you cause me to be fat, slim or short by merely looking at me? Of course not. But in the quantum space, you can cause a particle to change its state — so-called wave function collapse — by merely observing it.

And quantum entanglement describes a situation where you pinch John in Nairobi and a totally different person, Peter, feels the pain in Malindi — something even Albert Einstein found “spooky”.

The world is infinitely interesting and complex. The possibilities of its marvels are almost limitless. Why are we then regressing into the primitive and backward world of magic?

Why can’t we work for our money, love and success? Why do we want to obtain advantages that we don’t deserve? Why are we so corrupt and mean-spirited?

No society can progress on the back of magic. Success without hard work and application is a contradiction in terms.

Kenyans are destroying not just the fabric of their own lives, but also the foundations of their society by investing their time and money in foolishness rather than opening their eyes through learning and devoting their energy to constructive endeavours.

Hatching jinns, breeding vampires, spreading evil powders on people’s clothes, sticking pins on dolls will not get you anywhere.

In the old days, the Church played a key role in socialising witchcraft out of the people.

Today, I suspect some of our charismatic preachers are secret shamans, soothsayers and outright magicians and witchdoctors.

Their churches are “businesses”, the congregation customers, or suckers, to be milked of money.

In this game of conmanship, religion and witchcraft become extensions of the same “enterprise”.

There should be a law against witchcraft, but then the folks you would expect to legislate are probably consumers of magic.

Good, honest, ordinary people are our only hope to take a firm stand against this nonsense so that we don’t sink into collective insanity.