Superstitious beliefs in Igbo land have been old, but some Igbos still observe and practice these beliefs. In Igbo land, you don’t dare sweep your house at night! What if you do? You attract bad luck. However, Every culture has its own set of beliefs and fundamental rules and observations.
The Igbo people of southern Nigeria used to take such beliefs extremely seriously, believing that disobeying them would result in poor luck or maybe even fatality.
Even if superstitions like this are more likely to make people laugh these days, some individuals may still trust in them anyway in fear. Even though they sound funny, some of these beliefs are backed by science.
Superstitious beliefs in Igbo land
Do not step over the legs of a pregnant lady
Hmmm… if you do that, it will result in two things; the child being a dwarf or the child will resemble you! So don’t, according to Igbo people. Do not jump over or go by an expectant mother sitting on the ground with her legs apart since this is said to induce dwarfism in her child. It’s also conceivable that the child looks more like you than its parents.
During the day, sweep, but not at night
It is believed that if someone gets busy with a broom after dark, they will sweep the family’s wealth away. So, don’t sweep at night to avoid being poor and not to be blamed by your family members for bringing generational poverty. Was that why some Africans are poor? Who knows
Do not answer a call from an unknown person
If you respond to someone calling your name without first checking to see who is calling and then are unable to locate the caller, you may have difficulties. It may be God calling, according to the Igbos, and by responding, you’ve agreed to meet your creator.
Make sure your left leg isn’t bumped
Knocking your left leg on a stone, a wall or anything else is a bad omen. According to the superstition of the Igbo land, you should quit doing what you’re doing right away, since continuing to do so might endanger your life. So, if you are going for a Job interview or your first date and mistakenly bump your left leg on a stone or wall…. You already know the outcome, according to the Igbo’s belief.
Whistling in the middle of the night is not a smart idea
In the first instance, why whistle in the middle of the night? Who knows.. he might be communicating to his fellow nocturnal animals? Whistling late at night has the potential to attract bad spirits. It’s also conceivable that a whistler is attracting snakes. According to the believers, if you are not a snake lover, avoid whistling at night.
Igbo people of Nigeria are not alone in these superstitions’ belief systems. Some countries and tribes in Africa have the same belief systems.
The Lugbara of Uganda also shares the same superstitions with the Igbo of Nigeria. Lol… No wonder even some names are shared among the two ethnicities.
The Nso people of the Bamenda in NW of Cameroon share the same faith. Adding to that, in Nso land: only adults who have got a child are allowed to break a raw egg. Do not sing in the barn, etc. Same thing with the Ngembas, the northwest region of Cameroon.
The superstition of sweeping at night is similar to Songhay’s of Niger because, to her culture, the night is the kingdom of Djinns and many monsters of the night. To Songhay culture, the big trees(baobab’s) are big snakes’ houses.
The people of Ewes in Ghana are not left behind too. They share the same belief, and those superstitions are also the same.
Similar to Zambian superstitions, except that for pregnant women, the belief is never to stand behind her or her baby will resemble you.
Almost all of these are also believed in many places in Ethiopia. I wonder if they have common origins!
Even in Tanzania, in addition of don’t talk while you’re eating; you be married far from your tribe.
In Zambia, they share some of the same faith. Don’t sit by the door at night, I don’t know the reason, but prevention is better than cure.
Don not whistle at night is the same as the culture of Papua New Guinea.
All the same with the culture of (Dinka- Gok in Bahr-el-ghazal South Sudan) and in addition, unmarried gentlemen don’t sing while eating, otherwise one will marry a gluten/most greedy wife.
Ooh, I never thought Igbo’s superstitions were similar to Somalis.
Almost similar to the Banyankore of Southwestern Uganda.
Actually, some of them apply in Muganda from Buganda kingdom in Uganda!! And almost similar to the Banyankore of Southwestern Uganda.
The list is endless, and this speaks more on how Africans originated and migrated. But these superstitions didn’t stop in Africa. Don’t sweep at night, also observed in Jamaica.