The Igbo culture is the totality of the activities of Ndi Igbo (the Igbo people), how they live their lives, how they eat, what they wear, their distinguishing characteristics, their songs, how they express themselves, their belief system, collective attitudes and behavior towards life.
The Igbo people work round the clock to preserve the sanctity and beauty of their culture and traditions. Any tribe without strong adherence to their culture will go into extinction sooner or later, its cultural identities and sovereignty will be stripped off at the wave of globalization.
Here are the top 5 most respected and celebrated culture of Ndi Igbo:
Igbankwu (Traditional Marriage)
Marriage is one of the most respected cultures of the Igbo people. This is a means through which survival of the Igbo race and procreation is facilitated. Any procreation without a traditional marriage in Igbo culture is regarded as grossly unacceptable and illegitimate.
Omumu na Igu aha (Childbirth and Naming)
In Igbo culture, this refers to the birth and naming of a new child. Every name given to a child in Igbo land is considered unique with a deep meaning behind it. Traditionally, a child’s Igbo name signifies the activities, and experiences that took place during the period of pregnancy and/ or eventual birth.
Echimechi (Chieftaincy title-taking)
This is one of the most respected cultures of the Igbo people. It is a recognition given to certain people that have attained a certain level of greatness in different fields of life.
Awardees of chieftaincy titles are now eligible to participate or contribute meaningfully to the decisions of the communal issues. Titled chiefs are respected by all and sundry and they are expected to wear red caps in Igbo communities, and even local and International ceremonies outside the Igbo nation.
Akwamozu (Funeral rites)
The Igbo people believe in life after death. Funeral rites remain one of the ways they express such belief. Their funeral rites are usually ostentatious and it is assumed to be a smooth transition or send forth party of the dead to the ethereal world- the other side of life.
In Igbo culture and tradition, Mmanwu is considered a sacred entity. Women and non-initiates are forbidden to be members of the Mmanwu society. The Mmanwu mask is being worn by the initiates.
No matter the provocation, people are restricted to fight Mmanwu in the public. Also, no one is expected to trespass any property, tree or land occupied by Mmanwu for any reason whether for ritual, worship or any purpose.
Which of these cultures are you familiar with?
Share the experience of how any of these cultures is celebrated in your community!