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Kola Nut In Custom

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By  Ambrose Ekhosuehi (Last update 30-08-2018)

Kola nut in custom of Culture has various Usage and practices customarily Kola is a tree that originated from West Africa.

There are mainly three varieties which are Kola Nitida, Kola Acuminata and Kola Caricifolia.

Kola Acuminata originated from Benin Kingdom and is mostly found in Southern

Nigeria its seed has up to seven cotyledons.
Kola Nitida is commonly found everywhere in West Africa. It has two cotyledons.

Caricfolia has one cotyledon and is very bitter in taste.
The offering of Kola-nut is regarded as an honourable custom and blessing. It is
in drugs and for flavouring soft drinks. It stimulates the body and also
dye for different purposes.

The Kola-nut contains two alkaloids which help to combat fatigue and suppress.

It is used in traditional medicine, pharmaceutical and valued for its use.

It features in history, magic, oath, song and riddle.

The Kola-nut main use is cultural. There is hardly any ceremony where Kola-nut does not feature. It is an important commodity and a significant source of revenue and provides good returns to the producer.

Kolanut is exported raw in a supply container and the fresh nuts are transported in containers that seek to maintain a degree of humidity. It is also process into powder before being consumed diluted in water with sugar or honey.

The Kola economy is highly speculative and there is no guaranteed price for the producer or subject to specific tax common with fruits and vegetables.

Kola-nut is precious. It splits neatly into parts and perhaps for this reason, is a symbol of friendship, unity; offered and shared wherever people meet; and distributed during an engagement ceremony.

There is good scope for improving and developing the Kola sector at all levels. Production is a priority. Storage and conservation of the Kola nut is another area requiring attention, in order to cut high levels of post harvest loss; because kola-nut knows no boundaries when it comes to consumption.

Kola nut sharing offers community mutual trust, mutual self-revelation, mutual listening, mutual help, equality, personal freedom and creativity.

In basic community, kola nut is used for a primary group as a sign, small enough for all its members to be actively involved. It is a point of interaction for the individual with the society at large.

Basic communities change as one goes through life, family, work-group and neighborhood. Neighborhood community is an authentic part of tradition and corresponds to the social ideal of good company. It consists of clusters of family homesteads or settlements.

Traditionally, there are neighourhood courts for settling local disputes, and many activities such as house building, farm clearing, threshing that involve offering of Kola nuts, for blessing, prayer and sharing.

Kola nut, as an independent fruit, helps to buttress the traditional communities of family and neighbourhood. Their entreaties emphasize healing and teach immediate cures.

The dialectical approach believes that traditional ethnic religion influence one another and serves the religious needs of the community together. Complementarily and dialectical interchange outweigh competition and community building.

Kola nut signifies friendship, unity, as a grid relationship but it is a special kind of grid relationship. It is a loving mutuality between two equal individuals; the relationship of two individuals paired in a single, shared role; of two cotyledons.

Friends are not complementary opposites, such as Father and son, husband and wife, brother and sister, nor their shared role dependent on a joint relationship to a third party, like two customers of a single shopkeeper, two patients of a single doctor but in friendship, the relationship is exclusive to the two individuals. It is a unique relationship, characterized by mutuality, privacy, autonomy, unpredictability and so on.

Friendship is not incompatible with community. Friends can be chosen inside; outside or both as a kind of psycho-social valve.

Kola nut is a symbol of bond friendship expressed in kinship terms. It is a genuine but instrumental friendship between individuals whose families live at a distance from each other. It is the basis for exchanges of mutual protection, and strategically placed friends, so that the nomadic individual can find support; anywhere.

Kola nut expressed magical or religious oath or pact in a rite consumed in food or drink, followed by a cursing formula in which blood pact is called upon to witness and avenge any infringement. It ensures mutual safety and assistance, weapons, food, wealth, spouse and so forth. It reconciles strayed spouse (O fian evbee ne.re)

Kola nut tree is sacred and its sacredness is used in divinity as it can explain the oracle. It is an evergreen tree, the genus include about forty species. It has glossy green leaves, violet stripped flowers and star-shaped fruits. The seeds are taken from the pod as their outer coat or cover is removed. They are chewed while fresh or dried.

Kola nuts are valued in traditional medicine, for their stimulating, aphrodisiac and healing qualities. It is said to enhance alertness and physical capacities, improve mood and suppress the appetite.

Kola acuminata is used by specialist in operating oracles. The oracles is usually a magical rites based on a combination of chance and manipulating in varying degrees for the purpose of discovering hidden knowledge. Kola nuts in an effect produced by chance is interpreted in the light of tradition and of the circumstances.

The five or more cotyledons of one kola accuminata-Kola of Benin (Evbee Edo) are giving as male, female and Triad-Oghene. Union of three, three in one, the triune God-Oghene Osa, Symbolical representation of the persons of the trinity; hence “Ovba evbee ghei ri. Ogherne Osa”. Breaker of Kola nut retains the triune God. In the ancient and olden days, Kola nut is planted with a fall off umbilical cord for a female child on the seventh day. (Aigbe Evbee ne Erhan).

This previous friendly life giving Kola nut is widely prized for its symbolic and cultural value, for its significant source of revenue. It contains two alkaloids which help combat fatigue and suppress hunger. It is used in traditional medicine and in demand also with pharmaceutical companies, valued for its sacredness and an important commodity for many households because there is hardly any ceremony where kola nut does not feature in custom of culture.

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