A PHILOSOPHICAL EXAMINATION OF THE NIGERIAN RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE IN THE LIGHT OF ANDRE GODIN’S IDEAS. A RESEARCH PROJECT MATERIAL ON PHILOSOPHY
Majority of the humans in the world are born into one religion or the other. The environment in which we live is densely religious. As a result, one starts to hear, see and touch things about God very early in life. In the market, on the road, even in drinking houses you see and hear people talk about God. Even when you are in your house a loudspeaker is at your window telling you about God.
As a child, and a Christian, you look at a corner of your sitting room and see an altar set up by your parents for the worship of God. Every morning you are disturbed from an early morning dose of sleep in order to say the morning prayers. In the school, before you settle for studies, you are confronted with a session of prayers.
These are what we call religious encounters, the conscious assimilation of which becomes our experience – religious experience. We start having these experiences very early in life, and as we grow up we internalize the one that appealed to us. This will be our religious affiliation. But the question rests on the possibility and texture or quality of this experience. Its all about whether these encounters are necessarily qualified to be called an experience and how we can come to that. Is religious experience possible? How do we encounter God? Can we encounter God directly with or without the religious experiences? What is the nature of the Nigerian religious experience? Is it possible to encounter God in the country’s religious atmosphere? What are the factors that underlie the Nigerians’ religious attitude? These questions summarize what we shall discuss in this essay.