Sunday 26 August 2018

Indulging Our Appetites

I was thinking this morning..... about surfeiting. I am not referring to surfing, because I know you may still be in summer mode. Surfeiting means indulging in one's appetites excessively. It could be food or drink or many other things.

During my final days in the University of Benin, a professor whose name I can't readily remember gave an Inaugural Lecture titled 'They are as sick that surfeit with too much as they that starve with nothing.' This topic, which I later confirmed to be a quote by William Shakespeare, was quite intriguing to me at the time, explaining why it got stuck in my memory these past 27 or so years. At that time, it was difficult for me to imagine how too much food can make anyone sick, because as students, we never had enough to eat. In the closing days of each semester, when the 'allawi' is finished, our daily feeding plan switches to 'Zero-Pawpaw-Water.' Of course with the pawpaw coming free charge from the trees behind our hostel block. Yes, it is true. But Wey, where are you going with this reminiscing? I will tell you.

A few days ago, I was having this jollof rice for dinner. It was so scrumptious, that I ate more than my regular portion and went to bed shortly after. Then wahala started. I was so uncomfortable through the night, I was asking myself 'who send me?' It was the same feeling you have when you go to bed hungry. I woke up and agreed with the truism that 'They are as sick that surfeit with too much as they that starve with nothing.'

Look around and you will find this truism everywhere. If you are a believer in good governance and democracy, you might be wondering why you have been having this feeling of nausea in recent times. I will tell you. It is because you have been following the news of political events in Nigeria. The sheer appetite of the politicians for power is as amazing as it is insatiable. They want to hold on to power by all means, scheming and killing, if they have to. They have taken in too much power, and are power-drunk and now sick and suffering from power poisoning (similar to alcohol poisoning). The man on the streets, on the other hand is even more sick from power deficiency, a disease I call 'powershiokor.' He lacks appetite for power and therefore suffering the effect. 'They are as sick that surfeit with too much as they that starve with nothing.'

If you have no appetite for power, do you have appetite for news about politics and gist in the social media? While the majority of rural Nigerians are sick from ignorance and starved of information, those at the city centers are sick from information overload, made up of real news, fake news and sheer propaganda. Truly, 'They are as sick that surfeit with too much as they that starve with nothing.' No wonder Luke 21:34 says, 'And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.' Rather than indulge in too much food or drink or power, feed your faith and your fears will starve to death. A word is enough for the wise.

Happy Sunday.

......Just the thoughts of a certain Wey Mey.

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