As an obroni living in Ghana, one of the most striking differences I have noticed between this country and my home in the United States has been peopleï¿½s attitudes concerning spiritual matters.
In America, people do not believe in spiritual explanations for events. Almost all Americans would not believe that two boys could possibly turn into snakes. But after reporting on the recent sakawa story in which this allegedly happened, I began to wonder if anything similar to sakawa existed in the U.S.
In America, people definitely engage in internet fraud and other forms of identity theft. Some Americans engage in occult behavior. But I have never heard of people in America combining occult rituals with efforts to acquire wealth. However, the underlying motive behind sakawa, the desire for easy money, is definitely found in the U.S. and is the same motive that led to the current economic crisis in the U.S.
In many ways, the boom and eventual bust of the U.S. economy is no different from the recent ï¿½sakawa boysï¿½ story. In both cases people wanted to make money fast and easily, not through patiently working and saving. The U.S. economy was built around people buying houses on credit, which is money that people donï¿½t actually have yet. When American homeowners could not deliver what they had promised (their credit card payments), the housing bubble burst and the U.S. economy collapsed around it. Similarly, when two of the sakawa boys could not deliver what they had promised (menstrual blood), they were turned into snakes. The two instances both show that greed and the desire to get rich the quick and easy way will eventually lead to ruin.
Even if one does not believe in the power of occult rituals, they shed light on a very real problem: the excessive desire for material wealth. This problem is universal and is what caused Americans to spend more money than they had. President Mills recently warned of the dangers of sakawa, internet fraud, and of making ï¿½the attainment of riches and status their only purpose in life and as an end in themselves.ï¿½ After watching what has happened to the U.S. economy and witnessing the rise of sakawa activity in Ghana, I believe his warning is relevant. Many people in Ghana seem to often agree with my President, Barack Obama, and in this instance, I wholeheartedly agree with yours.
Source: Brian McAndrew/peacefmonline.com
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