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At this time the umbilical cord is buried at the foot of a tree selected by the child's mother. Onwubiko —"May death forgive"—expresses the fact that parents have lost many of their children and pray that this child may survive.

The name-giving ceremony is a formal occasion celebrated by feasting and drinking. The name may be based on anything from the child's birthmarks to the opinion of the diviner, or seer. The process of marrying a young Igbo woman is a long, elaborate one.

There are also minor gods, who are generally subject to human passions and weaknesses.

They may be kind, hospitable, and industrious; at other times they are treacherous, unmerciful, and envious. She is associated with fertility, both of human beings and of the land.

The Igbo believe in a supreme god who keeps watch over his creatures from a distance.

He seldom interferes in the affairs of human beings. However, he is seen as the ultimate receiver of sacrifices made to the minor gods.

To distinguish him from the minor gods he is called Chukwu—the great or the high god.

The Igbo language belongs to the Niger-Congo language family. A complicated system of high and low tones indicates differences in meaning and grammatical relationships. The Igbo have a system of folk beliefs that explains how everything in the world came into being.In addition, each town has its own local festivals.Those in the spring or summer are held to welcome the new agricultural cycle.Reincarnation is seen as a bridge between the living and the dead.The major beliefs of the Igbo religion are shared by all Igbo-speaking people.Although they live in scattered groups of villages, they all speak one language.


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