African Religions and Their Contribution to Humanity

African Religions and Their Contribution to Humanity

Part 1: Summary of Mitochondrial DNA

According to Lynn Margulis’ idea from the twentieth century, mitochondria formerly existed as free-living organisms. In a process known as endosymbiosis, mitochondria moved inside larger cells about two billion years ago, eventually becoming useful components of those cells (Walters, 2011). Unlike the DNA found in the cell’s nucleus (nDNA), every mitochondrion contains mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). Exclusively from their mothers, via their fertilized egg cells, can organisms receive their mitochondria. The proliferation of oocytes, the ejection of the oocytes out of the ovary, the joining of the oocyte and sperm, every phase of embryo development, and the development of the embryo following fertilization are all facilitated by mitochondria.

Around two hundred thousand years ago, structurally contemporary humans emerged in Africa. Even though some of humanity’s oldest fossilized remains point to an origin in eastern Africa, modern populations that represent the initial branch of human genetics can be found in southern Africa (Bien, 2015). Even though an alternative theory contends that various morphological traits of H. sapiens initially emerged locally in several African regions and afterward came collectively as a consequence of the transfer of genes between distinct groups around the same period, the Horn of Africa is where H. sapiens probably evolved between three million and two million years ago.

The theory of mitochondrial DNA is connected to the Christian religious views about the origin of Mankind. The mother of every person on earth, or mitochondrial Eve, is a human being’s female genetic progenitor. The DNA found within the cell’s mitochondria explains every aspect, even though it could seem extremely strange or even impossible. Human children inherit one DNA from their mothers. It turns out that Mitochondrial Eve, which may have originated from the biblical Eve, is where we can trace this DNA back to. Mitochondrial Eve’s discoverer, Allan Wilson, postulated that she existed in East Africa around 2,50,000 years ago. All of our ancestors lived in tiny groups during the Stone Age for around 2,38,000 of a total of 2,50,000 years. They shared the same requirements and supplies, hunted for, sought refuge from similar weather conditions, feared similar enemies, and engaged in a comparable set of fears.

Part 2. African Traditional Religion

Several readings dispel the negative myths concerning African Spirituality. The Art Key Theses Addendum explains how the West negatively perceived African religious activities and why it is wrong. It is stated that despite their increasingly close connection with Africans (Bien, 2015). Over the last century, Western culture has opted to view witchcraft, barbarism, and vulgarity of life whenever Africans initiated their most authentic morals. As bizarre as it is likely to appear, hardly anyone in the West is taken aback by the intricacies and refinements of Chinese or Japanese thought. When a researcher chronicles certain African beliefs, he is regarded as a breakout, if not utterly impulsive, ‘interpreter.’

In another text, the author argues that African traditional religion, like a variety of other kinds of faith, is an extensive collection of worldwide information that directs individuals in their search for life and their spiritual need to comprehend the world as a significant universe as well as their part and function in the trends of global actions (Olupona & Rey, 2007). African conception of Divinity impacts human beings’ perceptions of the universe as well as humanity. It offers an effective key to comprehending the universe and the meaning of radical nature, financial, societal, cultural, and spiritual events. Therefore, God’s qualities serve as a fundamental foundation for critiquing all types of thought and conduct.

In Africa, God is more commonly viewed as a family. The African conception of God, in particular, is Cosmo theandric. Vidye Mukulu is another name for the Great Spirit, Ultimate Being, or Supreme God. Furthermore there exist different deities, particularly nature spirits, who live in sacred waterways, sacred mountains, and elsewhere. Lastly, ancestors are persons who were well-known for their qualities and virtues and who became heavenly after mortality.

Values in African Traditional Religions are grounded on humanity’s knowledge of the ever-changing nature of their duties, relationships, and responsibilities toward themselves and other people in society as a whole in particular how they respond to the needs of Olodumare, the ultimate being, or the Creator. In some African cultures, “Bumuntu” is a concept that refers to the quality of being human, or the essence of what it meant to be a good person (N’Sengha, 2011). It is often associated with values such as compassion, generosity, kindness, and empathy. It is also related to the idea of Ubuntu, which means “I am because we are.”In this case, Africans define a good person as “Bumuntu” which is a concept that highlights the importance of treating others with respect, kindness, and compassion, and of recognizing our interconnectedness and interdependence as human beings.

Part 3. African Contribution to world civilization

Assmann, like Freud in Moses and Monotheism, contends that monotheism may be dated back to around the fourteenth century B.C. reign of Egyptian pharaoh Akhenaton. Unlike Moses, E. Akhenaten was a historical character whose memory was nearly lost until his recovery in the middle of the nineteenth century (Walters, 2011). Dr. Assmann further observes that monotheism subordinates law and justice to God and the divine will. The Egyptian gods made decisions based on human knowledge rather than the heavenly rule. If a man lived in peace with other people, he lived in peace with the gods. In a nutshell, man established justice, and the gods followed suit in their judgments. In contrast, biblical monotheism depicts God as both a lawgiver and a judge.

Some African countries significantly contributed to the spread of Christianity and the use of the bible among Africans. In North Africa, Christianity became prevalent as a religion of opposition to the expanding Roman Empire. During the 4th millennium, Ethiopian King Ezana proclaimed Christianity to have become his country’s official religion.  Africa also influenced Judaism. The Hebrews, or Hapiru, migrated from Ethiopia and established a civilization in Mesopotamia (Bien, 2015). The Israelites originated from them, especially when they returned to Egypt. A few of them returned to Ethiopia shortly after being freed. Sheba, King Solomon’s wife, could have originated from Ethiopia or Yemen. Saba the kingdom included both lands. Over history, humanity has traveled from one place to another between Yemen and Ethiopia. King Menelik was the result of Sheba and Solomon’s marriage.

The “Egyptian problem” refers to the argument between Western researchers about the identities of the creators of the ancient Egyptian evolution: The scholars wanted to find out what ways Africans employed to create an advanced civilization (Bien, 2015). They believed that if it had been empirically “proven” that Blacks were physically unable to develop civilization, no one could interpret Ancient Egypt, which happened to be located on the African continent. They provided three, options. The initial one was to dispute that the color of Ancient Egyptians was black; what followed was to dispute that they established the “right civilization”; and the final one was to dispute both.

Other Questions

This was my favorite assignment. There are numerous ways to acquire the information, as well as having the ability to study when I have time and not in a very regimented environment. I exerted more effort, but overall, a consistent level of labor was required. This project was instructive and did a good job of providing a general foundation on African religious practices and God conceptions. It provided the appropriate balance of facts for needed learning, as well as enough deeper incite and examples, so that a very interested student may spend any amount of time as needed and learn as much as he felt motivated. The knowledge gained enabled me to comprehend African Traditional Religion and to ask pertinent questions to validate the value of the study findings. The African conception of God astonished me in this project. I had no idea that Africans had distinct perspectives on God before this project. I enjoyed learning about how Africa contributed to Christianity because it helps me understand how Christianity spread over the world. This assignment assisted me in achieving educational goals by clearly grasping topics, and it encouraged us to exchange our accomplishments with other students, so establishing an environment in which we could learn from each other’s errors. The five citations that I found significant in our learning process include Africa, Cradle of Humanity, ATR in Key Theses, God in ATR, and Bumuntu Memory.















Bien. (2015). ATR In Key Theses: Summary of Critical Points on The Study of African Traditional Religions.

N’Sengha, M, N. (2011). Bumuntu Memory and Authentic Personhood: An African Art of Becoming Humane. In Memory and the Narrative Imagination: In The African And Diaspora Experience. New York: Bedford Publishers, Inc.

Olupona, K, J, & Rey, T. (2007). Orisa Devotion as World Religion: The Globalization of Yoruba Religious Culture. The University of Wisconsin Press.

Walters, T, S. (2011). Memory and the Narrative Imagination: In The African And Diaspora Experience. New York: Bedford Publishers, Inc.


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