Occultism is widely practiced in many parts of the world and Ghana is no exception. It hinges on the belief that there are hidden powers that can be tapped to enhance one’s fortunes in a turbulent world.
In point of fact the practice of occultism is not new in Ghana. It was only the elderly who were involved since there were perceived dangers associated with the practice.
Today the practice of the occult has gained acceptance among the youth. What is worrying is the increasing involvement of students in our basic and tertiary institutions in this evil practice (see Daily Graphic of February 24, 2016).
What has made the occult to look appealing to the young ones? It is partly due to movies and videos that glorify the occult. In these films, people are seen performing rituals and reciting incantations with the result that they used such hidden knowledge to inflict harm on their perceived enemies or got people to do their bidding.
When faced with daunting challenges in life, some people resort to the occult for answers. Some people are into the occult to resolve issues concerning their finances, finding a soul mate, the acquisition of material wealth, for employment, for power, to embark on a foreign travel and to have the ability to manipulate any given circumstances to their advantage.
In the case of students, some want to acquire occult power to enable them pass their examination with flying colours and to make quick money.
They are lured into the practice by the more experienced ones with juicy stories of what they had accomplished through the occult. The occultist uses various tools like tarot cards, Ouija boards, talismans, cowries, blood and other human parts among many others.
Apart from being mentored by those who are adept at the art of occultism, some have books on the occult which they read to gain insight into their modus operandi.
Since occultism is practiced in secret, most parents were unaware of the involvement of their wards until they have been arrested or when the children were experiencing the negative effects of the satanic practice.
Occultism whatever form it takes is satanic worship and is condemned by God. In Deuteronomy 18:10-12 the word of God warns us: “There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.”
God wants his children to live righteously with him. Satan’s powers are limited; God is supreme, and there is no one like him. He created us in his own image. If there is anything that baffles us, we should inquire of the Lord and not that of the ruler of darkness.
True knowledge and wisdom come from God. In James 1: 5 the word of God says, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”
God will respond to a sincere prayer that is offered in faith without doubt. To resort to the occult is to sideline God, your Creator.
We must all help curb youth involvement in the occult. The occult is not foolproof and can fail the practitioner. The inability to harness the supernatural to solve problems can result in frustration, depression, hopelessness and suicidal tendencies.
The poor grades of some students can be attributed to their increasing involvement in the occult. They spend precious time not on their studies but on the occult which results in abysmal performance.
The occult encourages quick fixes in life which cannot endure. Our young ones need to have a strong foundation in our cherished values and virtues to grow up as responsible citizens capable of making a meaningful contribution to nation building. They need to imbibe such values as integrity, honesty, hard work, patience, commitment, diligence, tenacity of purpose, knowledge, wisdom, stamina, courage, taking risks, optimism, etc.
Parents have a responsibility to teach their children the art of godly living. They (children) must surrender their life to God and follow his teachings and obey the commandments of God.
They must guide their children to choose godly friends. They (children) should be taught the rules of success, the rules of wealth creation, and the rules of work and of life; there are no shortcuts.
Parents should help their children know God from the very early stages of life. They should know that prayer is a powerful way to have a conversation with God. Prayer is powerful and efficacious. It can bring miraculous results, for instance, healing.
Parents must educate their children to keep away from the occult. Tools of the occult such as magazines and books, talismans, cowries, tarot cards, movies or videos on the occult must be destroyed.
Our educational institutions must ensure that students adhere to the rules and regulations that apply to them. Any student caught practicing the occult must be sanctioned to serve as a deterrent to others.
In conclusion, the youth should be discouraged from practicing the occult. They must know that the occult cannot guarantee success. Besides, its practice will erode the values they need for success in life. Instead of looking for shortcuts in life, they should follow the rules of life, wealth creation and success for a better life.
Yours in inspiration,
Abundant Robert K. AWOLUGUTU
Correction Officer, Priest & Author
Email: [email protected]