LOSS OF PHYSICAL IMMORTALITY
At one point in primaerval history, the Sun sent the Mole on a herald. The former commissioned the latter to deliver this message to the Imenti people:
" 'Let people "sleep" and "awaken' ".
The Mole started the journey from unknown place. However, the destination was obvious. On the way he met with the Hyena, one of the greedy scavengers of the wilderness.
The two talked quite a while. The Hyena, then asked the Mole:
"My friend, you seem to be on an important mission. I plead with you; tell me where are you up to?"
In response, the small soft spoken animal said unhesitatingly:
"I have been sent by the Sun to deliver an everlasting message to the mortals".
"Hmm! My friend, you are indeed an important emissary with an important message from the blue skies," The Hyena said with a biting sarcasm. "Drop me a hint", he added with bated breath.
The self-elated Mole grinned. He said gritting his teeth. "I have been sent to convey this message: "'let people "sleep" and "awaken' ".
"Oh brother mine! People to "die" and "resurrect!" the Hyena said wearing a surprise look on his face.
"Yes brother! That is the exact content of the message. People to "die" and "resurrect". The Mole reasserted.
In a while, the Hyena thought for himself as he stood in forlorn hope of changing the mind of the Mole. The beast, ever greedy for human remains, gazed into the blue sky not ever believing his
"I don't give a damn what you tell me. Believe you me. The message you are to deliver is not all that important to me as you thinkâ¦. If people "die" and "resurrect", what! Tell me! What shall I eat?"
The question boggled the imagination of the dismayed Mole.
In his droning monologue, the aggressor was imperative. He dictated to the Mole his own version of the message. He said demandingly: "Go, and deliver this message, "let people "die" and never ever to "resurrect" ".
The moment was tense and the silence was deafening. The Hyena added sternly: "In case you decline to deliver the message verbatim as I have dictated to you, I have no option other than to eat you without hesitancy."
The intimidating words of the snarling Hyena froze the blood of the Mole. The thought of being the delicious meal of the day made him tremble with fears. It was life or death. "Perish the thought". The idea flashed in the mind of the Mole like lightening. He then continued musing in his meditative silence.
"Not me. Today I am your day's meal. Eh! What about the morrow! The human remains you passionately crave for shall be your day's meal henceforth. Breathing is better than being breathless."
Now under hypnosis, for fear of his life, he chose to disobey the Sun so as to remain alive and kicking. In utter submission and cowardice, he said to the salivating aggressor:
"So be it,. I will deliver the message precisely as you have dictated."
Wow! A moment of triumph arrived at last. The desperate attempt of the Hyena to overpower the Mole climaxed in jubilant thrills and wild laughter. "So be it," the Hyena said with gratifying sentiments that echoed the Mole's.
The deal was finally concluded with excitements and disappointments. The triumphant Hyena and the downcast Mole parted peacefully albeit coldly. The two became predestined never to come face to face in their life time.
Guilty conscience tortured the otherwise innocent small animal. The Mole feared to face the Sun because he was remorseful for his sin of omission. Consequently, he condemned himself to eternal withdrawal never to come into direct contact with the Sun. He dug underground tunnels for his eternal abode and refuge. To this day, there he lives in colonies for fear of instant death from countless legs and arms of the Sun's rays that strike all over the earth's surface. The Mole can only emerge from the underground tunnels when the Sun goes to rest and the night falls.
Mortality is a natural phenomenon. Death has been described as: "The man's lot." This traditional allegory is an answer to the predicament of death and physical immortality. The five main ideas in the story conclude with an eternal answer. These are: the fear of death, the desire of physical immortality, the bestowal of physical immortality, the loss of physical immortality and regaining the loss of the physical immortality.
"Sleep" and "awaken" are verbs synonymous with "die" and "resurrect"
Death is the worst inevitable evil that comes naturally. The biological termination of life is man's most dreaded psychological fear. Thought and experience of the dreadful eventuality inspired man with an earnest desire to live physically immortal in space and time. Heaven graciously bestowed the desire.
The myth has three personified characters: the Sun, the Mole and the Hyena. Literally, the Sun is associated with the bestowal of physical immortality. The celestial radiant ball symbolizes the heavenly Provident Father. He willed man to "resurrect" after "death" and live physically immortal on earth.
The Mole and the Hyena are characters used for their vices of selfishness, greed, solitary withdrawal and cowardice respectively. They are the evil powers that made the interception that finally decided and endorsed the loss of human physical immortality. However, the loss of physical immortality is regained in quasi- immortality. Quasi âimmortality is perpetuated by one's children and offspring. The ancestors continue to subsist or to be in the children of their children in the afterlife. They live a blissful happy life.
The Imenti and biblical traditions agree on quasi-immortality. In Genesis, the tree of life symbolized immortality. The likeness of God, knowing good and evil, is interpreted to be the quasi âimmortality through offspring's achieved by sexual intercourse. Impotents and celibates die childless. The quasi immortality of these personalities ceases to be in space and time. In the afterlife, they live in a limbo of misery and unhappiness. They are not recognized as ancestors. They constitute one group amongst the wicked spirits of the dead.