PARABLE OF THE ARÁ AYÉ AND ARÁ Ọ̀RUN
Once upon a time, the Ará Ọ̀run known as the Egúngún visited Ayé for the first time and saw Ará Ayé, known as Ènìyàn or human being, for the first time.
Ará Ayé also saw Ara Ọ̀run for the first time that day.
Intrigued by the appearance of Ará Ayé, the Ará Ọ̀run the Egúngún wanted to take Ará Ayé back to Ọ̀run.
But scared of the colorful attires and striking sculptures of the Egúngún, Ará Ayé began to run when the Ará Ọ̀run approached.
When the Egúngún saw that Ará Ayé began to run away, the Egúngún started chasing Ara Aye.
It was a long chase, and Ará Ayé the human being began to get tired.
The Egúngún was happy and increased his speed when he noticed that Ara Aye was getting tired.
Ará Ayé looked back and saw that the Egúngún was rapidly reducing the distance between them, and the Ará Ayé became even more scared, and increased his speed too.
Soon, the gap between them began to widen.
The Egúngún sped even faster, but he began to get tired too and was panting for breath.
The Ará Ayé, though tired, continued to speed as if his life depended on it.
After chasing Ara Aye around for several hours, the Egúngún stopped the chase because he was out of breath.
Ara Aye turned a corner and disappeared into the neighborhood, thus escaping from the Egúngún.
This is why the Yoruba people have the saying that, “Eni Egúngún bá ń lé lọ kó má a rọ́jú. Bí ó ti ń rẹ Ará Ayé, náà ló ń rẹ Ará Ọ̀run.”
It means, “Those being chased by the Egúngún should never give up: just as the Ará Ayé runs out of breath, so does the Ará Ọ̀run get tired.”
This parable is for those who want self-determination but are increasingly falling into despair because the state is brutalizing them.
Let those who have ears hear.
And let the wise and the prudent break the proverb like Igbo people break kola nut for their ceremonies.