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The Ways of an Idan

The ways of an Idan cannot be understood by mere men

By Nathaniel BenjaminPublished 6 months ago 4 min read

“The ways of an Idan cannot be understood by mere men”.

You’ve probably heard that phrase a couple of times recently. Or you have been hearing the word “Idan” tossed here and there on social media lately. 

“Idan” is a Yoruba word, that literally translates to “magic”. In the context it is being used in English, it translates roughly as “a magic user”, or, more accurately, “a person who is mysterious or unpredictable”. Hence the phrase “the ways of an Idan cannot be understood by mere men”

The term "Idan" has been used to describe a certain kind of person, who possesses a certain kind of magic, a magic that cannot be easily understood by mere men. They are young people who are believed to have the ability to manifest their desires into reality. They are seen as influencers, trendsetters, and game-changers. 

I think I’ve shared this epiphany I had here before, but I believe that Nigerians in Nigeria have developed the habit of using a sense of humor as a coping mechanism. It’s safe to say Nigeria’s problems today are at an all-time high right now. From the cost of living to national insecurity to corruption, and that’s just speaking on a national scale. Speaking based on the demographic I belong to, a Nigerian public university undergraduate, lunged into the brutal working class. This demographic accounts for 60% or maybe even more of the individuals dominating the Nigerian social media space. A few of our problems include: 

1. Unemployment: I read an article the other day that said the unemployment rate in Nigeria reached a record high of 33.3% in the fourth quarter of 2020, with youth unemployment even higher at 42.5%  

2. A failing educational system: 8 months ASUU strike, LMAO. I saw this tweet yesterday where someone was complaining about being at the same level they were in 2021.  

3. Insecurity 

4. Political marginalization: as what can be considered a general rule in Africa, the youths are supposed to be quiet and out of sight when “important” decisions are being made. Youths in Nigeria are often excluded or considered insignificant in political processes and decision-making, despite being a significant proportion of the population. This is actually a problem that is gradually dying out, and I say this because of the impact we had on this past election process. Change takes time (Two steps forward, one step back). Remember, they won’t be here for long. 

I think I have digressed from the point I was trying to make. My point is, it’s hard out here. Everyone’s just trying to get through the day hoping they see the most minute amount of shege possible. And when we’re not actively working to secure that mula, or constructing our plans to japa, or not stuck in Imagination Land, we make jokes. Really funny ones. One of which is what you’re here to read about today. I call it “The Idan Personality”. As an Idan myself, let me walk you through what it means to be an Idan.

Idans have an aura of confidence and self-assuredness that draws people to them. We have a way of making things happen, even when it seems impossible. A unique ability to turn our dreams into reality, and stories of our successes, accomplishments, and adventures are often told with awe and amazement. 

To be an Idan means to possess an unyielding determination to succeed. It means having the courage to take risks and the resilience to bounce back from failures. It means being able to visualize your dreams and work tirelessly towards achieving them, no matter the obstacles. Although the ways of an Idan cannot be fully comprehended by mere men, they can be learned from. 

At our core, we represent a new way of being - one that is marked by a deep sense of self-awareness and empowerment.

We reject the norms and expectations of mainstream society and embrace our own unique path. We are not afraid to challenge authority and question the status quo, and we use our creativity and spiritual connection to create a better world for ourselves and those around us. 

In a country that is plagued by corruption, inequality, and social injustice, the ways of an Idan offer a glimmer of hope. We represent a new generation of Nigerian youths who are unafraid to take risks and challenge the old ways of doing things. And while our practices may seem strange or even incomprehensible to outsiders, we are a vital part of the rich and diverse tapestry of Nigerian culture.

The ways of an Idan may be difficult to understand for those who are not part of this unique subculture. But for Nigerian youths, being an Idan represents a source of pride and empowerment. By embracing their own unique identities and rejecting the norms and expectations of mainstream society, they are carving out a new path for themselves - one that is marked by creativity, spirituality, and a deep sense of self-awareness.

I really hope you start to see some traits of an Idan in you today. Live your life like one, and things will fall into place for you. 

As an Idan, you should wake up and let the sun rise up just to bask in the glory of your greatness.

As an Idan, you don’t need an umbrella when it rains because you can’t get wet. The rain gets dry around you. 

As an Idan, you should always win staring contests, even against mirrors.

As an Idan, you can’t get lost. You may however occasionally take detours to explore new areas.

As an Idan!... You get the point. Go forth and live audaciously!

Uncommon Lingos used in this piece

Mula: a common slang term for “money”

Japa: a common slang term that translates to “running away” or “to run away”

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