Death for 13th child in Western cultures


THE West has always portrayed itself as a clean civilisation innocent of evil beliefs practised by African cultures.
The killing of twins which took place among African cultures a long time ago is their favourite example.
The idea conveyed by the West is that there are no such practices where Europeans come from.
While Africans no longer kill twins, Europeans today still believe ‘13’ to be an evil number and deliver their 13th children as evil omens into the hands of death, as in the story below.
A poor man had 12 children.
He worked night and day to get them just enough to eat.
When the 13th child came, he did not know what to do.
In his misery he ran onto the highway to ask if anyone would need a child raise as his own.
The first to come along was God and he already knew what the man wanted and said, “Poor man, I pity you. Let your child come to me and I will make it happy upon earth.”
“Who are you?” asked the man.
“I am God.”
“Then I don’t want you for a godfather. You give to the rich and let the poor go hungry.”
That was how the man talked because he did not understand how God shares out wealth and poverty.
Thus, the man turned away from the Lord and walked on.
The next to come was the Devil who said, “If you let me be godfather to your child, I will give him gold as much as he can use, and all the pleasures of the world besides.”
“Who are you?” asked the man.
“I am the Devil.” “Then I don’t want you for a godfather. You deceive mankind.”
Next came, spindle-legged Death, who said, “Take me as godfather.”
The man asked, “Who are you?”
“I am Death who makes all men equal.”
“Yes, said the man. You are the one who shall take my child. You treat the rich and the poor without distinction.”
And Death said, “Yes. I will make your child rich and famous, because the one who has me for a friend shall want for nothing.”
Then the man said, “Next Sunday is the baptism. Be there in good time to baptise the child and take him as yours”
Death appeared for the baptism as he had promised and made a perfectly fine godfather.
When the boy was of age, Death took the boy into the woods and showed him a herb which grew there and said, “This is your christening gift. I shall make you into a famous doctor.
“When you are called into a patient’s bedside, I will appear. If I stand at the sick man’s head, you can boldly say you will cure him. If you give him some of this herb he will recover.
“If I stand at the sick man’s feet, then he is mine and you must say no doctor on earth can save him. But take care not to use the herb against my will or it could be the worse for you.”
It wasn’t too long before the young man had become the most famous doctor in the whole world.
“He looks at a patient and right away he knows how things stand.”
That’s how people spoke about him and came from near and far to be cured and gave him so much money he became a rich man.
Now, it happened that the king fell ill. The doctor was called to say if he was going to get well.
When he came to the bed, there stood Death at the feet of the king.
“If I could only this once outwit Death,” thought the doctor, “he will be annoyed I know, but I am his godchild and he’s sure to turn a blind eye. I’ll take my chance.”
And he lifted the sick king and laid him the other way around so that Death was standing at the king’s head.
Then he gave the sick king some herb and the king began to feel better and was soon in perfect health.
But furious Death came to the doctor and said, “You have tricked me. This time I will let it pass because you are my godchild. But if you ever dare do such a thing again, you put your own head in the noose and it is you I shall carry away with me.”
Soon after that, the king’s daughter fell ill.
She was his only child and he wept day and night until his eyes failed him and he let it known that whoever saved the princess from Death should become her husband and inherit the crown.
When the doctor came to her bed, he saw Death at her feet.
But the great beauty of the princess and the happiness of becoming her husband so bedazzled him that he threw caution to the winds. He picked the sick girl up and laid her head where her feet had lain and gave her some of the herb and at once life stirred anew in her.
When Death saw himself cheated of his prey the second time, he came to the doctor and said, “It is all up with you, now it is your turn” and grabbed him harshly with his ice-cold hand and led him to an underground cave.
There he saw thousands upon thousands of lights burning in rows without end.
Some were big, some middle-sized, others small. Every moment some went out and others lit up.
The little flames seemed to be jumping here and there, in perpetual exchange. “Look,” said Death, “these are the life lights of mankind.
“The big ones belong to children, the middle-sized ones to married couples in their best years, and the little ones to very old people.”
“Show me my life light,” asked the doctor imagining that it must be one of the big ones.
Death pointed to a little stub threatening to go out and said, “Here it is.”
“Ah, dear godfather,” said the terrified doctor, “light me a new one. Do it for my sake so that I may enjoy my life and become king and marry the beautiful princess.”
“I cannot,” answered Death.
“A light must go out before a new one lights up.”
“Then set the old on top of a new one so it can go on burning when the first is finished,” begged the doctor.
Death made as if to grant the doctor’s wish and reached for a tall new taper.
But because he wanted revenge, he purposely fumbled and the little stub fell over and went out. Thereupon the doctor sank to the ground and had himself fallen into the hands of Death to which his parents had delivered him as an evil omen at birth, according to their Western culture.


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