Claim: Ouroboros’ occult vector is an occult sign, and Tinubu’s cap suggests he is a member.
Verdict: FALSE. The Ouroboros symbol suggests eternal life in a cyclical pattern. It has nothing to do with the embroidered signature on Tinubu’s cap nor suggests that he is a member.
Amidst the series of campaigns staged in the country by different political office hopefuls for the February elections, a Twitter user and popular pro-Peter Obi social media influencer, has made a tweet insinuating that the All Progressives Congress (APC’s) presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, belongs to a cult group. He backed this with the claim that the infinity-like embroidery knitted on his cap bears semblance to the Ouroboros occult vector.
The Twitter user NEFERTITI (@firstladyship), who made the tweet on Monday, January 30, 2023, urged both supporters of the Obi-Datti presidential bid and other Twitter users to “spread” the photo grid of the Ouroboros occult vector symbol and Mr Tinubu on WhatsApp.
The photo grid shared in this post has the infinity-coiled serpent symbol of the Ouroboros occult vector on one half and the picture of the APC presidential candidate adorned in a Yoruba cap, having an infinity-like embroidery on its sides on the other half.
The assertion, “This is an occultic sign, is written above the serpent-coiled ensign. Members are brutal. They love money, and they can kill for power.” However, much of that assertion remains debatable and subject to scrutiny for merits.
Furthermore, the Peter Obi endeared social media influencer seemed to stray off her initial stance but never relieving the former two-time Lagos governor of her critique. She included in the thread a cartooned image of a sad-faced boy whose hands are shackled in Tinubu’s cap emblem.
The tweet, which has now generated over 661,000 views, 4,448 retweets, 312 quoted tweets, and 7,674 likes, unsurprisingly drew divergent opinions from other users of the micro-blogging platform.
NEFERTITI is not the only Twitter user who believes Mr Tinubu is associated with a cult group because of the semblance his cap embroidery shares with the symbol. Another Twitter user, Street Certified Vegan(@okpoOgban), in the comment section also shared a post declaring that the APC’s presidential candidate was definitely into an occult group because the embroidered signature on his cap is used by one.
The post, which has the picture of a snake positioned upright, and swallowing its tail, bears a message below it, asserting that an “occult group” uses the “Jagaban” (Tinubu) symbol. While it states that people “are wearing what they don’t understand,” it urges “Nigerians” to “fight for your life and destiny.”
A Twitter user, Sosodef (@aisosaigiebor), queried the post, countering, “do you have to result (resort) to insults(ing) people?” Another Twitter user, beedeepro (@Dailymercytye), mocked it, commenting, “They there dey post rubbish, don’t go and find something meaningful to do as a woman lol.”
Amid these comments, a few Twitter users were quick to swallow the contents of the post, hook, line, and sinker, and within a twinkle of an eye, dispatched the tweet even across other social media platforms.
Lovechijioke (General Show) (@Realsnowlove1) commented in his native language, “Ya kpotuba,” meaning “It is happening,” shared a screenshot of his WhatsApp interface with his mother, detailing that he had done as the post has asked.
Instantly seeing the post as a bargaining chip to dissuade the voting populace from favouring the APC with their votes, a Twitter user Better_days (@Emmytaj), scratched the idea to make use of the post to convince the late-bloomer generation to vote for the APC at the polling booths.
He commented, “This is the only way to convince Nigerian parents not to vote for APC; show them this, and they’ll even start praying against APC.”
Shifting the perspective away from the politically-inciting post’s argument, a commenter in the comment section tried to explain away the perceived logic in the tweet. The commenter, Johnson Marvis (@marvis_hottyme), upheld neutrally that symbols are of exquisite representation to people, and they hold onto them dearly because of the personal meanings they attach to them.
“Symbols are very powerful, and for him (Tinubu) to carry that symbol everywhere he goes, it means the symbol is important either to him or a group of people if there are other people who wear it every time too,” he wrote.
Knowing the superstitious nature of Nigerians and how this can be played on during strategic events like the election, DUBAWA decided to investigate the claim carefully.
Verifying this claim is also vital, seeing the reputation of the APC presidential candidate and his party is at stake.
In a 2017 British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) publication, it was disclosed that the Ouroboros symbol had been a “subject of awe and wonder” throughout “millennia.”
The Greek term means “tail-devourer” in its literal sense and is perceived differently in different forms and contexts. But the general and oldest traditional interpretation of the symbol denotes a snake eating its tail in a circle-enclosed manner.
It may bear a Greek interpretation, but it isn’t entirely Greek or of Greek origin, and neither does it suggest self-cannibalism.
So what, then, is the history of the Ouroboros symbol and its meaning?
According to the BBC publication, the earliest manifestation of the Ouroboros is in a “golden shrine in the tomb of Tutankhamun – ‘King Tut’ – in Egypt in the 13th Century BC.” This occurred when traditional religion was almost unheard of and out of practice. This was during Akhenaten’s (Tutankhamun’s predecessor) reign.
Egyptologist Jan Assmann said the symbol depicts “the mystery of cyclical time, which flows back into itself.” The Egyptians explained time as a “series of repetitive cycles” rather than “linear”. The ideology suggests the “flooding of the Nile” and the “journey of the sun”.
Mr Assmann suggests that the Egyptians believed that the flooding of the Nile in summer symbolised the beginning of the year and served as a “metaphor of cyclical time,” which enabled “renewal, repetition, and regeneration.” In a similar vein as well, the sun was also conceived to follow a cyclical systemic pattern, “undertaking a nightly journey to the waters of Nun (a sort of primordial void), fraught with all sorts of obstacles, whence it would find its way back to the sky.”
Therefore, in the Egyptian context, the symbol means a revolving repetition of the time pattern.
The Egyptians were not the only authority of the ouroboros ideology, as the Greek alchemists of Hellenistic Alexandria also held the belief. In Cleopatra’s chrysopoeia – the transmutation of gold – the ouroboros appears to be a pictorial alchemical papyrus from the 3rd Century AD. It represented the creation of gold, which appears among the mysterious symbols and images encircling the Greek words ‘One is All.’
Greek alchemists regard the Ouroboros as the “oldest allegorical symbol in alchemy.” It symbolises the “concept of eternity” and “endless return.” It also depicts the “unity of time’s beginning and end.” Notably, on the papyrus is a double ring, which connotes the mantra “One is All is only a part: One is All, and by it All, and for it All. And if it does not contain All, then All is Nothing.”
The Ouroboros also dominated the Gnostics’ belief. According to the Gnostics, the symbol represented the “divine and earthly in man,” which, despite their contradiction, interacted together.
In Norse mythology, the ouroboros is explained as the “serpent Jormungandr” which “encircles the world with its tail in its mouth.” In Hinduism, the ouroboros “forms part of the foundation upon which the Earth rests.” It (ouroboros) took a different transition among the Roman variant of Iranian Mithraism, Zurvan, as it symbolises “boundless time” that showcases “ouroboros entwined around his body.” While the Mesoamerican deity Quetzalcoatl is “often seen in the form of an ouroboros.”
The Ouroboros myth also prospered among Renaissance alchemists. Again, the symbol was perceived as “representing the infinite nature of time and eternal.” It was seen by the alchemists “as the ultimate obstacle to be overcome in the Magnum Opus,” which was the struggle to become immortal. They desired to break the “incessant cycle of the ouroboros once and for all.”
So, by all definitions and beliefs, the ouroboros is itself used to suggest the passage of life in a cyclical pattern. It only resonates with the words in Nietzsche’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra, declaring, “Behold, we know what you teach,” said the author of his protagonist – an antithesis of the historical prophet, “that all things occur eternally and we, along with them, and that we have already been here times eternal and all things with us.”
But is the ouroboros occult vector a cult?
The Ouroboros may be traced to the ancient Moon cults. The moon was regarded as a timekeeper. It was viewed as being in control of time’s eternal, cyclical nature. Furthermore, it was seen as a source of life on earth. It became a representation of birth, death, and regeneration because of its nature to live, outlive and be reborn.
Lunar bodies were known to associate with devouring snakes or dragons, which became the mother of the moon’s rebirth after swallowing the moon.
In ancient times, the Egyptians regarded the goddess Buto as a cobra. Buto was known to safeguard ISIS and Horus, her son. Similarly, every person is protected by a personal snake spirit that showcases their lifetime and survival into the afterlife.
The earliest form of the Ouroboros in Egypt comes from the tomb of Seti, where a carving depicts the sun god lying on his back in a house surrounded by an ouroboros. The art was crafted to represent the immortality of the dead. Tutankhamun’s third shrine reveals the dead in a stylised profile with one ouroboros encircled around his head and feet.
Does Tinubu’s cap suggest he is a member?
In a 2019 interview with the Guardian newspaper, the former two-time Lagos State governor and APC presidential candidate explained the intention behind the prominent embroidery on his cap.
He explained that the embroidery symbolises an unshackled dispensation from bondage.
“Philosophically, it is my belief and faith in education, freedom fighting. On my cap is a broken shackle. It is freedom. The shackle is broken, and you can no longer put us in bondage. You have broken the shackle of poverty, ignorance and disease. The APC stalwart had said.
The Ouroboros symbolically suggests eternal life and has no relationship with members who are brutal, love money, or kill for power. The claim is false as Tinubu’s cap does not have anything to do with the symbol or anything that even suggests that he is a member.