Today, I recalled something that always made me wonder.
As a Catholic, my grandparents and parents always had priests over for any celebration, and there was a distinct rule that priests were not to be offered any meal or refreshment in public. They had to eat and drink in private, or their refreshment packaged in takeaway packs for them.
Then one of my uncles became a Chief in his village, and he started repeating the same rule as a custom for his new elevated position. “I am not to be seen eating or drinking in public.”
I have always wondered about the reasons behind this rule. Is it so that they do not embarrass themselves with their chewing pattern? Is it so that they do not embarrass themselves with soiling their fine linen? Is it so that they do not get poisoned in public? Or is eating in public generally unbecoming for any respectable person?
For some time, I also stopped eating in public, after all, we are supposed to live up to the ideals of priests.
Then, I met a priest who did not abide by the rule. He fascinated me. I never asked him why he was so free in public, but he showed that it was not a rule, but a nice-to-have.
There are many rules that are entrenched to mystify positions, but not really required for the positions.
I am thankful for the people that demystify myths.