Every tradition, race, nation, tribe, or people has its way of greeting. Looked at critically, each way of greeting is a product of an age-long practice, which transmits from one generation to another. Natives in Africa have a pattern of greeting that is largely different from the West. Certain cultures in West Africa prostrate themselves, particularly in Nigeria, while few others squat, some wave the hand in expression of greeting. The West, (the Americas and Europe) shake hands, exchange kisses, hug or cuddle. Now that the world has become a global village, and global socialization is taking its toll on most cultures, especially on the African continent, some of these cultural ways of displaying greetings have been imbibed in other climes as well.
As simple and routine as it appears, greeting is a way of showing care to anyone to whom it is expressed. When you greet or receive greetings, there is a warm feeling you experience within. But if you do not get it, perhaps from those you expect, you feel bad or irritated, especially when an adult or someone with a wide age difference is involved. Even peers may feel offended simply because a friend refuses or forgets to greet.
In other words, greeting is part of our culture, and it is also cultural to offer greetings, no matter what. This article is out here to let us know the benefits of greeting.
Note the following benefits of greeting:
- Greeting sets the tone for communication.
- It is also a means of expressing care, warmth, friendliness, etc. Greeting sets the tone for friendliness. It, however, does not necessarily mean friendship, but an expression of tradition, norms or behavioural trend.
- Greeting could also be a signpost to a person’s place of origin, tribe, ethnicity, race or nationality of a person.
- Greeting could also show if someone is in good terms with you or not particularly, when the expression is done cheerfully and with great concern. Otherwise, if you greet someone grudgingly, the other party can easily notice and inquire the reason for such disposition. A total refusal to greet means the parties involved are not in good terms.
- It could also reflect if one is attuned with certain cultural practices; and elders would not shy away from drawing the attention of younger generation to any fault arising from an obvious or apparent neglect of this practice.
- Africans, most especially, and natives of other climes, may understand the failure to offer greeting as an insult, a show of pride, or any other negative behaviour.
- Greetings, in a way, could ease tension or the tendency to strife. In a case when it is done with humour or a high sense of care, it is capable of lessening the hurt done to someone earlier on.
- Cultivating the habit of greeting is one way to get along with other people; and it also helps to promote personal perception or rating.
- Greeting is a human habit mutually shared in any society.
10. It is also a way to know if you are acceptable or not. A rejected greeting could mean one is not acceptable or allowed to stay in a place, or given the space to relate with others.