Of ancient Malawi’s nyanga charms being diluted and destroyed….

dziwe-la-nkhalamba-2
Dziwe la Nkhalamba

A hand suddenly appears in the mythical realm of Sapitwa, the highest peak of Mulanje Mountain and suddenly points a huge white sword plaited with gold linings to the East and keeps it in that direction according to an oral myth told to this blog.

The deformed looking man whose head is shaped like a hexagon practices the ancient teachings of all that is holy and powerful coming from the East where the sun rises and that work of nature is used as a compass for some of the illiterate of Malawi to easily find their way around.

The sun which shines brightly in the sky is said to be the shield that protects the entrance to where Chauta, Namalenga, Mphambe (God) is, way above in sky….in a place where no mortal man can easily reach or see in oral stories.

It is in that direction where many ancient priests and priestesses (responsible for nsembe) today grouped together as asing’anga  (traditional  healers) send their requests and prayers for the one whose face is Hidden.

African cross
Ancient African cross to represent the 4 winds of North, South, West and East (mphepo zinayi)

Staring into a dilapidated temple like building the strange looking man takes out a measuring tape as if trying to figure out some mathematical calculations and shows the woman near him the object of his desire.

The man then shows her very shallow water in which there is a silver fish and far in the distance there is a blue pool so deep that nearby tables and chairs float on top of the water.

All of a sudden the deformed man gives the woman his sword and tells her to cut the fish in the swallow water in half but she refuses while screaming that she pities it and cannot hunt for food because she is not a hunter.

The man then turns to look at her, his eyes piercing and standing out as if staring right through her soul.  His white hair is quite visible and so are his high cheekbones and smooth dark skin when he appears normal.

One of the very rare ancient M'manga Mudzi anthill trees in Malawi.
One of the very rare ancient M’manga Mudzi anthill trees in Malawi.

You see this winged spirit called Mbewula which healers say means run away so fast to get away from it is actually Tomasi Bona of the North wind whom some ancestors of this ancient land used to invoke during battles or for protection using their ancient nyanga rituals.

Mbewula is also the strong winged spirit whom healers say has found his way to the mythical Sapitwa after being in “Kuba” and another hidden area for a very long time.

There is a possibility that the mythical “Kuba” of some healers is actually Mount Namuli or Mocuba in Mozambique but this blog is still investigating to establish whether this is true or not.

Now this ancient Tomasi Bona (atom) spirit and nyanga spirits are said to be dissolving and removing all power of nyanga that has been used to harm innocent people but not the one for self-protection say some healers.

That is why they believe all nyanga people who harm innocent people will fall and be disgraced as their powers are diluted and their evil ways exposed for all to see as the nyanga spirits pull them down and work with the winged spirits is an oracle from Sapitwa told to this blog.

In their vision of the “living dead” as they believe all spirits are immortal and that mizimu yakwiya (the spirits are angry), they talk of a powerful female healer being groomed to replace the first ancient Nyangu but not related to the known Nyangus of today.

With a fly-whisk she will make many nyanga people drop their charms including zithumwa (small magical pillows) is what this blog has been told in one of those “typical” Malawi matsenga stories.

This woman is also expected to dig up the secret place where an ancient nsupa (African wine kettle gourd) is buried so that she can destroy it and all powers associated with it so that all those who relied on it for good luck or love charms through evil means fall is the oral story told to this blog in Chichewa.

To be continued once more information is given to this blog.Mulanje mountain (2)

 

 

 

Of Ancient Malawi’s Njeza (Field of Reeds) and not Kanjedza ( palm leaves)?

What some Malawians call Njeza Reeds - Internet photo
What some Malawians call Njeza Reeds – Internet photo

A young dread-locked dark-skinned smooth skinned man with a well-shaped black beard holds his breath as he treks into the wilderness to meditate and get in touch with nature and animals among other things.

You see the young Mbona is considered to be one of the best traditional healers (sing’anga) in the area who also uses magic (matsenga) to disappear and turn into various birds and animals go some oral unofficial stories about Mbona.

Now whenever Mbona trekked into the bush he would use a reed locally called Chipala or Mponja but this blog does not know the exact spelling or whether it was consumed or just carried like others.

But anyway this reed would make him not get hungry for a long time and always feel full.  This is the same reed some Sapitwa healers use today to always feel as if they’ve eaten whenever they fast.

One specific healer who does not eat nsima or things like pork is somehow still fat although she does not eat much. 

What some Malawians call Bango reed which in English is Bamboo reed Phragmites
What some Malawians call Bango reed which in English is Bamboo reed Phragmites

Reeds which some healers call njeza are also said to be found a lot at the mythical Sapitwa on top of Mulanje Mountain.

These are not the leaves of kanjedza (palm leaves) whose dates or whatever they are called are used to make uchema (palm wine) in the Lower Shire.

Papyrus (Mululu) and Reeds (Njeza)
Papyrus (Mululu) and Reeds (Njeza)

In ancient Malawi reed mats made from njeza were used as death mats instead of coffins just like in ancient Egypt while papyrus was used for wrapping lepers for medical purposes according to a Sapitwa healer. 

Reeds are also something mentioned in the official Khulubvi Mbona stories.

Among the known reeds in Malawi are bango which is scientifically known as Bamboo reed Phragmites, njeza and mululu which is papyrus.  However some in Malawi confuse njeza with mululu because they claim they grow together.

Others like mkeka mats are made from palm leaves which are woven together. Reeds are also used to make mats like njeza and the bango one locally known as mphasa which women use to dry out maize.

The same mphasa, which is a thick mat made of split reeds and used as a bed is also used in funerals as a death mat while the mkeka is a thin made of palm leaves.

Putting the mphasa on the windows of a shop or home is believed to dilute the magical powers of thieves who try to gain access into a building using charms.

In other words the mphasa is a deterrent used by some healers in so many things and Mbona used many types of reeds in his magic.

Mphasa mat made from Bango which in English is Bamboo reed Phragmites
Mphasa mat made from Bango which in English is Bamboo reed Phragmites

Historians need to establish if ancient Malawi’s Mbona asking Mlauli to use “a leaf of a reed” to kill him meant they played a role in funerary texts. In the text below the reed used as a knife on magical Mbona’s neck is “bango.’

 “Pano dzina lake ndi pa Ndione” kapena kuti, “Ndili pano ndigwire….kuti muphe ine tengani mjere, dzani lamtengo, kaya khwaule la bango, mucheke nalo pakhosi langa.  Apo pokha mudzapha ine…..” says Mbona on p.37 of the Ulendo Series Mtunda 8 Chichewa for Standard 8 book.

Mphasa made from bango is also used in figures of speech or expressions in Malawi.  Among them is the expression “kupititsa mwana ku mphasa” which literally means taking the child to the mat but it’s real meaning being the first time a couple is sleeping together after a period following childbirth.

The child is kept between them, so that the warmth of the parents can meet in the child, in order to make it grow and prosper better reads the English Chichewa – Chinyanja Dictionary compiled and edited by Steven Paas.

Another expression is “nanga kumkeka kuli bwanji” which means how is your marital life? Literally it’s how is the mat?

Njeza mat
Njeza mat

Reeds might be the main thing that might connect many African cultures and countries to some ancient Egyptian beliefs concerning the “Field of Reeds” in their afterlife which is documented in http://www.experience-ancient-egypt.com/egyptian-afterlife.html#sthash.Iv7wIdN0.dpuf

Now a Sapitwa priestess (ansembe) claims that the Njeza reed when carried would bend down to show the holder had committed something wrong that was being investigated including whether or not a young woman was a virgin before marriage.

Some Malawians online defined bango (reed) as being sharp on both sides and mnjere as the peel/rind of a sheaf, a shrub of cereal family or the peel of a sugar cane. 

 “Msungwi yomwe amapangira nsengwa or lichero limakhala lakuthwa mbali zonse.”

According to an online document titled ‘Institutions and Ecosystem-Based Development Potentials of the Elephant Marsh, Malawi’, papyrus and reeds grow thickly in the Elephant Marsh and are used locally to make mats, hats, chairs, thatch, granaries, baskets and fishing gear.

“Papyrus is also used as a lining for coffins. Lily bulbs (locally known as nyika) are sometimes eaten for carbohydrates especially in years of poor crop.”

Weaving mats and stuff made from palm leaves (kanjedza)
Weaving mats and stuff made from palm leaves (kanjedza) Photo from http://msaluraprimaryschool.wordpress.com/2012/12/04/msalura-school-blog-to-biggin-hill-primary-school-uk/

The Egyptian Afterlife in the Fields of Reeds called “Aaru” was a continuation of life in Egypt where pharaohs remained pharaohs, the god s the same and the workers had to work hard among other things. http://www.experience-ancient-egypt.com/egyptian-afterlife.html#sthash.Iv7wIdN0.dpuf

It’s in these fields where Osiris ruled after he became part of the Egyptian pantheon and displaced Anubis in the Ogdoad tradition.

Finished weaving products made from palm leaves (kanjedza) taken from  http://msaluraprimaryschool.wordpress.com/2012/12/04/msalura-school-blog-to-biggin-hill-primary-school-uk/
Finished weaving products made from palm leaves (kanjedza) taken from
http://msaluraprimaryschool.wordpress.com/2012/12/04/msalura-school-blog-to-biggin-hill-primary-school-uk/

“It has been described as the ka (a part of the soul) of the Nile Delta. Only souls who weighed exactly the same as the feather of the goddess Ma’at were allowed to start a long and perilous journey to Aaru, where they would exist in pleasure for all eternity.

“The ancient Egyptians believed that the soul resided in the heart. Those whose heart did not match the weight of the feather of Ma’at due to their sins were excluded. They were said to suffer a second death when devoured by another being, Ammit, while still in Duat for judgment…

“Aaru usually was placed in the east, where the Sun rises, and is described as eternal reed fields, very much like those of the earthly Nile delta: an ideal hunting and fishing ground, and hence, those deceased who, after judgment, were allowed to reside there, were often called the eternally living,” further reads http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aaru

Ancient Egypt's Field of Reeds http://classroom.synonym.com/ancient-egypt-happens-couldnt-afford-preserved-10366.html
Ancient Egypt’s Field of Reeds
http://classroom.synonym.com/ancient-egypt-happens-couldnt-afford-preserved-10366.html

 

Of ancient Malawi amanita muscaria “magic mushroom” as Mbona’s flying carpet…

Amanita muscaria (holy  mushroom) internet photo
Amanita muscaria (holy mushroom) internet photo

“Santa is a modern counterpart of a shaman, who consumed mind-altering plants and fungi to commune with the spirit world,” John Rush, an anthropologist and instructor at Sierra College in Rocklin, Calif is quoted as saying in a Live Science website article titled ‘Magic Mushrooms” Santa and the ‘flying’ reindeer dated 2012 and posted on http://www.livescience.com/25731-magic-mushrooms-santa-claus.htm

According to the theory, the legend of Santa derives from shamans in the Siberian and Arctic regions who dropped into locals’ teepeelike homes with a bag full of hallucinatory mushrooms as presents in late December, Rush said.

“As the story goes, up until a few hundred years ago these practicing shamans or priests connected to the older traditions would collect Amanita muscaria (the Holy Mushroom), dry them, and then give them as gifts on the winter solstice,” Rush told LiveScience. “Because snow is usually blocking doors, there was an opening in the roof through which people entered and exited, thus the chimney story.”

But that’s just the beginning of the symbolic connections between the Amanita muscaria mushroom and the iconography of Christmas, according to several historians and ethnomycologists, or people who study the influence fungi has had on human societies.

“Of course, not all scientists agree that the Santa story is tied to a hallucinogen. [Tales of Magic Mushrooms & Other Hallucinogens]”.

“Amongst the Siberian shamans, you have an animal spirit you can journey with in your vision quest,” Ruck continued. ” And reindeer are common and familiar to people in eastern Siberia. They also have a tradition of dressing up like the [mushroom] … they dress up in red suits with white spots,” further reads the same Live Science article.

Now in ancient Malawi the same Amanita muscaria some nicknamed the “holy Mushroom” was known as “Mpunzo” or “Punzo” among the Mang’anja but this blog needs to confirm the correct spelling as it sounds something like that.

But unlike online websites, the ancient priestesses of this land did not talk about hallucinations but some kind of a magical flying carpet to the spirit world (mizimu).

Ancient Malawi’s Mbona used Amanita muscaria in line with the ancient and mythical 4 winds of Sapitwa which this blog will document in Chichewa later. Mbona was one of the 7 spirits of ancient Malawi history specifically responsible for the West.

Others were Tomasi Bona (world in one’s hands) for the North, Chandiona Goneka (seen me put to sleep) for the South and Nthanda mwana wa mwezi (Sirius Star, child of the moon) for the East.

These worked together with the three feminine winged spirits called Sungamwana (keep the child), Dziwe Ntambawana (witchcraft pool) and Ife Zonse (all of us)

Globally according to the unofficial Wikipedia, a magic carpet, also called a flying carpet, is a legendary carpet that can be used to transport humans who are on it instantaneously or quickly to their destination.

“One of the stories in the One Thousand and One Nights relates how Prince Husain, the eldest son of Sultan of the Indies, travels to Bisnagar (Vijayanagara) in India and buys a magic carpet. 

“This carpet is described as follows: “Whoever sitteth on this carpet and willeth in thought to be taken up and set down upon other site will, in the twinkling of an eye, be borne thither, be that place nearhand or distant many a day’s journey and difficult to reach.” The literary traditions of several other cultures also feature magical carpets, in most cases literally flying rather than instantly transporting their passengers from place to place.

Solomon‘s carpet was reportedly made of green silk with a golden weft, sixty miles long and sixty miles wide: “when Solomon sat upon the carpet he was caught up by the wind, and sailed through the air so quickly that he breakfasted at Damascus and supped in Media.” 

“The wind followed Solomon’s commands, and ensured the carpet would go to the proper destination; when Solomon was proud, for his greatness and many accomplishments, the carpet gave a shake and 40,000 fell to their deaths. The carpet was shielded from the sun by a canopy of birds,” further reads http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_carpet. 

The Flying Carpet, a depiction of the hero of Russian folklore, Ivan Tsarevich photo from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_carpet#mediaviewer/File:Vasnetsov_samolet.jpg
The Flying Carpet, a depiction of the hero of Russian folklore, Ivan Tsarevich photo from
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_carpet#mediaviewer/File:Vasnetsov_samolet.jpg

Of ancient Malawi Mbona’s graphic language and blog standstill

Photo taken from Ulendo series book for Standard 8
Photo taken from Ulendo series book for Standard 8

Those interested in ancient Malawi posts on this blog, some elements of ancient rites of passage and ritual were graphic and labelled “rude” today because of the language used and examples. 

For example when ancient Malawi’s Mbona said “amene ali ndi makutu amve” (those who have ears listen) he was not talking about the ears attached to our heads.

In Chichewa or Chinyanja ear as in khutu or makutu as in ears also means something some women stretch and this blog can’t post the Chichewa word here because it is considered swearing or cursing today.

The Tree Ear mushroom (Auricularia auricula) looks like errrrr…..that part but sorry this blog can’t  post the word either and neither could Mbona say it publicly but disguised. So when one said bowa muntengo that was the ear mushroom and the words “amene ali ndi makutu amve”.

Parts of the “magic” mushroom among others are used in an ancient recipe of ingredients to quickly stretch a certain part of the body. So in ancient Malawi “amene ali ndi makutu amwe” meant “woman listen.”

Mbona liked referring to women as “woman” which in Chichewa is “mkazi” or women (akazi) and in minibuses and on the streets of Malawi that is what most men say when talking about women and not only their wives or women.

His language was normal in ancient times but not today and his teachings, saying songs etc are graphic.

That is the Truth about ancient Malawi Mbona’s language and this blog is trying to analyze the language of other ancient cultures including the Abatwa or Abathwa who once occupied this ancient Malawi land so this blog will appreciate the sharing of information.

So for now this blog is at a standstill until appropriate words and translations are found….peace.Hand symbol

Of ancient Malawi priestesses using Nsengwa baskets/scrolls for ‘oracles’

Sapitwa healers say this image of an ancient healer/priestess with a nsengwa small basket is accurate. Photo – © 2013 Max Dashu – image created for [Malawi] Woman Shaman: the Ancients
Sapitwa healers say this image of an ancient healer/priestess with a nsengwa small basket is accurate.
Photo – © 2013 Max Dashu – image created for [Malawi] Woman Shaman: the Ancients
Several kilometers away from the commercial city of Blantyre in Mulanje district to be exact, an elderly veteran Sapitwa healer in her home calls to her grand-daughter to bring her “nsembe” (sacrifice) startling visiting guests who wonder what on earth she keeps in the other room.

They are even more surprised when the young girl only comes out with a huge and thick black book with English sentences inside.

However the healer only allowed the child to touch the mysterious book and not the adults…..even almost spanking their hands killing their curiosity.

You see what is puzzling is that the healer is illiterate as she can’t read and write and yet alone speak English so the guests wonder what the woman is doing with a book and are curious to read its contents inside!

Unknown to them, the book is very special to her as she claims she somehow got it from Sapitwa and believes that the words inside have a certain power on their own so guided by unseen forces she opens to pages which makes one of the guests weep.

The guest who can read simple English reads a part of the book which is somehow relevant to his life but he hears the unexpected when the female healer tells him that is an oracle from Sapitwa.

She also says the books and parts read only work when the intended person to read it does. This blog has seen several books or scroll like things said to be from the astral realm of Sapitwa but many of such were in a different alphabet from this Roman one so it could not be easily read.

Ancient Egypt papyrus paper Internet photo
Ancient Egypt papyrus paper Internet photo

That ancient Malawi scroll or paper is known as nsembe so the Sapitwa healers who still follow ancient teachings are known as ansembe because of their nsengwa also used for making sorghum (mapira) sacrifices among others on top of Mulanje Mountain.

Nsengwa a small lichero (winnowing basket) usually hang on walls as a decoration might be also made from bamboo and is also sharp on both sides.  It’s different from the lichero said to be used in witchcraft as that one is bigger.

Now some Malawians online, defined mnjere as the peel/rind of a sheaf, a shrub of cereal family or the peel of a sugar cane. They also described the bango (reed) as being sharp on both sides.

“Msungwi yomwe amapangira nsengwa or lichero limakhala lakuthwa mbali zonse.”

According to an online document titled ‘Institutions and Ecosystem-Based Development Potentials of the Elephant Marsh, Malawi’, papyrus and reeds grow thickly in the Elephant Marsh and are used locally to make mats, hats, chairs, thatch, granaries, baskets and fishing gear.

“Papyrus is also used as a lining for coffins. Lily bulbs (locally known as nyika) are sometimes eaten for carbohydrates especially in years of poor crop.”

According to some oral stories told to this blog, there are several books, papers and scrolls said to be in the hidden part of Sapitwa believed to be haunted by 7 winged spirits that have never been human (mizimu), ancestral spirits and a spirit royal family which includes Napolo, Mbona and Nyangu.

Nsengwa small basket
Nsengwa small basket

Strangely enough these healers also talk of Chauta, Namalenga, Mphambe (God) but claim He is beyond the sun and universe and why up above the sky were no mortal man can go.

The healers know that God remains Almighty and hesitate to talk about Him anyhow.  But they freely discuss many spirits they claim live in various mountains throughout the region.

These include good and bad spirits but above them all are the 7 which many nyanga (charms/horns) and mizimu (spirits) healers talk about.

These are Bona (world in his hands/feast) of the North wind, Mbona (to see) of the West, Chandiona Goneka (seen me put to sleep) of the South and Nthanda mwana wa mwezi (Sirius star/child of the moon) of the East which are positive male forces.

The other three negative female winged spirits are Dziwe Ntambamwana (Witchcraft pool), Sungamwana (Keep the child) and Ife Zonse (All of us).

In ancient Malawi beliefs both positive and negative forces were used as they believed that both created light or were the major forces besides lightning which was bright in their eyes and a good thing.

Now besides the mysterious books of 2014 said to be taken from Sapitwa, ancient priestess of this rich in history land also used nsengwa small basket for their oracles.

There is also a possibility that nsengwa small baskets were made from bamboo which was also used to make paper in ancient Egypt.  If some can confirm this then it means that might be the reason why ancient Malawi’s Mbona asked his uncle Mlauli to use a reed to cut his throat because other weapons could not harm him.

Mbona who during his time on earth was considered to be Malawi’s number one sing’anga (traditional healer) was an expert in herbs and healing rituals.

Internet photo of Papyrus and Reeds
Internet photo of Papyrus and Reeds

He was also an expert in magic (matsenga) according to some oral stories because he sought powers from both the positive and negative winged spirits.

“Pano dzina lake ndi pa Ndione” kapena kuti, “Ndili pano ndigwire…kuti muphe ine tengani mnjere, dzani lamtengo, kaya khwaule la bango, mucheke nalo pakhosi langa.  Apo pokha mudzapha ine.  Mukapanda kutero, mwataya nthawi yanu yonse pachabe. Koma mukandipha, mutenge mutu wanga mukauyike pa Khuluvi.

“Posachedwa minjere ndi masamba zones zinagwiritsidwa ntchito.  Nthawi imeneyo nkuti Mbona ali kufuula: “Ambuye: mundipheranji?  Ndikufa ine mayo!”  Mmenemotu nkuti mwazi uli puwu-u-u-u! ndiye ponsepo panali mwazi wokhawokha,” partly reads the Ulendo Series Mtunda 8 Chichewa for Standard 8 book explaining how Mbona chose to die.

Ironically ancient Malawi priestesses used scroll like tools like nsengwa small baskets to protect themselves from nyanga attacks or for oracles to see who was being harmed using nyanga charms among other things since most nyanga involves blood including animal parts in medication.

It was also believed that papyrus and some reeds and plants scared away both crocodiles and some snakes…..which in this case was also Mbona.

Photo taken from Ulendo series book for Standard 8
Photo taken from Ulendo series book for Standard 8

Online under a certain English/Nyanja dictionary, papyrus is defined as gumbwa.

It’s interesting how some sitting mats are said to be made from njeza or mululu, plants found in water and which crocodiles do not like and swim away from…which sounds like papyrus.

It is different from the sitting mats made from mulaza which look like kandjeza palm leaves which don’t grow high. So the other type is made from bango which is bamboo.

Some also claim that njeza is an expression for eyes…to clear the path so that one can walk through and to scare away afiti (witches) and anything that would come and harm a person.

Sitting mats are also placed at the windows of some homes as some but not all believe it dilutes the believed magical powers some thieves use.

Now a nsengwa basket is smaller than lichero winnowing basket which witches (afiti) are also said to use.  Nsengwa is for oracles and its ancient secrets were broken and revealed when it got into the hands of the owner as a scroll.

It would only work when it was with the one it was created for and the one who was given the power to reveal its words and secrets say some Sapitwa healers.

Now a nsengwa basket is smaller than lichero winnowing basket which witches (afiti) are also said to use. Nsengwa is for oracles and its ancient secrets were broken and revealed when it got into the hands of the owner as a scroll.

It would only work when it was with the one it was created for and the one who was given the power to reveal its words and secrets say some Sapitwa healers.

What is the meaning of this "Tarot Card" online may I ask?   Is it good or bad?
What is the meaning of this “Tarot Card” online may I ask? Is it good or bad?

Mbona reached the point where he became okhwima (ripe and magically strengthened) because he had a nsupa which is a magical African wine kettle gourd which required him to magically seek blood 10 times to give it power for the African version of a grail.

It is believed that the River of Blood which flowed after Mbona sacrificed his life ended the power of his powerful nsupa and the need for such magical rituals.

His ancient nsupa is believed to be hidden somewhere in Malawi beneath the earth since healers say it was magically washed with his own blood.

Ironically this ritual seems to have also been captured in the West and in some Tarot cards but this blog needs to be educated about the real meaning of those cards.

For example the magician one shows all the tools used in nyanga except that a red wine glass is used instead of the Nsupa African wine kettle gourd and the sword is there for all to see plus a candle to represent the light or sun and eyes that look similar to ancient Malawi’s Mbewula seem to be on top of the “magician”.

The hand positions also show the ancient global “As above, so below” sign also used in ancient Malawi.

It’s the same thing with the Tarot card about the High priestess who seems to be seated in between two columns with a veil like thing behind and a scroll or book in her lap.

This blog would appreciate if those in the know how explained the meaning of tarot cards….thanks in advance.

What is the meaning of the High Priestess Tarot Card and is the one on the right the Knot of Isis to symbolize life and womanhood?
What is the meaning of the High Priestess Tarot Card and is the one on the right the Knot of Isis to symbolize life and womanhood?

Of ancient Malawi bathing charms turning skins grey and ashy

Herb magic (matsenga) bath photo taken from http://herb-magic.com/9herb-bath-9.html
Herb magic (matsenga) bath photo taken from http://herb-magic.com/9herb-bath-9.html

“Ndiye eeish zandivuta. Business yanga kuti iyende ndinapeza madzi amene amasambisira maliro amene ndimayikako mu chakudya kuti tikamaphika kuti ziyende”, posted one unidentified person on a Malawi Facebook page called Malawi Breaking News and Gossip https://www.facebook.com/MalawiBreakingNewsAndSports/posts/436569393109029

This post which shocked this blog is loosely translated as:  (I have problems.  My business is successful because I found water which is used to wash corpses which I put in food so that when I cook my business will prosper).

The person who posted that went further claiming that if they stopped sourcing such filthy water their business would collapse and not thrive so they asked for help as a Christian.

This blog did a vox pop and heard other stories on the streets of Malawi of some allegedly bathing in such water while others used herbal charms for success in various fields and relationships while some women used kwakwananda (monitor lizard) love charms to force love out of cold men and magically control them.

What happens is the alleged people source the charms from witch-doctors who tell them to bath in them but not use soap.

Bathing with soap is hygienic and absorbs stenches and removes dirt
Bathing with soap is hygienic and absorbs stenches and removes dirt

Unknown to such users, the charms contain all sorts of things that make them stink like a hyena (fisi) or dirty dog (galu) and they make their skin appear greyish and ashy as if they’re not alive and healthy.

This is why some healers claim they can track down such afiti (witchcraft) when they fail to smell the faeces stench in their makeshift sack ‘clinics’ scattered throughout town.

The secret is that those without believed witchcraft smell the pit latrine while those with witchcraft don’t notice any scent because that is what their body is composed off say some healers.

For centuries the ancient name behind such evil charms was Mbewula, the wandering spirit (mizimu) whom many healers feared because he was said to be the wizard of all wizards (mfiti of all mfiti) but not like the female ones said to harm innocent people but the one who was an expert in magic (matsenga) used when fighting for causes and for good luck charms for business to progress among other beliefs.

Pits were symbolic in ancient Malawi but this one is an Internet photo
Pits were symbolic in ancient Malawi but this one is an Internet photo

According to a Sapitwa oracle, Mbewula has now started doing good which means all powers sourced in that name have been diluted and no longer work so all users will fall and be exposed and disgraced.

This mythical spirit is said to have for centuries worked closely with mythical dwarf spirits also known as Abathwa who are believed to guard several ancient mountains in Africa.  Some are believed to have one eye and have the strength of a roaring lion they say.

Besides dwarves some healers also talk of spirits (mizimu) which appear as children and represent all that is pure and innocent.

Now in ancient Malawi beliefs, good spirits and the bad ones usually clashed and were also in conflict with each other….but not anymore say some nyanga (horn) and mizimu (spirit) healers who claim both sides of the spirit world, the nyanga spirits and others are now working together to help unite Africa among other things.

Napolo, the mythical serpent spirit of Malawi is said to be busy with the 7 winged spirits of ancient Malawi according to some priestesses.

They say this is because a greyish hand suddenly appeared in the mythical realm of Sapitwa, the highest peak of Mulanje Mountain and suddenly pointed a huge white sword plaited with gold linings to the East and kept it in that direction.

M'manga Mudzi (foundation) anthill tree...underneath is a pit and water say healers
M’manga Mudzi (foundation) anthill tree…underneath is a pit and water say healers

The owner of the hand is a deformed looking man whose head is shaped like a hexagon and practices the ancient teachings of all that is holy and powerful coming from the East where the sun rises and that work of nature is used as a compass for some of the illiterate of Malawi to easily find their way around.

But he’s not Chauta, Namalenga, Mphambe (God) but fears and knows that God reigns Almighty forever and ever up in the heavens beyond the sun and all that is known by mortal beings and is good all the time.

The sun which shines brightly in the sky is said to be the shield that protects the entrance to where Chauta, Namalenga, Mphambe (God) is, way above in sky….in a place where no man can easily reach or see.

It is in that direction where many ancient priests and priestesses today grouped together as asing’anga amizimu specializing in Sapitwa (traditional healers) send their requests and prayers for the one whose face is Hidden.

Ancient Rock of Sapitwa
Ancient Rock of Sapitwa

They define the spirit of an ancient elderly man with white hair, slanted eyes and wrinkles on the face which resemble some hieroglyphics especially the one for the letter M.

Now this is the ancient spirit they claim heads the 7 winged angels known as Tomasi Mbona of the North (whole world in one’s hands), Tagoneka Mbona of the West (put to sleep Mbona), Chandiona Goneka of the South (it’s seen me put to sleep) and Nthanda mwana wa mwezi (Sirius star, son of the moon), Dziwe Ntambamwana (witchcraft pool), Sungamwana (keep the child) and Ife Zonse (all of us).

Staring into a dilapidated temple like looking building the strange looking man takes out a measuring tape as if trying to figure out some mathematical calculations and shows the woman near him the object of his desire.

He’s been in the waters and land under an anthill tree (m’manga mudzi) till he was born again of a woman and able to get out in some oral stories.

The man gives her his golden sword to catch a live fish in shallow water and cut it in half while in a distance there is blue deep water with tables and chairs floating on top to represent a deep pool but she can’t see the fish there.

Oreochromis of the squamipinnis group.  Photo copyright © by M. K. Oliver taken from http://malawicichlids.com/mw10100.htm
Oreochromis of the squamipinnis group.
Photo copyright © by M. K. Oliver taken from
http://malawicichlids.com/mw10100.htm

Lake Malawi Tilapia (chambo) fish species is widely consumed and forms the most important commercial fishery in Lake Malawi.  Other popular fish of Malawi are utaka (Copadichromis azureus), usipa (Engraulicypris sardella) and matemba (Barbus paludinosus).

Coincidently in ancient Egypt two fish were very powerful symbols with a deep meaning. Both fish were Tilapia and the Nile perch and iniconography, there was often a man spearing both at the same time, in reality it was quite impossible.

“And that’s where it gets interesting. Indeed, if tilapia is a fish living in shallow water, mainly in lakes, river banks or ponds, the lates is living in the waters dark and deep, in the bed of the river. You could not catch them at the same time and therefore the representation of a man catching both at the same time, has a hidden meaning.

Tilapia was associated in many ancient poems with sunrise and the light blue of turquoise and with protection because the female is during danger sheltering her babies in its mouth among other things.

The two fish were also represented following the solar boat since one represented the night and the other the day.

Ankhtifi tomb: catching both fish photo taken from http://www.gigalresearch.com/uk/article-201301.php
Ankhtifi tomb: catching both fish photo taken from http://www.gigalresearch.com/uk/article-201301.php

In the “Book of the Dead” song 14, it is said the deceased when he wants to join the solar bark: “You see a real Tilapia in its turquoise pool…”And” I hold the true tilapia guiding the speed boat on the water…”

And catching at the same time, two so different fish in ancient Egypt iconography is first to be didactic, a good teaching method to remind and warn about the properties of the different fish but it is “mostly a representation for man of his control on the day and on the night: it is to say his mastery on his destiny,” partly reads http://www.gigalresearch.com/uk/article-201301.php

However, this blog has not yet investigated how some in the West including Wiccans, Pagans and magicians use such charms although various are documented online including on http://spiritualspells.com/herbs-book.htm

There are also strange magical teachings involving Aleister Crowley of the online ‘Lam and Little Grey Man’ stories and he’s sometimes dressed like a nyanga healer which is bizarre.

In one write-up by Daniel V. Boudillion, the men of the west spoke of “grey aliens” who sound similar to the mythical creatures of “Kuba” which is a mountain on earth.

Most of Crowley’s writing sound like a mad man who failed to remove the veil of secrecy surrounding ancient magic and wisdom by ancient nyanga healers of this continent of Africa.

Hahahahaha akuti Aleister Crowley in "ceremonial garb"...like a nyanga healer huh?  Koma abale shaaa http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aleister_Crowley
Aleister Crowley in “ceremonial garb”…like a nyanga healer..where is his candle? Koma abale shaaa
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aleister_Crowley

Was the black rooster’s Heat behind some ancient Malawi rites of passage?

This is an update to an earlier post where this blog tried to analyze the behavior of a black rooster locally known as tambala wakuda in relation to some rites of passage and rites.

 

Black Rooster with mythical "comb fire" photo from http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Black_shumen_rooster.jpg
Black Rooster with mythical “comb fire” photo from http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Black_shumen_rooster.jpg

Kokoliriko…Kokoliriko…Kokoliriko [Cocka-doodle-doo, Cocka-doodle-doo, Cocka-doodle-doo],” cries the black rooster (tambala), it’s neck sticking out and red fiery comb shining on its head like fire to show off its strength!

According to internet sources, the rooster is polygamous, but cannot guard several nests of eggs at once. He guards the general area where his hens are nesting, and will attack other roosters that enter his territory.

“During the daytime, a rooster will often sit on a high perch, usually 0.9 to 1.5 m (3 to 5 feet) off the ground, to serve as a lookout for his flock. He will sound a distinctive alarm call if predators are nearby.

“The rooster is often portrayed as crowing at the break of dawn (“cock-a-doodle-doo”) and will almost always start crowing before 4 months of age. Although it is possible for a hen to crow as well, crowing (together with hackles development) is one of the clearest signs of being a rooster.

“He can often be seen sitting on fence posts or other objects, where he crows to proclaim his territory. However, this idea is more romantic than real, as a rooster can and will crow at any time of the day.

Roosters will occasionally make a patterned series of clucks to attract hens to a source of food, the same way a mother hen does for her chicks,” partly reads the unofficial online Wikipedia.

Cocks are also known to possess congenital aggression toward all males of the same species including in “cockfights”.

Cockfight photo from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:COCK_FIGHT.JPG
Cockfight photo from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:COCK_FIGHT.JPG

This is why in Malawi there are still people who believe that the black cock (tambala) is a sign of strength and power.  A Lilongwe-based “spiritual” man also claims that a lion fears a cock because of the red comb on top of its head which shines like fire!

Such beliefs are also captured in tales in the Ulendo Series Mtunda 3 Chichewa for Standard 3 books which talks of other animals thinking the rooster has fire on its head.

Animals including the lion feared the rooster because they feared the fire on its head would burn and kill them.

Aesop’s Fables, translated by Laura Gibbs (2002) also captures myths of lions fearing roosters but in this case, “a lion who had noticed the donkey crept up and was about to pounce when the rooster let loose a squawk. This frightened the lion (for they say that lions are terrified of the rooster’s crowing) and he turned tail and ran.”

“Kale Tambala anali mfumu yomveka pakati pa mbalame zonse ngakhale nyama za m’tchire.  Palibe wina amachita mwano kaya masewera ndi Tambala.

Onse amamuopa popeza panali mbiri yoti Tambala ali ndi moto pamutu pake ndipo wochita naye masewera akhoza kutenthedwa. Mbiri imati onse okhudzidwa ndi motowo, basi imfa ndi yomweyo mpaka kupserera.

Motowo unali wosenzera pamutu……Nyama zonse ndi mkango womwe zimawopa Tambala,” partly reads the Ulendo Series Mtunda 3 Chichewa for Standard 3 book.

Internet photo of fire to represent heat
Internet photo of fire to represent heat

In other secret beliefs now beginning to unveil, the black rooster was also known for its mythical so-called mating heat in ancient times.  This conclusion was drawn by studying the way a black rooster heated the sand it “sat” on and its behavior after that.

The black rooster would go “berserk” if there was a hen nearby and hence this might be behind the belief of kuchotsa fumbi but culture experts need to verify or dispute such assumptions.

Such traditions and practices are no longer widely practiced in these days of HIV and Aids but there are people who still believe in them.

Some people online define in it as young female initiates being “forced to be intimate with a man to introduce them to the adult world” in some cultures while in others like kulowa kufa or kupita kufa widows having to be sexually cleansed to “ebb away misfortunes before she is allowed to re-marry.”

Again this resembles the rooster which has “multiple partners” as in hens and this blog is again asking cultural experts to refute this and clarify.

Besides such tales about cleansing rites and its imitation of the behavior of the black rooster which represents fire, controversy rages over the mythical “crowing crested cobra” some locally refer to as resembling mbobo (variety of mamba) or songo (cobra) but those who know better can explain.

Drawing Dr Karl Shuker from http://karlshuker.blogspot.com/2012/09/nandi-bears-and-death-birds-my-top-ten.html
Drawing Dr Karl Shuker from http://karlshuker.blogspot.com/2012/09/nandi-bears-and-death-birds-my-top-ten.html

It’s believed to be a beast like a cobra with a crest on its head which resembles a cock’s comb and a loud, distinct cry like the crow of a cock.

“Well known to both those who know snakes and those who know the literature on animal myths and anecdotes, the ‘feathered serpent’ is more often known as the Crowing crested cobra.

“In some versions the snake has the head of a chicken, complete with combs and wattles, in others it has merely a crest of feathers. This fabulous serpent is, of course, highly poisonous. In most cases it is believed to have the ability to kill its human victims merely by looking at them…

“Stories and sightings that supposedly pertain to the Crowing crested cobra come from South Africa, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Tanzania, and apparently as far north as the Central African Republic,” partly reads http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/WSS/post.php?blog=33&post=1370

Over the years there has also been debate that the so-called Crowing crested cobra might be a mythical fire spitting dragon which in ancient Malawi was also a description for the feared Napolo that “breathed fire through its nostrils” according to a translated oral story.

Fire was a part of ancient rituals which including rubbing rocks among other things besides a sulfur rock nicknamed “zwangendaba” which some traditional healers today use to make fire in their hands by rubbing it with oil among other things.

Fire was also the way some saw the sun in the sky, feeling it could burn the whole world if “it came down” because of its heat and ancient beliefs associated with its rays among others.

Both were also connected to the Light in that with both human beings are able to see….even at night with fire.  Some go further and talk of dzuwa makala (sun charcoal) meaning lit charcoal at night also helps them see.

Sun light rays photo from http://www.wallpapershd2014.com/1920X1080-12/imagepages/image488.htm
Sun light rays photo from http://www.wallpapershd2014.com/1920X1080-12/imagepages/image488.htm

The sun (dzuwa) was also used as a metaphor meaning one that sees all like in the All-Seeing eye of Chauta, Namalenga, Mphambe (God) hence the phrase I see you (ndakuona).

According to the man, one could see with their two eyes all physical things of this world and with their spiritual eyes, mystical things and non-physical one such as spirits (mizimu), creatures and beasts (zirombo) in the after-life or astral realm.

Some ancestors of this ancient land believed that one would be able to see the spiritual realm once the veil of secrecy or mask is carefully removed for one to see the face.

This came with a price because it was believed that the “spirit” chose whom it wanted to see it and those who tried without permission paid with their life.

Malawi which is a modern day derivation of Maravi means “land of the fire” or the “rays of light” on some websites like http://www.malawithewarmheart.com/index.php?catid=5

Sunset photo from the Internet
Sunset photo from the Internet