The Universe Has Three Souls
Notes on Translating Akan Culture (1)
By Phil Bartle, Journal of Religion in Africa, Volume XIV, Number 2, 1982, pp 85-114
THE CULTURE HAS THREE ELEMENTS
The Twi word usually translated as “culture” is amane, but I soon discovered it meant only traditional customs and rituals. Its meaning is equivalent to high culture of western society: ballet, coronations and the fancy wigs of high court judges; it includes drumming, dancing, etiquette and dress in priests’ and chief’s courts. Culture means all learned human behaviour, high and low. To be learned, culture must be transmitted by symbols, and it is those symbols to which we now turn. Names of people, group identity and behaviour rules such as food avoidances, rites recognising status changes, and the assumed characteristics of colours, are some of these. What is significant in the examination of the ways these signs are used is the reflection of the tripartite cosmology (mentioned above) in these symbols.
Let us begin with labels: how do Akan people get names? Red: Naming is not matronymic in this Continue reading
Nazar Dosha Tips
The thought of “Buri Nazar” (evil eye) or “Nazar Dosh” is incredibly standard and creates ripples within the mind once anybody detected concerning it.
Nazar Dosh could be considered a transfer of negative energy. When someone holds intense negative thoughts concerning another person or object, the negative thoughts accumulate within the mind. When this vibratory energy transfers to another person or object, it causes hurt thereto.
Effect of Nazar Dosh
• Disturbance of the thinking pattern of the person envied.
• Diseases without identifiable somatic cause. Continue reading
The Smudging Ceremony
by Adrienne Borden and Steve Coyote
Our Native elders have taught us that before a person can be healed or heal another, one must be cleansed of any bad feelings, negative thoughts, bad spirits or negative energy – cleansed both physically and spiritually. This helps the healing to come through in a clear way, without being distorted or sidetracked by negative “stuff” in either the healer or the client. The elders say that all ceremonies, tribal or private, must be entered into with a good heart so that we can pray, sing, and walk in a sacred manner, and be helped by the spirits to enter the sacred realm.
Native people throughout the world use herbs to accomplish this. One common ceremony is to burn certain herbs, take the smoke in one’s hands and rub or brush it over the body. Today this is commonly called “smudging.” Continue reading