Friday, April 18, 2014

Ancient Malawi’s 7 Spirits…Forbidden mating serpent symbol?

Beautiful Mount Mulanje photo posted on
As the majestic Sapitwa peak stands tall as if summoning or inviting people to admire its beauty, the mythical 4 winds of Sapitwa quietly roar around Mulanje Mountain and its nearest water body in harmony with the black clouds as if to usher in rains so go some of the tales of ancient times in a Mulanje village.
Myths and Tales are abundant in all regions of beautiful Malawi. But for now this blog can only manage to capture some unofficial and undocumented tales from Mulanje which is easier to do amateur research with using SMS, phone calls or visiting the place at least once a month.
In Mulanje and amongst many Mang’anja traditional healers from Mulanje including a few Lhomwe ones the teachings of Mbona prevail.
This group includes the female mizimu ones of Sapitwa who deal with herbs but also winged spirits that have never been human and ancestral spirits.
Some Sapitwa healers like this drawing by Max Dashu with one serpent for healing
© 2013 Max Dashu – image created for Woman Shaman: the Ancients

Then there are the male nyanga ones of “Kuba” who deal with herbs but also charms and the so-called magical nsupa, the African wine kettle gourd and a few deal with the primitive and evil goat horn maula magical oracles.

Now when some of these healers claim to send their request to the 4 winds they chant several names which they have kept secret for a long time.
The most important name is Tomasi Bona which is not mentioned anyhow and connected to the mythical Napolo serpent spirit associated with earthquakes, landslides and other calamities.

This name is also used in the ancient Malawi way of explaining the two ways to the underworld of Sapitwa through a hidden rock at Dziwe la Nkhalamba say many healers in the area but cautiously.
The name is part of the 4 male winged spirits of a positive scientific charge which are also connected to water.
This blog earlier revealed the names with permission beginning with the 4 winds:
Tomasi Bona                                    -     North
Tagoneka Mbona                             -     West
Chandiona Gonekela                       -      South
Nthanda mwana wa mwezi [Nthandi]      -    East

And their meanings?:
Tomasi Bona                           =  the whole world in the hands/feast
Tagoneka Mbona                     = Like put to sleep
Chandiona Gonekela                = It’s seen me, put to sleep
Nthanda/Nthandi mwana wa mwezi  = Sirius star like in nthanda yaku m’mawa African cross and child of the moon
Another one of the so-called wandering one is Mpeula or is it Pewula or Mpewula and the name of the 3 other winged “spirits”.
The 3 mythical winged female negative charges used in battle etc and connected to specific hills or mountains are said to be:
Dziwe Ntambamwana (witchcraft pool), Sungamwana (keep the child) and Ife Zonse (all of us).
Now Dzwie Ntambamwana appears as a woman with reddish eyes as if drunk from red wine, her uncut Medusa like hair flying all over the place like serpents, dancing her heart out seductively on makeshift stages twirling and balancing while moving with beautiful chicken like steps in her bright red dress.
Eyes as red as this red wine photo from the Internet
She is also known to throw herself on the ground to show her forbidden fruit as if acting in an X-rated blue movie.
Oral stories also talk of her telling people about the power in her no-go-zone and that she is not human but a chiwanda (demon)…the most lustful of the three feminine ones in the tales.
It’s is this female autonomy where some spirits are said to possess a person and enter the body from and apparently the same part with males claim some Sapitwa healers.
It’s also from this area where some spirits are said to leave a body hence allegedly making some possessed dancers grab that part when performing because they can’t resist the sensation.
This blog is not accusing any musician or dancer who grabs their crotch when performing of being possessed but this blog is only documenting ancient Malawian history as told by some female Sapitwa healers.
Now some traditional healers dealing with spirits also known as African Shaman globally claim to also know the presence of a spirit by feeling a sensation in that area as it enters and possesses their bodies.
This is why some healers claim the caduceus as one of the most ancient symbols is vulgar and describes a sexual act with a serpent.
·         Online information also indicates that since ancient Mesopotamia “the caduceus presented two serpents intertwined (the central nervous system) around a staff (the spinal column) with the wings (the “swan”) on either side (the two hemispheres of the brain, with the circle in the center representing the pineal gland, or the central sun and psychic center within).
Sapitwa healers claim this Internet photo
looks like snakes mating which intertwine during the act
This symbol in several websites is translated into other languages as “satan,” which some say mean “enemy,” or “adversary” unlike the single upright serpent which is also used as a sign for healing by both uneducated healers and modern science.
This blog does not know which is the correct symbol but this blog is only sharing some oral stories told by some Sapitwa healers and ancient Malawi teachings bearing in mind different cultures have their own ancient beliefs.
Some Sapitwa healers claim a single serpent on a staff is the sign of healing – Photo from

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Took this picture of children in Milange, Mozambique admiring visiting Malawian children

Tracing footsteps to lead me home

Greetings from the Warm Heart Africa, Malawi.

I'm a Malawian journalist who grew up in many countries including South Africa, Belgium, then West Germany, UK, Washington DC and New York in the US and I love New York.

Trying to come up with the production of my life and by compiling some of my 1000 poems into a book called ‘Tracing Footsteps’ to lead me Home with excellent photography.

I also plan to film award winning documentaries based on the history of this ancient land called Malawi and the mysteries of Sapitwa and the Sirius star. this space.