Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Ancient Malawi’s mythical spirits of seduction, sun….from Pewula to Greek Pan?

WARNING: Some parts of this oral story are graphic.  This blog also needs the correct spelling of Pewula, is it that or Mpewula or Mpeula?
Red wine photo from

A woman with reddish eyes as if drunk from red wine, her uncut Medusa like hair flying all over the place like serpents, dances her heart out seductively on the makeshift stage twirling and balancing while moving with beautiful chicken like steps in her bright red dress.
All of a sudden the woman throws herself to the ground and shocks the small audience by spreading her legs wide apart to reveal her forbidden fruit as if acting in an X-rated blue movie.
Still in that position she dances on like a crude strip dancer not caring what normal human beings think about it because she’s trying to tell the audience that there is power in her no-go zone.
She’s also telling people that she’s not human but a demon……the most lustful of the three feminine ones so go some oral stories.
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.
A Shaman online is defined as a practice that involves a practitioner reaching altered states of consciousness in order to encounter and interact with the spirit world and channel these transcendental energies into this world.
 A shaman is a person regarded as having access to, and influence in, the world of benevolent and malevolent spirits, who typically enters into a trance state during a ritual according to information posted on

This is why such healers have to be trained by an experienced person to be able to control invading spirits and be able to differentiate the good ones from the evil ones including those that have never been human before but remain winged spirits.
According to one female Sapitwa healer, there are different spirits in the astral realm and not all are good but can be harmful and destructive.
She claims that once the veil is removed from a person’s face and their eyes see, they are also able to see the spirit world which includes both good and evil.
She also claims a healer should be able to differentiate between winged spirits which us Christians call angels and demons.
The demonic ones are said to sometimes appear as people for those whose eyes are “opened” and they can all of a sudden become white and as tall as a giant sparking fear in those who are not prepared or taught how to handle such issues.
However healers dealing in nyanga with their narrow necked African wine kettle gourd locally known as nsupa and so-called magic tricks (matsenga) are believed to sometimes tap into the spiritual realm.
At times they claim a healer can see the “unseen” and to avoid being labeled mad or insane, they are able to handle such sights including those that appear as creatures or deformed.
Now the difference with us Christians is that in ancient times ziwanda (demons) were also used for female energy power when fighting wars or solving conflicts by healers and their ancient kings.
Male healers who use the African Wine Kettle gourd locally known as nsupa also dress it’s “narrow waist” with beads to make it look like a woman and the feminine source of energy for their powers.
African waistbeads photo from the Internet
In their ignorant minds some of the ancestors of this land thought all spirits came from the same source unlike us Christians who separate good spirits from evil spirits.
Now of these winged spirits of Sapitwa and Kuba are the 7 which include the 4 winged male spirits of Tomasi Bona, Tagoneka Mbona, Chandiona Gonekela and Nthanda mwana wa mwezi.
Tomasi Bona was the most feared spirit of the North wind and the meaning of his name was “the whole world in one’s hands” while Tagoneka Mbona meant “we have put to sleep Mbona” and Chandiona Gonekela meant “they have seen me put to sleep” and Nthanda mwana wa mwezi meant “Sirius star like in nthanda yaku m’mawa African cross and child of the moon.
The 3 female mythical winged “spirits” were Dziwe Ntambamwana (witchcraft), Sungamwana (keep the child) and Ife Zonse (all of us).
Mwana which means child in English also refers to adults in the Sapitwa definition as a child (mwana) is also defined as a person who is naked and does not know magic.
Another one of the spirits is the wandering one known as Pewula but this blog is still not sure of the spelling as the Sapitwa source cannot read and write this alphabet so spellings are according to the way the words are pronounced.
Pewula appears as an elderly short man who can suddenly grow tall and appear bright white claim some healers.  His face has a pointed nose and he has slight high cheek bones.
African wine kettle gourd photo not connected to this story from,%20African%20Wine%20Kettle.html
This blog through research sees some similarities in this ancient Malawi oral story with that of Greek mythology proving some similarities in ancient beliefs of some cultures spread throughout the world including ancient Egypt.
In Greek religion and mythology, Pan is defined as the “god of the wild, shepherds and flocks, nature of mountain wilds, hunting and rustic music, and companion of the nymphs.”

Pan is famous for his sexual powers, and is often depicted with a phallus.

“His name originates within the Ancient Greek language, from the word paein (πάειν), meaning “to pasture.” He has the hindquarters, legs, and horns of a goat, in the same manner as a faun or satyr.

With his homeland in rustic Arcadia, he is recognized as the god of fields, groves, and wooded glens; because of this, Pan is connected to fertility and the season of spring. The ancient Greeks also considered Pan to be the god of theatrical criticism.

In Roman religion and myth, Pan’s counterpart was Faunus, a nature god who was the father of Bona Dea, sometimes identified as Fauna. In the 18th and 19th centuries, Pan became a significant figure in the Romantic movement of western Europe and also in the 20th-century Neopagan movement,” partly reads

“One of the famous myths of Pan involves the origin of his pan flute, fashioned from lengths of hollow reed. “

Echo was a nymph who was a great singer and dancer and scorned the love of any man. This angered Pan, a lecherousgod, and he instructed his followers to kill her. Echo was torn to pieces and spread all over earth. The goddess of the earth,Gaia, received the pieces of Echo, whose voice remains repeating the last words of others.”

In 1933, the Egyptologist Margaret Murray published the book, The god of the Witches, in which she theorised that Pan was merely one form of a horned god who was worshipped across Europe by a witch-cult.
Pan drawing from

This theory influenced the Neopagan notion of “the Horned god, as an archetype of male virility and sexuality.”

A modern account of several purported meetings with Pan is given by Robert Ogilvie Crombie inThe Findhorn Garden (Harper & Row, 1975) and The Magic of Findhorn (Harper & Row, 1975).

Crombie claimed to have met Pan many times at various locations in Scotland, including Edinburgh in Scotland, on the island of Iona and at the Findhorn Foundation.

And an online book titled ‘Tale-Two Brothers –Morrison-Hutchence author Jacqueline Murray in book also posted on claims that “the Doors were so unique because we seemed to invoke darkness, night by night, of ancient ceremonies or rituals brought through in the psychedelic hot dreams of the ‘60s. Pan, the ancient Greek god, was a great influence on me.”

Rock legends Jim Morrison of “The Doors” and Michael Hutchence of “INXS” are said to have “given a psychic medium riveting accounts of their controversial deaths and the many myths that surrounded their lives as only they can tell them.”

Jim James Douglas “Jim” Morrison was an American singer-songwriter and poet best remembered as the lead singer of Los Angeles rock band The Doors. From a young age, Morrison became infatuated with the works of Friedrich NietzscheArthur Rimbaud and Jack Kerouac, often incorporating their work into his lyrics.

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was a German philologist, philosopher, cultural critic, poet and composer. His bizarre key ideas included the Apollonian/Dionysian dichotomy, “perspectivism, the Will to Power, the “death of God“, the Übermensch and eternal recurrence.”

“One of the key tenets of his philosophy is the concept of“life-affirmation,” which embraces the realities of the world in which we live over the idea of a world beyond”, partly reads

Under an article titled “The Poet Possessed”, Morrison would be drawn to working with musicians hoping to unlock the free flow of his poetic dream worlds, saying that “poetry is very close to music”, and that music’s “hypnotic quality” puts the poet in the right “state of mind” leaving him “free” to allow his “subconscious” to “play itself out wherever it goes.”

“In other words, music re-creates that lost world of perception which is inhabited by the dream. However, a poem is not the dream itself. The poem is – in this case – an attempt to put the dream into words. A dream itself is never words but always images,” reads

“It might be well here to mention the oft discussed figure of the shaman, particularly as it is associated with Morrison’s stage performances with the Doors. The 1980 biography says that as a student Morrison was “into the shaman: the poet inspired,” as if the shaman and the poet were synonymous.
Talented Jim Morrison known for his ‘Shaman dances’
- Photo from the Internet
Eliade’s influential book on shamanism was published in 1964, and Norman O. Brown’s ‘Life Against Death’ – which, as we shall see, had an important influence on Morrison in the same period – also mentions shamanism.
The “primitive shaman” is described by Brown as “the historical ancestor of philosopher and prophet and poet … with his techniques for ecstatic departure from the body, soul-levitation, soul-transmigration, celestial navigation.”
When around eighteen years old, Morrison wrote “a paper called ‘The Sexual Neuroses of Crowds’. It is the germ of Jim’s conception of the performer as healer, the shaman who can draw out evil spirits and banish them. Crowds, like people, have diseases that can be diagnosed and treated.”
Music critics also talked of Morrison’s shamanistic performances,  and he certainly played up to that during 1966-9. However, by 1970 he is playing it down, telling an interviewer that “the shaman is a healer – like a witch-doctor. I don’t see people turning to me for that.”
“Shaman’s Blues” is track #11 on the album The Doors Box Set. It was written by Jim Morrison.

And You Tube footage of Jim Morrison’s on stage shaman dances during The Doors transcendent live shows, from 1967-69:

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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.