Saturday, August 16, 2014

Of ancient Malawi amanita muscaria "magic mushroom" as Mbona's flying carpet...

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

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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.

.....watch this space.


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