Africa is a vast continent that’s home to considerable diversity of various ethnic groups. Each of these groups has its traditions and beliefs.
Here are some of the most mysterious and important African mythological figures and their contribution to local culture.
Meme birthed every animal on earth, and also a pair of twins, one who was a female and one who was a male. The twins held magical powers and birthed many pairs of twins with one female and one male.
That pattern of twins continued until the birth of the hero-ancestors, Dribidu and Jaki. The story goes that the sons of these two were the founders of the present-day Lugbara clans of both the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda. The Lugbara tribal territories range from Uganda and into Zaire.
Huveane is known as the high god. He is the creator who made both earth and heaven. Captain Jako Hall explains that the story says once he made both the earth and sky, he ascended into the sky by climbing.
He did this by putting pegs on his feet and driving into the air. As he ascended, he took out every peg below as he stepped up to the next one. He did this so he would be separated from the humans who were created on earth below him.
Ever since his ascension, Huveane has remained in the sky.
The god is worshipped by the Pedi people, also known as Bapedi, an ethnic group that resides in Botswana and South Africa. Huveane is also worshipped by the Venda people, a Southern African Bantu tribe that lives mostly near the border of Zimbabwe and South Africa.
Mami Wata is the African water spirit. She is a deity that has many traits — that of lover, carer, mother, provider, mystic and healer.
She mostly appears in a mermaid form, but can also be depicted as a snake charmer. There are also instances where those two depictions of her are combined.
The story goes that Mami Wata recruits followers by abducting them as they are swimming in a river or taking a boat ride. Once abducted, she transports them to her realm and releases them eventually.
Once released, Mami Wata’s abductees return having a new approach to life as well as a spiritual understanding they never had before then.
Mami Wata is venerated by tribes in South, Central and West Africa, as well as in various African diasporas in the Americas.
In Mauritania, Gambia and Senegal, Takhar is known as a demi-god. People worship him to protect against abuse, bad omens and injury. They present sacrifices of cattle and poultry under the area’s largest trees because he’s believed to live in trees’ highest branches.
Within tribes, Takhar’s vengeance is also featured. Fear of Takhar deters local people from committing bad acts and crimes.
Ngai lives in Mount Kenya, locally known as Kere-Nyaga. People living near there gather under trees’ shade to pray to this lord of nature.
The story goes that a man named Gikuyu once went to the top of the mountain where he met the god. There, Ngai emphasized to him showed him the beauty of all the land that lay below him. He also promised that the man would have anything he needed as long as he prayed.
About Captain Jako Hall
Captain Jako Hall is an experienced mariner and a former naval officer known for his strong work ethic and ability to lead and motivate crews. He pursued Maritime Studies at the University of Technology in Cape Town and has received the highest level of training in Navigation and Seamanship during his years in the Navy. After 13 distinguished years in the Navy, Jako joined the superyacht industry, following his passion for creating unique and exclusive experiences for high-net-worth clients. He’s managed multi-million euro projects that required attention to detail and efficiency and has a proven track record of operating at sea in remote and unsupported areas.