Category: Mandau spirits

The mandau is the traditional weapon of the Dayak of Kalimantan, Indonesia. In the past, the majority of the native people living in the island of Kalimantan, the Dayak, were animists in belief.

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Perhaps the most striking is their ancient tradition of headhunting practices. And it is also precisely for this purpose that the Dayak used the mandau. Sacred kinds of wood from specific forest trees are used for carving the hilt of the mandau.

Usually the hilt is wrapped with hairs taken from the decapitated victims. Like the hilt, the sheath is made from wood of rare forest trees which are considered sacred, too.

The average length of the blade of a mandau is approximately 70 centimeters, and it has a sharp edge. Usually the width of a mandau is about 6.

The back of the blade is often decorated with metals other than iron, for instance or bronze, copper or brass. Back in the days in rural areas of Kalimantan, meteorite stones were believed to come from the ancestors of the Dayak people who reside in heaven, and were therefore regarded as a divine gift for their descendants on earth.

Although a mandau Batu is of a relatively light weight, it has a very solid and sharp blade. Due to its remarkable solidity and sharpness, it is possible to cut an iron nail in two pieces in a single cut, without leaving any marks on the blade.

Obviously, the mandau Batu is a very sacred pusaka item handed down from one generation to the next, and thus cannot be sold or purchased. Spread the knowledge.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it.The Ocean is our mother. All life came from her waters. She circles the earth and birth mountains.

Deep in her body live many of our relatives — fish, shellfish, crabs, dolphins, whales, sharks…… From the largest whale to the tiniest tiny critter. Many carry shells on their backs and live in them. These are grown and built over time, inside the ocean, and absorb all the energy and power of the sea and the life of that creature.

When we collect shells as medicine or for oracles bhula we must understand their origin and the memories of the ocean mother they carry. Water touches everything and is in all things, so we can access all information through water and especially the power of the oceans.

The ancestors may show you various shells and meanings so pay attention. One can find them all over South Africa. Noxolo and Dabulamanzi are traditional sangomas from the Xhosa lineage practising in Overcome Heights, a township in Cape Town.

Clients seek their help to remedy relationships or financial problems, to bring back lost lovers or to heal from painful illnesses. We had expected them to be in their traditional clothing. By throwing a mix of animal bones, shells, coins, dice and dominoes, sangomas can read into the past and the future of their clients.

Photo: Silvia Zanardi. We take off our shoes and enter the room barefoot. The dominoes tell us more about love relationships and the animal bones show us what has happened in the past of the client and what we can suggest she does. Most of the animal bones they use in rituals belong to cattle that have been sacrificed by their teachers during initiation ceremonies. Usually, the initiation process consists of three different steps.

During the first step, a chicken is sacrificed and its blood is collected for use in a mixture with traditional herbs that must be ingested by the student. Feathers are then used as a decorative headdress. For the second step, a goat is sacrificed by cutting its throat and allowing the blood to empty onto the sangoma. During this process, guests beat drums, sing, dance and go into a trance-like state to feel closer to the ancestors.

Not anyone can become a sangoma. My husband used to beat me. I knew that the ancestors were calling me since the age of 13 because I could foresee the future in my dreams. In that very moment, I decided to follow the calling and become one. Western medicine and traditional African healing, as Noxolo and Dabulamanzi state, can coexist.

On the one hand, the treatment by a sangoma is precautionary and encourages a connection with the spirits of the ancestors, which is therapeutic for health, while modern medicine fixes emergencies.This website use cookies.

By closing this banner, scrolling the page, clicking on links, or continuing the navigation in any other way, you agree with the use of cookies. Learn more. The Mandau or Parang Ihlang is a short sword or machete less than a meter long.

It is the typical weapon of the Dayaks, the headhunters of the Borneo. The blade has a narrow single-cutting edge with a shorter opposite side often decorated and a slanting tip. The mandau is one of the most romanticized, albeit macabre, weapons of Borneo. In Italy these weapons were made popular and famous by the novelist Emilio Salgari who made the mandau the weapon of choice together with the kriss, used by the pirates of Sandokan.

mandau spirits

The Dayaks are a population of the insular Asia located into the forests of the Borneo island Indonesia. They are divided in about ethnic groups or tribes, each one having its own dialet, customs and traditions. The Dayaks are farmers also engaged in poultry and piggery. They hunt and fish as well. Due to their anthropological characters and culture they are considered early indonesians.

They work the metals, in particular copper, with which they produce remarkable handycrafts. Typical Dayak weapons are the mandau, the blowgun and the club with stone head. Dayaks live into collective rectangular and very long houses, built on platforms elevated above bamboo sticks and wooden pile. The men are divided in age classes, where the passage from one to the next involves gory initiatory rites circumcision, mutilations, etc. In the past animists and head-hunters, nowadays Dayak are mostly Christians due to the massive action of the missionaries in the last century.

Despite almost all the tribes plead to be Christian, in many tribes people believe in the presence of evil or benevolent spirits and still preserve animist traditions and ceremonies. Long time ago the Dayak tribes were often fighting among themselves and coming back to the village with one or more severed heads guaranteed prestige and admiration to the warriors. Headhunting practice was not only linked to the war: Dayaks believed, and many of them still believe, that the skull is the container of the soul and the human essence.

Bringing new heads to the village meant bringing life spirit to people and to the soil. Killings and beheadings were shown by tatoos, at least among the Iban: a black ring arounf the thumb of the hand meant to have killed the chief of a village, the same ring on the index finger meant killing of a shaman, on the middle finger a warrior, on the fourth finger a woman and on the little finger a child.

After the mass conversion to the Christianity partially also to the Islam and the introduction of anti-headhunting laws by the colonial powers, such as practice seemed to be disappeared but on the occasion of conflicts and riots, Dayaks brush up the ancient customs and start cutting heads agan.

In both the cases Dayaks were encouraged by the major powers as the Allies in the 40 and the Indonesian government in the In and the Dayaks began a fierce etnic clash against the muslims migrated from the island of Madura to Borneo. From an article of Corriere della Sera Italian newspaper on June 10, Thousands Dayaks in T-shirt but with the face painted for battle as required by the ancient customs, and incited by their shamans, began to attach the madurese and sistematically have burned down their homes in the region north of Pontianak.

From an article of Repubblica Italian newspaper on February 24, Hundreds beheaded corpses float on the river, the houses of immigrant Madurese have been all burned, Willbald Pfeufferil, chatolic priest, said to Misna missionary agency. Probably, if we imagine these events, screaming and barefoot warriors in tribal dress with painted faces come to our mind.

Partly this is true, but the situation of the tribal populations is different from that of our imagination. Infact it seems that the clashes in began after two Dayak boys have been stabbed at a pop festival, whereas in the spark was the theft of a motor scooter.

Things change, some customs and ancestral beliefs remain. The mandau is used by many people of Kalimantan and is widespread. The mandau is believed to have supernatural power and it is passed as an heirloom from generation to generation. In addition to an important role in custom rituals, the mandau is also used as payment or as a richly symbolic gift, for example, at a wedding.

The mandau is single-edged, but not flat in section.Dayak languages are categorised as part of the Austronesian languages in Asia. The Dayak were animist in belief; however, many converted to Islam and since the 19th century there has been mass conversion to Christianity. The Dayak people of Borneo possess an indigenous account of their history, mostly in oral literature, [6] partly in writing in papan turai wooden records[7] and partly in common cultural customary practices.

The independent state of Nansarunai, established by the Ma'anyan Dayaks prior to the 12th century, flourished in southern Kalimantan. These attacks contributed to the migration of the Ma'anyans to the Central and South Borneo region. The colonial accounts and reports of Dayak activity in Borneo detail carefully cultivated economic and political relationships with other communities as well as an ample body of research and study concerning the history of Dayak migrations.

InBritish adventurer James Brooke arrived to find the Sultan of Brunei fending off rebellion from warlike inland tribes. Sarawak was in chaos.

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Brooke put down the rebellion, and was made Governor of Sarawak inwith the title of Rajah. Brooke pacified the natives, including the Dayaks, who became some of his most loyal followers. He suppressed headhunting and piracy. Brooke's most famous Iban enemy was Libau "Rentap"; Brooke led three expeditions against him and finally defeated him at Sadok Hill.

Brooke had many Dayaks in his forces at this battle, and famously said "Only Dayaks can kill Dayaks. So he deployed Dayaks to kill Dayaks. During World War IIJapanese forces occupied Borneo and treated all of the indigenous peoples poorly — massacres of the Malay and Dayak peoples were common, especially among the Dayaks of the Kapit Division.

Eleven US airmen and a few dozen Australian special operatives trained a thousand Dayaks from the Kapit Division in guerrilla warfare. This army of tribesmen killed or captured some 1, Japanese soldiers and provided the Allies with vital intelligence about Japanese-held oil fields.

Coastal populations in Borneo are largely Muslim in belief, however these groups TidungBanjareseBulunganPaser, KutaineseBakumpai are generally considered to be Malayised and Islamised native of Borneo and heavily amalgated by the Malay people, culture and sultanate system. These groups identified themselves as Melayu or Malay subgroup due to the closer cultural identity to the Malay people, [18] [19] [20] compared from the Dayak umbrella classification, as the latter are traditionally associated for their pagan belief and tribal lifestyle.

The Dayak people classification are largely limited among the ethnic groups traditionally concentrated in southern and interior Sarawak and Kalimantan. Other native groups in dwelling in northern Sarawak, parts of Brunei and Sabah, chiefly the BisayahOrang UluKadazandusunMelanauRungus and dozens of smaller group were categorised under a separate classification apart from the Dayaks due to the difference in culture and history. These groups though may be indigenous to coastal northeastern Borneo, they are nonetheless not Dayak, but instead are grouped under the separate umbrella term of Moroespecially in the Philippines.

The term Dayak was coined by Europeans referring to the non-Malay and non-Muslim inhabitants of central and southern Borneo. There are seven main ethnic divisions of Dayaks according to their respective native languages which are:.

Under the main classifications, there are dozens of ethnics and hundreds of sub-ethnics dwelling in the Borneo island. There are over 50 ethnic Dayak groups speaking different languages. This cultural and linguistic diversity parallels the high biodiversity and related traditional knowledge of Borneo.

Mandau (knife)

Dayaks do not speak just one language, even if just those on the island of Borneo Kalimantan are considered. Many of Borneo's languages are endemic which means they are spoken nowhere else. It is estimated that around languages and dialects are spoken on the island and some by just a few hundred people, thus posing a serious risk to the future of those languages and related heritage.

In the past, the Dayak were feared for their ancient tradition of headhunting practices the ritual is also known as Ngayau by the Dayaks. Among the Iban Dayaks, the origin of headhunting was believed to be meeting one of the mourning rules given by a spirit which is as follows:.

Often, a war leader had at least three lieutenants called manuk sabong who in turn had some followers. The war ngayau rules among the Iban Dayaks are listed below:. There were various reasons for headhunting as listed below: [ citation needed ].

Reasons for abandoning headhunting are: [ citation needed ]. It is a formal meeting that gathered all the Dayak tribes in Kalimantan for a peace resolution. In the meeting that is reputed taken several months, the Dayak people throughout the Kalimantan agreed to end the headhunting tradition as it believed the tradition caused conflict and tension between various Dayak groups.Fill in the rest of your details and you can start bidding.

Original antique sword from Borneo of the Dajak head hunters tribe. With teeth of a buffalo, with beautifully painted wooden sheath and decorated with beads and teeth. The blade is of worked steel with a handle of horn deer antler. The little knife is included. Head hunting used to take an important place in the life of the Dayak. It was an all male affair.

During their headhunting practises The Dayak used a Mandau, a sword that can only be used for martial purposes.

The Mandau Dayak Headhunter’s Sword

Forging a Mandau takes several months and involves a lot of magic and mysticism. A Mandau blacksmith invokes certain gods and spirits for making the Mandau and asks them to "inspire" the mandau, to add certain qualities and powers. This Mandau is the most important asset of the Dayak man. He is convinced that the victor inherits the strength of those he defeats. The sale, purchase and possession of arms are subject to national laws and regulations.

Mandau (knife)

The sale of weapons to people aged under 18 is prohibited. By placing a bid, you declare to be 18 years old or older and that you have verified that it is legal to purchase this kind of object in your country. How it works.

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Complete your details. Sign in. New user? Create a free account.Today, most of these groups have completely vanished from the face of the earth, and only a few continue to persist in the remote hinterlands of Asia, South America, Africa, Melanesia, and Polynesia.

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Only fragments of this once rich heritage of body art remain in our modern world, but they allow us to gain a glimpse of a culture that connected tattoo, ritual, religion, myth, and nature from which indigenous tattoo culture ultimately sprang. Why was it important for indigenous tattoo artists to create permanent designs on the body? Were they made for purely aesthetic impact or for other more magical reasons?

What deeper significance did these elements have for their makers and owners? And what did they communicate to others? For millennia, nearly all indigenous people who tattooed practiced shamanism, the oldest human spiritual religion.

Death was the first teacher, the boundary beyond which life ended and wonder began. Shamanistic religion was nurtured by mystery and magic, but it was also born of the hunt and of the harvest and from the need on the part of humans to rationalize the fact that they had to kill that which they most revered: plants, animals, and sometimes other men who competed for resources or whose souls provided magical benefits.

Mythology developed out of these associations as an expression of the covenant between humans, their environment and everything contained within it. But more importantly, it was a means of eliminating the guilt of the hunt and maintaining an essential balance between the living and the spirits of the dead. Shamanism is animism: the belief that all life — whether animal, vegetable, or human — is endowed with a spiritual life force.

Traditionally, such rituals included the sacrifice of a chicken, pig, or in special instances even another human — especially when a new longhouse was built. Perhaps the most common and important blood sacrifice practiced by many tattooing cultures worldwide was headhunting: the taking of human heads for ritual use. Human blood, the fertilizing essence of everything animate, was a highly revered sacred substance believed to appease spiritual powers that controlled the forces of nature.

Analogs drawn from historical headhunting cultures of India, Borneo, the Philippines, Taiwan, China and Brazil also support this model, because the ritual taking of human heads in these places was accomplished to ensure both biological and agricultural fertility, among other magical advantages.

Apart from their role as the guardians of tribal religion, some shamans actively participated in tattooing traditions themselves. Not all tribal tattooists were shamans, however. Some were simply traditional healers with particular specializations e.

In the northern Philippines, tattoo artists tattooed markings on the throats of patients suffering from goiter or other markings on the backs of individuals plagued by skin disorders. Yet many tribal tattooists did work under the guidance and protection of one or more spiritual helpers.

When a man was ill, it was supposed that his soul had escaped from his body: his recovery showing that his soul had returned to him. Of course, the string could get broken and the bead lost, so the Kayan replaced it with a tattooed bead motif that has come to be regarded as a charm to ward off all disease.

Interestingly, the Kalinga of the Philippines have a related belief. A brief chant is given to ward off any evil spirits, and then a red carnelian bead arugo on a string is placed around the wrist of the person who was injured. The Mentawai of Siberut Island also wear intricate bead tattoos on the backs of their hands.

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It should be noted that the Mentawai people are one the most profusely tattooed people living today. Tattooing has always been a creative process and depending on local environmental and cosmological forms and meanings, tattooing techniques were quite varied. In Papua New Guinea and other insular regions of Southeast Asia like the Philippines and Taiwan, lemon or orange thorns were utilized in hand-tapping tools; whereas in Polynesia hand-tappers preferred comb-like instruments forged from animal bones.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, groups like the Makonde practiced skin-cut tattooing by carving designs into the living flesh with iron tools made by the blacksmith and then rubbing-in carbon pigments derived from the castor bean plant. The Native peoples of the Northwest Coast of North America, like the Haida and Tlingit, used hand-poking tools probably derived from Japanese sources, although they are much smaller in scale.

Each pigment brush was carved with a crest animal that imparted supernatural protection to the design thus created. The technique of skin-stitching was also practiced by more northerly Arctic peoples like the Yupiget, Chukchi, and Inuit until the early 20th century: a practice believed to be over 2, years-old. Tattooing here was always performed by women, and tattooing in the traditional manner required extensive knowledge of animal products, pigments, and natural substances suitable for indelible marking.

Ndau people

Lampblack or graphite was then mixed with urine tequqperhaps because it came from the bladder: an organ believed to be one of the primary seats of the life-giving force of the soul. Some Yupiget elders of St.

mandau spirits

It scared away the evil spirit.The Ndau are an ethnic group which inhabits the Zambezi valleyin central Mozambique all the way to the coast, in central Malawiand eastern Zimbabwesouth of Chipinge and Chimanimani. The name "Ndau" itself means "place" in the Ndau language. The Ndau people are historically related to the Kalanga tribe, and were already in Mozambique and parts of Zimbabwe by the s.

Because of the large-scale conquests of the Ngunis in the s a lot of the Ndawu history is clouded and overshadowed by the Nguni perspective. In the s, during a period of severe drought, northern Nguni armies particularly the Zulu, Swazi, Ndwandwe,Khumalo and Ndebele people who speak related Bantu languages and inhabit southeast Africa from Cape Province to southern Mozambique, began to migrate to Mozambique from what is now South Africa.

One Nguni chief, Nxaba, established a short-lived kingdom inland from Sofala, but in he was defeated by Soshangane, a powerful Nguni rival. Eventually Soshangane established his capital in the highlands of the middle Sabie River in what is present day Zimbabwe. The Nguni-Shangaans established their Gaza-kingdom in southern Mozambique and subjugated many of the Ndau people who were already living in that area.

Due to this, a lot of the Ndau men today have their ancestry from Ngunis through intermarriage. According to Earthy, when the Ndau people were taken as prisoners by the Ndwandwe-Ngonis, the Ndau people took refuge among the Chopi Copi people, who had amassed rifles from the Portuguese in order to protect themselves.

With the prolonged drought, the rise of Gaza, the dominance of the slave trade, and the expansion of Portuguese control in the Zambezi Valley, the once-mighty African chieftaincies of the Zambezi region declined. In their place, valley warlords established fortified strongholds at the confluence of the major rivers, where they raised private armies and raided for slaves in the interior.

North of the Zambezi, Islamic slave traders rose to power from their base in Angoche, and the Yao chiefs of the north migrated south to the highlands along the Shire River, where they established their military power. The Ndau in all fairness are not, ethnolinguistically speaking of Shona stock but relation exists through intermixing. In fact, Ndau is one of the most ancient form of all modern day Nguni languages.

It is possible that the Ndau are one of the first ancestral tribes of the Ngunis, similarly to the Mthethwas, Lala, and Debe who are descended from the Thonga-Tekelas.

mandau spirits

Only in a large sense of the term is Ndau considered as part of the Shona language family. In a strict sense of the term the Ndau language is mainly spoken in the following southern districts of the Sofala province: Machanga, Chibabava, Machaze DandaBuzi and in Nhamatanda, Dondo and Beira Bangwe.

It is also partly spoken in Mambone Inhambane province and Mossurize. They also speak Portuguese in Mozambique and English in Zimbabwe.

mandau spirits

In Zimbabwe, Ndau is mainly spoken in Chipinge and Chimanimani districts. As ofit was estimated that there werespeakers of Ndau in Mozambique. There are many Ndau clans residing in South Africa. Ndau is also one of the languages used in churches in Beira.

Renamothe Mozambican National Resistance Movement, draws support from the Ndau in the Sofala province of Mozambique to where its leader Dhlakama belong, as well as the Catholic archbishop of Beirain part due to their poor socio-economic conditions and their so far too weak inclusion in foreign financial investments and socio-economic developmental programs of the governing party.

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Because of Sithole's contentious relationship with Mugabe, the Ndau population of Zimbabwe has never fully supported President Mugabe's government. The Ndau people are also known to be very good herbalists, they are openly expressed by Mozambicans to be the most feared black magicians. This is due to a number of instances where a Ndau would be killed and their spirit would fight back fiercely.

They planted Baobab trees as they used powder from Baobab fruits as special stable food. It is a taboo to eat the heart of a cow as they regard the caw as source of life. Ndau people traded traditional herbs, spiritual powers, Animal skins and bones. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Psychology Press.


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