Ancestors in Zimbabwean Traditional culture are very important in that they were once alive and now they are in the spirit and they do not die again. These are the spirits of the departed dead who were very good citizens and well respected in the family and the community. They used to command great respect and they used to know a lot when they were still alive, hence, in the spirit, they become even more important as they would be found everywhere and they would possess special powers since they can take information from the living to the creator and vice versa. My culture has a way of life in which ancestors are part and parcel of every major or minor event such as weddings, births, and deaths.

Ancestors maintain a spiritual connection with their living relatives and generally, most of them are good and kind. Followers believe in the guidance of their ancestor's spirits. Ancestors are said to be the mediators who would make the prayer of a believer successful. This means that they are a means to reach God who can send the answer back to the living through them. They are able to do this because they are bilingual; they speak the language of men and the spiritual language of God. It is highly believed that they have powers beyond human control, such as the ability to bring rain or to protect cattle and crops. Their responsibility is to procure various benefits for their living kin such as health, long life, and the begetting of children, great wealth, and good harvest. The crops and harvests are ancestral interests, and so is the weather that makes crops grow; therefore, the dead are implored for rain in rain making prayers or great tribal ceremonies.

The only negative actions taken by ancestral spirits is to cause minor/major illnesses to warn people that they have gotten onto the wrong path, by withdrawing their protection when their instructions have not been carried out. Hence, such acts as a serious sickness or a series of misfortune come into the family. To please these unhappy ancestors, usually, offerings of beer and meat are made through ritual ceremonies. This shows that Ancestors can be angered, and thereby can bring calamity to their descendants, especially when their instructions are not carried out, i.e. going on the wrong side of the law or taboo like the breaking of sexual taboos affecting women. Because they are 'parents', they have the responsibility to discipline their 'children' when they are disobedient. Ancestors have the power to destroy, their children, or their livestock, or even injure them when they are not obeyed.
Acquired directly from the artist

24/09/2020 - 27/09/2020

Latitudes Art Fair | Online