Somizi (PHOTO:GETTY/GALLO IMAGES)
Cape Town - The use of Impepho has been a topic of debate for decades now, especially between Christians and people who believe in ancestors. Even though the two can coexist, a lot of black people have been forced to pick one and stick to it in the past.
In a recent post, local media personality, Somizi Mhlongo, debunked the myth that using impepho is evil and dark. Impepho is an indigenous African plant that, once dried, is burnt in order to communicate with one's ancestors.
Somizi posted a picture of a straw mat with bones and shells, as well as a bowl with impepho, two boxes of matches and a small tub of snuff. He wrote:
"So one day many moons ago......someone who's not African woke up and said I'm gonna convince all Africans that this is evil.....this dark......this is a myth.........coz they realized how stronger how powerful how wise how free how happy and how rich we would be if we practiced our own culture.....and convinced us that if we do it we must hide it........I'm so glad my eyes got opened whilst I'm still on this earth......I've never been happier.....I've never been this free.....this pic right here is who I proudly am.....oh I am.so proud....I'm not ashamed anymore....I dont hide anymore......I live by imphepho and everything u see in that pic.......if Indians can proudly and boldly light up incense anywhere anytime why can't I.....if Christians can unashamedly whip out their bible anytime anywhere why can't I wear my sphandla with no shame....all I'm saying is do u boo as long as u dont look down or disrespect my culture and tradition just as much as I shud do the same unto yoz.....thokoza....[sic]"
Rapper, Boity and actress, Dawn Thandeka King, who are both traditional healers, commended Somizi in the comments.