The Taita Hills are home to three major tribes: the Sagalla, Dawida, and Kasigau. They each have their traditions and vernacular. But they have one similar practice. One of these practices was represented by the skull caves.
When a significant person died, their body was buried for a year before being exhumed. The skull was separated from the rest of the body and transported to a sacred cave to be buried with the ancestors. The skulls were arranged near the entrance, facing the setting sun and according to clans. Whenever they experienced diseases or drought, the people would pray to their ancestors for rain and protection from the diseases.
This tradition was similar to the Roman tradition of burying the dead in catacombs. However, what differentiated the two was what part of the body was buried and where.
Historians generally agree that this activity continued until the early twentieth century when the first Christian missionaries arrived in Kenya. Today, the caves and their ancient relics are considered sacred symbols of Taita culture and heritage. Moreso, the caves are open to visitors and the funds raised from the visits are then used to support conservation efforts on the hills and in the surrounding area.
Content created and supplied by: NomadThreads (via Opera News )
Opera News is a free to use platform and the views and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author and do not represent, reflect or express the views of Opera News. Any/all written content and images displayed are provided by the blogger/author, appear herein as submitted by the blogger/author and are unedited by Opera News. Opera News does not consent to nor does it condone the posting of any content that violates the rights (including the copyrights) of any third party, nor content that may malign, inter alia, any religion, ethnic group, organization, gender, company, or individual. Opera News furthermore does not condone the use of our platform for the purposes encouraging/endorsing hate speech, violation of human rights and/or utterances of a defamatory nature. If the content contained herein violates any of your rights, including those of copyright, and/or violates any the above mentioned factors, you are requested to immediately notify us using via the following email address operanews-external(at)opera.com and/or report the article using the available reporting functionality built into our Platform See More