Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Nehanda Chargwe Nyakasikana was one of the major spiritual leaders of African resistance to white rule in Zimbabwe. She was born among the Shona people, one of Zimbabwe's major ethnic groups, in or about 1863. She passed away in 1898. She was considered to be a medium of the female spirit Mbuya Nehanda. The Shona people believe in one Supreme Being, Mwari, who presides over the world, although distant from daily human affairs. Under Mwari, and above the living, one finds numerous spirits who assist Mwari and the living. Of particular importance are ancestral spirits, and among those, a particular group is believed to be quite powerful, the Midzimu Mikurukuru. The Midzimu Mikurukuru are also known as mhon-doro , that is, “lions,” because the Shona believe that those spirits wander the forest like mighty lions awaiting a new incarnation. Mhondoro are particularly revered among the Shona because they help people ...