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Untainted African culture as expressed by the Maasai

10 Oct Posted by in Kenya | Comments
Untainted African culture as expressed by the Maasai
 

Africa is probably the only place in the world where you will find people practicing their indigenous cultural beliefs and practices. To experience a truly African culture where people live their lives uninterrupted by modernization, where people live side-by-side with wild animals then you need to pay a visit to Kenya, a country of pure serenity and beauty.

The Maasai people give a true picture of how things used to be just by seeing how they live today. They live a nomadic kind of life. It is a culture that has not been tainted, just as pure as it used to be in the olden days. Just to give you a hint of what the Maasai do in their lives, just picture this, a man with nothing but a spear going after a lion!

The Maasai Way of Life

The Maasai live in huts which are made of cow dung, grass, mud and wooden planks. They believe in the family unit and as such they live as a community in Manyattas. The Manyattas are made of a number of homesteads which are all fenced off using thorny bushes. The huts are built by the women.

The young men in the family take care of the livestock, which is a treasured resource in the community. A Man’s wealthy is assessed in terms of his livestock, the more the animals one owns the richer he is perceived to be. The warriors, who are referred to as Morans, provide security to their people. The elders engage in the settlement of disputes.

Ceremonies and Rituals of the Maasai

Maasai People of Kenya
Image Credits: Javier Carcamo

The ceremonies that the Maasai celebrate are mostly as a result of graduation from one age group to another. Ceremonies such as Enkipaata, Emuratta, Enkiama, Eudoto and Eunoto are celebrated. Each of the ceremonies marks a milestone in ones life. For example Eunoto is a ceremony that is celebrated as young men are initiated into senior warriors of the community. Most of these ceremonies are accompanied by slaughtering of cows whose meat is eaten by the elders and the initiates.

An Attraction like No Other

A visit to Maasai land is not just like any other visit. You will get to interact with the Maasais as they go on with their daily routines, watch them go out to graze in the wild where wild animals appear to be in perfect harmony with domesticated animals. You will get to watch them as they dance to their traditional songs with a kind of energy that you have never seen.

How to Get There

You will be able to get to Maasai land through the good road network that connects this region with all the major cities of the country, with well trained tour guides at hand to take you around. Accommodation in a hotel/lodge within Maasai land should offer you an authentic Maasai feel.

The Maasai believe in one thing; that they cannot allow their culture to be changed. they have a saying that says “It takes one day to destroy a house; to build a new one takes months, perhaps years. If we abandon our way of life to construct a new one, it will take thousands of years”.

Banner image credits:Frédéric Salein


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