Mythical leopards (panthera pardus) of the vhavenda

Spiritual connections and contacts of people with supernatural characters sourced from the environment explains the deep-rootedness of Vhavenda religiosity on gods, and subsequently explains their world as being highly influenced of Occultism. Amongst the various clans constituting the broader Vhavenda tribe, ocultic activities and rituals expressed through festivals and individual communication with supernatural characters are common. Modern scientific thought view these beliefs as created illusions, fantasy, mythical and deep-rooted primitive religiosity and spirituality. This paper reveals that the majority of those who practice Occultism amongst the selected clans of the Vhavenda viewed their supernatural characters as postulating Mwali; the Vhavenda god with these characters as the guides. Some believe that their characters are in the class of Jesus Christ and Prophet Mohammed who are guides in the Christian and Islamic faiths. Conclusions drawn are that while some of the supernatural characters believed and accepted as genuine by some of the participant clans in this paper could also be created illusions, fantasies, mythical and fictitious.

Dr. Abel M. Mafukata
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