Jessica Thornton

In the heart of the Outeniqua Mountains in southern Africa lies a tale of cultural resilience, interconnectedness, and where the legacy of a healer diviner transcends borders and spans generations. It was on the way to a scared river that we heard of  the last Khoisan bow, which embodies the spirit of transboundary heritage uniting South Africa and its neighbouring nations. Delving into this captivating narrative, we heard of the significance of preserving transboundary heritage in the region.

On a rainy evening in May, we found ourselves singing outside a house covered in honeycomb shapes and bees. It was on this night that we met a healer diviner known as DikweX, who imbues his healing with ancient wisdom passed down through generations. He said that “our children, the children of us who are being born now, they are born with those incredible gifts, man. And they have that incredible freedom that the mediums before them didn't have”. Drawing upon his spiritual connectors, DikweX serves as a guardian of tradition, offering guidance and healing to those in need. Through rituals, ceremonies, and honey, he connects with the spirits of the land and channels their wisdom to restore balance and harmony to those he is serving. As a healer diviner, DikweX stated that “from the mountain to the sea, that's where we went to cleanse and fully enjoy the sea, man. And the sea needs us, we must stay by the sea. Our people were displaced from the lands, and that connection was taken away”.

DikweX is the holder of the last Khoisan bow, a tangible artefact of a bygone era that holds deep cultural significance. Crafted with care and precision from the branches of indigenous trees, the bow symbolises the resilience of the Khoisan people in the face of displacement becoming a tangible link to the ancestral heritage of the land and the spirit of resistance that courses through its veins. DikweX shared that the keeper of the bow was put on his path to free the trapped Khoisan ancestors after their genocide on Shark Island in Namibia. He said that the keeper is important to open this gateway. We also heard of the protector of the gift, a young female from Cape Town, who can communicate directly with the ancestors. She will know “what is going to happen and she can open up the guidance for the last Khoisan bow. It is important to know the sand we are standing on to do the work we need to do, the music and the guidance, the voice of the ancestors as a gift, the spirit of the ancestors to be heard”.

While DikweX and the last Khoisan bow are rooted in the Western Cape of South Africa, their story transcends borders and resonates with the neighbouring nations of Namibia and Botswana, speaking to a shared history and heritage of the Khoisan people. This is just the start of the story of DikweX and the last Khoisan bow, as he prepares to take the bow to Shark Island in Namibia to perform the ritual of opening the spiritual portal.


Posted on 20 March 2024 09:02:32

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