Conversations with Ogotemmêli: An Introduction to Dogon Religious Ideas

By Marcel Griaule, Germaine Dieterlen

Initially released in 1948 as Dieu d'Eau, this near-classic deals a special and first-hand account of the parable, faith, and philosophy of the Dogon.

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Yet, if it is an exact development uncovered to the daylight or a recess on the finish of a gorge, the sanctuary consistently encompasses a basic chamber both sq. (often rounded on the corners) or round. The sanctuary of the Sodamma sector of higher Ogol, a village that's choked with altars, measures 4 cubits via 5. Its entrance is pierced via a door surmounted by means of holes and topped with 4 excrescences like rounded sugar-loaves. This construction stands in a small courtyard, and prefer all these equally positioned, is particularly small. The temple ofBinu Sangabilu within the Do region, nonetheless, is outfitted On a pretty big open area clear of the dwelling-houses. it's a dice measuring a few six cubits a facet, its entrance wall flanked through towers on the corners, somewhat conical match and crowned with mounds, among which there's an iron hook. The door, measuring one by means of cubits, is surmounted via sq. niches put on an identical point. To the proper of the door is a platform of earth which serves as a seat for the priest in the course of ceremonies. To the left are put a few hole stones, in former occasions used for grinding, and now containing stone axes or around pebbles. The roof is a flat one, from which the rain is led off through a wood gutter, whereas the 2 nook towers are crowned by way of flat projeCting stones which safeguard the roof-ridges from rain. contained in the sanctuary are the cult objects--a hole stone jam-packed with water or thunder stones, earthenware vessels of assorted forms, iron or wood implements and altars made from earth. 'A sanctuary,' stated Ogotemmeli, 'should face north. yet, as with the large condominium, it's the rain which comes to a decision the orientation. ' one zero one libations of millet-gruel and the blood of sacrificial on the time of sacrifice the white gruel and the pink trickle down front of the development and drip in lengthy traces. the floor. 'Where you spot the iron hook among the mounds,' Ogotemmeli, 'is where the place the ancestor smith all started paintings at his smithy within the primal box. ' 'But the hook? what's that? ' 'The hook is the anvil. it's buried in a cross-beam: 'A cross-beam of the roof? ' 'No! there's a brief piece of wooden at the pediment, no longer be pressured with the roof timbers. it's the image of the within which the anvil is fastened. ' The roof of the sanctuary, it seemed, is the emblem of primal box, and the inner of the construction underneath is tomb of Lebe. The platform outdoors is where the place the lifeless physique' sooner than it was once buried. The door is the opening wherein the entered after they desired to exhume the bones so as take them into new nations. the 2 niches' above the are the place the 7th ancestor got here and went while he forged human dermis and took the shape of a serpent: he entered via aperture at the correct while he got here to swallow the guy and regenerate him, and he got here out by way of the only on left. in the sanctuary, the hole stone packed with water, pe and cowries includes the 7th ancestor's vomit, the waters torrents and marshes, the useless man's bones replaced covenant-st(jnes, and his nails .

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