Elders cleanse Mugumo tree after nine days without sex
The ceremony to cleanse a Mugumo tree whose branches were cut off and hewn into timber was conducted Friday. The event at Waithaka in Nairobi County was an elaborate ceremony that required the presiding elders to have refrained from sex for the last nine days.
The preparation for the ceremony had been demanding. Gikuyu traditions require the elders to abstain from sex for nine days preceding the ceremony.
They were here on a cleansing ceremony and to ask for forgiveness from god for whoever cut the branches of this sacred tree and made timber from them.
According to the elders, cutting a Mugumo tree is sacrilegious and could bring untold misfortunes to whoever did it.
But having established that the cutter was unaware of the implications of his acts, the elders hoped to intercede on his behalf.
The elders, praying at the top of every hour to intercede to the gods on behalf of whoever cut the tree said that it was planted by Mzee Jomo Kenyatta to cement a treaty between him and departing settlers.
Libations were a necessity and they had to be poured and share traditional brew Muratina as they chanted an incantation around the tree.
While the prayers went on, another group of men was preparing a special meal for the elders. A castrated male sheep with no blemish was slaughtered with the knife for the job requiring a special purification prayer.
The elders will return to the tree ground in two months to convert it into a shrine.