In conversation with GOGO LWANDLE – a story of a healer

By Gogo Lwandle

Being the student of the beat, I Sangoma can get you dancing to the pantsula ka de kwai kwai …..he he he he , ask me how..

In the current society we leave in it is so easy get swallowed by pressures. I didn’t say societal pressures and its no mistake. The pressures we endure whether we like to admit it to ourselves or not are burdens brought on to ourselves by ourselves.

In all honesty society doesn’t hold a gun to our heads, and most importantly society asilona idlozi lakho! We lose ourselves and who we are wanting to fit into this box, confined regulated spaces. When in essence we are not that kind of people. Darlin your soul can never be regulated; it dies off to a point of almost not existing and that’s when we get sick from emptiness; manifesting in all kinds of sickness and societal pressure being the most popular.

Most parents need their kids to prosper and to be happy. You see, we a reflection of those we come from. Idlozi is no different it needs us to represent the strengths from which we are made of. So it seats and thinks, “wait, how do I fix this, How do I return self-consciousness to the child ?” Then Taada with all the dlozi’s brilliant ideas they say, “ Ngi zoba thwasisa “. he he he he he

Intwaso forces you to really look at yourself, the perceived bad and the hard truths one never wants to face. How to nurture yourself into a love, patient and free spirited being. In that journey by the love ye dlozi and grace of God, you find out that “actually I matter, actually I am me”. Dude, it sometimes takes what feels like forever to get there. But when you do, maaaaaannnn is it liberating!

So if you think you’ve been adulting , think again cause ukuthwasa is the beginning of the real adulting. It is a beautiful experience and a wonderful gift, but never prepares you for the load of adulting you would have to do, for yourself and those around you. When isangoma graduates, uyalwa ngokuthi “ Go heal”. So the determination becomes to heal others, spread yourself thinly and heal.

You go out and heal, amongst other reasons; to prove to your guide ( baba) they did a good job, your family and friends; to say “look I assisted that man to get a job, nywe nywe nywe she was doing it cause it’s fashionable, where all my haters at”, he he he he he.

Little do we give thought to the damage caused by following that pattern. It is easy to get abused by your gift, to carry burdens far-fetched from your path and slowly get lost in the system. Leading to broken, angry and bitter Healers. Imagine now, you went into intwaso boxed, empty and sick, you come out, somaar a warrior with superpowers and all that you went through prior and during magically disappears ?

I doubt it works like that. Going through Intwaso does not take away from us that we are human. You should hear the things people attempt to get away with in the name of “ mos wena uhamba nabo gogo” . Yhooo, then people wonder why abo gogo are not out here whispering the cure for Covid 19 in our ears the very next day it surfaces, cause hayi shame baya abuse-wa

I figure we start with the basics according to me

What is the role of I sangoma in the society ?

Upon research, the most popular answer was, healing. Yes and no my response was. I mean yeah the end goal is to heal, but I strongly believe the most crucial role of Umgoma is to teach. Because you see, I don’t heal you, I take you through means of healing in consultation with both my ancestor and yours. Which is why It is key for the patient to show up fully, be present in the process, breaking down defenses that would block the interpretation of the reading.

If I didn’t need your presence of mind, then all I’d have to do is a wam bang thank you ma’am..he he he he, no not in that way you silly mind. I mean you would come in, I give you treatment and you leave, only to come back again and again and again with absolutely no clue of the cause of your struggle.

How do I teach you about who you are, when you’ve been living your life and not me ?

Any grounds created to have a truthful conversation is an opportunity to learn. So I do that, we get to talk about your life, the ways of old leading to who you come from that contributes to who you are. Put these findings into context to then further seek what the source of your struggle is. Highlight things about who you are, you’ve been repeatedly missing, which are key to your healing. I can only talk truth that is being revealed to me, but cannot force you to be present and therefore cannot guarantee your healing. How then do I put that much pressure on myself to fulfill a mandate to heal. You must meet me halfway, come with an inquiring mind ready to discover, so to grasp the basics of strengthening the foundation on which you stand

I mention an inquiring mind, what do I mean about that ?

Please dude, I don’t mean ask about every item in my ndumba. An inquiring mind is one without prejudice or preconceived ideas of what answers I should give. Cause honestly then why are you here. I may tell you things not known to you yet, or things so deeply buried your first instinct is to reject, and that’s fine. But want to know why, why gogo is it like that, why would the ancestors respond in that way, what was my role in it all, engage with me instead of up and leaving thinking that was a load of hogwash and then claim I couldn’t help you.

So the next time you go consult, help yourself first by realizing Isangoma is not a magician, we don’t have all the answers. Ours is to mediate between you ne dlozi lakho by translating their communication to you.

Note to myself….

Weee Sangoma, practice self-love , patience and care, it will continue to keep you away from pressures of wanting powers not meant for you, ngoba vele asiphiwanga ngakufana.

As I always tell my initiates, the mandate of a Healer is to build, ukwakha, akusona isiphithiphithi. You don’t have to be dramatic and over the top. Often times scaring your patients out of their wits giving them gory stories of the worst-case scenarios. I always tell them don’t create relevance by creating fear and paranoia in your clients .

Let’s keep it simple Mgoma, tell the truth only. In that way, we are well on our way to having emotionally intelligent healers at peace, and in clear conversations amongst ourselves and with those who lead us. Better equipped to take on the Covid19s of this era and beyond.

Makwande !!