Why Some Natural Areas Are Sacred? Lesson From Guji Oromo In Southern Ethiopia

Why Some Natural Areas Are Sacred? Lesson From Guji Oromo In Southern Ethiopia

Gemeda Odo Roba

Current researches show that there are considerable sacred natural sites among Gujii Oromoo of southern Ethiopia. Nevertheless, the significant weight was not given to explore why some natural areas are sacred while others are profane. Hence, this article aims at addressing this question by exploring the traditional bases for classification of sacred and non-scared/profane land among Gujii Oromo in Adoola Reedde and Annaa Sorraa districts in Gujii Zone. Concerning methodological approach, methods of data gathering employed were in-depth and key informants’ interviews, transect walk and focus group discussions. The analysis of data was carried out through qualitative description and explanatory approach. The findings of the study demonstrate that dedication of some natural places to rituals of Gada system and adoring of waaqa in the area, are identified as the traditional grounds for sacredness of some natural sites. In addition, the symbolic connection of topographical features and agro-climatic condition with Guji cultural practices, on one hand and myths entrenched in the people’s tradition on the other are basic grounds for the classification of sacred areas from profane. Generally, some natural sites are sacred in the study area, not because of land’s unique feature or other aspects, but because of dedication to rituals in Gada system and worship of waaqa, symbolic implication of the area to Guji culture and related traditionally deep ingrained myths handed down from preceding generation.

Keywords: Natural area, sacred, Guji, southern Ethiopia

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Gemeda Odo Roba.Why Some Natural Areas Are Sacred? Lesson From Guji Oromo In Southern Ethiopia. Global Journal of Arts and Humanities, 2018, 1:6


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