Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Get Our Free Newsletter

Friday, August 2, 2019

Celebrating Basotho New Year (Selemo sa Basotho) by Katleho Mpopo

The Annual Celebration of Basotho New year (Selemo sa Basotho and The Molutsoana Celebration)
  by Katleho Mpopo

The Basotho people hold the Molutsoana Celebration (prayer for rain and peace) to mark the commencement of the ancient Basotho calendar which begins in August (Phato), immediately after the last days of winter. The month of Phato is characterised by blowing winds; clearing of the land, cultivation of the fields and preparation of the new crops; spring birds like Tsoere, Mamotintinyane and Ts’emeli arrive, and so we say, “Let there be Life!”

The Basotho New Year Celebration is one of prayer 

Two villages across the Basotho Kingdom host this spring-time celebration in which a group of girls and newlywed women from one village come together and visit second village. Upon their arrival, one girl from the visiting group approaches a house nearby and asks for water. Instead of drinking the water, she mischievously snatches the Lesokoana (a stick used in cooking papa- a mixture of water and maize meal) and scrambles full speed to her fellow village sisters waiting on the outskirts. The family from which she took Lesokoana now calls upon all their village girls to give chase to the “thieving” girl. 

The visiting team runs with the Lesokoana to their village while the home team chases after them hoping to retrieve the stick. If they catch the person holding the Lesokoana, they take it from her before she can throw it to her own village members. When they retrieve it, they return to their village and present the stick to their chief (to show that they brought back what had been taken from them), then the home village chief announces “Khotso Pula Nalla!” This rings in  the beginning of a celebration, with traditional food like LikhobeNyekoe, and Sekele. There is dancing: Mokhibo (done by older women) and Ndhlamo (young men of the village).

However, if the visiting team gets to their village and presents the “stolen” Lesokoana, then their chief hoists the stick high above his head for all to see and declares “Khotso Pula Nala!!” (Let there be Peace, Rain and Abundance!).  Either way, the Basotho New Year Celebration will begin and eventually all the ladies from both villages gather at the outskirts where the prayer games begin.

This is a prayer to keep peace between village and asking the creator to provide rain that will nourish the plants and the soil, fill the streams with fresh waters for drinking. We pray for peace between villages, pray for lavishing green to cover the land throughout the kingdom hence enough food for Basotho’s livestock.

Khotso Pula Nala (Peace, Rain, Abundance) hence the colours 
on our fag  (blue= Water, White= Peace, Green= Abundance)

Khotso Pula Nala in your lives!
Happy New Year.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Say What You Sayin'

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Featured Post

Spoken Word Griots: African Oral Tradition in Caribbean Music (Third Part) - Calypso

Spoken Word Griots: African Oral Tradition in Caribbean Music (Third Part) - #Calypso by K. Omodele African traditions and customs are i...

Popular Posts