BUNG'EDA: The world most expensive burial process practised by Barbaig also known as Datoga - Wazalendo 25 Blog


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20 Sep 2016

BUNG'EDA: The world most expensive burial process practised by Barbaig also known as Datoga

Burial ceremony: The tribe called Barbaig performs the most spectacular process
Bung'eda is a special type of grave in which a dead body of an elderly man is buried. It's origin is deeply rooted in the culture and tradition of the Datoga / Barbaig community. 

However the definition of Bung'eda can be broader than this as it includes several ceremonial events which commence after the burial has been effected.

The grave Bung'eda is special in the following aspects;

- In the way is made ( it is dug in a circular shape)

- The way the dead body is placed (it is seated in the upright position and facing east ward with a fresh cattle hide wrapped around the body (This male-cow which must have any defect on its body and from a clean family in killed by being suffocated to death before being skinned by also clean people.

- In its rarity since one to be buried in this way should first deserve, and it is the community which declares and not the family neither his clan (the criteria)

- In the several special ceremonial events which follows soon at the burial with accompanying step - wise aligning some trees of progressively tallness surrounding grave. ( this takes from 8 to 9 months)  
This type of burial is considered especially by by Datoga as a highly respectful burial and a way ordination to somebody who have lived type of appreciable life. 
The decision for such ordination is made by the longer Community through a meeting which is convened soon after the death announcement has been heard.
The main theme which governs the whole process is holiness, and this is simbled by ensuring that every participant of all the tangible ceremonial events is first evaluated and declared "clean" (ie free from socially acceptable trace passes)

The community is the main supervisor of Bung'eda process and the family handles the responsibility of financing the events, however the clan participate in this aspect, towards end of the Bumg'eda ceremony.

Highly respected elders (clean) not more than 8 from the community are appointed to compose a central administrative committee, and they work closely with the traditionally old man (Sidabeyoned) and another one elder from the clan (those 8 elders should be age - mates or even more with that who was buried)

The central administrative committee deals with traditional procedure for bung'eda and also ensuring that peace ethics are maintained during the whole period of bung'eda.

Throughout Bung'eda occasion, all misbehavior eg. quarreling, fighting, theft etc are strictly prohibited. In ensuring that the insisted love and peace are maintained, various problem solving stages are established, and only the difficult issues are referred to the central committee.
Together with other issues concerning the ceremony, this is also the time the community evaluate the in-activeness of the culture and the deviations corrected including carrying out the meetings for reconciliation.

Note: The old man who is buried in this way is believed to be alive and although he is physically not visible, but is capable of solving problems when is asked through prayer by mentioning his name. Especially when people go to worship around his grave.

He is also believed to be closer to God and can translate our prays to God when asked through prayers.

SOURCE: Barbaig Elders/Translated
PHOTO BY: Ohayoooda     

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