IS AN ANCESTOR
IN AFRICAN TRADITIONAL RELIGION?*
It is not possible to speak of traditional religion without touching on the subject of the ancestors. Because they are nowhere and yet everywhere, it is difficult to speak of them comprehensively.
However, an ancestor is a person:
- who died a good death after having faithfully practised and transmitted to his descendants the laws left to him by his ancestors.
- who contributed to the continuation of the line by leaving many descendants.
- who was a peacemaker, a link, that fostered communion between the living and the dead, through sacrifices and prayers.
person who is the first-born is a candidate 'par excellence' to become
an ancestor because he is able to maintain the chain of the generation
in a long genealogy. The right of the first born is thus an inalienable
from the document released after the 24th meeting of the IMBISA Standing
Committee at Mahalapye (Botswana), 16-20 September, 1996, published by
AMECEA Documentation Service, Nairobi (Kenya).