reply to post by EfficientP
I didn't have a chance to read through the entire thread but I will add this.
I'm from South Africa and I have been doing some research for a novel that I am writing at the moment.
I interviewed a sangoma - he told me about his training and how people are chosen to become sangomas.
Here's the interesting part... His final test is to walk into the water (usually a lake or dam). Once in the water a being will take him beneath the
surface to an underwater cave/ room. Here he will meet his ancestors and be given bones that he will use in his practice. He says that you area able
to breathe in this place and some spend many weeks; sometimes months beneath the surface.
When they re-surface they are greeted by their people and they celebrate his success...
Now I am not saying this is true. But many people know and understand this part of their tradition here...
I think it's beautifully magical and I love listening to his stories...