Tribal African Mask

The Tribal African Mask Ceremony Kind Of Gets You In A Trance

The tribal African mask dates back to the Paleolithic times. These were impressive artwork that were created from materials like leather, fabric, metal and different types of wood. These hold the prestigious position of being one of the world’s most sought after artworks and grace the museums and art galleries at different parts of the world.

The occasions of wearing the African mask

The tribal African mask was extensively worn by the Africans during the initiations, celebrations, war preparation, crop harvesting, the troubled as well as the peaceful times.

Ways of wearing the mask

If you think that you can wear the tribal African mask in any manner you want, you are mistaken. The African mask can be worn in three different ways. You can wear it vertically; that would be covering your face in a similar manner as a helmet would. You can also wear the mask by encasing your entire head and as a crest that is by resting the mask on your head.

The objective supporting the wearing of the masks

The tribal African mask usually represents the spirit and it is strongly believed that the spirit of the ancestors come upon the wearer to possess them. The masks of the totem or human ancestors are most often the objects of family pride and they are even honored with the gifts and ceremonies.

The mask ceremony

At an African mask ceremony, you will find the dancer entering into a deep trance and this is the mental state, which enables the dancer to communicate with his ancestors. Often you will find a translator or a wise man accompanying the African mask wearer at the time of the ritual for the interpretation of the messages that are supposedly conveyed by the spirits of the ancestors.

The messages are of wisdom that is brought forth by the ancestors. When the message is just a couple of grunted utterances, the translator tries his level best to get the correct meaning of the message.

The tribal African mask ritual ceremonies are usually accompanied with dance, song and music. The music is played with the traditional African musical instruments.

At present, you will find that a large number of people have lost the essence of their tribal culture and identity, and consequently the masking ceremonies are not so much prevalent in Africa.