How did the Dogon come by this knowledge? Temple’s book says that long ago an ark descended to the ground amid a great wind and brought amphibious beings, known as the Nommo, who gave the Dogon the scoop on Sirius B.
The ancestors of the Dogon came from Mande, an area in southwest Mali and northeast Guinea that was home to the thirteenth-century Mali empire. The Dogon migrated after the empire’s collapse to the cliffs of the Bandiagara plateau.
The Dogon are an ethnic group indigenous to the central plateau region of Mali, in West Africa, south of the Niger bend, near the city of Bandiagara, and in Burkina Faso. The Dogon are best known for their religious traditions, their mask dances, wooden sculpture, and their architecture.
Dogon language, language of the Niger-Congo language family spoken by some 600,000 Dogon people in northeastern Mali to the east of Mopti and along the border between Mali and Burkina Faso.
While some villages have adopted Islam or Christianity, a large percentage of Dogon are animists who believe in the importance of a synergy between the spiritual world of gods and ancestors, and the living world of plants, people, and animals.
Today, Sirius is nicknamed the ” Dog Star ” because it is part of the constellation Canis Major, Latin for “the greater dog.” The expression ” dog days” refers to the period from July 3 through Aug. 11, when Sirius rises in conjunction with the sun.
With slightly more than twice the mass of the sun and just less than twice its diameter, Sirius still puts out 26 times as much energy. It’s a main-sequence star, meaning it produces most of its energy by converting hydrogen into helium through nuclear fusion.
Do not travel to Mali due to COVID-19, crime, terrorism, and kidnapping. Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 4 Travel Health Notice for Mali due to COVID-19.
This type of mask, known as kanaga, is created by the Dogon people of Mali in Western Africa. The masks are used in funerary rituals called dama, which allow the souls of the deceased to leave the village and enter the world of the dead, marking the end of the mourning period.
Following a death, Dogon peoples bury the dead immediately. They dance emina, masks carved from wood and woven from hibiscus fiber, as part of a sequence of rites that are conducted for men long after they are buried.
Nommo are the ancestral spirits of the Dogon (Mali) and are derived from a Dogon word meaning “to make one drink”. Nommo implies the power of words to create harmony and balance in the face of disharmony2.
Dogons rely on farming for food intake. Dogon people cultivate pearl millets, sorghum, rice, onions, peanuts and other vegetables. They domesticate goats, sheep and chickens to produce milk, eggs and meat.
Like other Dogon masks, kanaga masks are worn at rituals called dama, whose goal is to transport the souls of deceased family members away from the village and to enhance the prestige of the deceased and his descendants by magnificent masked performances and generous displays of hospitality.
Mali is a landlocked country in West Africa, located southwest of Algeria.