Malidoma Patrice Somé

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Malidoma Patrice Somé
Malidomacrop.jpg
OccupationAuthor
Known forWorkshops, lectures
Websitehttp://www.malidoma.com/

Malidoma Patrice Somé (born 1956) is a West African writer and workshop leader, primarily in the field of spirituality. Born in a Dagara community in Dano, Burkina Faso, he was raised by Jesuits from the age of four. He currently lives on the West Coast of the United States.

Background[edit]

At age four, Somé was abducted from his people, the Dagara by a missionary Jesuit priest, and taken to a Jesuit boarding school where he was inflicted with a Western education by the priests.[1][2] Somé endured sixteen years of physical and emotional abuse by the priests, but he left the school when he was twenty to return to the village of his birth.[2][3] Upon his return, integration into his traditional tribal religion and customs was difficult, due to his long absence from his culture and his apparent indoctrination into Christianity and a "white man's world".[4] Elders from the village believed that Somé's ancestral spirit had withdrawn from his body and that he had already undergone a type of rite of passage into manhood in the white world.[4] Despite this, they agreed to let him undergo a belated manhood rite with a younger group in the tribe. Having been raised outside of the culture and not speaking the language made the month-long, baor process, believed to unite soul and body, more dangerous for him than for the culturally-Dagara youths also undergoing the rite.[4]

Somé writes that each person is born with a destiny, and he or she is given a name that reflects that destiny.[3] Somé says his name, Malidoma, means "friend of the enemy/stranger."[1][5] Somé believes it is his destiny to come to Western audiences and promote an understanding between Western and African cultures.[1]

After living in the US for about 10 years, while completing a PhD at Brandeis University, Somé went back to Burkina Faso for an arranged marriage to Sobonfu Somé, a member of the Dagara tribe.[6] They later divorced.[7] Sobonfu Somé died in 2017.[8]

Education[edit]

Somé holds three Master's degrees and two doctorates from the Sorbonne and Brandeis University.[1][4]

Somé currently conducts Kontomble initiation and divination retreats and other workshops in the US and Europe.[9][10]

Bibliography[edit]

  • Ritual: Power, Healing and Community, Swan and Raven (1993). ISBN 0-14-01-9558-0
  • Of Water and Spirit: Ritual, Magic and Initiation in the Life of an African Shaman, Tarcher/Putnam (1994). ISBN 978-0-87477-762-8
  • The Healing Wisdom of Africa, Tarcher/Putman (1999). ISBN 0-87477-991-X

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Somé, Malidoma Patrice (1999). The Healing Wisdom of Africa. New York: Tarcher/Putnam. pp. 1–15. ISBN 0-87477-991-X.
  2. ^ a b "Somé, Malidoma Patrice @ Enclyclopedia.com". Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  3. ^ a b Somé, Malidoma Patrice (1994). Of Water and Spirit: Ritual, Magic and Initiation in the Life of an African Shaman. New York: Tarcher/Putnam. ISBN 978-0-87477-762-8.
  4. ^ a b c d Taylor, Bron; Chester, David (2008). Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature. A&C Black. pp. 1581–1582. ISBN 978-1847062734. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  5. ^ "Biography of Malidoma Patrice Some, Author of Of Water and the Spirit Archived 2006-05-11 at the Wayback Machine.", in Religious Traditions of Africa and the African Diaspora, by the members of Honors AFAM 220 (Spring 1997/ Spring 1999/ Spring 2001).
  6. ^ "Out of Africa: a message..." The Independent. Retrieved 4 June 2015.
  7. ^ "Insights at the Edge". Sounds True. Retrieved 4 June 2015.
  8. ^ Past Events – Grief Ritual with Sobonfu Somé Red Balloon Project
  9. ^ Somé, Malidoma Patrice (2007). "Malidoma.com".
  10. ^ Ancestral Wisdom Bridge Foundation: Somé's "Indigenous African Spirit Technologies" group, with schedule and fees for his events.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]