Jillian Edelstein was born and grew up in Cape Town and is now based in London. Known for her portrait work and award-winning personal projects, she is currently working on the book project Here & There: An Expedition of Sorts.

Cave of the ancestors

Some of the thousands of sangoma (traditional healers) in southern Africa come to this valley on the Lesotho-South African border to speak to their ancestors and learn their skills. The area is considered sacred and is known variously as Badimong, Mautse, or Nkokomohi, meaning to "rise up like smoke", a reference to the spirits of the ancestors. Mautse means "holy waters".

As we arrived at the cave at dusk a ritual was taking place. The shapes and colours worn into the walls felt like ancient history. The hum of the voices, the beat of the drums and the stamping dancing feet echoed all around. JE



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