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Nehoreka Learns His Enemy's Secret


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(Shona/Zimbabwe)

The Budya, a Shona-speaking people, came from Mingare.

The father of the Budya was Nehoreka. He wanted to migrate, because there was no water in his land. He and other men went in search of a better country. They passed through many countries, and finally reached a country that was ruled by Makate. It was fine, arable land, with much water. Nehoreka returned to Mingare, and prepared his people to migrate. But because Makate's people outnumbered his, he married a daughter of Dzivaguru, the leader of Choma, a man who had power over the rain. Dzivaguru agreed to help him, but asked for a place in the new land for his own family. Nehoreka took his army and moved to Makate's land. The people were struck by the beauty of that land. Makate, no fool, prepared for an invasion. When Nehoreka's people attacked, Makate's armies rolled rocks on them and forced them to retreat. Nehoreka, defeated, refused to return to Mingare. He knew that Makate had supernatural powers, powers over lightning, wind, water. So he asked his beautiful sister to marry Makate. Makate was pleased with her, and over time he came to love her so deeply that he told her all his secrets, not realizing that a trap was being set. Nehoreka's sister took the horns and magical paraphernalia of her husband and returned to Nehoreka, who once again took his people to war on Makate. When Makate saw that his magical horns were gone, he knew that he could not win, so he departed with his people. When Nehoreka arrived, the houses were deserted, flies were buzzing everywhere. Makate came to a great rock floor. He took a tail-switch and hit the ground, and the rock floor opened and all his people went in, disappearing into the earth. The only clue as to the entrance in this rock floor was a hoe beaten into the rock. No one could remove the hoe. In the meantime, Makate and his people moved into a new and better country. The footprints of Makate's family and those of his livestock are still on the rock.

Subjects: Religion.


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