The companionship 

One day as Mundu wa Ngai was strolling to acquaint himself with this worlds physical laws, he saw a Mundu like him, but, with features that attracted him. As the master of the new habitation he called out “Mundu!”as he had called flora and fauna without response. The creature responded, coming hurriedly smiling and embraced Mundu wa Ngai. Instantly, Ngai gave them the language for self expression.   The newly found Mundu Muka  enquired.” Who are you and where did you come from?” Mundu wa Ngai answered.”I am Mundu. I came from the direction of that Mountain,” He pointed Mount Kenya.

“And for you, where did you come from?” Mundu wa Ngai asked Mundu Muka .

Mundu Muka  held Mundu wa Ngai by hand “Come I will show you”.

They went for some time and came to a ravine with a stream. At the opposite river bank there was a black cotton clay work visible. The lumps of clay could tell it was in use not longtime ago, though the area was dump with humid climate.

“I woke from that clay. Beyond that I cannot tell”.  Mundu Muka  said.

“You were created by Ngai. All the constituents of that clay over there are your body. The thing foreign in you, is life which came in form of ostrich. At the end, your life will leave you and your body will return to the same soil as well as that of your progeny. Mundu! Enjoy the world you have emerged with a clean heart. Give praise to Ngai alone because all the rest is work of His Hands. Give praise to Ngai for His special favours He has bestowed upon you by granting you your personality.  Personality is the assurance you will enter the next world in which I evolved,” Mundu wa Ngai said.

They left the ravine and entered into the forest. That night they slept under a Mukuyu (fig) tree in a place called Nyagathanga today. For a long time, their habitation was arboreal. After some time Mundu Muka  conceived.  When the womb was three months old, one morning a python from the sky landed and hang its head down from the Mukurwe tree facing Mundu Muka . Mundu Muka  in turn stared back at the python. Mundu wa Ngai held tightly his left wrist. The python cast aspersion at Mundu Muka  and delivered a message to her.

“Thy shall bring forth a child with bigger head because the child shall be wise in comprehension of concealed wisdom. At labour, thy shall have a terrible sharp pain that will open up your brain for a moment and it will be revealed to you what nature holds for your child. When the labour will be over, you will embrace the child and shed tears of joy.”

As the python was talking, Mundu Muka  could see through the python like a clear water or thin screen of smoke. After that message, the python poured its self to the ground and vanished in the soil. Mundu wa Ngai saw the python, but did not hear it. Mundu Muka  pondered over those words in her heart with anxiety till the day she gave birth.

One morning she developed an unusual pain and in the same morning delivered a bouncing baby girl. Her mother named her Wanjiru, a child of blue sky – a child of Ngai because it had been revealed she would be a great seer. Mundu wa Ngai renamed his wife Mumbi, the mother of humanity and from then Mundu wa Ngai adapted the name Gikuyu, a derivative from Mukuyu. Any green tree according to African traditions is habitation of the spirits. Mundu wa Ngai knew he evolved from the world of spirits.

Mumbi knew her child would be a great seer and true to it at a young age Wanjiru could foretell great events to the chagrin of her father. The nine sisters who followed her could not match her psych. She naturally inherited her father’s psychic traits.

When Gikuyu daughters attained marriage age, there were no suitors to marry off his daughters to. Gikuyu knew it was only Ngai who could provide men to marry his daughters. Being a man of Ngai, he knew how to approach Ngai and how to offer effective prayers.

One morning, he assembled his family and told them he was set to go to Mount Kenya for prayers. To his family it was not a surprise, because they had known him as a man of prayers. What they did not know was the nature of prayers and why in Mount Kenya only. However, they bade him tearful fare well.

He left Nyagathanga and headed for Mount Kenya. After six days of spiritual walk, he arrived in Mount Kenya. On the seventh day, he rested. On the eight day he started fasting that took forty (40) days. On the 41st day he collected honey and wild bananas, and ascended the Mountain.

He found a suitable place to offer his sacrifice.   He took the bananas and raised them in prayer facing runyondo rwa njathi peak. After the bananas offering, he placed them on a stone. He held the honey and raised it in prayer. After the offering s he placed the honey on the same stone. Cabalistically and ritually he had served Ngai. It was now the turn of Ngai to serve him by answering his prayers. He went down in prayers requesting Ngai to give him men to marry his daughters. Raising his hands in prayer, facing Mount Kenya’s runyondo rwa njathi peak argued his case loudly.

“When you brought me to this world, you instructed me to create my offspring’s and fill the world. True to it, you provided me with a companion. With her, we have 9 complete daughters. Now the daughters require men to marry them to start their families. Ngai remember the promise you made to me that whenever I am in trouble, and I face this Mountain and talk to You, You will hear me. Ngai, it is only You that I trust, not even the ostrich. I am descending from this holy ground, hoping You have heard my prayers.”

Gikuyu reached his homestead tired and weak after a two months absence. He went direct to his personal   alter and offered thanks giving to Ngai for granting him a safe journey. When he came out of the alter, the family hugged him in tears of joy. That night, he had a dream seeing young men under Mukurwe tree not far from the homestead. The intuitions built a very strong feeling that Ngai had brought him the men he had requested for. He left very early in the morning towards the mukurwe tree and to his surprise he found ten young men asleep. He woke them up and took them to his homestead. A bon fire was made to warm them. After breakfast marriages were arranged. The ten Gikuyu daughters represented the ten Gikuyu clans. Traditionally, all seers come from the clan of Anjiru the lineage of Wanjiru the first born daughter of Gikuyu and Mumbi. A major genetic trait found among the Anjiru clan is that their hair turns gray at very early age. It is believed to be a sign of wisdom.

Traditionally the creation of Gikuyu and Mumbi and their ten daughters is Gikuyu fashion of Bibilical Adam and Eve. In all aspects, the two fashions of creation are agreeable to the fact that, there was a time when there were no people on planet earth and humanity was the last species to be created after the emergence of flora and fauna. In creation of man, Ngai put a special attention to man than the rest of creation. But it should be remembered the creation story in any community is the parting point between man and Ngai. In Africa, creation story, unlike ordinary epics, was not open to discussion to ordinary people because it touched on gods, men and magic. It was reserved for a certain age of sages. As it can be seen, the creation fashion of Gikuyu and Mumbi has some kind of harmony and beauty because it has been narrated by the rightful elders who are the custodian of the Gikuyu antiquity.

The creation story does not reflect on the arrival of Gikuyu community in the present site in Muranga via Meru as narrated in modern historical texts in what is called migration of Eastern Bantu. Gikuyu and Mumbi is a very old history. Unfortunately, it won’t pass the test of time so long as there are no records to justify its accuracy. Like any African history, it falls under the legends. History of Africa is presumed to have started with the arrival of whites. Whites say, before their arrival, Africa was in a long sleep of ignorance.

Africa has never been asleep. If she could be accused of being in along sleep that is obvious because others who could not measure to her genius have stolen from her quarry of African mythology, religion, science, art and culture.

Charles S. Finch III, Echoes of Dark land, theme from African Aden, copyright 1991                                                By, Khants page 71.

Cheikh Anta Diop, The African Origin of Civilization, Myth or Reality, 1974.                                                         Edited by Merger Cook, ISBN 1-55652-072-7, pp.13.

Stolen Legacy, Greek Philosophy is stolen Egyptian philosophy George G.H.James                                             Africa World Press, Inc pp 126.

The African Civilization                                                                                                                                    …OR                                                                                                         Utamanduni Wa Kiafrika                                                                                                               Professor Kihumbu Thairu

She has never had time to reclaim her ownership. If she has to recall what originated from Africa, the rest of the world would cover her nakedness with her palms. A child, who comes from a home of plenty, has no business talking about what they ate last night.

According to the seers, Gikuyu and his family did not venture in an expansive range of territory throughout their lifetime, because of the availability of food; clothing and shelter were in simple format because of the favorable warm climatic conditions of the tropics. They survived by gathering of small games and large birds, who augmented the greens and fruits in their daily ration intake. No doubt, in their simple life-style, without ambitions, set goals, fear or worry created their first civilization among humanity in this planet. Today we might talk of democracy, human rights etc in different fora as a fight of injustice and inhuman but looking at the pushers of the agenda, you realize democracy and human rights are lies of life. It is all about the control of natural resources of others.

Gikuyu family was busy learning their environment. They soon realized they were not only predators, they were prey as well. Their number was small but they had wits over all animals. Their specially built body i.e. the    buttocks, the foot and the fingers are the most vital body parts that give man advantage over other animals in management of his environment. Whereas the brain was made to co-ordinate the nervous activity, the buttocks to co-ordinate the muscular activity, the feet to balance the body and the fingers to grip, the Creator had in mind to create a superior being.

After many seasons on this physical world, Gikuyu in his old age had premonition that time had come for him to return to his former world of spirits. The premonition did not bother him because he knew where he was going. In his heart he knew he had accomplished the mission Ngai had given him. Unlike his progeny he was ready to die.

He assembled his family for the last supper known as giathi kia muthage. In this ritual, the food taken represented the body of Patriarch Gikuyu and the drink taken represented his blood. In African mana it meant, though I am gone, spiritually I am in your body because you ate me and drank me.

After giathi  kia muthage, Patriarch Gikuyu woke up one early morning and bade his family fare well. Unlike other errands, he asked his oldest daughter Wanjiru and her son, his name sake, to accompany him. The three left towards the direction of Mount Kenya. After the usual six days walk, they reached Mount Kenya. On the seventh day they rested. On the eighth day Patriarch Gikuyu taught his daughter and grandson the wisdom of the Mountain, the hidden treasures of the Mountain, the esoteric wisdom and life after death. He forbade them from sharing that wisdom with others not of Anjiru lineage. He concluded “The wisdom I have imparted in you is not subject to exploitation for personal gain. Whoever is privy to it must remain humbled because he has become a servant of Ngai. He must not take wine or the food I forbid you. Unlike the angels, you are at liberty to do good or evil, because this world is founded on law and you know the consequence of law. Your deeds will be weighed on a balance to predestinate your fate in the next world.

Always remember to keep your worship and praise to Ngai alone Who Created the earth and the heavens, Who has no Beginning or End.  ”

He forbade his daughter Wanjiru never to offer sacrifices to Ngai on that Mountain, because when Ngai Manifests Himself, a very powerful bolt of energy hits the Mountain and no woman or any man without urungu (melanin) would come out safely.

All sacrifices to Ngai must be conducted by your son or his son.

After that, Gikuyu climbed higher up on a rocky surface and stood still. As he raised his hands in prayer, a great cyclonic whirl of wind developed and lifted him up and up till he vanished in the clouds. Wanjiru and son left immediately to tell the story.

The tradition has it that when Gikuyu ascended to the sky, his wife Mumbi became restless and discontented. She took to moving to far distances in anticipation of finding Mundu wa Ngai as had happened many years ago.

When her time came to leave the world, she was not lifted up as her husband Gikuyu. She met  her natural death and interred by her family in a place near the present day boarder of Ethiopia and Kenya.

Through the works of Dr. L.S.B. Leakay and others on evolution it became known the first man to walk on this planet did evolve in East Africa.

New genetic study carried out by Sarah Tishkoff and other researchers from the University of Maryland USA has shown that “Eve” the 150,000 or so year-old female ancestor of every human being on earth may have lived in East Africa. The researchers say the oldest known DNA lineage found are those of East Africans. They found a very high amount of genetic variation, or diversity, between the mitochondrial DNA of different individuals in these populations.

Copyright: Gikuyu and Mumbi Cultural Museum