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Mipasi ancestor figure - Tabwa - Congo
Passed down through the generations, mipasi figures are kept in special buildings within the compounds of the ruling elders. The figures are believed to embody the spirits of ancestors and as such have healing and protective powers. Mipasi figures are placed at the entrance of the village to ward off witches and sorcerers, placed beside a sick person to cure an identified ailment or placed near the workshops of blacksmiths to prevent evil spirits from disrupting their work. During new moon festivals, the figures are offered sacrifices and food offerings to heighten their powers and to bring good fortune to the community and its leaders.
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