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Frank Trimbos

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Sangoma Traditional healers are, even in today’s modern times, still highly respected and frequently consulted members of South African communities. Instead of referring to Western, mainstream health and healing practices, they practice traditional African medicine. Despite modern science and innovative technologies in the health and pharmaceutical sector, traditional healing is still the most trusted approach in South Africa. Even today, there are approximately as many as 200 000 indigenous traditional healers in South Africa compared to 25 000 Western-trained doctors. Traditional healers are still consulted by 60% of the South African population and are highly trusted and respected in the communities. Traditional healers don’t only fulfil a healing role in the community, but also social and political roles, due to their healing, medicinal and herbal knowledge, but most of all because of their divine connection with the ancestors. There are many different traditional healers in South Africa, from herbal healers to healers that focus on divination. Traditional healers that have a connection with the ancestors of the community or tribe are called sangomas. For harmony between the living and the dead, which...

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