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Title: Israel in two African prophet movements : an inquiry into the Mount Zion-Jerusalem concept as reflected in the aspects of hymns and prayer-songs of the Kimbangu and Shembe prophet movements
Author: Simbandumwe, S. S.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1990
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Abstract:
When the profane world and secular society threaten man's socio-religious life, he takes refuge in the centre of the world of his religion. This centre for the Israelite, Kimbangu and Shembe Prophet Movements is the cosmic mountain. The phenomenon of theophany on it characterises the genesis of earth's unpolluted life, through which they try to transcend the profane world. In such a situation the Israelite, Kimbangu and Shembe Prophet Movements were born and emerged in protest against colonisation and corruption. The prophets of these Afro-Israel movements claimed to be under the control of the Spirit. They were compelled to deliver a divine message of both condemnation and redemption through the spoken and sung word. With their prophecies, hymns and prayer-songs they attempted to reform the evil systems of their societies, they questioned the right of the oppressor and led pilgrims to the road of the New Jerusalem, the place of comfort and liberation. The thesis analyses the cosmological significance of the sacred mountain and discusses what Zion-Jerusalem is believed to have in common with Nkamba-Jerusalem of the Kimbanguists, Nhlangakazi and Ekuphakameni of the Shembeites. It observes parallels between the three Prophet Movements in their socio-religious traditions. The research was conducted within the guideline of a major research question and four subsidiary questions. The answers to the questions were reached through the interpretation of the socio-religious traditions and analysis of prophecies, hymns and prayer-songs of the prophet Movements. As a result, the thesis concludes that the cosmic mountain in the Prophet Movements is pre-eminently the centre of the pilgrim's world of socio-religious life. Through the phenomenon of theophany on the cosmic mountain, the pilgrim re-enters into the realm of the primal instant perfection of nature and foretastes the paradisiacal life. He feels the need to be and stay always at the centre of this life-giving force. It is his sanctuary, the centre of divine powers and axis mundi where he meets his ancestors and God. The reading of the Bible opened the eyes of the prophets Kimbangu and Shembe to see the sacred symbols of Zion-Jerusalem in their holy mountains, the rich heritage of their traditional religion and values of their socio-cultural traditions. Thus they established Churches based authentically on African Christianity.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.661921  DOI: Not available
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