The Great Zimbabwe monuments, dzimba dzemabwe, from where the country derives her name remain a tourist attraction, with thousands coming through to view the stone works every year. 

But beyond the stone work, this place is believed to be home to the country’s ancestral spirits and a lot of sacred happenings used to take place here.

For a place that harbours the history and foundations of this country’s civilisation, one cannot begin to imagine the secrets that these stones carry.

Great Zimbabwe ruins

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The battles fought here, the trade, the secrets of the great kings and queens and their subjects who lay and found refuge inside these walls are all part of what makes the Great Zimbabwe a monumental phenomenon.

Beyond this is the mystery of the sacredness of these stones which seem to be fading or have rather faded with time. 

There were a lot of strange happenings that history bears testimony to that visited the great enclosure.

80 year old Sekuru Samuel Rufuharuzivishe Mugabe, who grew up playing close to the monuments, said as a young boy, one day he and his brother heard sounds of cattle lowing and goats bleating though the incident happened once it remained imprinted in his memory.

“I was in the company of my brother on our way to shepherd one early morning when I heard the sounds of cattle, sheep and goats. I asked my brother and he said that was the case of what happened long ago. I didn’t know where it came from,” he said.

Sekuru Mugabe’s story is collaborated by National Museums and Monuments director southern region Mr Lovemore Mandima who said such stories as told by Sekuru Mugabe are common and have been documented.

“As you are aware Great Zimbabwe is the home of living and dead spirits. There are numerous myths, legends linked to place. We learnt that voices were heard coming from inside,” he said.

Sekuru Mugabe further spoke about his aunt who disappeared when she went to collect water at a spring which was at the monuments.

The spring which was called Chisikana never used to dry up.

According to him, his aunt’s mother used to fetch water at the spring daily and one day she came across a man standing near the water source who asked her if she has a daughter and why she never sends the girl to fetch water for her. 

Two days later she sent her daughter to fetch water, and on the first day the girl returned but the outcome changed on the second day as she never returned.

The spring eventually dried up and Sekuru Mugabe blames that on changing times.

The narrations give a glimpse of the many mysterious stories that are said to have occurred at the sacred monuments.

It is worrisome for people like Sekuru Mugabe that the monuments seem to be losing their sacredness and one wonders what kind of an impact that could possibly have on the well being of the country.

Could modernity have cost the country its sacredness? Such questions remain unanswered.