Bamileke beaded tribal skull

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An intricately beaded skull from the Bamileke tribe in Cameroon.

The Bamileke believe that death is a passage to the afterlife. Following a person’s death, usually, one of value and impact (almost always an old person), the next and final step is known as “the sacred cult of skulls”.

In the Bamileke spirituality, the dead are alive and well, and from the spiritual world, they continue to be interested in their loved ones and descendants still on earth. Therefore, their descendants contact them spiritually, via the skulls, to intercede with “sie” (God) on their behalf, support them or help them solve any problem they face in their lives.

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