Sobonfu Some, The Spiritual Voice Of Africa
One of the greatest women I have ever known and so deeply admired, Sobonfu Some, famously known as the Spiritual Voice of Africa, has gone across the threshold. The loss is personally deep and poignant for me and many others, for her healing presence was so profound, her wisdom-inspired teaching so far reaching, and her writing so uplifting and penetrating in its deep and loving humanity.
Sobonfu has made unique contributions to this world when such offerings are never more needed by a disconnected humanity, by bringing healing and uniting ritual, especially around grief and loss. She has our gratitude for the bounty of her wisdom gifts she poured into the social/cultural life throughout the globe. Her steady message is that as reincarnating human beings we each have unique tasks, missions, and gifts that must be shared if we are to live a fulfilling life -that we need to hear the call of our true higher humanity; and further we as members of the Community are called to be present for one another to recognize and support the gifts and the mission of each other.
Sobonfu was born in Burkina Faso, a small and desperately poor country in Africa into the Dagara tribe that is known on the continent as keepers of primal wisdom, a people rich in spirit knowledge, social/human community capacites and moral life. Even before her birth, Sobonfu was recognized as a coming seer and tribal initiate, a guardian of healing ritual for all stages of human life. Her fresh, soothing girlish voice bubbled like a cheerful brook; her candid joy and encouraging mischievous laugh could not be denied. She had a deep and authentic humility and penetrating insight into human spiritual life and community that has made her a treasure and inspiration throughout the world. Fortunately, there is a legacy of her work on You Tube as well as her books and tapes to inspire us now.
Sobonfu and I worked together as colleagues to create a conference called Feminine Fire, Transformative Healing, in 2011. It was truly amazing and so healing for all present. I felt greatly honored to work with her and have her friendship in the years that followed. She had hoped to come here to our home, White Feather ranch, in recent months.
Sobonfu was a master in the realm of grief ritual and ways to honorably incorporate the grief that life brings us. Together we mentored Sylvia Jackson, a young woman who has suffered profound losses; and Sobonfu’s work was the path to Sylvia’s healing, far surpassing the western programs she had experienced. Sylvia even went to Burkina Faso and now is completing her doctorate in grief counseling to help carry on Sobonfu’s integrated, deeply human, holistic work in this realm.
Sylvia and I went together to Sobonfu’s memorial in Oakland last Monday, February 20, 2017 at Humanist Hall, a place of celebrating the fellowship of humanity. Imagine the joy and surprise for us that just the moment we walked in the large continuous slide show pictured the three of us together on the screen! We felt blessed as we danced and sang and prayed to honor this great soul and met with representatives of the many, many people whose lives she has touched.
Surely heaven and the Ancestors are rejoicing now with Sobonfu’s presence there in spirit. May this holy woman continue to shine on the world with her great Sophia energy, for hers was one of the greatest purity. She is sorely missed, but may she be sourced by many and often, too, as a continuing well spring of spirit wisdom (her organization was called Wisdom Springs) that will be pouring forth like gentle, healing rain, with bursts of radiating sunlight of insight and awareness even as her laugh and smile gave us such affirmative inspiration for life.
Nancy Jewel Poer, February, 2017