Original Research

Spiritual diagnostic criteria in an African setting: The case of baruti in Limpopo province, South Africa

Nare J. Masola, Salome T. Sigida, Elizabeth M. Khorommbi
Theologia Viatorum | Vol 43, No 1 | a24 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/tv.v43i1.24 | © 2019 Nare J. Masola, Salome T. Sigida, Elizabeth M. Khorommbi | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 27 May 2019 | Published: 13 December 2019

About the author(s)

Nare J. Masola, Department of Psychology, Faculty of Humanities, University of Limpopo, Polokwane, South Africa
Salome T. Sigida, Department of Psychology, Faculty of Humanities, University of Limpopo, Polokwane, South Africa
Elizabeth M. Khorommbi, Department of Psychology, Faculty of Humanities, University of Limpopo, Polokwane, South Africa


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Abstract

In many provinces of South Africa, especially in the indigenous societies, baruti (pastors) are consulted for different purposes, paramount among them being the execution of good health. The research was carried out to explore the diagnostic measures used to diagnose chronic diseases by pastors in Limpopo, South Africa. Ten pastors who specialised in chronic diseases were interviewed through individual semi-structured interviews in the Ga-Dikgale rural community, and the data were analysed using a thematic content analysis. The findings of the study indicate that diagnosis of chronic diseases by the participants relied primarily on power confession, and discernment of spirits. The researcher concludes by recommending policymakers and Western-trained health care practitioners to acknowledge the pastors as experts in their own right, as an additional resource in health promotion in the rural communities.

Keywords

pastor; South Africa; discernment; health promotion; diagnosis

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