The Three Sisters Who Saw God

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In a village there lived three sisters. The eldest was called Porofa after the men’s Poro Society. The second was known as Sandofa after the women’s Sande Society. The third was named Weiva, which meant adulteress.

While walking through the forest by a lonely path these three sisters saw Ngala bathing in a pond. Ngala had a narrow waist, as small as the wrist of a wasp, and since he did not care that men should know of this he always wore a heavy girdle. But he had taken off his girdle to bathe, and when Porofa politely coughed to let God know she and her sisters were approaching, he quickly seized his girdle, put it on, and flung his robes about him.

As Porofa drew nigh and was passing with her face averted modestly, Ngala asked:

“O maiden, did you look upon me as I bath?”

Porofa said she had not, for she had no wish to hurt Ngala’s feelings. Sandofa likewise said no. But when Ngala asked Weiva if she had looked upon him, she laughed and mockingly replied:
“Oh yes, indeed I saw you. You have a funny waist just like a wasp!”

Ngala blessed Porofa and Sandefa, and through them he blessed the Poro and Sande Societies, promising that they and their secrets would always be honored and respected.

But he cursed Weiva. He cursed her and her children and laid the stain of ill fame and lifelong shame upon her face. And that is why immortality can never be kept secret, and why wicked women such as Weiva are shunned by worthy people.

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