I was honored to witness this rare Hamer tribe ceremony. This clan was celebrating the transitional phase of a boy from boyhood to manhood.
The event starts with the men getting face painting using special materials while the woman and girls are dancing.What was special and shocking for me is that the females asking the males to whip them with birch stick. The greater the physical pain, the more devotion they are believed to show to the boy who is about to become a man. Their back bleeds but instead of screaming they tease the men, asking for more lashes.The critical part of this ritual is that the boy must ran across the backs of a line of bulls. Once it is accomplished, he becomes known as a Maza, and is entitled to take the first of several brides.Everyone will celebrate and get drunk. This ritual will continue for 3 consecutive days.
About Omar Reda
Omar Reda is Lebanese Creative Director based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Aside from his advertising work, photography is his biggest passion, he travels to remote places around the world to explore new cultures and traditions. [Official Website]