Author Topic: Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman  (Read 12704 times)

Cheesy Little Life

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Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman
« on: March 09, 2013, 04:27:01 pm »
Please see, first of all,

where we discuss young white men claiming to be indigenous sangomas.

John Lockley is one such person. He is to visit Totnes, UK, in May 2013. He is a white South African.

This is the text from a flyer currently around town:


African Shamanism in Totnes -- May 3rd to7th


Senior Shaman of the Xhosa Tribe
that brought us Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu

May 3rd: Introduction to South African Shamanism
Public talk / Blessing ceremony / Q & A session
Suggested Donation: £15 (advance booking recommended)
Learn about traditional Xhosa medicine practice, including ancestral connection through dreaming.

May 4th -- 5th: Two-Day Ancestral Blessing Ceremony / Initiation
Dartington Village Hall
Exchange: £141 (Early Bird price just £121 before 10th April)
Note: This two-day ceremony involves powerful transformational work with a master shaman.
This is beautiful and serious work for those looking to deepen their connection with the spirit world.

May 6th -- 7th: Personal Sangoma Divinations
Exchange: £81. One hour session
In this 1-to-1 session John will channel information from the spirit world to help you on your life path.

see   for more details

email:   for all bookings / questions

Don’t miss this unique opportunity!
Places for all events are limited, so advanced booking is highly recommended to avoid disappointment.

[end of flyer]

His booking agent Mark Flaherty is an astrologer who says that drinking ayahuasca saved him.

There are plenty of search results all over Google and Yahoo about Lockley. This Wikipedia link discusses the place of white sangomas in South Africa:

There appears to be some disagreement within the traditional communities about the legitimacy of white practitioners.

And here is his own Wiki page, which smacks of self-written self-promotion:

Both the above Wiki pages were updated earlier this year; was this in late preparation for his tours and engagements this year?

In the past few years Lockley has toured extensively throughout the UK, North America and northern Europe.

This is from , 13 July 2009:

To clear up mistaken beliefs and disseminate the core principles of Xhosa shamanism, John is currently running workshops in the UK, where he says he faces a different kind of prejudice. “People in the UK are mainly familiar with North American shamans and they have a perception that African medicine men are witchdoctors or practice voodoo.”

Perhaps he should check out his own assumptions.

*  *  *

So all the obvious and familiar questions apply. Is he legitimate, or is he just yet another misappropriator in another continent?
« Last Edit: September 12, 2016, 09:48:04 pm by Yells At Pretendians »

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2013, 07:59:51 pm »
Yes, Lockley is the reason I started that thread. I was looking at some newager's page on Facebook, and saw this blindingly white man with "Sangoma" in his name. I don't know many specifics of Sangoma traditions, but in the '80s I was part of the African Dance community, and spoke to singers from South Africa as well as many dancers who had been in Africa and knew real Sangomas personally.

I think this appropriation and exploitation of what, traditionally, is almost always the domain of elderly Black women - especially happening in the wake of Apartheid - is one of the sickest examples of cultural theft and appropriation I've ever seen. These young white men posing as Indigenous African Elders make me nauseous.

Go back to Wikipedia. If something is only sourced to something he wrote, call for third-party citations and indication of notability. I'm not convinced the guy is notable by WP standards. You can cut anything that is not cited to WP standards of notability and reliability.

It's also against the rules for people to post autobiographies on WP. Once you're even named in an article, you're not supposed to edit it. Looking at the user name in the history, and the type of personal details and non-neutral language the first edits include, I strongly suspect Lockley violated Wikipedia policies and started that article himself, and continued to work on it after people informed him of WP policies. You can click on any WP user's name in the history or on talk pages and see their contributions. If someone has only edited articles that include the person we think is them, it's a Single Purpose Account (a SPA) which is another misuse of the Wikipedia process.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2016, 09:48:22 pm by Yells At Pretendians »


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Re: Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2013, 02:17:37 am »
Perhaps this is a silly comment, but how can a white baby be born with a band of white birth skin around the eyes?

John was born, in 1971, into a divided Apartheid South Africa, with the mark of the Sangoma on his face – a band of white birth skin around the eyes.

Doesn't make much sense to me, but I am sort of stuck in a "common sense" mold.

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2013, 02:20:30 am »
If you see his recent pictures, he paints a white stripe over his eyes. He's very pale, so the paint has to be dead white or bright white. Guess the "sign" wasn't visible to normal people. Or anyone.

Offline ShadowDancer

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Re: Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2013, 01:35:25 pm »
Caitlin Matthews posted this on her Facebook page regarding an upcoming event.

Personal Sangoma Divinations with John Lockley:
John Lockley is available to give 6 personal sangoma divinations of an hour each on 26th August 2013 in Oxford. Please send me a personal message to arrange a time.
Traditional African divination involves looking into the ‘soul’ of the client and channeling information from the ancestral/spirit world in order to help people on their Life Path. This type of divination can be very helpful in guiding you to your life’s purpose as well as forging a path of re-connection to your ancestors and spirit guides.
Each session is performed in a ceremonial way. John and the client sit on the floor with bare feet (no shoes) and assume a meditative posture.
John does a divination using ‘bones’ (shells, stones and other sacred objects). He connects with his ancestral spirit guides, as well as the spirits of the client to search, divine or ‘see’ what is happening with the client emotionally, physically and spiritually. The bones reveal the ‘spiritual constellation‘ of the client’s life, showing for instance, their connection to their Ancestors, life-path/destiny, calling, gifts, etc.
Sangoma (or traditional shamanic) sessions differ from traditional psychotherapy in that when someone is consulting with a sangoma it is widely believed they are consulting with not only the individual in front of them, but also the shamanic lineage that they are connected to. John’s ancestral spirits or guides help to heal the person at a soul level, and sometimes a person might feel the effects of a session for weeks, months or even years afterwards.
John is gifted in two different divination techniques. The first is Xhosa, where he channels ancestral energy. This is called ‘vumisa’, (meaning, ‘ancestral agreement’). The second is Zulu, where he throws the bones.
There is time after the divination for the client to ask questions, discuss what is revealed, and whether or not it is in accordance with how the client is living their life.
Divination or Sangoma Counselling represents a different way of ‘seeing’. It is more indigenous with a focus on dreams, nature, synchronicity etc. Sangomas are often educators and teach people about the hidden, mystical, spiritual worlds. However spiritual growth takes time, practice and patience. John teaches people how they can unlock the door to their own spiritual abundance, however the client has to turn the key. It is the responsibility of the client to follow through with the various prayers or treatments that John recommends.

I have attached a picture of him.

I would like to note his South African heritage being born the son of an Irish woman and Zimbabwean father of British heritage.  Simply being born in South Africa doesn't make him part of the culture. 

I have a friend who was born in South Africa of German parents who immigrated there.  While he is caucasian and fluent in three of the languages spoken in the country, he claims to be German as that is his culture/ancestry.
« Last Edit: June 23, 2013, 03:03:16 am by ShadowDancer »

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2013, 06:14:50 pm »
Discussions about him have shown staggering levels of racism among his supporters.... white people who think that just because he posed for photos with smiling Black people that those Black people must be sangomas who approve of all his claims and ceremony selling. As far as I can tell, none of his supporters has ever met anyone that can be verified as being a real, traditional, respected sangoma who sponsors him. As we've discussed on here, many of his photo ops with Black South Africans look like the women are laughing at him.

I have to admit I find it very amusing that people go to him to consult with his ancestors... I hope they get Germans saying scary things to them, in German.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2015, 08:35:08 pm by Yells At Pretendians »

Offline ShadowDancer

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Re: Sangoma John Lockley -- African Shaman
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2013, 01:54:26 am »
I note that John Lockley has cancelled his appearance at the August event in Oxford, per Caitlin Matthews.

I'm afraid John Lockely has had to cancell his course at Hawkwood College on 23-25th August and will be unable to offer sessions in Oxford on 26th August.

On his own website there is no indication of this cancellation.  I note that through 2012 to date in 2013 he apparently has not spent any time tending to the spiritual needs of his people in South Africa due to being in the United States, Ireland and England. (/sarcasm)

« Last Edit: July 29, 2013, 01:56:42 am by ShadowDancer »