MBOMBELA – The tokoloshe may have once again met its match as thousands of people are buying special Tokoloshe Salt to nip the evil spirit in the bud.
The salt, which was invented in the ’50s, has made a comeback in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa and is literally flying off the shelves.
The salt was spotted in a supermarket in Hazyview and was available in a variety of colours from pink to red to blue.
The advertisement claims that for only R5.99 per 200g, you can add a bit of salt to your food and tame your “inner” Tokoloshe.
“In the 50s, people began using salt to ward off the tokoloshe, with the belief that the evil boy had a great fear of the salt and would therefore not wreak havoc in the life of the user,” said Mike Elliott, from MJO marketing.
“The demand for the product is unbelievable as these traditional beliefs are extremely strong.”
Elliott is involved in the production of the Tokoloshe Salt and believes the product is truly a recipe for success.
“The salt is blessed by a traditional healer during the production stage and this gives the salt its magical qualities and characteristics,” he said.
The marketer also explained the reason for the different colours of salt.
“Today different tribes prefer different colours. For example, the Zulus like the colour, red as it represents royalty to them. Therefore, users believe that using the right colour salt, it will prove more effective at warding off the tokoloshe,” Elliott said.
The tokoloshe is a dwarf-like water sprite in southern African folklore. It is considered a mischievous and evil spirit that can become invisible by swallowing a pebble. Tokoloshes are called upon by malevolent people to cause trouble for others. At its least harmful a tokoloshe can be used to scare children, but its power extends to causing illness and even death upon the victim.
The story of the tokoloshe originates from a few hundred years ago, when an extremely naughty boy in a rural village was said to have caused trouble with the village’s traditional leader.
In order to stop the boy’s disobedient behaviour, the leader led him down to the beach, where he threw salt at the boy.
This is said to have turned the boy into the ugliest creature imaginable, but made him angry and more naughty, until eventually the villagers had no choice but to kill him.
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