Author Topic: The Mbaraki Pillar  (Read 2798 times)

nightcrafter27

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The Mbaraki Pillar
« on: August 22, 2011, 01:01:28 »
     I can guarantee that we have all seen this. One of the neater, yet smallest features of ODST it the clock in the loading screens. For those who don't know what I'm talking about, during ODST's loading screens, your local console time is displayed in the bottom right hand corner, in military time. Above the time, 'MBARAKI.2552" is written.


     It shocks me that none of the SGP members haven't done any research on something that stares them in the face every time they play ODST. After some googling, I found this page, giving us some details on the Mbaraki Pillar (You'll need to scroll a bit). According to the article, the Pillar is a few hundred years old, the second oldest structure in Africa. Supposedly, the tower is the residence for a spirit with magical healing powers.
*IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO THE SITE HOSTING IT GETTING NUKED*

     There are three theories as t how the Pillar was used. Native lore claims that an Arab spirit of healing resides here, and women would pray and worship at the base of the tower to be granted fertility in baring children. Those who were sick would leave offerings, in hopes of improved health. Another theory is that a sheikh, or elder, was buried here, and the tower is his tomb. A lack of burial chambers and being in no way similar to other pillar tombs of the Changamwe people poke quite a few holes in this theory. The most probable explanation is that the Pillar is an early form of lighthouse. Standing fifty feet high, the Pillar can easily be seen from the sea. The open turret topping the tower would allow the placement of some sort of beacon, and being located near the entrance to a creek give the lighthouse theory a solid foundation.
     I know what you're thinking; That magic spirit is the engineers! Sure, there is a large relation in their roles. But Mbaraki is in Mombasa, so it should have some relative position in ODST, right? It does. With Uplift Reserve.

(The Mbaraki Pillar is marked with 'B')
     As seen in the map, the Pillar's location is closest to the second round enclosure that the player enters when playing through Dutch's first flashback. This is the area with the Shade turrets on the ridge, and the dead zebra. What might this mean?
« Last Edit: June 18, 2013, 05:38:22 by nightcrafter27 »
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Insane Monx

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Re: The Mbaraki Pillar
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2011, 01:18:02 »
I have a feeling, like most other references and relations from Halo to Real-World things, this one can have more than one meaning. I'm interested to hear the description of it, it most certainly does seem to relate to the engineers. But I don't know about the location being something significant to Uplift Reserve, I think that's because that's where your drop pod is located and the game takes most of it's place, the Mbaraki District.
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Scatcycle

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Re: The Mbaraki Pillar
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2011, 02:40:20 »
"Another theory is that a sheikh, or elder, was buried here, and the tower is his tomb."

Sounds like the Squidhenge to me. Elite tombs. Are there any carvings on the Mbaraki Pillar? What is the culture of the people who came to this pillar? Are there any glyphs in their language?

Good work Night.
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nightcrafter27

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Re: The Mbaraki Pillar
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2012, 02:05:00 »
Doh! I can't believe that I never made the connection that the orbital elevator could be a spiritual implementation of the pillar! I know the locations are different, but the functions seem nearly the same! People place sacrificial foods and stuffs at the base of the pillar, to be taken up to the gods, people 'place' their food and goods at the base of the orbital elevator to be lifted towards the heavens.
     
This theory seems to point in the direction that the New Mombasa Uplift is some kind of spirit or god like figure. When the Uplift Reserve is taken into account, this could be another point for Uplift-Deityism. The reserve was made by shipping in dirt from the canal that cuts through New Mombasa (Librarians check me on that). One could view this action as creating land out of the sea, a large part of many creation stories. The fact that this land is then used for the preservation of plants and animals give Uplift Reserve an almost Garden of Eden aspect, the small plot of Paradise amongst the urban landscape.

Unfortunately, the real world location of the pillar is on the opposite side of Mombasa from the fictional location of the orbital elevator.
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Imppa

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Re: The Mbaraki Pillar
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2012, 18:11:45 »
Doh! I can't believe that I never made the connection that the orbital elevator could be a spiritual implementation of the pillar! I know the locations are different, but the functions seem nearly the same! People place sacrificial foods and stuffs at the base of the pillar, to be taken up to the gods, people 'place' their food and goods at the base of the orbital elevator to be lifted towards the heavens.
     
This theory seems to point in the direction that the New Mombasa Uplift is some kind of spirit or god like figure. When the Uplift Reserve is taken into account, this could be another point for Uplift-Deityism. The reserve was made by shipping in dirt from the canal that cuts through New Mombasa (Librarians check me on that). One could view this action as creating land out of the sea, a large part of many creation stories. The fact that this land is then used for the preservation of plants and animals give Uplift Reserve an almost Garden of Eden aspect, the small plot of Paradise amongst the urban landscape.

Unfortunately, the real world location of the pillar is on the opposite side of Mombasa from the fictional location of the orbital elevator.

Couldn't find any info about the canal, and Halopedian just says (without any source, of course) that

Quote
Located southwest of New Mombasa, Uplift Nature Reserve resides on what used to be part of the Mombasa island, but due to sea levels rising, has been separated from it. Due to this, the entirety of the reserve's natural habitats, including the rock formations, are artificial.

So, well, The Bible part, I guess, is a bit unstable. But I can see the connection to the Elevator, even the location is a bit off. :P

nightcrafter27

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Re: The Mbaraki Pillar
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2012, 01:17:57 »
So, well, The Bible part, I guess, is a bit unstable.

Here's the part about Uplift Reserve being man made in Ark's article. I guess the proximity of information caused me to get Battery Park (cited as being made from soil removed from rivers) confused with the reserve.

When If I have time, I'll look into major shipping/mail companies in Mombasa or Africa to see what I can find. Who knows, there might be something.
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