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Rafiki is a wise male semi-anthropomorphic shaman Baboon.


He is a baboon shaman and considered the family priest to Simba's family for past and future generations. He was also a close friend of Simba's father Mufasa and a supporting character in the Disney classic, The Lion King. He blesses the children of the king of Pride Rock, believing the spirits of their ancestors bless them. He carries a staff and can predict the future. It is he who convinces Simba to return to Pride Rock and fulfill his destiny.

When Simba was born, he blessed the young cub and predicted that he will become a good king. When Mufasa died, he wept greatly over the loss of his friend and when Simba was presumed deceased, he gave up hope on restoring peace to the circle of life after Simba's uncle Scar became king and let hyenas into The Pride Lands. One night, an young adult Simba was sulking over his life and a few of his mane hairs blew away and ended up near Rafiki's tree and then, Rafiki knew that Simba was alive and that it was time to take his place in the circle of life. After fighting with Nala, Simba runs into Rafiki, who he does not remember and the old monkey kept toying his mind with riddles and then Rafiki mentioned Mufasa which caught Simba's attention. Rafiki called upon the ghost of Mufasa, who reminded Simba who he was and Simba returned to the pridelands. Rafiki found Nala, Timon & Pumbaa and told them to return as well.

Rafiki returned and joined in the battle between the lionesses and hyenas and kicked many hyenas' butts. He also saved Simba from a hyena who tried to attack him by bashing the hyena in the head hard with his wooden stick. After Scar's death and the hyenas fled, Rafiki indicated to Simba to take his place on Pride Rock to which the young lion did and roared in victory. Sometime later, Rafiki presents Simba and Nala (now Simba's wife)'s newborn cub to the animals of The Pride Lands.

In The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, Rafiki blessed Simba and Nala's daughter Kiara and like many others, he was skeptical about the relationship between Kiara and Kovu, Zira's son and Scar's heir, but Mufasa's spirit forces Rafiki to help bring them together and he reluctantly agrees. He became an animal love maker towards the two lovers when they became adolescents and brought them together but it was only temporary when Simba exiled Kovu (because he thought that Kovu was part of an ambush where Simba was attacked by Outsiders) as much to his sadness, knowing he was not involved on the attack which was actually set by Kovu's mother Zira and that Simba has completely lost his mind and is defying his father's goals, which puts the "Circle of Life" out of balance. When Kovu and the reformed Outsiders rejoined the Pridelanders and Kovu married Kiara and became accepted to succeed the throne, Rafiki looked and knew that Mufasa was right all along.

In The Lion King 1 1/2, from Timon and Pumbaa's point of view of the first film, Rafiki helped them out with their problems. When Simba left to return to Pride Rock, Pumbaa was eager to join him but Timon had no desire. Rafiki confronted Timon but said nothing which made Timon realized he was wrong and should help his friends.

Behind the scenes

Rafiki first appeared as a character in the 1994 film The Lion King.

Voice Actors

  • Robert Guillaume in The Lion King, The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, The Lion King 1½, The Lion King's Timon & Pumbaa, and Kingdom Hearts II.
  • Khary Payton in The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar and The Lion Guard.