The Origins of Voodoo Essay

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The Origins of Voodoo Voodoo is a religion rich in heritage and founded in faith and community. The religion has been villainized by western culture and has been wrongly portrayed as malignant and dangerous. The religion is not founded in any of the (known) "black magics" or fear popularized by Hollywood films, but rather it is based on balance and tradition. The religion is not something that should be encountered with inhibition or fear induced from childhood horror stories, but embraced for its strength and history. Voodoo originated as an amalgam of African religions during the slave trade. As slaves were shipped from Africa to the Caribbean, groups of slaves sharing a similar heritage were broken apart to prevent any sense of…show more content…
In the three centuries of religious oppression, voodoo became a symbol of pride and independence for the slaves. Any pride in a slave is, of course, regarded as a threat to the slave owner. Rumors of human sacrifice and devil worship became prevalent in the social circles of plantation owners and slave traders. These statements had no validity, but traveled quickly throughout the Caribbean and America. The practitioners of voodoo embraced this fear as means to frighten their former masters and gain some respect in a world where they were deprived of everything. Former slave owners quickly found themselves duped into the beliefs of voodoo dolls and hexes. Of course, many slave owners simply killed their slaves rather than be frightened by the voodoo. The practice itself is not actually frightening or powerful in any way, but that doesn?t matter to superstitious folks like those in Salem. No historical evidence of human sacrifice or affiliation with Satan has been discovered (Voodoo), or likely ever will be. Primary religions involved in the African aspect of voodoo are Macumba and Candomble of the Yoruba people of Nigeria, and several now extinct tribes from the Congos and Cameroon. These religions lay the groundwork for the course of religious ceremonies and contain the origins for the deities worshipped in modern voodoo. Voodoo?s principle deity, Olorun is the voodoo equivalent to God. Though the name can be traced to the Yoruba tribe, it is unknown if

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