By Teodoro Diaz Fabelo.
Translated of Africanias #1 to Africanias Online.
The Vodu enter at Cuba in 1791 as result of the Haitian revolution that produce the exodus of owners with his slaves that which was permitted locate it in the countries of the province of Oriente, from where were transferred to the countries of Camaguey. Other haitian populate begin in 1913 and last until 1960. Today have in Cuba a hundred thousand haitians and descendant called "young pigeons". The haitian has being maintain in the mounts of Oriente and Camaguey, heeding the agricultural labors of the cane and the coffee; is little communicative, has being very abused until 1960 and maintain his language; has maintain an slow transculturation reason in which his creed don't have penetrated in the cubans significantly, and are little and bad knowing, due to that only as been teach to the "young pigeons".
The Vodu have origin in Benin, in the coast of Dahome, called Coast of the Slaves and located in the Guinea Golf, knowing by the portuguese "negreros" since the XVI century. Of this area are the "araraes" and the "fon" blacks, carry to Cuba and confused with the lukumi, nevertheless to have cult to the serpent and tribal language different to the yoruba-lukumi.
Vodu mean "mystery", "secret" founded in the serpent, in natural forces and in powers that the human being could develop for good or for bad.
Vodu is equivalent to "orisha" lukumi, to "nsambi" congo, but not to catholic saint. In the houses-temple of the Vodu have reclusely and school to the chooses that could develop it as magicians.
In the Vodu, as in all the african creeds, have cult to the dead, ancestors of the town or of the family of blood or religious. The Catholic Church keep the cult to the dead creators of the religion and to the followers that reach to be sanctify. The catholic have attention and care to the familiar dead. The nations all honor to his great man and women dead and consider them lives and counselors of his leaders and people.
The Vodu are vibratory forces, spirits of the nature and unincarnated personality also. All the Vodu are in charge of to rule the world and the humans by charge of God, that not intervene, but are present and informed of all, as in Osha Lukumi. In the Vodu God are informed of all, see give and receive to the dies.
The Hebioso arara of Cuba is the same in Vodu, the Nsasi of Palo Monte and the Shango of the lukumi, also called in Palo Monte Seven Rays.
Erzuli is equivalent to the Oshun Lukumi, the cuban Charity of Cooper, to the Aphrodite greek, to the catholic Imias Virgin.
Aziza is the Oggun lukumi, botanic owner of the trees and herbs to whom you have to ask permit and to pay it tribute consist in a rooster, a candle, tobacco, corn and money to enter in the mount and to gather sticks and herbs.
Legba is the Elegbara lukumi, the Eleggua of Cuba, the greek God of Destiny. Everything that is going to be done require the consent of Legba, he is the owner of the road, open it and close it, is the dialectic law, of the three and the contradiction. Fa is the divinatory power, equivalent to the Ifa of the babalawos. This power have it the what is in Vodu "bokonu", a wise man that make divination with 16 walnut of palm, as make the babalawos in the Ate Ifa with the 16 "ikini". The bokonu and the babalawo are diviners.
The Vodu, as the Osha Lukumi and the Palo Monte or Sutumutukuni, is mystic familiar religion where concur forces and spirits of dies; where animals are sacrificed (never human beings), sing it, dance it, celebrate it ceremony diverse, initiate it new adepts and observe it a adequate conduct to the creed it and practice it to interpret, to make the to live and help itself.
The "vodusi" is as the "yawo" lukumi; is a fellow that has suffer the superior initiation and could be possessed by an of the forces of Vodu to conduct him as a possess lukumi.
It born to the Vodu as it born in the Kari Osha Lukumi or in the Scratch of Palo Monte or in the Catholic swear. The "vodusi" have Godfather and Godmother that teach it all of the sacred or The Saintly, including the Vodu language.
To the initiation in Vodu is necessary cut the hair of the head to petitioner, same make it in Osha Lukumi and the Buddhist religion, as in the Catholic. Since before of this ceremony the petitioner is secluded, separated of the world, of his people and his vices; is in seclusion of meditation, preparing it to undertake a new life with a new personality, with news and profound concepts, enlarged knowledge and powers. To this time of petitioner follow it the time of yawo or consecrate; in both periods will be in sexual abstention, not receive visits, not visit to the familiar, pass the time learning, praying and meditating. In the Vodu fulfill religiously with the apprenticeship, as between nuns and catholic priests or in Osha Lukumi.
To the end of the apprenticeship do it the ceremony of "tudede" when the yawo could consecrate it as priest; the vodusi is now bokonu and is considered by the community as important person. All the vodusi, hungans are brothers and who talk bad of one of them or the Vodu, should die.
Vodu have magic, "fetiche", conception and mystic practices, cult to the ancestors and rituals, as in Palo Monte, Osha Lukumi, Catholic Christianism, Hinduism and other religions. The Mystery of the Holy Trinity, by example, are expresed of some mystic ritual form, of magic religious power, as in all the religions. All have some ritual form of cult to the deads and similar basic concepts.
In the Vodu and in all the african creeds, two ceremonies enclose to the initiate: the entrance or initiation into then sacred misterys and the exit to the die; in both do it the lustral clean and the spirit of the ancestors are call; in both are used herbs, sings and sacred waters; both ceremonies are developed by priest and priestess; both have beliefs, knowledge, diverse powers, experience and fait.
The "houngan" take certains precautions to avoid that an "bokor" could utilize the spirit of the dead to make a "zombie" or to use it as "nfuri" of Nganga. To this fear obey the complexity of the funeral rites and the fear to the "bokor".
There is believe that the "zombie" is created by the "bokor" through a secret beberage that produce an apparent die. Nevertheles, remain much to investigate in this strange beings, as in many other things.
Return to Table of Contents
Return to Munanso Kimbisa Ntoto
This page is under eternal in the meantime please E-mail us at
Last Updated on January 15, 2008 by David Camara
All Rights Reserved