With our Back To Our Roots retreat to Benin, West Africa coming up soon, a lot of people have been inquiring about the practices of our ancestors. I often get asked what Vodoun really is? I hope to answer most of your questions via this quick video where I break down the main principles surrounding one of the most misunderstood spiritual practice to date:
Take away notes:
To study the spirituality of a people is to understand their fundamental ethos and world-views. Thus; by understanding this spirituality we can get a glimpse into the world of our ancestors:
Vodoun at it’s core:
Every, African spiritual practices is rooted in the belief that everything in this universe has a spirit. The spirituality is a devout journey into one’s inner self. It is a journey that has the goal to help the growth and evolution of the soul. Within this journey a practitioner is guided by two entities: his ancestors, and the forces of nature personified as various divinities. The ancestors represent spirits who have already had a human experience; and thus contributed to the evolution of the soul.
In moments of trouble a practitioner can call upon the spirit of his/ her ancestors to assist them in their journey.
Many of the misconceptions of African spirituality were rooted in the existence of the various divinities. The divinities do not represents gods, they do not represent saints but rather moral principles of life based on the 4 element of nature: water, air, fire, earth. Each principle is personified into various deities that help the initiates see life a little clearer. Unlike the modernized concept of a saint: someone with no flaws, the vodoun deities are revered not because they lack flaws but rather because they shed light on the reality of life, and emphasize the need for balance in our world. A divinity may create chaos in your existence in order to help you regain back the essence of who you are: a balanced being.
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