Voodoo is considered a religion by nearly 60 million people throughout the world. The word “voodoo” actually means “deity.” There are different types of voodoo – Haitian voodoo, New Orleans voodoo, and African voodoo. It’s known by a variety of names like Vodun, Sevi Law, and Voudou in different areas.
Voodoo also has a rich history. It’s believed to be over 10,000 years old and it originates from Africa. Many historians believe that voodoo as it is known today originated in Haiti when European countries began colonizing Hispanola. It traveled to the United States and other countries with the slaves that were captured there. Since they were split up among different countries, different types of voodoo evolved. While the rituals may be slightly different, the foundations and beliefs of the religion remain the same. Interestingly, many aspects of modern voodoo line up very well with Catholicism as many voodoo gods have the same roles as Catholic saints.
The voodoo religion has many gods. Gran Ibo is the swamp witch who is ancient and wise. The goddess of wisdom, she requires sacrifices of seeds and swamp plants. Chango is the god of fire, power, thunder, and sensuality. Ogun is the god of hunting and politics. He is called on to help people obtain good jobs. Yemaya is the goddess of fertility and motherhood. People pray to her to have children.
The gods in Afro-Caribbean regions are different. Voodoo gods are known as loa. Among them are Agua, a violent god that causes earthquakes and thunder. Agwe is the king of the sea and conch shells are used to summon him during rituals. Brise rules the hills and demands speckled hens as his sacrifices. Erzulie would be the closest thing they have to a goddess of love. She presides over love, help, and goodwill as well as jealousy and vengeance. There are many more gods, each with their own traits and special rituals to summon them.
Many people employ voodoo to affect the relationships in their lives. Although rarely fatal, some of the more misguided practitioners use voodoo dolls to try to place curses on people they don’t like or those people who are causing them problems. Some people use special love spells to try and ensure that their relationship is a strong and healthy one. Some people use voodoo spells to try and make someone fall in love with them or to make them better in the art of dating.
Although voodoo has gained a dark reputation, many of its practitioners are deeply respectful of the world. Aware that every action affects someone or something, they show great consideration for the earth and the people around them.
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