Oh My Yemaya- Goddess of the Ocean

Yemaya photo by Neftali courtesy of Shutterstock.

“ they kissed the ground and said Oh My Yemaya, thank you." Legend has it that when slaves were taken from their homelands in Africa and forcibly placed on ships, they believed that the ocean would swallow them up, and they prayed to Yemaya to save their lives. When they finally reached land they kissed the ground and said Oh My Yemaya, thank you.Yemaya is an Orisha, a mother goddess, a goddess of the sea. For many she is also a goddess of the moon. She is worshiped in the r … [Read more...]

Candomble and Umbanda Declared Not Religions by Brazilian Judge!

Caminhada dos Terreiros de Pernambuco photo by Nathalia Verony. Edited for this article. Licensed under CC 2.0

 According to a decision by a Brazilian judge on April 28, 2014 Candomble and Umbanda are not to be legally considered religions in Brazil anymore. We have entered the 21st century but prejudice and oppression are as alive as they ever were.Candomble and Umbanda are Afro-Brazilian religions that have been practiced for centuries. In my book Voodoo and Afro-Caribbean Paganism I mention that one of the earliest records of related practices date to 1618 when “an informant named S … [Read more...]

Yemaya Shines Her Beauty on New Year’s Eve!

Festa de Iemanja 2013 by Clarissa Pacheco licensed under CC 2.0

 New Year's Eve is a time for parties in this world and the next. In Santeria (Lukumi) the goddess Yemaya is often honored on September 7, the feast for Our Lady of Regla. In Bahia she is known as Iemanja, honored on August 15 or February 2, and is frequently associated with Nossa Senhora da Gloria. While in Rio de Janeiro she shines her radiant beauty on New Years Eve. New Year's is a time for huge ceremonies in the Brazilian traditions of Umbanda and Candomble. It is a time for p … [Read more...]

Review: Witchcraft, Intimacy and Trust: Africa in Comparison

Festa de Ogum photo by Pit Thompson licensed under CC 2.0

This book excites me: Not for the answers it provides, but for the questions it raises. I'm an anthropologist, in addition to being a Voodoo priestess, and this work is important for the study of Witchcraft, the Occult, and African and Afro-Diasporan Religions ( be it New Orleans Voodoo, Haitian Vodou, Cuban Santeria, or Brazilian Candomble) across the globe. Peter Geschiere is a professor at the University of Amsterdam and Witchcraft, Intimacy and Trust: Africa in Comparison is his latest … [Read more...]


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