Indigenous Afro-Brazilian Religion refers to the unique religious traditions of Brazil that have formed out of a mixture of the religions of enslaved Africans and those practices and beliefs native to Brazil.  Many of these so-called "new religions" originated in northeast Brazil, but now are common in urban and coastal areas.  Three of the most common of these traditions are Umbanda, Candomblé, and Batuque (others are Xango do Nodeste, Xamba, Egungun, Ifa, Macumba, Tambor de Mina, Irmandade, and Quimbanda). Umbanda is a blend of African, Amerindian, and Catholic beliefs characterized by a great variety of spirits, African deities, saints (including Jesus and Mary), leaders, ancestors, and natural forces. Communication with the spirits is possible through mediums. The Umbanda often leave offerings including flowers, candles, and food to these spirits in public places. Candomblé has a strong West African influence, and is made up of a variety of different cults with Yoruba, Congolese-Angolan, and Islamic African characteristics.  Candomblé also incorporates Amerindian and Catholic aspects. Candomblé religious sects are noted for their elaborate festivals. The Batuque religious cults tend to be markedly Brazilianized, including the use of Portuguese as well as an emphasis on spirit possession, divination, animal sacrifices, and ritual cult centers.  Batuque practices and beliefs often appeal particularly to the lower classes. 

Quick Facts

Formed 19th century
Adherents 15,000,000 (8% of population)
Deity Various divinities
Sacred Text Oral, ritual
Origin Brazil
Headquarters None
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