We live our ideas.
Some topics I do require some anchor in peoples personal experience. I have no intention of beating around the bush as they say. I just have to have the groundwork for the main ideas to make sense. So shall we begin today’s topic of voodoo?
Voodoo… whodoo. Actually, the other spelling would be hoodoo, and we will go into the difference.
Western culture, as we know it mostly, is a minority in how it views religion and spirituality. In pretty much all of the Asian continent, religion is seen more as a grand body of wisdom than some faction for you to join up with, and they might both engage in say Taoist practices as well as Christian church services, and then go receive a Confucian marriage ceremony. Nobody thinks this at all strange unlike on the American continent.
Voodoo. It’s spelled a lot of ways, and has multiple different variations of lineages and is more akin to that line of thinking than western dogma.
In the voodoo belief system, the grand creator being stays out of people’s daily affairs, and instead has servitors (or angels if you prefer), that fulfill there various offices in making sure the world runs in the best way possible.
Are you talking about Santeria? Ah, Santeria would be included, as well as some forms of Curanderismo.
Now to most western thinkers there is a perceived difference between magick and religion. In the voodoo belief system, they don’t see a difference between magick and prayer. The power of a spell and the power of a prayer are seen as working for the same reason.
Funny how walking on water and multiplying fish isn’t considered magic. In voodoo, and especially hoodoo, they are indeed seen as magick, and Jesus is seen as the greatest hoodoo man.
Was voodoo around before Christianity? In the form of Vodun, yes. In the form of Santeria, no.
An explanation of the hoodoo tradition as it relates to voodoo and differs from it… In voodoo, the focus of prayers and meditation are the intermediary spirits. In hoodoo, they use magick as orthodox western Christians use prayer, and they forgo the concept of what we might consider strict moralism as it manifests in most Christian bias.
I can’t quite see voodoo as a religion. To me it is more like Wicca or Druidry. It seems less about worship, more about nature. It is very much about nature, and if you define worship as reverence and respect, then it does include worship, even service actually. But they offer service to the spirits for a different reason than most Christians serve god. Most Christians serve god from a basic belief in their own inadequacy, the doctrine of original sin which actually doesn’t have strong back-up as a doctrine to support it in the Bible itself. So they offer service and obedience to god in order to atone for their sinful nature.
In the hoodoo tradition, they see god as having something to do with literally every event, every one, without exception, even those we might judge as evil. They embrace the saying that “god works in mysterious ways” more literally than do most other Christians. In fact, they view the creation story as the very first act of hoodoo, and all other miracles and the works of every other holy person as being hoodoo also.
They see that we aren’t meant to know everything? Indeed. They don’t believe that man can know everything, but they do believe that man is meant to take some part in anything and everything.
They like the magic and don’t need to know how the trick is done. For the hoodoo practitioner, those things that are sacred are also magickal. They don’t see any difference.
So voodoo uses social networking and hoodoo goes straight to the boss? Actually no, hoodoo is more about the craft of miracle working itself, and voodoo is more concerned with the state of the community and spiritual balance, but they are not strictly segregated belief systems. If you witnessed a hoodoo practitioner at work, or a hoodoo accepting church, they strongly resemble Christian “spiritualism.” They believe that one’s departed ancestors or family members, as well as the saints, can intercede in your personal affairs.
Voodoo is like Farmville. Well, like Farmville with a stronger sense of kinship and communal or familial obligation.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.