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Indigenous African religions

Discussion in 'Other Religious Movements and Practices DIR' started by MD, Oct 20, 2016.

  1. MD

    MD qualiaphile

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    What are some prominent indigenous African religions? Do they venerate the earth and nature? Are they pagan?

    Christianity and Islam are fighting over turf at the moment in Africa, but they're both products of ancient colonialism.
     
  2. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist Veteran Member

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    The only ones I know of is Lukumi and Vodou. Lukumi because I talked with a priest first hand Vodou online resources I trust is valid. Both are secretive. You can't find it online.

    Lukumi from what I know they don't venerate nature. Each part of nature has their designated spirit as well as our ancestors. Each spirit who used to be human used to govern over a specific part of nature. They were looked up as "saints" for lack of a better word. When they passed on, their spirits govern the water the same as when they were alive. So believers venerate the spirits rather than nature itself. When we drink water, we are drinking the spirit of water. When we pray to the sun, we are praying to the spirit of sun.

    It isn't Pagan since pagan is European and African is not. It is p-agan because many African traditions before Christian colonization are native to the country they are from. However, it's touchy. Lukumi, for example, isn't polytheist. So, a good definition of pagan would help to understand what follows under what (though not comfortably).

    I guess you can call Santeria a African religion. It's mixed with Catholicism, so the best word is Lukumi from I think the Yoruba.

    Here is the difference between Santeria and Vodou. Hoodoo isn't a religion.

    Here is the differences in how African religions see god compared to Christianity. It will give an idea of how some African religious spirituality is of. But as for a complete list, there are sooooo many that one can't possible start to know.
    African view of god compared to Christianity
     
    #3 Unveiled Artist, Oct 20, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2016
  3. MD

    MD qualiaphile

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    Wow thanks so much for this detailed reply
     
  4. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist Veteran Member

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    You're welcome. Also, this is the best source I can think of if you use Facebook. Ancestral Voices: Esoteric African Knowledge

    When you "Like" it you will get periodically some general ways Africans see spirituality. There are also small videos you can get and they are working on a full-length one that shares the different African spirituality, beliefs, and their culture.
     
  5. GoodbyeDave

    GoodbyeDave Well-Known Member

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    Names like Vodun are naturally used of disapora religions. In Africa, traditional religion doesn't have a name (any more than in China) because it was what everyone did.

    African practice usually involves
    > veneration of ancestors
    > veneration of nature spirits
    > divination to get divine guidance or to discover divine will

    Belief in what one might call "great gods" (like Thor, Athena, Re) tends to be most common in West Africa, as does divine possession.

    Belief in a creator seems to be universal, but worship of her/him is limited: traditionally the creator is though to have delegated things to the spirits/gods. This belief enables the Africanist churches to combine Christianity and paganism, by equating spirits/gods to angels. Even an Anglican priest like John Mbiti finds that acceptable, although the evangelicals obviously hate it.

    There seems to be a revival of traditional paganism, as Christianity is less seen as the "respectable" faith of the ruling class, but African religion is still probably growing faster in the Americas and Europe. The statistics show that Islam is not expanding in Africa: the increase in numbers is roughly in line with the population increase.
     
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  6. SpentaMaynu

    SpentaMaynu One /G\god(s)[dess]

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    Living in South Africa I know something (but am not an expert at all) of the traditional religions practiced here. It is in some cases heavily syncretic, mixed especially with Christianity. The Zulus, with whom I'm most in contact with, do not venerate earth or worship many gods. They worship one God called Nkulunkulu (and He have other Names as well). They venerate (not worship) the ancestors. I guess they can be describe as pagan but that depends on the definition of pagan and it won't be in the same way as European paganism. The Yoruba in Nigeria and the ancient Egyptians are only ones I know to have a specific religion. The rest of Africa, as far as I know, have many unnamed religions. Collectively it is called African Traditional or Indigenous Religions
     
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