1 / 75


Nigerian 'Voodoo Spirits' walk the streets

In the mysterious heartland of Voodoo

Yahoo Lifestyle Entertainment
11 February 2014

Voodoo or Vodun is a collective term for the African Traditional Religions of Coastal West Africa from Ghana to Nigeria. Vodun recognizes one god — an androgynous being called Mawu or Nana Buluku — with many helpers called Orishas. In one tradition, Mawu is believed to have engendered seven children, each of whom reigns over a realm of nature. All creation is deemed divine, which might explain the use of fetishes or voodoo talismans in the form of dried animal parts or statues.

Ouidah in Benin is believed to be the heartland of Voodoo, and is thought to be the spiritual birthplace of Voodoo or Vodun as it known in Benin. Shrouded in mystery and often misunderstood, Voodoo was acknowledged as an official religion in Benin in 1989, and is increasing in popularity with around 17 percent of the population following it. A week of activity centred around the worship of Voodoo culminates on the 10th of January when people from across Benin as well as Togo and Nigeria decend on the town for the annual Voodoo festival.

These pictures represent a Voodoo celebration in January 2012. Photos: Getty Images

What to read next

How much can you actually save by refinancing?

Rates now at 3.11% APR 5/1 ARM- $250K for $972/mo. LendingTree's simple online tool to help determine how much you could be saving by refinancing.

15 Cancer Causing Foods You Probably Eat Every Day

Do you eat any of these cancer causing foods? Number 12 will surprise you. Check out the list now.

Hilton HHonors™ Card

Get 75,000 Hilton HHonors™ Bonus Points! Terms Apply. Offer ends 5/4

Single and over 45?

There are thousands of singles online now! Find your next date here. Click to browse profiles and pics for free!

Install ADT for $9/Week & Get Free Security Camera

Monitor your home with ADT for only $9 per week including a free home security camera system (an $850 value). Get a free quote! ADT Authorized Dealer

Get This Once-In-A-Lifetime Deal Before It's Gone!

Get 4 Disney Movies For $1 With Membership. See Details. Exclusive Titles, Merchandise, Offers & Discounts. Plus, Free Shipping On Your Initial Order!