An Introductory Guide. Voodoo History, Beliefs, Elements, Strains or Schools, Practices, Myths and Facts
List of chapters included in the book
Elements of Voodoo
The Different Strains of Voodoo
Vodou in the Caribbean
The Dark Side of Voodoo
Voodoo and Racism
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The Ultimate Information Guide for Voodoo
It has been a long time since the world was introduced to Voodoo – ever since the Atlantic slave trade brought the slaves out of Africa and in closer contact with the western and European world. But since we first learned of the existence of Voodoo, and up until the present times, our perception of this religion has been clouded by prejudice, fear, and the cloudy lens of sensationalist entertainment. So what, really, is Voodoo?
“Voodoo, an Introductory Guide,” by Riley Star is a compilation of many of the world’s recent information regarding this previously obscure African-rooted religion. We take a look at the central beliefs, rituals, historical development, and evolution of Voodoo through the years. We learn the role it played in the lives of the African slaves, how it integrated within itself foreign religious practices such as Catholicism and native American traditions and spiritual practices.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Her “day job” working in a metaphysical bookstore gives her access to plentiful reading and research material, but she also meets a lot of questioning people daily. “Learning where people are on their own path is so fulfilling for me,” she says. “The questions people bring to their personal quest fascinate and motivate me. There are so many ways of being in the world, and I want to understand them all.”
Deeply influenced by the work of comparative mythologist Joseph Campbell, Starr still lists The Power of Myth as her favorite book. “We all have forces at work in our daily lives we try to understand,” she says, “and we all tell ourselves stories to get through the day.”
After caring for an elderly aunt who was a dementia patient, Starr was shocked when someone suggested the experience might have left her open to demonic possession. “That really sent me digging into demonology to try to understand where that explanation would come from!” she said. “That’s when I discovered a powerful trove of demon lore and of course, I had to write about it.”
Now Star sees writing as part of her personal path, likening the gathering of information and the sharing of the material to a kind of active meditation. “If we get back what we put out into the universe,” Star says, “I want to make sure I’m sending the clearest signal possible.”
She keeps herself open to all ideas and all philosophies. “There’s just no one way to express or experience this miracle of existence,” she says. “I really don’t know who or what is running the show, so I try to be nice to priests and oak trees. That’s not a joke. All life and all belief is sacred.”
Above all, she holds to the key moral tenet of her Wiccan faith, The Wiccan Rede, “An Ye harm none, do what ye will.”
WHAT READERS SAY
Quick and excellent read!
Excellent and quick read if you’re interested in world religions. The author is very clear and points out important aspects. I’ve learned a lot about the topic from this, it sorts out fact from fiction! The author also doesn’t pressure you into any beliefs, but to use your own as you read, which I respect entirely. I would recommend this book to pretty much anyone since voodoo stereotypes are everywhere.
– AMAZON CUSTOMER
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“The Ultimate Information Guide for Voodoo”