Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Candomble is an ancient African religious tradition, that is still practiced by some here in Brazil because of the deep African roots. Candomble is not exactly practiced however, it is something that the people live, and you do not decide to join, each person is chosen. They believe that each person is born with an orisha (which is like a spirit or natural element) that comes out during the ceremony. The tradition honors nature, with orishas of earth and wind and fire, and focuses on living life at a slower pace in time with the world.
Since this trip is an educational one we were allowed to go visit and participate in one of these ceremonies. It is not something that they allow tourists to do. We were all brought into the temple, or church that they have of sorts, and allowed to ask questions. They all wear white during the ceremony, so to be able to participate we all had to take showers and change into white clothing. they then showed us all the different shrines that serve the different Orishas that they had there were they lived, and then the ceremony began. There were drums, clapping and singing. and then the main woman, who is charge of the ceremony hugged us all. We also went through a process where she blew cigar smoke on us, and patted us down with tree branches. I am probably not doing it justice, but it was a very interesting experience. It was nice that they had taken the time to put on the ceremony for us, and allowed us into their home and see their traditions. It was an invaluable experience.

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