La SS. Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre, Virgin Patroness of Cuba, in yellow.
The SS. Virgen de Regla, in blue.
Those Roman Catholic Madonnas are transculturated with several Deities of African origins.
A Bantu would see Chola Wengue and Madre Agua.
A Yoruba would see Ochún and Yemayá, las dos Hermanas, the water Sys, Omí­ Omí­.
The Catholic transculturation was not just a forced hiding of African Deities but also a way of union and significance in a different land.
To be initiated, both in Palo Reglas or Santeria or Ifa, you needed to be baptized.
Holy Water, Lango Sambia in Bantu residual and Omí­ Lasa in Anagó is an important ingredient of the Sacred Baths and plants concotions. In twenty years I have very very rarely seen Cuban houses without a Christian image. Now, there’s a huge movement trying to quit this transculturation, a re africanization of Diasporic Religions.
Mismo perro con diferentes collares?

I give what was given, without changes.
Why? I am nobody to change a Culture.
It was told me this way, this way I give it.
It is called Tradition for a reason I cannot discuss or change in any way.
I respect those who prayed different Gods and united Them in single images, seeing and seeking unity besides differences.
Cuba is creole.

About Manuel Congo

A renowned Palero, Babalawo, Ajarn and Hougan, Manuel Congo lives in rural Italy, where he spends most of his free time touring on his custom Harley Davidson. An avid ethnographer and noted expert on Italian witchcraft, Manuel has spent decades working for elite clients around the world, conducting investigations in locales as far-flung as Togo and Thailand. He enjoys rainy days, BBQ and blondes.

Leave a Comment