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Meaning Of Voodoo & Inside The World’s Largest Voodoo Market

Story Highlights

  • Inside The World's Largest Voodoo Market
  • Origin of The Akodessewa Voodoo Market

Meaning Of Voodoo: Voodoo is related to the religion of the West Indies associated with charms and sorcery, or a solution to a problem while Voodoo Market is where you can get items such as monkey heads, skulls, dead birds, crocodiles, skins and other products of dead animals used for voodoo rituals.

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Meaning Of Voodoo & Origin Of Voodoo & The Voodoo Market

Voodoo is a religion of West African origin practiced chiefly in Haiti and other Caribbean countries, based on animism, magic, and elements of Roman Catholic ritual, and characterized by belief in a supreme God and a large pantheon of local and tutelary deities, deified ancestors, and saints, who communicate with believers in dreams, trances, and ritual possessions.

Vodou is a creolized religion forged by descendents of Dahomean, KongoYoruba, and other African ethnic groups who had been enslaved and brought to colonial Saint-Domingue (as Haiti was known then) and Christianized by Roman Catholic missionaries in the 16th and 17th centuries. The word Vodou means “spirit” or “deity” in the Fon language of the African kingdom of Dahomey (now Benin).
“Voodoo” is derived from Vodun, the indigenous African word, meaning spirit. Vodun is a way of life in which a number of spirits or deities are called upon and celebrated, including ancestors or elders in the spiritual world. Various forms of magic are used for the betterment of those who follow it. It works for those who believe it.
Vodun recognises one God with many helpers called Orishas. Every Orisha is responsible for a particular aspect of life. Each Orisha reflects the many possibilities inherent to the aspects of life over which they preside. In order to navigate daily life, vodouists cultivate personal relationships with the Orishas and Loa through the presentation of offerings, the creation of personal altars and devotional objects, and participation in elaborate ceremonies of music, dance, and spirit possession.
Voodoo is a widely practiced religion in many parts of Africa, particularly in Togo, Ghana, and Benin, where it is estimated that up to 30 million people in the region believe that the physical world and the unseen world are intertwined.

Inside The World’s Largest Voodoo Market

The Akodessawa Voodoo Market in Lome, Togo is regarded as  the world’s largest voodoo market. 36% of Togo’s population is made up of Traditional Religion worshippers who worship animals (animists).

The Akodessewa Voodoo  Market, or Marche des Feticheurs, is a place where you can find anything from leopard heads and human skulls to Vodou (voodoo) priests who bless and create fetishes or predict the future and make medicines to heal whatever ails you.

The Akodessewa Voodoo Market  is believed to be the mecca to local practitioners and they travel there from all over the African continent.  Many believers view the Marche des Feticheurs as a kind of hospital or pharmacy – it is the place you go when you either cannot afford traditional treatment or traditional treatment has failed you. Here you can find talismans and charms good for treating everything from the flu or infertility to removing the blackest of curses.

Whatever your ailment is, the traditional healers at the Akodessewa Voodoo Market in Lome, Togo have a solution.

In the practice of Vudun every single creature is potent and divine, whether alive or dead, and in the Akodessewa Fetish Market you may find them all – monkeys, alligators, goats, leopards, gazelles, and many, many more – in various stages of decay and stacked up in macabre piles for blocks.

Origin of The Akodessewa Voodoo Market

The Voodoo Market was first established in the Kingdom of Dahomey (present-day Benin) way back in 1863, Vodoun is the official religion of neighboring Benin and is still the largest religion in the area.

The original Beninese founders of the Marché des Fetiches were not only healers but also shrewd businessmen, and they soon realized that the market for fetish objects and traditional pharmacies was oversaturated in Benin.

But in Togo, where the voodoo religion was also important, there were far fewer of such markets. In order to bring in more revenue, the Marché des Fetiches was moved from Dahomey to Lomé in the early years of the 20th century.

 

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