Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Things I'll Miss About Angola: Witchcraft

There are lots of beliefs about witchcraft here. I like hearing about them- how do we explain the strange things that happen around us? I guess since I don’t believe in it, it doesn’t scare me. Note: I will NOT miss witchcraft which ruins the lives of innocent children.

I’ve written about these things before: goats, tala, and the man whose picture cannot be taken. Also, anything black can be added to the list.

I was really worried about finding a good home for my cat, Willie. One thing people have said about Willie is that he is beautiful. I, of course, agree- he is all black and because he lives indoors mostly, he has a healthy coat. A colleague of mine came over to my apartment to do some inventory and I asked her if she knew anyone who would be willing to take Willie and give him a good home. “Ka! A black cat? No way! Tem fetiço com certeza. It has a spell on it, for sure.” She then explained that black cats come from the devil and do evil things. I took this all with a grain of salt. After all, in the US we have the superstition that black cats are bad luck if they cross your path. But especially because this colleague is a Seventh Day Adventist and won’t get in a car on Saturday because it’s devlish.

A few days later, another colleague offered to take Willie. I was so happy because I know he will have a good home. But a day or two later it suddenly dawned on me- this colleague is also Seventh Day Adventist! Will he suddenly reject Willie because he is all black? So I asked him and he just laughed at me. He said that the belief that things that are black has spells apply to everything- don’t buy a black car because it will be cursed! Don’t buy a black goat because it is cursed! Don’t paint anything black because it will be cursed! He said that if everything black was cursed, then the whole city would have collapsed. So he said it would be fine to take Willie, blackness and all.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Don't worry. They still have plenty of idolatry!