Benin Voudou

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Benin - Voudou, the oldest world religion
Photos: Bruno Zanzottera
Voudou, which literally means 'spirit', or even more literally 'unconscious sign', is an African religion with a strongly esoteric character. Modern Voudou is the derivation of one of the most ancient religions in the world, present in Africa since the dawn of human civilisation. Some historians believe that the ancient Voudou religion even dates back ten thousand years. Widespread in many areas of the Black Continent, the profound philosophic wisdom of Voudou then spread throughout the Americas, as a consequence of the deportation of black slaves to the new colonies. Today, Voudou is practiced by about sixty million people worldwide, and has recently gained the privilege of being recognised as an official religion in Benin and Togo, where it is organised in a church frequented by the majority of the population.
Benin Voudou
International photojournalism