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Christa Neuenhofer | profile | all galleries >> Voodoo. Fetish priests in Ghana. tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Voodoo. Fetish priests in Ghana.

After having visited voodoo priests in Togo and Benin (cf. my galleries Voodoo in Benin and Togo, West Africa 1 and 2: http://www.pbase.com/neuenhofer/voodoo_in_benin_and_togo_west_africa and http://www.pbase.com/neuenhofer/voodoo_in_togo_and_benin_2), I went to Ghana this February. My expectations concerning voodoo rituals were rather low, because I had been told that there is not so much voodoo in Ghana. Reality looked different. There was at least one priest in nearly every village. Only – apart from the south – they were not called voodoo priests but fetish priests. And they did not pray to the gods that are popular in Togo and Benin. In Ghana the priests first address a supreme being, but then they pray to their ancestors to ask for their advice. In all the three countries fetishes are used and the rituals are very similar. For each ritual alcohol is needed (“Schnapps” and local gin) which is poured on the ground for the ancestors and over the fetishes during the ceremony (libation).
But one thing is rather special in Ghana: Several fetish priests explained that apart from their ancestors they were also guided by small spirits (dwarfs). These spirits cannot be seen by ordinary people, only by the priests who already feel the presence of these spirits even before they see them. They say that suddenly around them everything becomes very cold and they themselves begin to shiver. The spirits that are very hairy, only about 50 cm tall and who walk backwards, tell the priests e.g. what they have to do for the welfare of the community.
Have a full view of my book GHANA, Fetish Priests, Witch Camps and Funeral Rites in English:
GHANA, Fetish Priests, Witch Camps and Funeral Rites by Christa Neuenhofer | Make Your Own Book
and in German:
GHANA FETISCHPRIESTER, HEXENDÖRFER UND BEGRÄBNISRITEN by Christa Neuenhofer | Make Your Own Book

The books also exist in low cost versions as ebooks. German version: http://store.blurb.com/ebooks/313607-ghana-fetischpriester-hexendorfer-und-begrabnisriten
English version: http://store.blurb.com/ebooks/314829-ghana-fetish-priests-witch-camps-and-funeral-rites
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli from Tso  Torgble near Dzodze prays to the ancestors.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli from Tso Torgble near Dzodze prays to the ancestors.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli´s fetish.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli´s fetish.
Me and fetish priest Mensah Gakli. You have to change clothes and wash your hands and arms inside the shrine.
Me and fetish priest Mensah Gakli. You have to change clothes and wash your hands and arms inside the shrine.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli ´s fetishes.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli ´s fetishes.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli and his fetishes.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli and his fetishes.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli and a legba in front of his shrine.
Fetish priest Mensah Gakli and a legba in front of his shrine.
Fetish priest in Atsiekpoe. When the ancestors agree to help, he can pull the small mask towards him, otherwise it is blocked.
Fetish priest in Atsiekpoe. When the ancestors agree to help, he can pull the small mask towards him, otherwise it is blocked.
Fetish priest in Atsiekpoe offering alcohol to the ancestors before starting a ceremony.
Fetish priest in Atsiekpoe offering alcohol to the ancestors before starting a ceremony.
Fetish priest in the Lobi village Talawona.
Fetish priest in the Lobi village Talawona.
Fetishes of the priest in Talawona.
Fetishes of the priest in Talawona.
Fetish priest´s relative in Talawona.
Fetish priest´s relative in Talawona.
Fetish priest and his assistant in Sonyo.
Fetish priest and his assistant in Sonyo.
Fetish priest´s assistant in Sonyo.
Fetish priest´s assistant in Sonyo.
Fetish priest and his assistant during a ritual in Sonyo.
Fetish priest and his assistant during a ritual in Sonyo.
King of Sonyo.
King of Sonyo.
Fetish priest Charles Amesimeku asks the small spirits, here named Ague Vodoo, for advice.
Fetish priest Charles Amesimeku asks the small spirits, here named Ague Vodoo, for advice.
At the shrine in Ejisu Besease. The main fetish is Lahadi Brekumde.
At the shrine in Ejisu Besease. The main fetish is Lahadi Brekumde.
Fetishes at the shrine in Ejisu Besease.
Fetishes at the shrine in Ejisu Besease.
Fetish with kola nuts at the shrine in Ejisu Besease.
Fetish with kola nuts at the shrine in Ejisu Besease.
Fetish at the shrine in Ejisu Besease.
Fetish at the shrine in Ejisu Besease.
Priest Kwabena Adade Penya from Akomadan offers his services on a billboard.
Priest Kwabena Adade Penya from Akomadan offers his services on a billboard.
Priest Kwabena Adade´s shrine.
Priest Kwabena Adade´s shrine.
Priest Kwabena Adade´s children play the drums under a poster of the Holy Family.
Priest Kwabena Adade´s children play the drums under a poster of the Holy Family.
A shrine in Tonga.
A shrine in Tonga.
Offerings at a shrine in Tonga.
Offerings at a shrine in Tonga.
Offerings at a shrine in Tonga.
Offerings at a shrine in Tonga.
Offerings at a shrine in Tonga.
Offerings at a shrine in Tonga.
Donkey shrine in Tonga. In this shrine mainly donkeys are sacrificed and their skulls are displayed on the rocks of the shrine.
Donkey shrine in Tonga. In this shrine mainly donkeys are sacrificed and their skulls are displayed on the rocks of the shrine.
The king´s first wife and her house decorated with offerings in Tonga.
The king´s first wife and her house "decorated" with offerings in Tonga.
The fetish priestess Nana Saah from Kubease in her shrine with her fetish Asuo Densu.
The fetish priestess Nana Saah from Kubease in her shrine with her fetish Asuo Densu.
The fetish priestess Nana Saah and two of her novices prepare for a trance dance.
The fetish priestess Nana Saah and two of her novices prepare for a trance dance.
The fetish priestess Nana Saah and her two novices.
The fetish priestess Nana Saah and her two novices.
The young woman dances till she is in a trance.
The young woman dances till she is in a trance.
In a trance.
In a trance.
In a trance.
In a trance.
After her trance dance the young woman demonstrates her subordinate position to the priestess.
After her trance dance the young woman demonstrates her subordinate position to the priestess.
Ceremony for a priest, who died a week ago. Dances and bloody sacrifices shall make him give up his power over his fetishes.
Ceremony for a priest, who died a week ago. Dances and bloody sacrifices shall make him give up his power over his fetishes.
Libation. Alcohol for the ancestors.
Libation. Alcohol for the ancestors.
The fetishes are put on a skin. Today they shall get a new master.
The fetishes are put on a skin. Today they shall get a new master.
The  blood of a chicken drips on the fetishes.
The blood of a chicken drips on the fetishes.
Several animals are sacrificed and their blood is poured over the fetishes. Thereafter they will serve the new fetish priest.
Several animals are sacrificed and their blood is poured over the fetishes. Thereafter they will serve the new fetish priest.
Blood of the sacrificed animals. Later the blood is rubbed all over the fetishes.
Blood of the sacrificed animals. Later the blood is rubbed all over the fetishes.