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The Religion of Santer Peoples and Culture of the Caribbean Religion in some ways confuses me They all claim to be so different yet when one takes a close look at them they all have striking resemblances to each other I was raised in a Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox household Although both had some differences anyone could see all the similarities that they possessed All religions pick choose and blend from other religions and form a new version A type of creolization if you will Different aspects of two similar religions Catholicism and Yoruba were blended together to form what we now know as the worldwide religion of Santer In this paper I will be discussing the origins of this fascinating religion what it entails and a couple of the problems that people who practice the religion face Santer started in Cuba during the nineteenth century when Africans from what are now Nigeria and Benin were sent to the island to be slaves The religion centers around ancient African gods who have been assimilated as Catholic saints Santer comes from the Spanish word santo meaning saint Santeros or for women Santeras is what the priests of the religion of Santer are called They dispense ritual paraphernalia such as candles beads and ointments as well as advice on how to solve any problem imaginable-including relationship money and health problems-which usually involves strengthening the individuals connection with the orishas Novas 2003 211 Santer was created out of necessity for the African slaves so that they could continue to practice their religion in the New World In most countries where Africans were made into slaves they were discouraged or forbidden from practicing their native religions For this reason the religion that emerged is known as Santer the way of the saints Since they were forced to convert to Catholicism slaves continued
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