Aspects of Traditional Religion in Africa

Aspects of Traditional Religion in Africa

 In African religions all things, animate and inanimate, are imbued with a unique life-force at the time of Creation and as conscious beings humans have the ability to interact with the energies that make up the life-force of any animate or inanimate object and to bend them to our will with a positive or negative intent. Good fortune and bad fortune depends on our exercise of positive or negative intentions or their exercise upon us by others. Therefore, human morality is bound by human intent and human actions. Of course to keep things interesting there is always the interference of mischievous spirits in the affairs of human beings. But since all things have their origin in the life-force that the Creator gave of himself/herself/itself in the Creation of the universe, maintaining the proper balance of life-forces to through prayer, offering, and sacrifice is necessary. Write short answers, [3-5 sentences] for each of the questions below that address traditional aspects of faith and spirituality in Africa.

1. What are some of the ways in which the Supreme Being is represented in the religious beliefs of the Akan people of West Africa?
2. What are “rites of passage” and how were they practiced in traditional African cultures?
3. How was the concept of “ancestor spirits” used to maintain moral order in African societies?
4. What is the relationship between faith and sin in traditional African religious cultures?
5. How have African religious practices influenced the development of African American spirituality?

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