• Explains how Kimbanda’s presiding deity Eshu embodies both masculine and feminine principles, both god and devil, and thus represents human nature itself with all its vices and virtues
• Discusses Kimbanda’s magical practices, initiation rites, sacred knives, and sacrificial offerings
• Details the seven realms and the entities that inhabit and govern each of them
Although it has been demonized as a form of Satanic cult, Kimbanda--the tradition of Afro-Brazilian black magic--is a spiritual practice that embraces both the light and dark aspects of life through worship of the entities known as Eshu and Pombajira.
Exploring the history and practice of Kimbanda, also known as Quimbanda, Diego de Oxóssi builds a timeline from the emergence of Afro-Brazilian religions in the 17th century when African slaves were first brought to Brazil, through the development of Orisha cults and the formation of Candomblé, Batuque, Macumba, and Umbanda religious practices, to the modern codification of Kimbanda by Mãe Ieda do Ogum in the 1960s. He explains how Kimbanda’s presiding deity Eshu Mayoral embodies both masculine and feminine principles, both god and devil, and thus represents human nature itself with all its vices and virtues.
Discussing the magical practices, initiation rites, and spiritual landscape of Kimbanda, the author explains how there are seven realms, each with nine dominions, and he discusses the entities that inhabit and govern each of them. The author explores spirit possession and Kimbanda’s sacrificial practices, which are performed in order to honor and obtain the blessing of the entities of the seven realms. He discusses the sacred knives of the practice and the role each plays in it. He also explores the 16 zimba symbols and sigils used to attract the spirits most apt to realizing the magician’s will as well as traditional enchantment songs to summon and work with those spirits.
Offering an accessible guide to Kimbanda, the author shows that this religion of the people is popular because it recognizes the dark and light sides of human morality and provides a way to interact with the deities to produce direct results.
DIEGO DE OXÓSSI is a Chief of Kimbanda and Orishas Priest. For more than 20 years he has been researching and presenting courses, lectures, and workshops on pagan and African-Brazilian religions. He writes a weekly column at CoreSpirit.com and is the publisher at Arole Cultural. He lives in São Paulo, Brazil.