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24077: Walton: (reply) RE: 24069: Karshan: (reply) Bell -- on Vodou (disc) Walton (fwd)

>From Bob Walton -waltonr@hotmail.com

Re: Vodou is overseen by the Ministry of Cults (located on Delmas 33) which
is a
subdivision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

While Vodou might be considered a cult religion in Boston, Austin or
Brooklyn, I believe it is a mainstream religion in Haiti. In the
western-european tradition, the term, "cult" has a negative connotation,
(see  below*). Why then, is Vodou defined as a "cult" in a country where it
is so widely practiced and respected?  Are the minority Protestant
congregations overseen by the Ministry of Cults?  Were I a Haitian
vodouisant, the "cult" appellation would offend me.

* From the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary (extract)-
1 : formal religious veneration : WORSHIP
2 : a system of religious beliefs and ritual; also : its body of adherents
3 : a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also : its body of