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Monday, December 5, 2016

Cultural Religious Symbols of Quisqueya

Belie Belcan (Archangel Michael) San Miguel
     The picture above represents one of the most important aspects of my culture (religion and Santeria).  It’s supposed to be the representation of the Archangel Michael (God’s favorite) when he defeated “Lucio el Bello” (Luzbel) also known as Lucifer, the devil, Satan, etc.…  According to the legend San Miguel and Luzbel were best friend but when Lucifer blasphemed against God The archangel Michael dishonored and defeated him….
     I was born and raise in the island of Quisqueya commonly known as Dominican Republic.  My country which is an infusion of cultures from indigenous Tainos, Europeans settlers, African slaves, and many other diverse influences is well known for been a very religious and superstitious land.  The picture above was part of many household decorations, especially in houses were Santeria was part of the belief system.  
Below is a picture of a Dominican Santera and many of the religious symbols:

Paintings of saints, devils, angels, and many representations of the bible combine with the Santeria Symbols were part of the majority of the Dominicans households. 
Furthermore, my mother which is the “Santera” (person who practice Santeria) in our “barrio” {neighborhood}, had all those pictures in our house and every day before we went to bed and when we woke up that will be the first and last thing we saw.  Now as an atheist it fascinates me to learn and to understand our customs, religious practice, and traditions. 
Looking at those type of symbols everywhere created fear in our hearts and made us live horrify by the idea of a battle between good and evil. 

My mom still practice and strongly belief in God and Santeria and regardless of the fact that I am now an atheist every time I visit I feel compel to participate in our rituals and with respect embrace my family religion and beliefs.  
My understanding is that symbols are part of our lives and help us identify our culture and history.

Brava <3 o:p="">


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