Friday, July 30, 2004

UMBANDA - a religion is born - part 1 of 3

It is very hard to specify the exact date when the religion Umbanda was born. Below follows the "official" description of how it happened:

The year was 1908 and the city Niteroi, which is located in the State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
All of a sudden a young 17 years old teenager called Zelio started acting strange. His family was very known and traditional in the neighborhood and his parents did not know how to deal with the unexpected "attacks".

The first attacks made the boy bend like an old person, and he started talking in a very different way, almost as someone from another time. Some other times the young Zelio would act almost as a being from the forest, with an amazing knowledge of herbs, fruits, vegetables and anything else related to Nature.

After checking Zelio thoroughly, his family doctor, which happened to be Zelio's uncle, suggested that the boy should be sent to a priest, considering he had never seen any kind of "madness" that would fit the profile known by him. The doctor believed that the boy was possessed.

The attacks continued though, even after the exorcism. With time, the boy seemed to be cured!

Some members of his family suggested that the boy's problems could have some relation to the spirits, and the boy was taken to the "Federation of Spiritism" in Niteroi, which is basically a study group with focus on what we call "White Spiritism".

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