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The Temple of Yehwe is an offshoot of Le Peristyle de Mariani which was founded in 1974 in Mariani, Haiti by Max-G. Beauvoir. Both institutions have been dedicated to the understanding and to the promotion of Vodun as the Religion and the Culture of the Haitian people. Vodun, actually, is the popular system of belief and the religious practice of the overwhelming majority of the population of Haiti. Its moral precepts, generally admitted as unfailing, embrace all the many aspects of life. May them be in the political, the social or the economic’s domains, may them be in the foreign affairs, or else, may them be in the public, domestic or individual fields of activity, the fundamental tendency is to consider all vital issues from a Vodun standpoint. Family’s disagreements, discords between employer and employee, disputes concerning land ownership, differences of opinion and of point of views, problems created by birth, education, health, work, death…find their solutions in Vodun, for that system of belief is the interpersonal as well as the collective conflicts mediator of the Haitian people. For, implicitly enfolded in the entire Vodun system, is a “Code of Ethics” which accurately fits the socio-cultural, historical, political and economic realities of the community and serves as an instrument of peace and harmony for everyone. This gives all Haitians their psycho-social specificities. Practicing Vodunists, or not, all Haitians are Haitian. That is to say that all Haitians must accept the standards set by the community. That Religion, thus, constitutes a motivating factor which conditions the Haitian’s views and attitudes towards the World. One’s appreciation is consequently influenced by the many forms of activities and the fundamental aspects of that collective human experience. This finds some of its explanations and justifications in the fact that Vodun has its set of Norms and Values to which everyone, by devotion, conviction, attachment or by simple social conformism, automatically adheres to because the religion is lived by the majority. The teachings are revealed to very many Haitians and the precepts are instructive to all who naturally see the well founded grounds for them. This explains why Vodun, whenever and wherever it is practiced, gathers the adhesion of the majority of the population. The mode of transmission of Vodun’s precepts isn’t limited to individual and group revelations. There are also, carried through the Tradition, a whole oral sapiential literature in the form of prayers, litanies, religious songs, mythological stories, charades, maxims, proverbs and even some secular and funny anecdotes about boys and girls that everyone repeats across the country. They too carry the norms of behavior as well as the philosophical reflections about GOD, the Great Master, or better yet, the Great Mistress Who govern the Universe; Nature, which is man’s environment; and reflections concerning the human being. In other words, the Theological, Cosmological and Anthropological conceptions are continuously expressed in appropriate terms and in simple language to everyone’s cogitation. In the Vodun sapiential literature, one always finds, implicitly or explicitly expressed, two main aspects:
- The first one which deals with the subjects of PRACTICAL AND MORAL PHILOSOPHIES and exposes the popular wisdom born from individual and collective experience. It can be defined as containing propositions which convey the precepts of conduct and of moral standards, objectively recognized as being valid. Those are willingly followed by everyone who would like to consider him/ or herself, and who also want to be recognized by others, as “REASONABLE” and as a “SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE” person.
- The other one which treats of problems concerning mainly Religious and Moral life. Presented as SPECULATIVE PHILOSOPHY, it deals with what is generally considered “The UNACCESSIBLE” to the individuals or to the collectivity by means of experiences. It then concerns three main subjects:
|The existence of God|
|The Immortality of the Soul|
|The Human being seen as Soul in a perishable package. The Freedom of Will is an important aspect of those considerations.|
That name came from a Vodun expression of African origin which means The National Congregation of Vodunists and of Vodun Defenders for the protection of the people, their culture and their art-of-living.
Having understood that the generic name for all the Lwa is Yehwe, the decision has been made to name the new Corporation: The Temple of Yehwe. The purposes for which it has been organized were many, mainly:
|– to allow anyone the possibilities of finding another way of worshiping God, in the manner that it was established traditionally thousands of years ago by the African Ancestors;|
|– to unite publicly with the Temple in the belief in, and in the love of, the Divine Power of the Supreme Creator and Ruler of the Universe;|
|– to increase among its members the sentiments of devotion, fraternity and tolerance, by the practice of the religious observance of the Vodun rites and rituals.|