The Twelve Apostles

Frater Vameri



“God created the earth and the animals and then the twelve apostles. However, the apostles were rebellious and defied God and his dictates, inflaming his wrath, being sent, then, as punishment to Gine . They and their descendants are the Lwas . However, one of the rebellious apostles refused to be sent to Gine , he became a powerful sorcerer and called himself Lucifer”.


Taken from Mcalister (2014), The Color of Christ in Haiti.

I'm betting that right now the reader must be twisting his head and thinking either that the story isn't quite like that or that it doesn't make sense. Sense? I ask if it is possible to talk about meaning without talking about who tells and who listens to a story. And as for the fact that it wasn't quite like that – who said?


History clearly tells us that the Lwas were made right at the beginning of creation and before man, by the way. After all, these twelve apostles cannot be understood as anything other than twelve principles – perhaps astral – like the zodiac. Or maybe it's 11, as one refused to stay and becomes Lucifer. In any case, we know that these apostles are genius – to the point of defying God.


At the same time, they seem to have come to terms with their exile in Gine . It is the exception that proves the rule who tells us this – Lucifer. If he rebelled once more and mastered the art of sorcery for sai and proceeded to teach it to men, then, of course, the others did so not out of inability but out of will.


Mcalister reminds us that Lucifer is the prince of the world and that our existence is therefore marked by his undeniable influence. That would be the reason life is always full of twists, spells, spells and ailments – Lucifer's heavy hand on the loom of human existence. It would be tempting to associate Lucifer with Judas Iscariot , but something doesn't fit.


There is a notable absence in this story. Where will Jesus be? No Jesus, no betrayal, no traitor Judas. Perhaps Jesus is not in this myth, for what sense would it make to have a redeemer while there is still nothing to redeem? Humans will still come and still have their existential odyssey.


This absence beckons to Jesus' lack of centrality. He being just another inhabitant of this vast spiritual world. The saints, apostles and all sorts of biblical and religious characters take over the stage and reveal that their hagiographies and their imaginary of mediators are valuable, as much or more than a figure who will take away sins – after all, what sins? Here's something that doesn't quite fit Vodou's worldview .


Jesus, however, half-man, half-god, is a red bridge and the poteau mitan can be seen as the phallus of Osiris, Isis rescues the deep waters and that fertilizes for the birth of offspring, this post can be also the very cross (the crossroads) of Christ, which links man to the invisible.


We also need to think about this God who exiles the apostles in Guinea. Was it exile or was it a “mission”? It is worth remembering that God does not usually deal with trivial matters, he leaves that to the Lwas and other intermediaries. Perhaps the whole story holds another message for us, then – that the character and drive of the apostles made them the perfect characters for the task of mediating human creation and coordinating the swings of the world.


This story that Mcalister tells us accepts many interpretations, but it does not fail to state clearly the following: no one can ever read the same sentence, even from a book like the bible.

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