Umbanda's relationship with the natural environment & religious intolerance




Costa Kott, Alex

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This work explores one of Brazil’s most important syncretic religion, Umbanda. The first chapter focuses on how Umbanda and umbandistas relate and interact with the natural environment in its various forms. One of the main themes of this section is the importance of the orixás for the religion’s relationship with nature. This chapter also explores: plant taxonomy in Umbanda, Umbanda’s National Sanctuary in the city of Santo André (SP), the establishment Umbanda’s Magna Carta in 2013, the appearance of political-partisan movements for African derived religions in Brazil, the use of sacred food offerings in Umbanda, and how Brazil’s process of urbanization has impacted how umbandistas interact with nature in midst of the Anthropocene. The second chapter explores how religious intolerance has been manifesting against indigenous and African religiosity. The first section of the chapter focuses on the history of how Catholicism has demonized indigenous and African spirituality. This chapter also explores: the Kingdom of Kongo’s process of Catholicization, the establishment of Zélio de Morães’ Tenda Espírita Nossa Senhora da Piedade in Cachoeiras de Macacu, Rio de Janeiro, and also the spread of religious intolerance through evangelization, televangelism, Kardecian Spiritism and Eurocentrism.


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