“Brijit, Baron’s Beloved”

Brijit, mother of the Ghede lwa in the flesh. Original Oil painting on Linen Canvas sheet, virtual matboard. Copyright c. 2012

Mamman Brigitte is a lwa that is European in origin, the wife of Baron Samedi, together they are the head of the Ghede family of vodou lwa! Brigitte comes from the Scottish and Irish sent to Ayiti who suffered through indentured servitude. Not as horrible and ultra violent as African slavery but a living hell all the same. Some contracted and signed themselves into slavery while others were forced into the situation. Many Celtic peoples were deported as slaves during the era of Oliver Cromwell back in the 1600’s,       for example.                                                                                                                                      Great articles discussing Indentured servants sent to the Caribbean:   http://www.newworldcelts.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=25&Itemid=40                            Article “The Redlegs of Barbados” By Edward T. Price: http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/CARIBBEAN/2001-04/0986680712

http://www.electricscotland.com/books/caribbean.htm

http://www.kavanaghfamily.com/articles/2003/20030618jfc.htm

Many paintings and art depict Brigitte and the Ghede lwa in skeletal form, I have painted her cameo profile as a beautiful flame-haired Celtic maiden in the flesh. Graves of the first female corpses buried in all  cemeteries of Ayiti are blessed in the name of Mamman Brijit. A sacred cross is placed upon the tomb in each burial place consecrated in her name. Mamman Brigitte drinks the special zesty rum of the Ghede lwa called Piman and she dances the wild, erotic Banda. People who drink Piman and dare to fake their possessions during a fet will burn their mouth out! Piman is straight rum with hot peppers soaked into it, the preferred drink of the Ghede lwa. When the Ghede are in the body of a vodouisant during fet, drinking Piman is like drinking water, no pain, no 3rd degree burns in your mouth! Otherwise you might as well be eating a fresh Trinidad Scorpion Pepper, a chili famous for causing acute blindness if its gets near your eyes! Leave the Piman drinking to the dead! Brigitte is tough-talking and tells it like it is, the Ghede are not shy about revealing secrets or telling the truth around anyone. She can curse like any sailor or trucker, using whatever “obscenities” that she chooses to use. Beyond death, all pain and suffering, the Ghede lwa do not adhere to the social rules of society in this world and they are not affected by them. They are free from the social reprimand that acting and speaking “raunchy and rude” will get you in this world. The Ghede lwa are spirits of fertility, death, resurrection and healing among other powers they have. They will talk about sex, having it, doing it, and about sex organs openly and freely. Mamman Brigitte is syncretized with Saint Brigid, the Christian nun and pagan goddess Brigit who is associated with flames and fire. The candles in my oil painting represent the sacred eternal flames of Brigid’s Kildare sanctuary in Ireland.                                                                                                                       http://kildare.ie/local-history/kildare/saint-brigid.htm

November 2nd, Fet Ghede in Ayiti is Brigitte and her family’s sacred holiday. On this special day the dead and the living come together. In violet, black, and white sacred colours of the ghede lwa, people gather in the streets of Ayiti dancing and celebrating, possessed by the spirits. Sunglasses, top hats and the powdered faces of the skeletal dead can be seen everywhere! Some Vodouisants links discussing Fet Ghede and the Ghede lwa: http://www.rootswithoutend.org/racine125/vleson2a.html    http://hermitsjourney.wordpress.com/2009/11/07/fet-gede-fun-and-surprises-on-all-saints-day-2/                                                                              http://www.ezilikonnen.com/society/fet-gede-2006.html

Brijit and her family are known to be playful. clownish, and rowdy but they are wise and can assist you with any problem you may have in your life. They have the best sense of humor in the world! Very funny with lots of dirty jokes and dark humor. Brijit and her husband are truly lwa of death, they can kill with their magic, bring illness and misfortune. But they can also heal, give life and resurrect. When you are at the end of your rope, something in your life is gone and it seems like it will never come back, Brijit and Baron will be the judge of that!

About ErzulieRedEyesArtandSpirit

I love art, I enjoy oil painting and drawing anything I wish. Vodou is my faith and I enjoy creating artistic images of the lwa and spiritual subjects. I also paint and draw other subjects when I'm inspired! When i'm not painting and drawing I enjoy dancing, and spending time with my family. My favorite medium is Oil but I also love to work with graphite pencil, pastels, pen and ink.
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11 Responses to “Brijit, Baron’s Beloved”

  1. Sosyete Makaya’s video of their Fet Ghede celebration:

  2. Raven of Leyla says:

    Facinating read, Erzulie 😉
    I have so little knowledge of what you write, but it does intrique me. Sounds somewhat fearful, but all religions do to me. Some more than others, too!
    I am not surprised about the Celtics brought to the Carribean into slavery. There were many who did not like the Celtic, nor my people of American Native Tribes… I am Kickapoo 😀
    The painting has a wonderful story you told well. I like that those “candles represent the sacred eternal flames of Brigid’s Kildare sanctuary in Ireland”
    Be well and a warm feathery hug to you,
    Raven
    Feathers are symbols of blessings in my tribe 🙂

    • Hello Raven! There’s alot of interesting history behind Vodou, and so much to learn. My ancestors included some people who were native american as well as Islanders from Natchitoches Parish. The sanctuary there would be one of the nice places to see If you ever wanted to visit Ireland. Thanx for stopping by have a great weekend!

  3. Miro says:

    Beautiful and illuminating. 🙂
    Peace & grace,
    ~Miro

  4. Indeed a fascinating article, I’d never heard of this Celtic element in Vodou before.
    Thank you for sharing your experiances, knowledge and thoughts in this and previous posts. I’m sure your helping to
    dis-Spell many people’s misconseptions about this much misunderstood religion.
    I look forward to your future writings (oh and the art too!)
    May the ancestors smile upon you

    • Hi there thank you! Brijit the Ghede spirit is a Brit but she speaks Haitian Kreyol like Baron and their children. Many of the lwa come from different backgrounds in Vodou they are a mystery inside of a mystery. Be sure to read all the good books out there from Mambos, and Houngans and their experiences with the lwa to learn more. Here’s a nice link from Mambo Racine outlining Dark Godesses in Vodou with a song for Mamman Brijit there too: http://www.rootswithoutend.org/racine125/goddess.html Thanx for visiting!

  5. This is a lovely piece! 🙂

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