|Iwol village, Bedik tribe, remote southeast corner of Senegal, Africa.|
When I asked Jean Babtist Keita, the Bedik Chief of Iwol village, about God, he explained that they had one Super God and many Spirits.
|Chief Jean Babtist Keita, Iwol Village, Bedik tribe, Senegal, Africa.|
Chief Keita told me a story to illustrate their idea of a Spirit: "Once our women went to the village spring to fetch water. But they did not take care of the place. They were spoiling the water."
|Iwol village, Bedik tribe, Senegal, Africa.|
"One day when they went there, they saw into the water a face, a white face, a bearded face.
Chief Keita continues: "They were afraid. They rushed back home.
"When they arrived, I asked them, 'what did you see?'
"'We saw a white face on the water,'
"Are you sure it was not your own faces? Did you bent down and see your own faces?
"'No,' the women replied.
"Then I knew certainly it was one spirit. Maybe the spirit in charge of the water, who wanted to tell them to take more care of the water.
"From that day, the women tried to take more care of the place. Since then nothing more."
|Kids going to fetch water. Iwol Village, Bedik tribe, Senegal, Africa.|
This is my illustration of the Water Spirit from Chief Keita's description.
|When I asked Chief Keita to sketch a spirit, this is his drawing. He said that everything was accurate, but he didn't know how to draw the feet. Iwol village, Bedik tribe, Senegal, Africa.|
All photographs and text © 2015 Janis Miglavs