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22 Best African Spirituality Books

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African Spirituality books have become harder to find do to the lack of interest in the country, the people and the culture. We have compiled a list of 22 books that may help you understand the rich history of African spirituality and religion.

Spirituality in Africa

1. Spirituality Before Religions: Spirituality is Unseen Science…Science is Seen Spirituality

Spirituality Before Religions, delves deeply into many ideas researched by many brilliant writers and scholars. My ultimate purpose is to synthesize these writings into a comprehensive study of ancient African Deep Thought with Tep Heseb, the Kemetic (Egyptian) process of accurately reckoning by using the correct method of analysis. This clear and concise philosophy guided early humanity into the heavens on earth, while creating a heaven on earth. African educator, Dr. John Henrik Clarke teaches us that to be self-sufficient, people have to see the Creator when they look in the mirror. 

Eastern Africa Anthropology

2. Lugbara Religion: Ritual and Authority Among an East African People (Classics in African Anthropology) Paperback – May 27, 1999

The Lugbara are an ethnic group who live mainly in the West Nile region of Uganda,in the adjoining area of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and in Morobo County Republic of South Sudan. They speak the Lugbara language, a Central Sudanic language similar to the language spoken by the Madi, with whom they also share many cultural similarities. They are also found in South Sudan where they are known as Mundu and other names.

This series of Classics in African Anthropology is primarily drawn from a distinct family of texts which dominated the academic analysis of society in mid-20th century Africa. The texts reproduced are significant yet often neglected, and have stood the test of time. John Middleton’s classic study on the Lugbara was originally published in 1960. New edition published in association with the International African Institute North America: Transaction Books; Germany: Lit Verlag

African Spirituality Books

3. African Spirituality: Forms, Meanings and Expressions (World Spirituality)

What is Pa divination in Nigeria? Who or what is Mami Water? Does a single African spirituality exist across all indigenous cultures, even after their contact with Western religions such as Christianity? In this illustrated book, a perfect introduction to the fascinating world of African religion, spirituality, and cosmology, writers from Margaret R. Miles and Kathleen O’Brien Wicker to Ogbu Kalu and Abdulkader I. Tayob lead us into discussions of the diversity of African spiritual traditions and the forms and patterns that link them. Special topics include Dagbamba, Haitian Vodun, shrines, divination, candomble, and Sufism and the role of Islam.

Spirit Ritual Magic in Africa

4. Of Water and the Spirit: Ritual, Magic and Initiation in the Life of an African Shaman (Compass)

Maliodoma Patrice Some was born in a Dagara Village, however he was soon to be abducted to a Jesuit school, where he remained for the next fifteen years, being harshly indoctrinated into european ways of thought and worship. The story tells of his return to his people, his hard initiation back into those people, which lead to his desire to convey their knowledge to the world. Of Water and the Spirit is the result of that desire; it is a sharing of living African traditions, offered in compassion for those struggling with our contemporary crisis of the spirit.

african rituals

5. The Healing Wisdom of Africa: Finding Life Purpose Through Nature, Ritual, and Community

Through The Healing Wisdom of Africa, readers can come to understand that the life of indigenous and traditional people is a paradigm for an intimate relationship with the natural world that both surrounds us and is within us. The book is the most complete study of the role ritual plays in the lives of African people–and the role it can play for seekers in the West.

west african religion

6. West African Religion: A Study of the Beliefs and Practices of Akan, Ewe, Yoruba, Ibo, and Kindred Peoples

A comprehensive look into the religious practices and spirituality of West African peoples. The book is a bit dated but a very good look into the African Spiritual Aspect of these people.

Orishas african magic

7. Seven African Powers: The Orishas (African Magic Book 2)

This is a kindle book, but very worth the purchase.
Who Are TheyDeep-rooted African Spirits, the Orishas are given respect and service in modern Santeria, Voodoo, as well as other Caribbean traditions.
Today, many Yoruban and other West Africans still turn to the Orishas for help and guidance in not only their little problems, but also the big ones of life.
Inside you will learn that each Orisha have specific actions and temperament.

  • Where can you find Elegua
  • Oshun’s favorite food
  • How to petition Chango
  • Find which Orisha is best capable to work out the difficulty you are going through
African Igbo religion

8. Odinani: The Igbo Religion

The Igbo venerate or worship the God of the Earth and Its Hosts of spirits (Ani). Odinani or Omenana describes this method of venerating or worshiping God. Note that worship of God describes the ways we choose to commune with the manifest God (Chineke) and, through It, with the Godhead (Chukwu) – the Source. Men worship God in diverse, but equivalent, ways. The God is the same – Spirit, Mmoo, Ndu- but the rituals or methods for approaching It differ.

African Spirituality in Voodoo

9. Voodoo: Voodoo History, Beliefs, Elements, Strains or Schools, Practices, Myths and Facts. An Introductory Guide Kindle Edition

It has been a long time since the world was introduced to Voodoo – ever since the Atlantic slave trade brought the slaves out of Africa and in closer contact with the Western and European world. But since we first learned of the existence of Voodoo, and up until the present times, our perception of this religion has been clouded by prejudice, fear, and the cloudy lens of sensationalist entertainment. So what, really, is Voodoo?

Shamanic wisdom in Africa

10. Shamanic Wisdom in the Pyramid Texts: The Mystical Tradition of Ancient Egypt

To the Greek philosophers and other peoples of the ancient world, Egypt was regarded as the home of a profound mystical wisdom. While there are many today who still share that view, the consensus of most Egyptologists is that no evidence exists that Egypt possessed any mystical tradition whatsoever. Jeremy Naydler’s radical reinterpretation of the Pyramid Texts–the earliest body of religious literature to have survived from ancient Egypt–places these documents into the ritual context in which they belong.

Egyptian Spirituality books

11. New Age Bible of Mother Africa (Vol.2): Ancient Alien Gods, Metaphysics, Kemetic Spirituality & African Origins of Civilization

The author, T. Lindsey-Billingsley, has compiled a no-nonsense philosophical study guide exploring racial origins, the African origins of humanity, and prehistoric Kemetic influence throughout the world. The main focus of these studies is on the anthropological and physiological makeup of racial groups, with in-depth research into both the ‘Out of Africa’ theories and divine creationism myths.

ancient african religion

12. The Way of Orisa: Empowering Your Life Through the Ancient African Religion of Ifa

Carried to the Americas by slaves, the 8,000-year-old philosophy of Ifa originated with the Yoruba peoples of West Africa. Ifa’s enduring message of strength and inner peace, one that offers a way to harmonize our spiritual and worldly aims, is enjoying a resurgence of popularity in the West.
Written by an avid student and accomplished practitioner, The Way of the Orisa provides an exhilarating introduction to the orisa, the powerful messenger spirits who act as our personal guardians. Through fables, rituals, prayers and simple guidelines, Philip Neimark shows how we can further our personal and professional goals by cultivating the loving support of orisa energy.

introduction to african spirituality books

13. Introduction to African Religion, Second Edition

In his widely acclaimed survey, John Mbiti sheds light on the survival and prosperity of African Religion in different historical, geographical, sociological, cultural, and physical environments. He presents a constellation of African worldviews, beliefs in God, use of symbols, valued traditions, and practices that have taken root with African peoples throughout the vast continent. Mbiti’s accessible writing style sympathetically portrays how African Religion manifests itself in ritual, festival, healing, the human life cycle, and interplay with the mystical and invisible world.

African spirituality books on iboga

14. IBOGA( The Visionary Root of African Shamanism)

Iboga is the African Hallucinogenic used by many shaman and is said to have spiritual powers. This has been used since the ancient times and date back to ancient Egypt. Much like ayauasca it has properties which introduce a deep spiritual state. The perfect book for those interested in African spirituality books.

african azande witchcraft

15. Witchcraft, Oracles and Magic among the Azande

By examining the context within which beliefs in witchcraft form, Evans-Pritchard explains how the beliefs coordinate with the Sudanese social structure. The Azande use witchcraft to explain unfortunate events, such as death. When a person dies, the Azande try to identify and punish the witch.

african Ndembu Ritual

16. The Forest of Symbols: Aspects of Ndembu Ritual

It combines unusually detailed ethnographic description, based upon field work among the Ndembu of Zambia, with remarkable theoretical sophistication. Professor Turner describes the ritual phenomena in terms both of practice and of their sociological and psychological implications within a preliterate society.

african religious symbols

17. Scarabs. The History, Manufacture and Religious Symbolism of the Scarabaeus in Ancient Egypt, Phoenicia, Sardinia, Etruria. Also Remarks on the … of the Ancient Egyptians, Phoenicians, etc.

This work has been selected by scholars as being culturally important and is part of the knowledge base of civilization as we know it.

This work is in the public domain in the United States of America, and possibly other nations. Within the United States, you may freely copy and distribute this work, as no entity (individual or corporate) has a copyright on the body of the work. This is a broader look into African Spirituality Books.

African Spirituality books from Haiti

18. Haitian Vodou: An Introduction to Haiti’s Indigenous Spiritual Tradition

Haitian Vodou is a fascinating spiritual tradition rich with ceremonies and magic, songs and prayers, dances and fellowship. Yet outside of Haiti, next to no one understands this joyous and profound way of life. ln Haitian Vodou, Mambo Chita Tann explores the historical roots and contemporary practices of this unique tradition, including discussions of:

  • Customs, beliefs, sacred spaces, and ritual objects
  • Characteristics and behaviors of the Lwa, the spirits served by Vodou practitioners
  • Common misconceptions such as “voodoo dolls” and the zombie phenomenon
  • Questions and answers for attending ceremonies and getting involved in a sosyete (Vodou house)
  • Correspondence tables, Kreyol glossary, supplemental prayer texts, and an extensive list of
Africans in America

19. They Came Before Columbus: The African Presence in Ancient America

They Came Before Columbus reveals a compelling, dramatic, and superbly detailed documentation of the presence and legacy of Africans in ancient America. Examining navigation and shipbuilding; cultural analogies between Native Americans and Africans; the transportation of plants, animals, and textiles between the continents; and the diaries, journals, and oral accounts of the explorers themselves, Ivan Van Sertima builds a pyramid of evidence to support his claim of an African presence in the New World centuries before Columbus.

African Muslim Slaves

20. Servants of Allah: African Muslims Enslaved in the Americas

Despite the explosion in work on African American and religious history, little is known about Black Muslims who came to America as slaves. Most assume that what Muslim faith any Africans did bring with them was quickly absorbed into the new Christian milieu. But, surprisingly, as Sylviane Diouf shows in this new, meticulously researched volume, Islam flourished during slavery on a large scale.

African spirituality books on islam

21. Black Arabia & the African Origin of Islam

Is Islam a Religion of the Black Man as suggested by Elijah Muhammad? Or is it a slave religion originated by white Arabs and imposed on Black People? Finally, this question is addressed with scholarship rather than with rhetoric. Internationally known scholar of Islam Dr. Wesley Muhammad brings together in this his latest work a tremendous amount of scholarship and demonstrates that: Ancient Black Arabia, which is the matrix of Islam, is a root of civilization and an integral component of the Global African Civilization paradigm.

African Spirituality books from Egypt

22. Egyptian Book of the Dead: The Book of Going Forth by Day: The Complete Papyrus of Ani Featuring Integrated Text and Full-Color Images 

Maybe the most stunning presentation of this book in 3300 years: Upon death, it was the practice for some Egyptians to produce a papyrus manuscript called the Book of Going Forth by Day or the Book of the Dead. A Book of the Dead included declarations and spells to help the deceased in the afterlife. The Papyrus of Ani is the manuscript compiled for Ani, the royal scribe of Thebes. Written and illustrated almost 3,300 years ago, The Papyrus of Ani is a papyrus manuscript with cursive hieroglyphs and color illustrations. It is the most beautiful, best preserved, and complete example of ancient Egyptian philosophical and religious thought known to exist. African Spirituality Book from Egypt.

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