Guyana Obeah and Amerindian Practices
Sources: The Library of Congress Country Studies; CIA World Factbook
A number of folk beliefs continue to be practiced in Guyana. Obeah, a folk religion of African origin, incorporates beliefs and practices of all the immigrant groups. Obeah practitioners may be Afro-Guyanese or Indo-Guyanese, and members of all the ethnic groups consult them for help with problems concerning health, work, domestic life, and romance. Some villagers wear charms or use other folk practices to protect themselves from harm.
Traditional Amerindian religious beliefs vary, but shamans play a significant role in all of them. The shaman is believed to communicate with the world of spirits in order to detect sorcery and combat evil. The shaman is also a healer and an adviser, the representative of the village to the spiritual world and sometimes its political leader as well. Missionary activity to the Amerindians has been intense. As a result, the traditional beliefs and practices of all the Amerindian groups have been modified; some have even disappeared.
Data as of January 1992
NOTE: The information regarding Guyana on this page is re-published from The Library of Congress Country Studies and the CIA World Factbook. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Guyana Obeah and Amerindian Practices information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Guyana Obeah and Amerindian Practices should be addressed to the Library of Congress and the CIA.