I am not a subscriber of the ‘ancient alien’ theory. In fact, I find the entire thing laughable and ridiculous. I have looked into it. I have read the book that started it all, Chariots of the Gods by Erich von Daaniken. I gave it a shot; I really did. However, I just couldn’t put any faith in it. It doesn’t help that a lot of the ‘experts’ in this area could be qualified as complete nut jobs and quacks. I mean. No, you know what? Never mind. That’s not the point.
The point is that last night, I happened to catch an episode of Ancient Aliens, which is on the History channel. Occasionally, I watch the show because I learn new things. I’ve picked up various new pieces of information that are of vague interest to someone who wants to major in history. Well, last night, they were playing the episode, Aliens and Deadly Cults. I’m fascinated by ‘deadly cults’ and have done a lot of research on the topic. So, I thought, “What the hey? I can disregard the alien portion of the show.”
The entire premise behind the series would seem to have been that gods were really aliens that have come to us throughout the years. I’ve long since stopped ranting about this whenever I catch an episode or walk through the room when the Hubby is watching it. (I have not stopped from muttering deprecations under my breath.) However, in this particular episode, not only are the gods ancient aliens that were pulling the wool over our eyes, but they are also the very entities that were communicating with cult leaders. That the gods, wait, aliens were telling these people what to believe and how to go about it. And while the whole show premise is offensive to me, as a polytheist, it was something else entirely(in this particular episode) that got my blood boiling…
About ten to thirteen minutes into the program, they begin to talk about the Mexican cult leader, Adolfo Constanzo. He was a cult leader who offered his services to the drug cartels in the area, claiming that he could keep them from being found out by the cops. This went on for quite some time and I’m led to speculate that it was obviously fairly successful since he never ended up dead at the hand of the cartel he was working for. Anyway, that’s neither here nor there. The point stems from his religious beliefs: he was born into palo mayombe, which is a part of the African diaspora religions. It’s related to Haitian vodou and Santeria and and and. It’s just another version of a faith that has morphed throughout the centuries.
Apparently, however, his faith was closely related to Yoruba and Haitian vodou because the program was quick to mention this after they gave the gory details of Mr. Adolfo’s crimes. The deity that he had sanctified himself to was Kadiempembe. This deity is referred to in various articles as a Satan figure, but when I managed to catch what little information about him as I could, that while I found that Kadiempembe is considered a devil figure in their pantheon–and in worshiping him, one does not tread lightly–it would seem that this is the result of ‘Christianization.’ In an interesting aside, this deity was once considered the high god of the Congo peoples, to be replaced later (probably, also, do to ‘Christianization’) by Nzambi.
Before I move on, I would like to mention that it was spoken of with almost distaste that Mr. Adolfo practiced “witchcraft” and “sorcery.” One expert seemed almost surprised that he was using words like “spell.”
Back to Kadiempembe.
A statue is brought out and it’s made mention that it has wide eyes like the gray alien depictions. After this awe-inspiring piece of evidence, they mention that Kadiempembe is also known as Eshu. Now, Eshu is a cross-spiritual-barriers kind of a deity. He is found in Yoruba, Candomblé, Santería, and Lukumi. Eshu is a more common name found under direct lineage to Yoruba-based religions. However, Eshu is also known by numerous other names, such as Exu, Esu Eleggua, Esu Elegbara, Eshu Elegbara, Elegba, Legba, Papa Legba and Eleda. I would like to point out that nowhere in that extensive list does it say “Kadiempembe.”
But what really got to me was this point.
First, they were sure to point out that Eshu is a trickster deity. They were also good to point out that he was all around a “not nice” kind of a god. It wasn’t insomuch that this could be the truth, but how it was portrayed. They made it seem that his being a trickster was a very negative thing and that it only led people to bad places. “He’s the master of lies,” they said. Anyway, after going through this, the narrator says: “Eshu is also represented in Haitian vodou as Papa Legba. A god that has been linked with another notorious mass murderer.”
If I wasn’t pissed off before, I was getting there at this point. But, I decided to give what they had to say a shot. It could be an interesting avenue of research after I got done being severely fucking pissed off. Oh, boy. I should have just gone to bed then. “…Papa Legba can speak all languages, even the languages of animals. So he channels his energy through dogs and actually is somewhat fond of that particular species, so he’ll more often take that animal form than others. …The terrible serial murderer, the Son of Sam, David Berkowitz, said he got his orders from dogs. One could speculate Papa Legba is speaking through the dog to the sinister end.”
WHAT THE FUCK.
WHAT THE FLYING MOTHER FUCK.
I am so beyond outraged at this as a person who worships Papa Legba, but also as a pagan. I feel like my beliefs are being stomped on, pissed on, and that on top of all of this bullshit, they’re laughing in my face to boot. And where the fuck did they get this shit about Papa Legba telling David Berkowitz to kill via dog chatter? And I mean, I have never once in all of the research I have ever fucking done on this lwa come across this, this affinity for dogs as is suggested in this program. Not to mention, as someone who was once a dark-interested teenager who did avid research on various serial killers, I can heartily assure everyone that it was NEVER suggested ANYWHERE that the Son of Sam killer was given orders from Papa Legba via the German shepherds he claimed were giving him these ideas.
I couldn’t watch anything else of that program. I just came within seconds of tossing a shoe at the TV, I was so mad. I couldn’t believe how completely one-sided and fear-inducing the whole shebang was. I understand that to get the good ratings, the show has to be edgier, darker, and willing to give a good scare. But, all they’re doing is giving more fodder for the people who hate pagans. They’re just giving them something more to look at when a cult leader is discovered abusing or killing the members. It’s just like Satanism being the be-all, end-all of all bad behavior in the 70s/80s. Now, it’ll be paganism.