Mr. Reza Aslan,
I finally had a chance to entirely watch your CNN series “Believer” about voodoo in Haiti. I read a lot of reactions about it. Some people were happy, and some others were outraged, including voodooists who declared you misrepresented their religion.
At the end of the show, I heard you say that voodoo will never be eradicated from Haiti. I don’t know why you would say something like this because, presently, I don’t think there is an anti-voodoo campaign going on in Haiti. I don’t think there is a religious war between voodoo and Protestantism either.
If voodoo is threatened, the threat doesn’t come from Protestants or an anti-voodoo sentiment; it comes from the voodooists themselves, those who are leaving their religion for a reason or another. Nobody forced them to leave; they willingly and freely left. Why? I don’t know. Maybe this belief didn’t work for them anymore. Maybe it doesn’t meet their spiritual needs anymore. Worse, maybe it’s destroying their lives. Personally, I know some voodooists who confess they don’t want voodoo for their children. They even call it a curse they don’t want to pass to their offspring. They send their kids to Christian schools and churches to spare them from something they don’t want anymore.
In your show, when the Shalom’s evangelical pastors were casting the voodoo spirit out of a woman, the pastor asked the spirit what it was doing in the woman’s body, the spirit answered, “I am here to destroy it”. Did I hear that right?
So why are voodooists massively leaving voodoo? I don’t know. Maybe you should have found an ex-voodooist and ask him or her, “Why did you leave such an extraordinary religion?” If you did, maybe their answer would have surprised you.
One last thing, major news networks like CNN always make the mistake of saying that most evangelicals came after to Haiti the earthquake and spent big money to spread their religion. It’s false; they were in Haiti long before the earthquake. In fact they’ve been in Haiti for more than 200 years.