Zombies – The Real Story of Undead (Part 1)

Interesting facts
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Many people may not realize that zombies are considered to be very real.

Without a doubt, there are places in the world, which have the word “weird” written all over it. One of those places is the Island nation of Haiti. 80 to 90 percent Haitians practice or believe  in the voodoo religion. In voodoo, it is believed, that zombies are indeed real. However, they are not stuff of imagination or fiction, but they are real flesh and blood creations. Now, you might be wondering, how much truth is there behind these traditions of actual zombies?

In Haiti, zombies (also spelled as zombi) were said to be corpses that were reanimated through black magic by very powerful voodoo priests or shamans, known as bokor. They could use zombies for many reasons, but mostly it was for manual work. To understand how a dead person can become zombie, we need to know, that there are two ways a person can die. First one is by natural means such as sickness and the second one is unnatural means such as murder. The people died unnaturally have souls, that are more vulnerable to the witchcraft of voodoo sorcerers. The sorcerers would trap these souls into the bottles or jars called zombi astral, which are used to control undead body called zombi cadavre. 

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Voodoo priest, Bokor, source

Those, who are turned into zombies are described as having very thin features and grayish skin, which is very close to their bones. The expression is still and movement is described as clumsy and purposeless. They move slowly, without any coordination. Zombies can also hear and understand basics command and also can talk (only very basic phrases). They lack free will. Their strength is enhanced, they do not feel pain and they do not get tired. The real zombies of Haiti are not aggressive, unless they are commanded to do so by their master.

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Haitian artwork depicting zombies, source

The difference between Western images of zombies and the zombies of Haiti is, that zombies of Haiti are seen as victims, not the villains. Haitians are not afraid of zombie, they are afraid of becoming a zombie. However there are ways, that zombie can be freed. It is said, that if the zombi astral is somehow broken or if the bokor responsible for zombification dies, the person can regain some free will and can return to the family. It is also said that feeding zombie salt can reverse the effects, especially if it is done by bokor himself. Zombies, which are freed in these ways remain still the same. The only way, that a person can be fully revert to a person before their “death” is through mercy and divine intervention of a voodoo God called Le Grand Maitre.

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Michaela Miklusak

Michaela Miklusak is deputy editor of TechandFacts.com and big technology enthusiast. Michaela now lives in Singapore, where she studies System Engineering and Informatics. michaelam@techandfacts.com

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