The wizard, through incantations followed by a ritual, can exit his body. This phenomenon is commonly referred to in the Fon language as “e ton sin akpame,” which literally translates to “he has exited his envelope, that is, his body.” This allows him to go anywhere, even into tightly sealed rooms. This power is acquired during the “awawuwu” ritual, meaning the ritual of wing thrusting. A wizard or witch who has not yet undergone this wing thrusting ritual cannot attend any of the sorcerer’s gatherings without being accompanied by a sponsor elder; and it is under the cover of the wings of this elder that they will make all their movements.

If for any reason, this elder is unable to attend, they delegate their sponsorship power to another. We have encountered cases where sponsorship power has been delegated to animals such as cats, owls, lizards, etc. And it is these animals that go to fetch the aspiring sorcerer to attend meals and nocturnal meetings. When the owl comes to fetch an applicant with a calabash in its mouth, whether the aspiring sorcerer wants it or not, they must obligatorily go to the meeting place. This formula is used when sorcerers realize that their candidate wants to escape.

The wizard then uses all sorts of animals for their operations: the owl, the scavenger, the ant, the cat, the snake, the pig, the mouse. In the past, the animals most used by sorcerers for their operations were birds. Probably for this reason, joining witchcraft was called “reception of bird.” “e yi hè,” meaning “he has received the bird.”

In the past, when the animal used by sorcerers for their operations was killed, the sorcerer would die immediately afterward. Nowadays, sorcerers do not die anymore when their substitute animal is killed because they have several animals. As soon as their animals are killed, they fall ill for a few hours, the time it takes to reconstitute the killed animal. So how do they reconstitute this animal?

Time will certainly reveal this. For now, we have no answer. The wizard sometimes also manifests his presence by a light in the form of a flash, like a camera flash. I still remember the case of little Claire from Golo-Yekon. One day, while I was maneuvering to get my car out of the garage, a nine-year-old girl came to see me at the presbytery, crying, and said to me, panicked, “Father, save me, my father just forced me into marriage, and I don’t want it.” Filled with compassion, I asked my intern to take care of the little girl until my return, and especially to accompany her to the mayor’s office to make a statement. Which was done.

When I returned in the evening, there was an impressive crowd in front of my presbytery. I asked what was happening. That’s when I was made to understand that the little girl who had taken refuge in the presbytery was breaking everything while performing “Dan” voodoo chants and asking to join her father. I was totally confused by such a contradiction because I no longer understood anything. She came by herself, asking to be saved; then she starts breaking everything because she wants to go home. My procedure was quite simple. Once back at the presbytery, I asked her to leave and immediately rejoin her parents.

Suddenly, she fell silent; no more agitation; no more chants. I was later summoned by her father to the mayor’s office. It was there that the father said to me in the presence of the mayor: “I haven’t even opened the lid of the jar and you’re scared, you shout and you agitate; what will you do when I remove the lid of the jar?” I replied: “I command you, remove the lid of your jar!” That was the pot calling the kettle black. He remained stunned for a few minutes. Then he shook my hand vigorously. He is now my daughter’s legal guardian. But the story didn’t end there.

I brought the girl back to the shelter for girls in difficult situations that I had built in Golo-Yekon. The following night, all the girls saw fire entering through the roof holes, which then moved toward the nine-year-old girl’s travel bag. Promptly, she got up to crouch next to the bag. Then, she took a piece of meat from it and ate it. The girls’ dormitory was illuminated for 3 to 4 minutes, and all the other girls, seeing the nine-year-old girl eating meat, became afraid.

Having not finished the quantity of meat that night, the next noon, she put the rest in the collective sauce, and all the girls ate it. Twenty-four hours later, they began to behave strangely. After evening prayer, we sang the “Salve Regina,” and one of them, passing by the presbytery oratory at the time we sang this beautiful hymn to the Virgin Mary, fell into agitation and began to speak, describing how the nine-year-old girl had given her witchcraft through the meat, how she had ended up at witch meetings with certain people…

So I questioned the nine-year-old girl, who made me understand that her father, at night, had turned into fire and entered their dormitory, leaving her a big piece of meat in her bag. When she shared this piece of meat with her classmates, they found themselves, at night, at the witches’ meal, except for two girls, even though they had also eaten this meat. But how to explain the fact that all the other girls could see fire, while the nine-year-old witch girl rather saw her father in the form of fire? This remains very difficult to grasp by reason.

In addition to the wizard fire, some trees serve as meeting places for these spiritual actors of the night. They would have the power to enter, gather, and eat there (such as iroko, baobab, and some large trees). But why are these trees chosen, and not other categories of trees? Nowadays, it must be recognized that there is no longer any particularity. Sorcerers use all categories of trees. So all trees can serve as meeting spaces for them. To attack their victims, these sorcerers use methods very inaccessible to ordinary mortals.


This text is an excerpt from the book “Exorcism Facing the New Challenges of Witchcraft, Testimony of an Exorcist 2nd Edition” written by Father Pamphile FANOU.

We invite you to read the following article “The Phenomenon of ‘Prepared Money.'”

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