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A Mediator between the Material
and Spiritual Worlds


There is an anthropomorphic aspect to musical instruments, whose constituent elements are often identified with parts of the human body — head, neck, ribs, belly, etc. Through their repertoires, instruments also convey symbols that incorporate the notions of love, bravery, morality, faith or pride.

Benediction of the Rada drums, Cayes-Jacmel, Haiti / CMC - P. Carpentier

Certain instruments have a purely spiritual purpose in that they must place the musician and the audience in contact with the world of the gods. This is the case with ritual music, which is played to propitiate the gods or obtain specific favours, celebrate religious holidays or accompany initiation ceremonies.