V

Vietnamese
A racial category that reflects individuals who identify as Vietnamese or Vietnamese American.See: Asian Source: Census.gov
Vodun (Voodoo)
Related religions: Candomble, Lucumi, Macumba, Voodoo, Vodoun, and YorubaVodun (a.k.a. Vodoun, Voudou, Voodoo, Sevi Lwa) is commonly called Voodoo by the public. The name is traceable to an African word for "spirit". Vodun's can be directly traced to the West African Yoruba people who lived in 18th and 19th century Dahomey. Today over 60 million people practice Vodun worldwide. Vodun, like Christianity, is a religion of many traditions. Each group follows a different spiritual path and worships a slightly different pantheon of spirits, called Loa. The word means "mystery" in the Yoruba language. There are hundreds of minor spirits.Some Beliefs: Followers of Vodun believe that each person has a soul which is composed of two parts: a gros bon ange or "big guardian angel", and a ti bon ange or "little guardian angel". The latter leaves the body during sleep and when the person is possessed by a Loa during a ritual. There is a concern that the ti bon ange can be damaged or captured by evil sorcery while it is free of the body.The purpose of rituals is to make contact with a spirit, to gain their favor by offering them animal sacrifices and gifts, to obtain help in the form of more abundant food, higher standard of living, and improved health. Vodun priests can be male (houngan or hungan), or female (mambo). A Vodun temple is called a hounfour (or humfort). At its center is a poteau-mitan a pole where the God and spirits communicate with the people. An altar will be elaborately decorated with candles, pictures of Christian saints, symbolic items related to the Loa, etc. Source: ReligiousTolerance.org