Baka (Babako) In Haitian voodoo, a very evil loa (deified spirit of the dead). Black roosters and black goats are sacrificed to appease his anger. Sometimes instead of the blood sacrifice he will accept a virgin girl for sexual intercourse. His symbol is two broken crosses.
Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante
Baka is an evil loa or god in Vodoun who can only be evoked and commanded by the most powerful magical adepts, a houngan or mambo. Baka is summoned to curse others with misfortune, havoc, and death. He is appeased by blood sacrifices of a black rooster or a black goat or sexual play with a virgin. In such appeasement rituals, the priest takes the role of the loa.
The term Baka, most commonly associated with dangerous spirits of Haitian Vodou, is variously used but is almost always negative or pejorative:
• Baka may be a synonym for minor Demons.
• Baka may indicate malevolent, tricky souls of the dead.
• Baka most commonly refers to powerful spirits willing to contract with sorcerers.
Baka and magician are both independent contractors. The Baka is not a member of a pantheon but a free spirit; the sorcerer works for him- or herself. Each represents only their own desires. The Baka will do whatever the magician/shaman/sorcerer seeks as long as the price is right. Thus the Baka could theoretically be commanded to perform good works, although this is generally not believed to be the case.
Haitian Baka derive from Congolese spirits described as dead souls wandering the forest or as small malevolent spirits who wreak havoc. Baka also names an ethnic group: Baka Pygmies, nomadic hunter-gatherers who still live in the diminishing rain forests of Cameroon, Congo, and Gabon. They have historically been persecuted by settled Bantu neighbors who traditionally perceive Baka Pygmies as possessing profound magical knowledge. Using the name Baka to refer to malevolent forest spirits reflects Bantu fear of these forest dwellers.
In the context of Haitian Vodou, individual Baka make deals with individual magical practitioners. They are typically asked to provide or guard wealth, reveal hidden treasure, or do revenge work. They are not patient spirits but clever tricksters who will turn on you in an instant if you fail to live up to your end of the bargain or their interpretation of your end of the bargain. They are dangerous and should be avoided.
Baka may have horns.
Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses – Written by : Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.