Death is not feared. People are buried inside their house. The Bijagós believe that beyond death, spirits continue to take part in the daily lives of the living. For example, sometime after a man’s death, something happens which is interpreted as a sign that the soul wants to rest in the family home, where the body is buried. In that case, a sculpture is ordered so the soul can move in. In addition to the spirits of the family home, they are countless others who interact daily. Female spirits will go on roaming freely in the forest.
It is through coded dances, music, masks, and sculpture representing the Bijagós' harmony with nature and spirits that we best understand how they interpret the world.
The Bijagós are a highly superstitious society and they have over 100 days dedicated to religious festivities!
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