Rising Soca music echoing through an island who’s name literally means eel due to its’ shape one would not think of this tropical paradise as having anything to do with superstition. Millions of visitors grace its’ sandy beaches never knowing what is lurking, watching & waiting in the wings to induce thoughts that nightmares are made of.
It is not bad enough that the Old Higue of Caribbean folk lore derives from this area and numerous oral traditions of this demonic spirit that shows itself as an elderly man or woman who, upon shedding its human skin, is revealed a glowing, animated ball of light. Female variants are said to drink the blood of children, while the male variants prey primarily on adults. Waking up with black and blue marks on one’s skin is said to be a sign that you’ve been visited by Ol’ Higue overnight. Tradition dictates that to ward them off, one must leave a bag or a bowl of rice before one’s door before bed.
They also believe in the Jumbees of the trees, primarily the Silk Cotton Trees which encroaches with its finger like roots able to engulf a home with in its’ grip. This legendary tree, is easily among the most feared and notorious symbols of the spirit realm in this part of the world.
The reverence attached to these trees goes all the way back to the slave days, a product of ancient belief systems practiced throughout Western Africa, native home to a great many slaves, as well as the silk cotton trees themselves.
According to folklore, the silk cotton is one of the best places to find spirits, Jumbees, duppies, and other supernatural beings.They live inside the trees, which presents a bit of a problem if you’re ever trying to build something where these trees are numerous. There are tales of islanders refusing to cut down silk cotton trees for fear of releasing the spirits inside. These spirits and belief are prevalent throughout this area as well as all the Caribbean.
source Caribbean Uncharted