Textile workers pass by a picture of the Saint Cheikh Amadou Bamba Mbacké at the Touba Commercial Center in Dakar. Serigne Touba, as Bamba is also called, watches over numerous street corners, shops and taxis all over Senegal and protects millions of people who wear his picture on amulets. Bamba and his teachings still have a strong influence on everyday life. There is hardly a musician or rapper who doesn’t have a song about Bamba in his repertoire. The saint did not only encourage the Senegalese to be peaceful, but also to work very hard. His doctrine of ‘Ora et Labora’, pacifism and submission to the spiritual leaders have made Senegal one of the most stable countries in Africa, and also one with the lowest crime and HIV rates. At the same times it helps the religious élite to sustain their wealth and influence.
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