Kel Asouf

   This refers to the Islamic belief in djins (demons), known as "people who live alone," "people who talk to no one," "people of the night," "people of empty places," or "people of the earth." The Kel Asouf are particularly active during the hours of darkness and in and around empty places, fireplaces, trees, caves, slaughter places, and water holes. They are believed by the Tuareg to have human qualities. They are essentially wicked human beings, and many of the daily mishaps are attributed to them. The Tuareg maintain that most illnesses are caused by the Kel Asouf entering the body, which can cause death to both humans and animals. Protection against the Kel Asouf involves the practice of a series of taboos imbued with baraka and the use of aromatic herbs to drive the mischievous Kel Asouf away.

Historical Dictionary of the Berbers (Imazighen) . . 2014.

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