The Lila is is a rich ceremony of song, music, dance, costume, and incense that takes place over the course of an entire night, ending around dawn.
The ritual enables participants to enter a trance state, in which they may perform startling and sometimes spectacular dances.
It is by means of these dances that participants negotiate their relationships with djinns either placating them if they think they have been offended, or strengthening an existing relationship. The maâlem or Master Musician, by burning incense and playing musical instruments, calls the saints and supernatural entities to present themselves in order to take possession of the followers, who devote themselves to ecstatic dancing.
It all sounds like a load of fun and an all nighter with a difference - but it is a very serious matter for believers.
Often found attached to a fibula which is essentially a cloak fastener, is a Tagemout. This is an egg-shaped bead which ranges in size according to prosperity and is decorated with filigree and enamel. It is a symbol of fertility. Coins are usually attached to it, symbolising wealth and I attached Afghani coins that I had in my stash as this pendant bead came without them. Apart from the black agate beads and the colourful ceramic beads, I made the others from polymer clay. The faux beeswax amber beads were inlaid with wire 'repair' joins, and turquoise and coral clay and then distressed and antiqued to imitate real ones, and the lapis beads are polished to a high shine. A Tibetan chant burned into a piece of bone which came to me as a gift when I purchased beads from a vendor ages ago, and has sat in my collection waiting patiently for it's turn to be used, was dangled from a chain at the back of this necklace from a copper clasp I made myself from wire.