September 4, 2011 § Leave a comment
First, let me explain why I'm including both hoodoo and voodoo in the listing title.
Hoodoo and voodoo are of course two distinct traditions, the former being folk magic and the latter being a religion. In the Louisiana area, though, especially New Orleans, there is a strain of practice where the two are often blended to a greater extent than elsewhere in the world and the African diasporic traditions.
Furthermore, in the work of Tau Michael Bertiaux, the systems of Haitian voodoo and hoodoo are blended into a dynamic system that offers step by step instruction to the practitioner who seeks to access to the Gnosis by means of esoteric prayer.
This set of hand made rosary beads is a product of the place where Louisiana culture and tradition meet Gnostic Voudon and good old Big Lucky Hoodoo.
Sometimes called a "medium's necklace," this set of beads is ritually created, consecrated, anointed, and censed on nine different altars by a fully consecrated bishop and exorcist in a gnostic voudon lineage of apostolic succession (me), and empowered to assist the practitioner in his or her work as a rootworker, serviteur of the spirits, and interpreter of messages from the Invisible World.
In creating this ritual piece, I have made a type of point chaud (aka pwen cho, and sometimes called a pwen achte for reasons I explain in an article I've written if you don't know this type of work; I can direct you to it) – a hot point, or physical object, in which the spirit is called (actually often sung) down into the piece through creation of a three dimensional (or four dimensional, depending on your perspective) crossroads where it is then housed.
This is not exactly the same type of point chaud that mambos and houngans in traditional Haitian sevis would prepare for a serviteur, or that you may have read about in some academic sources over the last fifty or sixty years – I have not imprisoned a spirit here, and this is not dangerous for the experienced worker, and no spirit or being was coerced. The type of points chauds work I do is a bit different and informed by my own lineage's practice and my own experience and work, which is not what you're going to find anything about in that older academic work (I can direct you to some small amount of material/info on this if you like – just drop me a note upon purchase). While it would be very unwise to become the owner of this piece and not feed it, it is not going to result in anybody's death if the spirits are not fed and worked with – it's not that kind of point chaud. It is not, however, created for the novice or newcomer – I call this a rootworker's/medium's necklace for a reason. It's not likely to hurt a novice or new DIYer, but it's not likely to be a lot of use to one either, as it's designed for some fairly specialized things that most people doing conjure work at home for themselves and their family are simply not going to have a need for.
Bishop Tau Michael Bertiaux says of the rosary, in his chapter on Upadhi I in The Gnostic Voudon Workbook, that prayer beads are among the most effective ways to generate spiritual energy and "hook up" to God energy. He conceives of the rosary as a "prayer machine" and emphasizes that the rosary is further blessed and empowered through use. I have blessed and empowered this rosary, but it will absorb deeper spiritual energies through your repeated use. For more information, see The Gnostic Voudon Workbook (and my blog, where I have a few articles on esoteric prayer and non-traditional rosaries – follow the tags).
This particular rosary is designed to assist the worker and serviteur with just about every aspect of spirit work and rootwork you encounter. I have pulled out all of the stops with this one. I have only ever made one of these a year at most, and some years I'm not able to make any because I don't have the time or materials when the appropriate astrological and celestial events roll around. So I haven't made one of these for a couple of years now. This one is dedicated to mediumship, as the last one was, but it has other elements as well, including those for protection specifically geared for rootworkers and serviteurs.
It is made with stone, metal, and glass beads in segments of color appropriate to the following:
* Simbi, represented by St. Patrick; the patron of magicians and mediums
* Baron Samedi, represented by St. Gerard; the patron of communication with the ancestors and the dead
* St. Joan of Arc; the patron of clairaudience
* Legba, represented here by St. Anthony; the patron of Yoruban divination
* St. Clare of Assissi; the patron of clairvoyance
* St. Michael, the warrior archangel and supreme master of protection and all spirits, often called upon alongside the more traditionally "dangerous" spirits to protect the worker in these rites
* St. Benedict, a powerful ally for exorcism of both people and places
* St. Cyprian, the patron of magic and magicians
There is a medal for each saint and spirit, some modern "charm" style medals and some vintage medals imported from Europe. The center bead is a large, lost-wax-method cast brass bead imported from Ghana, Africa, as are the pater beads, which are sand-cast (I purchase these locally from a local importer who owns a family-run shop and is a native of Ghana). These one of a kind rosary beads also feature a small glass bottle pendant, with stopper, to hold a few drops of oil or a bit of powder – the top screws in securely via fine-threaded metal so you don't have to worry about losing it.
A vintage skeleton key on the strand opposite the glass bottle is at least fifty years old, possibly older, and to boost the key's traditional "road opening" power, it has been touched to doors/gates/entrances to several different important symbolic buildings or places, to give the bearer mastery over them, including a graveyard entrance gate, a police station door, the entrance to a neolithic longbarrow tomb in the UK, the door of a courthouse, and others.
From the center bead hang two charms. The first is a reproduction of an antique cross, hand-cast in bronze from a mold made from the 18th century original, a solid, sturdy piece that will hold up despite what looks like a delicate design of four equal arms terminating in relief patterns with an overall shape of a Jerusalem or Crusader's cross, emblem of the warriors of God.
The second is a bronze Tibetan prayer box pendant that opens to hold your small personal curios or items. I will add appropriate herbs and curios to consecrated beeswax to secure them inside the pendant so they will stay safe. These will include a Job's tear, genuine flakes of 24 K gold, a pinch of real diamond dust, and a genuine black cat bone – a tiny toe bone, complete with claw (my last claw that is not spoken for already). This is my preferred type of cat bone to use when making protective and/or "work" amulets for professional workers and readers, because we need to hone certain skills for our own good when working with the public, aside from the usual divination and casting skills (and if you've read this far, you doubtless know the kind of thing I'm talking about – but if you don't, and you win the auction, I am happy to fill you in – just ask). I will leave enough room inside for you to add your own stuff as well.
Message me after purchase to give me any customization requests for blessings, prayers, or consecrations, or if you have any questions about its use. I will finish its ritual preparation for its new owner, including preparation of the amulet ingredients and censing/dressing on any additional altars that you request, before shipping your new hoodoo rosary to you – so please allow me adequate handling time to do this work. This rosary has already been blessed at nine altars, and will remain on my medium's altar until it finds its new home.
The loop section measures app. sixteen inches with ends held together (not counting the cross and charm hanging from the center bead) – so this is a very long piece. The beads are large to match the size and presence of the piece – most are 8mm and some are larger – so it is not a lightweight piece either. It is designed for ritual use, not for casual wear, and while I make it as sturdy as I can, you risk segments coming unconnected or glass breaking if you wear it out dancing to a nightclub. So please don't do that (if you have to take it out wth you, then carry it in a pouch inside a pocket or bag, ok?). But this does not mean you should not wear or use it – you SHOULD wear it when working or reading, and you should use it regularly. I have consecrated it, but it will only become more powerful and more responsive to you as you use it over the years. It was NOT designed to be laid up in a box or museum or curiosity shop and just looked at. It was made to be worn and used in ritual work.
Ask me if you need care and feeding instructions (many of the recommendations for caring for mojo bags will apply here, including keeping away from casual handling and making sure it's fed regularly). It is designed with an eye towards the spiritual significance of the beads, charms, etc, not with an eye towards comfortable length for jewelry or the latest trend in necklaces, so this may be one of the odder-looking pieces you've likely seen. But every single element of it is there for a specific reason, and you will not find another like it anywhere else.
Beaded wrap bracelet is made with Czech glass seed beads spiraling around five loops of memory wire. I've attached a plethora of dangles and charms, consisting mostly of multicolored resin evil-eye-protection beads hanging from large, brightly colored, sturdy aluminum jump rings. There are also a couple of Czech glass beads and shiny metal dangles.
livejournal is being stupid. I suddenly can't upload any more pictures. Earlier this past week I couldn't post at all, so I couldn't announce these auctions when they started. I hope I don't have to pull up stakes and move to blogger – this is really beginning to irritate me.
Anyway, the memento mori chaplet can be seen at the below link
Memento Mori rosary (technically a chaplet) is made of silver-plated brass beads and feature two bone skull beads carved from yak bone. Offset with African cast brass spacer beads.
Bracelet is nine inches long and has a lobster clasp. Matching earrings hang from silver-toned french hook ear wires and hang just shy of two inches from cener of earlobe.
In the Middle Ages and well into the Victorian era, images of skulls, skeletons, and other symbols associated with death were used to remind the wearer or bearer of the item to contemplate his or her own mortality, to remember that he or she would one day die. Some people used this as a reason to seize the day; others used it as a reason to reject life's transient pleasures and focus on eternal rather than earthly glory. Some used it as a reminder of the Christian promise of the resurrection of the dead
at the end of time, when bodies would rise at the Last Judgment and be reunited with their souls.
Regardless of the meaning you bring to it, this is a rosary (technically a chaplet) that would be suitable for the lover of medieval stuff or the Victorianist on your gift list, as well as any devotee of the family of Vodoun loa known as the Ghuede, who are patrons of death and sexuality and rule the cemeteries.
September 7, 2009 § Leave a comment
I was corresponding with a friend today about how to get somebody to do spiritual bathing when they will pretty much only use regular soaps, and not those perfumey, strongly scented botanica soap bars. I was giving her my Bath and Body Works cheats, and figured I’d share them here too. I give these as gifts when anything else would raise suspicion, and I travel with them if my usual stuff is too bulky or messy to travel with.
Lemongrass Sage for clearing old messes, making good decisions, uplifting and cleansing, study aid
Coconut Lime Verbena for Legba and opening the way
Bergamot Coriander for mastery, "I can," sticking power, prevention of illness/headache
Ylang Ylang and Myrrh for sex appeal/seduction
Orange Ginger for energy, strength, happiness/mood booster
White Clover for protection and uncrossing
Saffron and Fig for love, affection, friendship
Cedarwood and Spice for love/lust, especially to keep a lover around
Eucalyptus Spearmint for protection and jinx breaking
One of the great things about hoodoo is that you can buy citronella tealights and Lemon Pinesol at the dollar store, pray over them, and have fabulous results at a fraction of the cost you’d spend at a botanica for cleansing, uncrossing, or protection work. Remember, happy hoodooers, it doesn’t have to be expensive and complicated to work.