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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

MLAAW: Blood-Spell

How a Mojo Bag Saved My Life...

As I shared in an earlier entry, magic has always been a part of my life even before I knew very much about it, how it works or how to do magick. However, I credit the idea of, belief in, and practice of magic with me being the person that I am. Today, I would like to share with you the story of how a mojo bag saved my life. 

I was always a shy, introverted child. I didn't have very many friends growing up. I was often picked on by my peers for being different (i.e. gay). As a freshman in high school, when many teens are discovering themselves as sexual beings, I became a regular target of bullies for my perceived homosexuality. I was a young lad of 16 and even though, deep down inside I knew they were right about me I wasn't ready to admit it to myself let alone anyone else. 

Having inherited my love of reading from my mother, I often retreated from the harsh cruelties of the world into my own fantasy world through books. Whereas my mother read romance novels, I leaned toward fantasy fiction. As I grew older and my interest in the occult became more prevalent, I began reading about ghosts, witches and vampires. I became intrigued with the idea of becoming a vampire myself. I believed that if I was a vampire then I would have the power to make the bullies stop hurting me; that I would have the power to hurt them, and that I could make the boys that I like, like me in return. Later I would turn to witchcraft for the same reasons.

One particularly harsh month the bullying got worse than ever. I felt like I couldn't turn to anyone. School officials either wouldn't or couldn't do anything and my home life wasn't ideal either.  I began to realize that my fantasy of becoming a vampire had very little chance of becoming a reality and that's when I began to entertain thoughts of suicide. I just wanted everyone to leave me alone but it seemed like the more I tried to will it to stop the worse my situation became. 

Then one day at the library I was reading a book about vampires and came across an entry about Elizabeth Bathory. I had heard of Elizabeth Bathory before and read accounts of how she had murdered virgins and bathed in their blood to stay young and beautiful. However, this book mentioned the Countess' involvement with witchcraft and mentioned a charm she carried for protection. According to the story, Elizabet carried a small leather pouch inside of which an incantation was written on a piece of parchment (although some accounts say it was the skin of a unbaptized baby). The incantation read:

'Isten took nine stems of glory
And he killed the serpent which split into nine pieces
Since then the nine herbs have had power against the nine evil spirits,
Against the nine poisons and the nine infections,
Against the red poison, against the disgusting poison,
Against the white poison, against the purple poison,
Against the yellow poison, against the green poison,
Against the black poison, against the blue poison,
Against the brown poison, against the crimson poison,
Against the prick of the serpent, against swelling by water,
Against the thorn and that of the thistle,
Against swelling from ice and against that from poison.'

An so believing that if vampires couldn't save me, then perhaps witchcraft could I copied the incantation down precisely as it had been written in the book. When I got back home, I stole a little leather pouch that my grandfather kept in a junk drawer and inside of which he kept some poker dice. I snuck a candle and some matches into my room for my little ritual. 

That night, I waited for everyone to go asleep and then I lit the candle. I read the incantation over and over several times asking God to save me from my bullies and give me the strength not to take my own life. Thinking that the spell needed something more, I pricked my finger and drew a pentagram over the prayer in my own blood and then folded up the paper with a bit of my own hair inside of it. I tucked the paper in the little leather pouch and asked God to keep me safe at least until my birthday which was just a few weeks away. Somehow I believed that if I could just stay alive until my birthday everything would be all right. 

Even as I write these words I cannot remember exactly what occurred in the days after I made my little mojo bag (and I know that technically it wasn't a real mojo bag). I don't recall if the bullying eased up or I got stronger or what. All I know is that something changed for the better because I am still here...and you don't see any bullies around here do you?

Happy Hoodooing



Denise Alvarado said...

dean, what you did was a lot like traditional gris gris, from writing the incantation/prayer to repeating it over and over again and drawing the symbol (though blood is not typically used in gris gris bags) and putting it in a leather bag. Funny I just wrote an article on my blog about gris gris and your story reminds me a lot of that tradition. You intuitively knew what to do, whatever the tradition, to spiritually keep you going and safe. And for that I am grateful because I would never have met you otherwise. And I am most grateful for the fact that you found a means of empowerment which is the saving grace for many suicidal folks...hope and empowerment.

Anonymous said...

I thought I heard the nine stems of glory from somewhere. I believe that it originated from Odin's Nine Herbs Charm from Old English lore.

" A snake came crawling, it bit a man.
Then Woden took nine glory-twigs,
Smote the serpent so that it flew into nine parts.
There apple brought this pass against poison,
That she nevermore would enter her house."