Recently in Voodoo Category
The Drudge Report has justed posted a link to a fascinating news story out of New Jersey, involving a 21-year-old man who lived as woman but died in a voodoo ritual.
The voodoo priest identifies himself as Houngan Hector on his Gade Nou Leve Society Web site, which says the three-day Lave Tet ceremony was to begin Friday.
Lave Tet (from the French laver tete) literally means head-washing, according to several Haitian voodoo Web sites. Hector's site describes it as a ceremony that begins with cleansing, after which participants lie in a "badji," or altar room, before being "baptized."
Hector, who claims he was initiated as a senior priest in Haiti, said Lave Tet "improves the ability for possession, clears the mind, clarifies abilities for seeing, and substantially improves the life."
Houngan Hector had an online store--Botanica Santa Clara--that appears to be down but is archived here. Fortunately, the practitioner's Youtube account is still live. Below, a sample testimonial from a satisfied customer who apparently survived a ritual.
Of course, she could just be a zuvembie!
Tucked away in the City section of today's NY Times is a wonderful account of the work of Iya Nirvana, a prominent Greenwich Village Santeria priestess. Among the article's gems--her initiation ritual.
I was initiated in 1986. An initiation lasts a year and seven days. The first night is river night. They took me to a river blindfolded. I don’t know what river it was, but let me tell you, I know I was washed in the river. The next day all the songs are sung, all the waters poured. The next day a group of people come and dress you for breakfast and you sit on your throne, which is a stump of wood built by your godparents and consecrated for your seven-day stay.
The next day they dress you in beautiful clothing with pearls and gold and things your orisha likes, and there are big parties with drums and singing, with prayers, prayers and more prayers. Then you spend the rest of that week on that mat.
For the next year, you wear white every day and you eat on a certain plate with a certain cup and spoon. You cannot wear clothes with sleeves that cover less than three-quarters of your arms. You cannot look into mirrors or let people touch you. You’re not supposed to be out after dark. You sleep on the floor on a mat. You’re like a newborn.
These days, I’m an Internet service between here and the worldwide cosmos. It’s not hocus-pocus. It’s a higher form of science.
Via the New York Post:
A human skull that may have been used in a bizarre ritual was found on a Bronx beach flanked by multicolored necklaces and with a jar of mercury embedded inside it, The Post has learned.
Knowledgeable sources say the skull was likely stolen from a grave and used in a Palo Mayombe ritual, which was developed by Central African slaves in Cuba and spread to the United States in the 19th century.
At the center of worship is a cauldron filled with human and animal remains, herbs, spices, cemetery soil and branches, considered sacred because it is believed the gods reside in them.
Freedom of religion--ya gotta love it! Happy Independence Day!
It's Christmas, and that means time for wives everywhere to break out the traditional skull jewelry and excoriate their addled spouses for buying them inappropriate gifts.
(Didn't know that Nicolas Cage--"star of National Treasure II, playing now at a theater near you!"--and his son were producing a comic book? Cage Factor has more on Voodoo Child and the entire line of Virgin Comics, which "hopes to challenge titans Marvel and DC by marketing largely to Asia and infusing the story lines with Eastern mythology." HT: The Beat)
Breaking news in the New York Post: reports that the New York City Dept. of Education is about to fire a New York City principal who allegedly forced staff to participate a Santeria ritual cleansing of their school. What actually happened isn't clear--the priest accused of leading the ceremony denies practicing Santeria and the principal denies the whole thing, but the staff members themselves tell a far different story in considerable detail:
A former assistant principal, Melody Crooks-Simpson, said there was a running joke at the school that sage should be used to cleanse the building because many of the students were ill-behaved. But it seems Tamayo took it seriously, Crooks-Simpson told investigators, and had Fonte lead a ceremony at which she sprinkled chicken blood on the building.
Crooks-Simpson told investigators she didn't attend that ceremony but showed up to school a few days later in a white dress to participate in another ceremony because Tamayo said it wouldn't work without her. She said she was charged $900 by Tamayo for the rite.
Another teacher saw Tamayo, Fonte and another woman, wearing white dresses, performing a ritual at the school while Fonte balanced a silver tray with 40 lit candles on her head, said investigators, who were tipped in February by an anonymous caller who accused Tamayo of misconduct.
"Superstition is ubiquitous in football," so it should come as no surprise that this official World Cup voodoo cup has been one of the event's hottest selling tie-ins. The "FooTooKit" makes it simple for fans to curse their team's opponent in any given game--just dress the doll with a shirt bearing the opposition's national symbol, stick in a bunch of pins and you'll help secure a victory for your team.
And now you know the real reason why the fifth-ranked U.S. team mysteriously choked to lose 3-0 in its opening game.
(Click here for more World Cup marketing fun!)