New Years Tradition: Collard Greens for Success Recipe

Southern Comfort Cooking: Oven Fried chicken, homemade buttermilk biscuits and collard greens by flippinyank licensed under CC 2.0

No Voodoo or Hoodoo discussion about this time of year would be complete without talking about the traditional New Year’s recipe for collard greens. This dish is served just after midnight. If eaten and prepared right, it is said to bring divine blessings of money and success. The shredded greens, which you are supposed to tear with your bare hands, are thought to represent dollars coming your way.  Collard greens are really good for you too. They are rich in calcium and are said to lower … [Read more...]

Yemaya Shines Her Beauty on New Year’s Eve!

Festa de Iemanja 2013 by Clarissa Pacheco licensed under CC 2.0

  New Year's Eve is a time for parties in this world and the next. In Santeria (Lukumi) the goddess Yemaya is often honored on September 7, the feast for Our Lady of Regla. In Bahia she is known as Iemanja, honored on August 15 or February 2, and is frequently associated with Nossa Senhora da Gloria. While in Rio de Janeiro she shines her radiant beauty on New Years Eve. New Year's is a time for huge ceremonies in the Brazilian traditions of Umbanda and Candomble. It is a time for … [Read more...]

Review: Witchcraft, Intimacy and Trust: Africa in Comparison

Festa de Ogum photo by Pit Thompson licensed under CC 2.0

This book excites me: Not for the answers it provides, but for the questions it raises. I'm an anthropologist, in addition to being a Voodoo priestess, and this work is important for the study of Witchcraft, the Occult, and African and Afro-Diasporan Religions ( be it New Orleans Voodoo, Haitian Vodou, Cuban Santeria, or Brazilian Candomble) across the globe. Peter Geschiere is a professor at the University of Amsterdam and Witchcraft, Intimacy and Trust: Africa in Comparison is his latest … [Read more...]

Counting Kwanzaa: Thoughts on Voodoo Unity

Kinara in Oakland YMCA lobby by George Kelly licensed under CC by 2.0

  Someone just posted on my Facebook wall that “Kwanzaa is crap.” So much for hopes of U-N-I-T-Y, in the community, in the world, even on my fracking wall. Okay, Kwanzaa is a relatively new holiday. It's not associated with any religion in particular and is designed to, in the words of it's creator Dr. Maulana Karenga, "bring a cultural message which speaks to the best of what it means to be African and Human in the fullest sense." That sounds great, in theory. Kwanzaa starts … [Read more...]

Marie Laveau’s Tomb is Pink: Shame, Shame, Shame!

Pink Marie Laveau's Tomb.Photo by Dorothy Morrison, copyright 2013. All rights reserved.

  Marie Laveau's Tomb has stood the test of time. It has seen flood, violence, disrespect, haters, and now someone has painted it pink. Marie Laveau's Tomb is a shrine to Voodoo practitioners around the globe, a mecca if you will, that is the second most visited grave in the United States. Marie Laveau is New Orleans Voodoo Queen. Immortalized in story and song, she was said to have possessed immense power which lives on through her spirit today. The grave is a site for visitors … [Read more...]

Christmas with the Ancestors: Sicilian Stuffed Artichoke Recipe

Sicilian Stuffed Artichoke photo by Lilith Dorsey

  The holidays are upon us and it is time for friends, family and feasting. My Voodoo house celebrates this as another joyful time to share with the ancestors and renew our spirits. There is cornbread, black eyed peas, collards, ham, and the delicious list goes on. Each food fulfills it's own special role providing healing, fertility, abundance, financial success and the like. I grew up with the Sicilian portion of my Family and as my grandfather always said “the Sicilian part … [Read more...]

Krampus Is Cool This Christmas!

Grub Vom Krampus! by wendEwho! Thompson licensed under CC 2.0

You may be thinking, why is the Voodoo Universe blog making a stop to talk about Krampus ? Well, Krampus is cool. The Nazis hated him, and he has had two appearances on network television this month. He drinks beer and he will beat you into submission if you don't behave. Sounds like a modern hero to me. If he isn't honored as a Gede (Voodoo ancestor spirit) yet, he certainly should be. He represents social control and the awesome power of disguise. Masquerade is a vital component of magic in … [Read more...]


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