-prepares for her newbieness to show-
I’m reading the 5,000 book of spells.
What the fuck is a conjure bag?
It’s a voodoo (hoodoo?) thing.
rootandrock, storiesandconjure - would either one of you be willing to give more information on this?
Mojo/Mojo Bag/Mojo hand/Gris-gris. I double-checked context to be sure.
ETA: Hoodoo, yes. Mojo hands have their own sets of rules as to how they’re assembled and what goes into them, some very specific. Basic all-around “Stuff in a bag” charm. I call them “bag charms” or “lamen charms” if they’re not adherent to the strict recipe.
Okay, well when it comes to mojo hands and Gris Gris, the term has kinda been misappropriated by the pagan scene to apply to any and all charm satchet type spells, but it is a littler more complicated than that.
A mojo hand is usually seen as an indwelling spirit in a bag, conjured forth by your own breath as well as the combined powers of the herbs, curios and taglocks that go into the bag. You breathe it into life through prayers, candle lighting, and the plunging of fire into it’s depths. You baptize it with it’s own name that you keep secret to yourself. And call upon it through that name whenever you need aid. It is often fed periodically, or at the very least, initially fixed with oil and spiritual waters/cologne as well as alcohol on it’s creation. Then it lays next to the heat of the person it is for so that it stays nurtured and warmed. So long as the person’s body is taken care of and well, so is the bag. Other spiritual workers on tumblr I believe also have in their family traditions simplified versions of a mojo hand. One practitioner (they used to go by Ozark Witch but I am not sure if they deactivated) calls their’s comets.
I like to think of it as putting a part of me out there into the worlds to work specifically upon an issue, so I am not needing to focus on it 24/7 to give it heat and manifest it into the world of being (to use overtly poetical witchy language that may or may not be seen as actually part of Hoodoo and conjuration).
Some rootworkers who are also initiates and practitioners of Palo traditions compare the mojo hand to a American version of spirit vessels found in Palo traditions, both of which have roots in Kongo spiritual traditions from Africa.
From my readings, Gris gris, is a term often encountered specifically in the context of New Orleans Hoodoo and Voudou traditions. It is a verb and a noun. You work gris gris. And the spiritual product is also a gris gris. Authors like Denise Alvarado trace it’s roots to the blending of spiritual traditions in Senegal and Gambia with Islamic spiritual traditions that were then brought over to the shores of New Orleans with the enslaved. They would be leather pouches with curios and herbs and roots placed alongside scriptures from the Quran, blessed by a spiritual leader or travelling Imam. The gris gris may also be mixed together into powders and such. And depending on the form, like mojo, is believed to have an indwelling spirit, either birthed by the maker, or rooted with the heat of an existing spiritual ally that needs to be cared for and fed periodically, spoken to, and developed a relationship with.
With the diffusing of African traditions into Catholicism in New Orleans as a result of colonization, enslavement, and the Code Noir, Quranic verses transitioned into biblical verses, and later on with the absorption of grimoiric traditions, incantations, words of power, and intent written in alphabets like Theban, Hebrew, Enochian etc.
It is believed by some practitioners that the practice of gris gris became popularized and solidified through the Lineage of the Marie Laveau spiritual workers and priestess. Passed down from mother to daughter, blending New Orleans spiritual traditions of the mother with the Haitian Vodou of the daughter. Also that gris gris were at one point quiet elaborate and appeared similar to Paket Kongo in Haitian Vodou, but with time of the driving of New Orleans Hoodoo and Voudou underground by missionaries, police forces, and slanderous media, became simplified for ease and safety.
Now a days, it seems some practitioners are making a come back with the more elaborate forms of Gris Gris. Denise Alvarado crafts her gris gris packets on the Kongo Cosmogram I believe. Where as Priestess Miriam and Sallie Anne Glassman create theirs I believe on the ponto, veve, and spiritual signatures of their lineage and spirits (Obeah + New Orleans Voudou/Hoodoo and Haitian Vodou respectfully). I cannot verify this though for sure as I am not belonging in either of their houses.
Gris gris has also over time been equated as another name for mojo hands.