top of page
Voodoo-  Unveiling The Hidden.

Voodoo- Unveiling The Hidden.

SKU: 562406


Voodoo, often portrayed with a shroud of mystery and fright in popular media, holds a rich and complex history that transcends its sensationalized depiction. While the practice has been linked to magic and malevolent myths, the reality of Voodoo is deeply spiritual and rooted in a vibrant cultural heritage. This blog post delves into the origins of Voodoo, highlights influential figures associated with it, and unveils some of its rare customs and rituals.

Voodoo, also spelled Vodou or Vodun, traces back to West Africa, specifically regions that are now Togo, Benin, and Nigeria. The term itself is derived from the Fon language word "Vodun," which means "spirit" or "deity." Voodoo emerged from the traditions of the African diaspora and evolved significantly through the transatlantic slave trade, absorbing influences from the Roman Catholic Church and Indigenous American practices as it took root in places like Haiti, Cuba, Brazil, and the Southern United States.

The heart of Voodoo is its emphasis on the connection with ancestral spirits and deities known as Loa or Lwa, who act as intermediaries between humans and the supreme creator, Bondye. Voodoo's core ethical tenet is to live in harmony with nature and one's community, reflecting its reverence for both the visible and invisible worlds.

Influential Figures in Voodoo:

One of the most renowned figures in Voodoo is Marie Laveau (1801–1881), known as the "Voodoo Queen of New Orleans." Laveau was a free woman of color who gained fame for her powerful influence, philanthropy, and reputed magical abilities. Her legacy continues to captivate people worldwide, and she remains a beloved figure in New Orleans culture to this day.

Another famous figure is François "Papa Doc" Duvalier, the president of Haiti from 1957 to 1971. He wielded Voodoo symbolism to garner support and control his populace, often associating himself with the Loa Baron Samedi to instill fear and command authority. He is where this piece comes from. This is a real snake/ bones of one. This was used in multiple rituals but the main one was Kanzo.

Voodoo is steeped in a myriad of rituals that vary by region and community. One lesser-known ceremony is the "Kanzo" initiation rites, where initiates (known as Hounsis) undergo a transformative experience to become Voodoo priests (Houngans) or priestesses (Mambos). This rite involves several stages, including seclusion, instruction, and, in some branches, a symbolic 'death' and rebirth, aligning the initiate with the Loa.

Another rare Voodoo custom is the "Fêt Gede," a festival celebrating the Gede Loa, spirits that embody death and fertility. Festivities include offerings, music, dance, and participants often donning black, white, and purple attire, with some appearing as Baron Samedi himself.

Voodoo practices are closely linked with animal sacrifice, a sacred act intended to nourish the Loa and bring balance. Though controversial, this ritual is a profound display of reciprocity between devotees and the spirit world, with the meat typically shared within the community.

The Cérémonie Bois Caïman is considered by some to be a catalyst for the Haitian Revolution. According to lore, enslaved Africans held a secret Voodoo gathering in 1791, led by a priest named Dutty Boukman, where a pact with the spirits was made to free Haiti from colonial oppression. This event exemplifies the intrinsic relationship between Voodoo and the fight for freedom.

Voodoo is a faith that intricately weaves the spiritual and the earthly, the ancient and the contemporary. Far from the misconceived notions of dark magic, Voodoo is a religion full of life, community, and connection to the divine. The practices and customs, while varying in their expressions across different cultures, are united by their profound respect for the sacred forces of life and the enduring bonds between the living and their ancestors. Through understanding its true origins, influential figures, and sacred rituals, we gain insight into a tradition that has endured and adapted through centuries of change, continuing to thrive with reverence and vitality.

Only a few rituals were mentioned here but there are many of them. A lot of them went into this piece. The snake bones have been bleached and they did have to be restrung. Everything is original except the string which doesn’t matter. What matters are the bones.

Some of the rituals this holds are going to be listed below. The werewolf one has been done so many times it sits in a different piece that I will get on.

The Bizango Secret Society Ritual:

Bizango is a secret society within the Haitian Vodou tradition that largely operates underground and is known for its secretive nighttime meetings. The society's origins can be traced back to the era of slavery, and it played a role in the Haitian Revolution. Bizango societies have their own special rituals, deities (known as the Lwa), and codes of conduct. Their rituals are often protective in nature and serve as a way of policing their communities according to their own rules. The initiatory rites and practices of the Bizango are closely guarded secrets, and as such, they are not public knowledge or openly discussed with outsiders.

The Kanzo Initiation-

While initiation rituals are a core component of many Vodou communities, the Kanzo ceremony is a particularly intensive initiation that involves several stages. It is the process through which one becomes a Houngan (priest) or Mambo (priestess). Due to the intense and intimate nature of the ceremonies, which involve spiritual trials and teachings that are meant to bind the individual more closely to the Lwa, detailed accounts of the Kanzo are not typically divulged to outsiders. Kanzo rituals often culminate in the taking of sacred oaths and the acquisition of new spiritual names and protections for the initiates.

The Petwo Rites-

Petwo is a family of spirits (Lwa) in the Vodou pantheon that are known for their fiery and hot temperament. Petwo rites are intense, often involving more energetic and rapid drum rhythms, dancing, and specific rituals that invite possession by these powerful Lwa. Since possession is a direct communion with the divine, these ceremonies are considered highly significant and are not lightly shared with non-initiates.

It must be stressed that discussing the details of specific Vodou rituals goes beyond the scope of respect for cultural and religious privacy, as many traditions in Vodou are not meant for public or casual consumption. Moreover, because Vodou is a lived religious tradition, its rituals and practices continue to evolve, and they can vary widely from one community, congregation, or spiritual lineage to another. The rare rituals of Vodou are part of a sacred tradition that is passed down through oral history and direct teaching within the community, preserving the integrity and power of their practice for those who earnestly commit to this spiritual life.

Danbala's Ascension Rite-

Danbala (also spelled Damballah) is one of the most revered Lwa in the Vodou pantheon, often depicted as a serpent and associated with creation and wisdom. The Danbala's Ascension Rite is a mysterious and rare ceremony that seeks to honor and evoke this ancient deity. It is said that through this ritual, practitioners aim to reach deeper states of spiritual enlightenment and wisdom. Specific details of such a rite are typically not disclosed to non-initiates. This was another one totally dedicated to Francois.

The Loup Garou Transformation-

The Loup Garou, similar to the European concept of a werewolf, is a creature of folklore believed to possess the power to shapeshift. In some remote regions of Haiti, there are whispered accounts of secret Vodou rites that are said to grant certain individuals the supernatural ability to transform into a Loup Garou.

  • See the entire listing on the blog.

    Read entire listing on the blog section

bottom of page