Witch Bottles: An Unbottling

Today, dear readers, we have for your consideration a sort of Paranormal Supplies PSA (Paranormal Safety Announcement). Enjoy!
A concept known since ancient times, Witch Bottles have been historically viewed as charms of protection against witches. But, since modernity marches on, the term (and charm itself) seems to be more frequently used by witches (and those in the metaphysical circle) as a ward against negative energies in general.
Considering that, to outsiders, a typical Witch Bottle is nothing more than a simple glass jar filled to the brim with garbage, it’s far from a glamorous topic. But, if you’re worried about your supernatural safety, this may be just the answer you’ve been looking for!

witch-bottle-paranormal-supplies

The most important, and obvious ingredient of a Witch Bottle is, of course, the bottle. The shape, color, and size of bottle is unimportant, but generally something around the size of a medium-sized mason jar is considered ideal. Glass is the preferred material, since it will not biodegrade and is sturdy enough to withstand burial (this is crucial).

Now that we’ve obtained our bottle, we can focus on the interior and protective properties therein.

The layout of a witch bottle is intended to somewhat resemble a magic circle. Therefore, the first layer of the jar is usually devoted to a salt circle. These are, of course, a recognized ward against malevolent energies. Simply pour some sea salt into the bottom of the bottle, enough to thoroughly cover the base and heel, providing a flat and purified foundation for the rest of your bottle.

The second layer of your jar will consist of a bunch of rusty nails. They don’t necessarily have to be nails per se, just a pile of any rusted, dangerous, sharp metal objects. The purpose behind these objects is to “impale” the negative energies, to shred them and protect the owner from any ill intent. This is probably going to be the widest band of the bottle, fill it about halfway with these objects. But be sure not to cut yourself. Obviously.

The third layer of the bottle is meant to symbolize the bottle’s owner. There are a few ways you can do this, but almost all of them involve a piece of the owner’s body. The most commonly used of these would be the owner’s own urine (we told you this wasn’t glamorous). However, for the more squeamish among our readers (believe us, we understand), anything from finger/toenails to strands of hair to spit to blood can be used as a substitute. This ingredient will essentially act as an identifier, telling the bottle who it’s meant to work to protect. Some have foregone this step, using a tied-up piece of cloth or paper with the owner’s name written on it, but it is not recommended, as in the magic sphere, names have immense power and should not be given out freely (especially in a ward).

The final component of the Bottle itself is the seal. Take the lid the bottle came with and affix it as normal, and seal it with melted wax from a black candle. This will serve as the final layer of banishment, and in effect activates the ward.

After you’ve completed your Witch Bottle, the final step of protecting yourself is storing it. Most practitioners agree that a Witch Bottle is ideally buried, either near your most-used home entrance or the farthest corner of your property. Some prefer keeping their bottles inside of their homes or near the hearth, but this would keep the ward from working until after negative energies have entered your home, so it is not recommended.

In the ever-evolving world of paranormal investigation, sometimes one can forget to look out for their own wellbeing. Perhaps today’s article has opened some minds to some protection methods a little beyond the norm.

So, dear readers, have you any stories or suggestions involving paranormal safety? We’d love to hear from you!

Voodoo and Mardi Gras: The “Mystick” Meeting in New Orleans

Mardi Gras Mask and BeadsIn nearly every corner of the planet, no city is more associated with Mardi Gras than New Orleans. Indeed, the extravagant annual festival is viewed by many as the pinnacle of everything a celebration should be – parades, music, masquerades and general debauchery which can only be stopped by the threat of wartime (and once due to a police protest in 1979). The celebration has continued strong since 1703, in which a small plot of land 60 miles south of what is now ‘Nola was named “Pointe Du Mardi Gras” by Jean Baptiste Le Moyne Sieur de Bienville, a Canadian explorer. But we at Paranormal Supplies would be remiss if we didn’t discuss the more… esoteric side of the festival.

When most hear the term “Voodoo”, it’s understandable that they may think of some of the more outlandish aspects of the religion. Snake symbolism, zombies, mysterious men adorned in top hats and corpse paint – All very much aspects, but not quite to the extent that one might assume. In truth, Voodoo is a fusion between ancient African tribal practices and Catholic doctrine. Slaves brought to the area, though forced by their owners to give up their ancestral religions outright and convert to Christianity, found parallels within the Catholic saints and the animism present in their traditions, eventually merging the two. In addition, Native American tribes and New Orleans slaves displayed marked intermingling, and thus some of their practices were incorporated into the budding religion known as Voodoo (not to be confused with Hoodoo, which is related though not the same, and most certainly a thing.)

In Voodoo practice, veneration of one’s ancestors and the dead are powerful tenants, and post-emancipation practitioners took it very seriously during Mardi Gras festivities. Many chose to honor their Native American allies by hand-crafting elaborate “Indian” costumes from beads and feathers, as well as highly-structured “Tribes” with varying roles such as Flag Boy, Spy Boy, and Queen (if you’ve ever heard the song “Iko Iko” by the Dixie Cups, yes, that’s what it’s about). These traditions still exist today, though some (if not most) who participate don’t practice voodoo.  Really, the Mardi Gras Indians are one of the most instantly recognizable and beautiful aspects of New Orleans Mardi Gras, and a vibrant piece of the puzzle that is New Orleans culture.

 

 

http://www.mardigrasneworleans.com/history.html

https://thenarcissisticanthropologist.com/2013/03/16/voodoo-and-mardi-gras-indians-new-orleans-deep-culture/

http://www.neworleansonline.com/neworleans/multicultural/multiculturaltraditions/voodoo.html