Saturday, December 10, 2016

The Bible in Folk Magic ~~~~~~

Hello Everyone,

A number of you have noticed that in doing magic I give passages from the Psalms in the Bible to say,  well one of my readers posted this question to me.

“Hi Ms. Q

Speaking about using the Bible. Can you do a post or an article about the Bible? Since some of the post you posted have Psalms which is in the Bible.

Thank you.   Danny”

Well Danny I am going to do my best to answer your question, but please remember that my answer is based on my experiences and how I was taught and it is about how the Bible is important in Folk Magic.

Sara August wrote this a few years ago :
“The beauty of folk magic is that it is practical magic. Don’t have an obscure magical herb for a spell? No worries, find something already in your pantry or yard instead. Don’t have a special anointing oil for your candle spell? No worries, use olive oil.  Lacking a specific incense for a ritual? You guessed it… there’s something in your kitchen cupboard to burn in its place…..”

I would take it a step further, you don’t have a Grimoire?  a book of shadows? A book with workable chants to increase the power of your spell work?   No worries, just grab the Bible either the Rheims-Douay or old style 1611 King James, you will find incantations and phases that are inspired and truly focus on what you want, and if you say it forcefully enough in cadence (like as if you were speaking Klingon) you will feel a trembling throughout your entire body, because there is something in the cadence of the Psalms especially, that seem to elevate a person.

The only other thing that comes close is singing Chant, Gothic church chant without vibrato as one voice trying to meld your voice as one single tone or whole, becoming an instrument and in doing that your body vibrates and you feel lifted.   I’ve done that and felt an energy that went from the bottoms of my feet through the top of my head.    These men and women of the Bible were divinely inspired in their prayers.   Their statements and pronouncements still hold true today in the 21st century. 

The Bible is one if not Thee the most powerful and magical works around.   I’ve had fundamentalist Christians try and tell me that using magic is wrong but they have no idea what a powerful Grimoire they have in their hands, but I fear that many mis-use it. The magic is simple to do and it’s like breathing fresh air especially to those who feel overwhelmed by the complex rituals of high Ceremonial magic and Wicca.  And we should take into account not everyone that does magic wants to work with Pagan deities.

Granny and her ladies were pretty basic in many ways, they could care less so long as the job got done.  And they were pretty formidable in their own way. 

I mean if you wanted a “Road Opener” or a “Block Buster” deity to call in  who but Jesus could do that, he who had the stone rolled away from his tomb, well I’d say that was and is a “block buster”.

I remember one Sunday morning after church (we are Catholic)  a newly ordained priest gave the sermon and he seemed quiet inspired, afterwards, as we were leaving the young priest was out front shaking folks hands and well-wishing,  he heard about Granny, and a few of her ladies were with her, she said that his sermon was very good,  they talked for a minute and then he made an odd remark about Mary’s place in the Catholic church,  I’m not sure what it was he said but my Grandmother, old and bent over, suddenly straighten her spine, she looked 30 years younger and looked that young priest right in the eye and said “If Mary had said ‘No’ you would not have a job!”   I swear it seemed like fire shot out of Granny’s eyes when she said that.

Then we walked away to the car, some 10 years later that young priest showed up at Granny’s house, the starch had been taken out of him, I let him in and he went directly to the Kitchen where my Granny was sitting and got down on his knees and begged her forgiveness.   He had been sent to one of the poorest parishes in New Mexico and there he saw faith and he saw folk magic and he finally understood. 

Now some folks call Folk Magic as Granny Magic, Hoodoo and in some cases Voodoo (which is not correct).  So where did the use of the Bible come into play in Folk Magic especially in the U.S. well a good part of it we can thank the Germans, it was brought over to the Pennsylvania area by German Christians who believed that humans were co-creator of the world along with god. Later on it got combined with Native American elements and herb lore and also it combined with African Folklore from the slaves that combined Catholic saints and their attributes with their own gods.

So it was an amalgam of different types of worship, Catholic predominate New Orleans and Louisiana in the early years when it was controlled by the Spanish and then the French brought a lot of knowledge in magical workings along with the slaves and their blending of their magical works. 

But the passages of the Bible as preached by traveling preachers and missionaries had powerful images for folks,  combine the chanting of the verses from the bible along with the use of candles to help focus and certain scents to help channel the energies developed into a formula and those that were observant realized that certain combinations of colors, chants (psalms), incense, and oils even crystals would create a resonance and harness the natural energy within a person to be properly directed.   But they also knew it took internal strength to make it succeed.

As I said Hoodoo, folk magic, uses the scripture like the psalms as a form of incantation much like those in Ceremonial Magic and Wicca write their own incantations, but the men and women of the Bible really knew how to put the “punch” on things.

For example if I was working on a hoodoo or Folk Magic  spell for justice, I’d be looking at passages in the psalms to get to “the meat of the situation”  so if I were to do it then the lines from Psalms 129 and 130 would work even as a curse if I really wanted to “kick butt” . Here’s a bit from Psalm 129:

“Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth, yet they have not prevailed against me.
Let them all be confounded and turned back…
Let them be as the grass upon the rooftops, which withereth before it groweth up.”

Can you imagine if this was used as a curse?  With a lot of power behind it?

You have to remember the Bible is not all forgiveness and love, even Jesus had a temper when he chased the money changers out of the temple.  And in other passages it gets stronger.  

So why do Bible passages work?

Here are some social reasons why the words from the Bible have power :

A lot of it has to do with the social power that our society has conferred upon biblical language, especially in its older forms – the language from the recent  modern versions of the Bible are watered down without the punch that one needs.

Those of us with Christian backgrounds, the Bible is seen as an ‘anchor’ – a strong association that we have developed with something sacred. I remember hearing the passages said in church in ritual and its words are literally associated with sacred power.

One thing that cannot be denied is that there’s also the symbolic value of  the psalms and other passages whose themes are about the concept that one is working on, for example justice. Say the verses enough times, and they become  kind of a mantra – an overall concept, not individual words.

 And finally the most obvious of course, is that hoodoo practitioners say that the biblical words themselves have a sacred power inherent in them.   That cannot be denied.

Take for example “The Lord’s Prayer” especially put to music and one’s soul is transformed,  and who does not cry when their hear the words “Ave Maria” in song and feel the ache within one’s being.   There is POWER there.   And it works.

When someone does the sign of the cross they are not only invoking the Father, Son and Holy Spirit they are also saying “Defend me from evils present, past, and to come, inward and outward”.

Midnight Hoodoo I think expresses it best in this quote:

“Make no mistake, there are many people out there who want to remove the Bible from conjure work, due to their own belief systems or the fact that they have none. The same people usually want to remove any reference to God, the angels and the saints too.

If you take these elements out of conjure, you are left with a neo-pagan magical system that has no resemblance to genuine hoodoo. God, the Bible, the angels and the saints are all an integral and vital element of conjure. Put simply, you can’t claim to be a conjure worker if your work excludes them. You could, at a stretch, claim to be working magic, but definitely not conjure.

As far as the Holy Bible is concerned, there were, and still are, many workers who use it as the only conjure book they need. For example, Wikipedia, in its Hoodoo entry, states:

“In hoodoo, “All hold that the Bible is the great conjure book in the world.” It has many functions for the practitioner, not the least of which is a source of spells. This is particularly evident given the importance of the book Secrets of the Psalms in hoodoo culture. This book provides instruction for using psalms for things such as safe travel, headache, and marital relations. The Bible, however, is not just a source of spells but is itself a conjuring talisman. It can be taken “to the crossroads,” carried for protection, or even left open at specific pages while facing specific directions.”

I work extensively with the Psalms, and I use “Secrets of the Psalms” as my reference, together with the Holy Bible. There are many other good books available on working conjure with the Psalms…… I have found the Psalms to be very effective as a magical tool, and when coupled with candle burning their effectiveness is further increased.

For example, a simple ritual for protection involves burning a white candle while reciting Psalm 23 (‘The Lord is my Shepherd’) three times in your own name or in someone else’s.

Additionally, there is very little monetary cost associated with Psalm work, which given the state of the world economy, is an important consideration. All you need is a Bible, a white candle and some blessed olive oil.”

And Midnight Hoodoo is correct in their assessment.

We have to remember since the late 18th through the 19th and early 20th century there has been a Christian influence in hoodoo thought. This is particularly evident in the idea of the relation to God's providence and his role in retributive justice. For example, though there are strong ideas of good versus evil, for example cursing someone to cause their death might not be considered a malignant act.

As one old time practitioner explained it to Henry Hyatt as follows:

        "[In] Hoodooism, anythin' da' chew do is de plan of God undastan', God have somepin to do wit evah' thin' you do if it's good or bad, He's got somepin to do wit it ... jis what's fo' you, you'll git it."

(cleared up vernacular) "([In] Hoodooism, anything that you do is the plan of God, understand? God has something to do with everything that you do whether it's good or bad, he's got something to do with it... You'll get what's coming to you)"

Not only is God's providence a factor in hoodoo practice, but hoodoo thought understands God as the archetypal hoodoo doctor.  Zora Hurston stated, "The way we tell it, hoodoo started way back there before everything. Six days of magic spells and mighty words and the world with its elements above and below was made."   And from this perspective, biblical figures are often recast as hoodoo doctors and the Bible becomes a source of conjugational spells and is, itself, used as a protective talisman.

With that understanding so O.K. now you are thinking of buying a Bible the question is then which one do you want to get?  There really are only two, but for many people the old translation of the Douay-Rheims Version (Catholic) is considered to be far more accurate by 83% , but some folks from a Protestant background would prefer the King James Version which has less books of the bible, but if you decide to get the King James, then get the one that was directly translated in 1611 and not the more recent watered down versions, either KJV or DRV  you want it with the power of the original wording.

I have both but I do prefer the Douay-Rheims as it is more accurate, but read both and see which wording seems to work the best for you.

I hope Danny that answers your question.

Bright Blessings,
Ms. Q


  1. Hello Ms.Q

    Recently my ex left me but I couldnt forget him. I will like to consult what psalm and ritual that can help for reconciliation.

    Thank you and looking forward to your reply.

    Ms. Y

    1. Dear Ms. Y,

      My Dear, I’d like you to first read my post “Do Reconciliation Spells Work?” this is very important, because you can try to do reconcile work as much as possible but there is always some underlying energy as to why there was a break up and as long as that energy is there, still lingers either within you or him, the workings will not work.

      To what psalm you can use either or both psalm 38 and 85 for reconciliation and psalm 111 Line 4 for Love and romance and do it with a honey jar spell, or you can get two figure candles 1 male, 1 female and anoint them with Reconciliation oil and recite the same psalms as you bring the two each night closer together inch by inch.

      On the honey jar spell use a pink candle, you can anoint it with the same oil.

      There are many recipes for Reconciliation oil but the one that is most familiar is made from essentials oils of Rose, Lavender, Sandalwood, Balm of Gilead and Damiana. 3 drops of each oil into a small amount of base oil of sweet Almond oil.

      Before you waste time and money on such a spell, to make sure that it will work I did a one card reading to see if there is any possibility of success and the card I drew is the Ten of Swords (Ruin)

      This is a very sad card, its meaning is crushing defeat brought about by being divorced from reality. Sadness and desolation in the aftermath of a catastrophic and total collapse.

      Ten of Swords upright can be taken as one of the most heart-breaking tarot cards.

      Its keyword is “being attacked cruelly”. The pain it causes is extreme and although it is psychological in nature its effect can be felt even in the body.

      Then Ten of Swords mainly describes a relationship that has ended bitterly.

      The tarot card can represent the worst possible betrayal in love which totally rips the heart.

      This card shows up when your partner announces that he is breaking up with you because it is possible that he has found someone new. Now the pain that you will feel from his statement equals to what Ten of Swords plainly tells.

      This card shows rejection, which tells me that any reconciliation spells may not work and you will only feel more disappointment.

      I did a one card reading for you to see how you will do without him in your life and the card I drew is the Ace of Wands upright. Your ex breaking up with you has done you a good thing because now you are free to explore a new life and all its possibilities.

      This is a very positive and forward looking card it is the seed of a new venture - perhaps as yet unseen. An opportunity to be met with boldness, vigor, and enthusiasm. The herald of re-birth, invention, or entrepreneurship. An innate and primal force released. May suggest a surge of vitality, creativity, or fertility that can set things in motion.

      The Ace of Wands tarot is the card that symbolizes creation and beginnings. It represents potential and passion. It indicates inspiration and creativity. It signals direction and expansion. It also means power and resourcefulness.

      The Ace of Wands represents a breakthrough moment in your life. It’s the break that you have been waiting for. The Ace of Wands tarot wants you to do it now, while you’re at the height of your excitement and your passion, so you will feel inspired all throughout. You must also consider is that with the Ace of Wands tarot, the seed of ambition is small and young, and you have to nurture it so that it will grow.

      You have to keep the dream alive and work on it very hard so that it will become a reality. Everything starts with a spark that turns into a fire. You must start the fire, and keep the fire burning!

      This can be a great time for you. You may not be sure how to begin or how to proceed, Don’t fret, you have the energy and the passion, the way is free now, for you go out and take control of your life and the world, that is what is ahead for you in 2017.

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q

    2. Dear Ms. Q

      Your reading is deadly accurate. At this point i am living aimlessly and not sure what i should do. I have tried hard and long to give up this relationship but can't get out from this dissapointment and waiting for his return.

      Dear Ms. Q, sincerely i would like to ask your help if anything i can do to be with him again. Sorry for my desperation.

      Thank you.
      Ms. Y

    3. Dear Ms. Y,

      My Dear I drew a card from Tarot asking my Spirit Guides to guide my hand, to see if there is any possibility of him coming back to you and I drew another unhappy card, the Nine of Swords (Cruelty), but reversed.

      This means mental anguish or ill health endured it also may indicate that you narrowly avoided some form of catastrophic loss either physical or financial.

      The reversed Nine of Swords does not have anything too happy to deliver.

      In a case related to the aftermath of a breakup, the reversed Nine of Swords shows that in time you will gain the return of willpower to you which will eventually kill the sadness and allows the moving on process easier.

      Nine of Swords also represents the feelings of your Ex and it means there is zero amount of romantic thought attached to this tarot card.

      So what does it say about his feelings towards you? Nothing good really, he is done and gone.

      It means that you MUST move on, do not linger on what could have been, because it’s gone.

      My Dear with so many reversed cards regarding this relationship, there is no easy way to say it but this relationship is over and done with as far as he is concerned, you are only making yourself ill over a person who, at the center of this, is extremely selfish and uncaring. Consider yourself lucky in the long run.

      You MUST HEAL yourself, stop moping over him, it cramps your life and your soul.

      I did another reading for you to see how 2017 will be and it is the Six of Pentacles (Success).

      This means that 2017 is going to be a time of prosperity and profit for you. Success and generosity in material things. Power and influence turned to noble pursuits. Philanthropy of a sort, and the balancing of physical and spiritual life.


      Spirit, my guides are saying to me that there is wonderful good things going to happen for you and to you in 2017, a new life, a new love, a new interest in things around you, but THAT WILL NOT HAPPEN IF YOU GO AROUND WISHIN’ AND HOPIN’ HE’LL COME BACK and feeling sorry for yourself.

      I want you to do a Honey Jar spell to heal yourself and to bring in positive energy into your life, light it with a pink candle for healing, alternate it when the pink one burns down with an orange candle for new energy, so do that pink for healing then orange for energy, keep doing that all through New Year’s eve and New Year’s Day.

      And keep saying to yourself “Today is the first day of the rest of my life and I’m going to live it to the fullest!” and say it like you mean it, even if you have to yell it out loud. Mean it!!

      When you do you’ll be surprised at all the positive blessings that will come to you, I can see that happening, but you have got to start now taking that first step!

      Get involved with Charity Work, help out at a soup kitchen, visit the elderly who are alone in rest homes, talk to them they’d be happy for that bit of kindness and attention, collect coats for the homeless, get involved with LIFE, remember the old saying “I thought I was poor because I had no shoes, until I met a man with no feet.”

      You have been given a 2nd chance, take it!

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q

    4. Dear Ms. Q

      Thank you very much for the advice

    5. You're welcome my Dear.

      I know my words were very strongly put to you, but 2017 is going to be a very good year for you, I didn't want you to miss out on the good fortune that will be coming to you.

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q

  2. Hello Ms. Q, I'm very interested in using the bible in my work, but I often have problems with the Old English pronunciations in some translations. My mother tongue is French and English is my second language. I'm confused in which bible translation and language would be best for me.
    Ms. C

    1. Hello Ms. C,

      I answered your question in the below post, I think you posted twice.

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q

  3. Hello Ms. Q,
    My native tongue is French and English is my second language. I have often difficulties when reading out loud bible verses in Old English. I'm very confused as of now at finding the right bible version for my magickal work. What would you recommend? Thanks.

    1. Dear Ms. C,

      That is a problem I have not thought of in my personal experiences, but you have brought memories to me.

      I remember Mrs. Byrd who was German/Austrian as having her King James bible was in German but it said "from 1611"

      Bella and Della were Italian and Catholic their bible was in their language but it was based on the Douay-Rheims.

      If you can find a Douay-Rheims as revised by Richard Challon that would be best for you, I think.

      The Challon revision cleared up much of the archaic pronunciations.

      However in the Catholic bible how "the Lord is my Shepard..." psalm is translated differently and is listed as the 22 psalm. In the King James it's listed as the more familiar 23 psalm.

      If you want the more complete bible I suggest the Douay-Rheims but keep a separate standard King James single page version of the 23rd Psalm as that is more familiar and falls easier in the pronunciation.

      But I've know some practitioners who keep both copies, sometimes comparing which version is more forceful in doing the work, I've seen on Amazon (USA) copies of the King James 1611 going for $22 and the Douay-Rhiems going for $39.95.

      But I've seen copies for sale at Friends of the Library book sales for as low as $2.00. as well as at thrift shops.

      When you buy a book either new or 2nd hand smudge it first with Frankincense to clear any energies before using it.

      Don't worry about pronunciations, my tongue twists over the words as well. In time you'll find it easier to pronounce.

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q

    2. Thanks. By the way, I've did some research about French "authentic bibles" and found some interesting information. There is indeed a French translation of the KJV1611. Also, there are many French bibles which are based on the "Major texts" unlike most bibles of today. Nevertheless I'll try to take your advice on the Douay-Rheims if I can. Bright Blessings to you too :)

    3. Dear Ms. C,

      That is good to know.

      If you are unable to find a copy of the Douay-Rheims Challon transcription then do get a copy of the King James 1611 to start with.

      You can always add the Douay later on.

      As I've said many practitioners have both copies, I myself have both.

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q

  4. Dear Ms Q.

    I am very happy to read your post about this matter. A few days ago, I have made a search about the connection between conjure and Bible.
    This is also the reason I decided to learn more about Hoodoo.
    I have always been attracted by magic and occultism in general. Firstly, I started to learn tarot readings and after I have bought books about magic in general, trying to find the system that was suitable for me. But, mostly books I have found and read concerned Wicca or Paganism or other "in vogue" matters. I was not confortable with this, I had the feeling that this was not for me. An acquaintance of my mother lent me a book called "le livre sécret des grands exorcismes et bénédictions" (the secret book of exorcism and blessings) wrote by a famous French exorcist called Abbé Julio. In this book, Abbé Julio explained the power of Psalms (that are written in Latin) and he gave instruction about blessings (for exemple for water, salt, prayers on parchment...). For me this was a revelation. Of course, I have bought this book and I use often it. I tried to collect all possible information about the power of psalms and I learned that they are used in hoodoo. This explains why I decided to learn Folk Magic. Fortunately, I understand English and I can read it (It is very difficult to find information about Hoodoo in French or Italian, I was born in Sicily and Italian is my mother tongue).
    Again I would like thank you for sharing your knowledge with us, your blog is very helpful.

    Blessings from France


    1. Dear F,

      I remember a bit about Abbe Julio, he was a remarkable religious person, and his views on using the Psalms are most remarkable, I suggest that you use his book to help guide you, now you do have to compare what Psalms he’s referring to, for example he says Psalm 90 is good against vampires and spirits of the night when in the King James it’s listed as Psalm 91, like we have the problem with the 23 Psalm in KJ compared to it being 22 Psalm in DR. So do make comparisons as well.

      I’m glad that my blog is very helpful to you and I will continue to share my knowledge as long as I can.

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q

  5. Ms. Q

    This is a lovely extensive article about the bible in folk magic. I am very pleased that my questions are answered.

    Thank you.

    1. You are Welcome Danny,

      This has proven to be a very thought provoking article, and I had fun researching it.

      Bright Blessings,
      Ms. Q