Necromancy, Necromancy, Necromancy
Updated: Mar 28
It's ghosts all the way down...
I have been really feeling the dead lately. Not just my family, blood dead, but especially the “randos”, the forgotten and nameless ones, the ghosts that have lost their identities, the ones nobody prays for.
America is full of those. There are various words for them. Anima Sola comes to mind, the “lonely soul in purgatory” from Catholic tradition. One can get an icon for these lost souls and pray for them to gain Jesus points (read: sorcerous power glossed in Christian terms. And you need not be Christian to apply. It’s easy to understand that miserable ghosts who have been abandoned by their families would probably be happy to help out pretty much anyone who gave them some candlelight, prayer, time. Time is the big one, the most precious thing we can offer…
The icons of the Anima Sola look pretty metal too:
I’m into her stare of defiance. She may be burning but she has not given up.
Thinking about abandoned souls reminds me of the Gede nation in Vodou. Compared with the Anima Sola(s) suffering in the school of purification by fire until they are made perfect enough to join the people feeling guilty at Sunday Mass, there’s something much sweeter about the way the Gede are spoken of.
According to Mambo T’s pamphlet Gede: The Forgotten Dead, “Two special Lwa gather up forgotten or lost souls and give them new purpose as Gede: the constantly growing, innumerable horde of the dead.”
I like the idea of these lonely ones being gathered up. Mambo T also says that while Vodou requires initiation, anyone can serve the Gede. I recommend that pamphlet if you want to know more.
Speaking of all these dead people, I have been working on a new publication. It’s an annotated, heavily footnoted re-presentation of a Spiritualist pamphlet written in 1870.
I’m excited about it because it provides simple explanations of the methods for forming séance circles. It’s approachable for newcomers and experienced mediums alike and I really think it’s worth reading and giving the practice a spin (if you’re not too chicken!)
More info to come.
Before I go, here have some links... Phoebe Hildegard Presents— thee best ov thee occkult inner-net! -in keeping with the necromancy theme, here’s an oldie but a goodie: Naples is for Necromancers -I’ve been impressed by the simultaneous scholarly rigor and transgressive, original thought of the editor-writers of Tower Quarterly. -I recently came across this video on the Weizza of Myanmar. I have to say, the reporter is a particularly unfaithful witness to this beautiful tradition, but the footage is still fascinating. I particularly liked the bits about snakes being both 1) descended from dragons, and 2) inherently related to sorcery.
Sorcery is a global affair! The dead are all around us! Grow flowers, pour out libations, adorn yourselves, write poems and read them to the moon! Scream! Pray out loud and see who answers! Dive headfirst into fear, festoon yourselves in taboos and break the limits of this straightjacket culture!
Here’s to you, your power, and the flawless execution of your Will!
© 2023 Phoebe Hildegard