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Friday, May 14, 2010


Fixing the mojo is not merely a matter of dumping a bunch of items into the bag. It involves a ritual -- which will vary from maker to maker -- of filling the bag and then awakening it to life. It may also be "smoked" in incense fumes or the smoke from a candle, or breathed upon to bring it to life. Prayers may be said, and other methods may be used to accomplish this essential step.

Once prepared or "fixed," the mojo is "dressed" or "fed" with a liquid of some kind. The most common liquids used to feed a hand are alcohol, such as whiskey; a perfume, such as Hoyt's Cologne or Florida Water; bodily fluids, such as spit or urine (or sexual fluids for a love-drawing hand); or with a specially-prepared condition oil. The bag is not generally soaked through, but simply dabbed with the liquid, although some old-time poker players i knew during in my youth, during the 1960s, used to say that to get a gambling hand to really work for you, you had to have your lover pee all over it out in the alley between rounds of play.

Why is the mojo fed to keep it working? Because it is alive with spirit.

One major difference between typical European-style magical talismans and a mojo is that it is almost universally claimed and believed by practitioners of conjure that the mojo is alive, is inhabited by a spirit, and/or contains a fragment of the spirit of the owner. Few, if any, European magicians say that sort of thing about their religious or astrological talismans. Yes, astrological talismans are embued with, or reflective of, the energy of a planet or a fixed star, or a moment of transient vibration between two or more such planets or stars -- but they are not alive, kept fed, and cossetted the way a mojo is -- and for good reason.

A secondary difference between mojos and European talismans is that mojo hands are customarily fed with scented liquids that are themselves derived from various magical herbal ingredients -- herbal conjure oils, magical herbal-floral colognes, and even liquors such as whiskey ("water of life") in which herbs have been soaked. This is nature magic, the use of this earth's spiritual interweb of magically active beings, in which persons, animals, plants, and minerals are bound together in social patterns on an invisible plane.