My Hoodoo Favorites
Let me give a bit of background about crossed conditions. Using spell-casting and magics has been on the rise since the 90’s. With the rise in interest and the internet both coming into play there are many folks out there practicing many, many things and a large number of them aren’t properly trained in magical ethics. As much as some folks who practice these arts would like to pretend it is all sunshine, and bright blessings, it often isn’t. There are people who practice the darker side of magic. There are people who will send ill will your way. To be on the receiving end of such workings is to be experiencing “crossed conditions.” The best defense against such workings is simply to be careful and observant, it also helps to NOT be the type of person someone would want to hex or curse.
Another defense against these types of workings is to not take them as a laughing matter. If someone has put focused intent into hexing you, there is no reason not to take it seriously, especially when it is a simple matter to reverse the working. Crossed conditions should be taken seriously; there is a reason why part of casting such workings on another requires taking a ritual bath afterwards to cleanse oneself of evil as well as doing a forgiveness ritual to gain forgiveness for committing a sin. If you have ever considered doing this type of working I would encourage you to ask yourself if it is really such a good idea to do any working that requires purification and forgiveness after it is done. Not to mention putting some thought into the fact that whatever working you put out has the potential to be sent back to you magnified up to tenfold. Is it really worth it or is it better just to let karma take its course?
While I would never condone the use of magics to cause harm or bring ill will to anyone I do indeed condone the use of magics to turn the negativity back to its sender threefold. There is no need to turn the other cheek if someone is casting against you. To be very clear, I do not condone the use of magics to cause crossed conditions on another. In point of fact, if anything the information I provide here will demonstrate the potential danger in doing so. It is often more dangerous to send out negative magics than to be on the receiving end. The more vengeful the jinxing one sends out the more powerful and damaging to the sender it will be when it is sent back. Having knowledge of how to protect oneself from such magics is essential to any practitioner.
This is where part of me wants to explain “foot-track magic” and crossing and uncrossing spells but again, I will not. Back in the day there may have been a specific way these things were done, however, with the rise in popularity of these practices and the creativity people have lent to the arts there are now hundreds of ways and the internet provides access to them all. What I encourage is to do the research and either find what resonates, or create your own methods. Do not ever let anyone convince you that being creative magically will somehow diminish the strength of your workings. Anyone attempting to tell you that you must practice in a specific way likely has an agenda. The strength or weakness of a working is linked to the practitioner.
All that being said, here are some of my favorite tools for Conjure work …
CROSSROAD DIRT: Crossroad dirt is just that, dirt gathered from a crossroads, where two roads meet making an equilateral cross. While some use crossroad dirt to create crossed conditions, it is useful in other ways as well, and for those uses I recommend it. To gather your own, go to a crossroads, from each corner gather up some dirt and leave behind 3 coins. It helps to get the dirt home and consecrate it to your use perhaps even adding some herbs to the mix for increased potency.
If doing a ritual one can draw a “five spot” or ‘X’ (equilateral cross) on the ground and sprinkle some crossroad dirt onto the middle of it, this will increase the power of the working performed in the space. An altar and tools can be sprinkled with it to the same effect; even a practitioner can be sprinkled with it to increase their power. Crossroad dirt increases the potency of any magical working.
Often the crossroads are associated with an entity, sometimes thought to be the devil, to whom you can petition for some gift. For example, many have heard the stories of people selling their souls for becoming gifted in some trade such as being a musician. Personally, I don’t buy into any of that but I do believe in energy, and if the energy of asking and receiving is there, I say use it. To petition at the crossroads one can write down the petition, remember choose your words wisely and “be careful what you wish for.” State your petition aloud, cast intent in whatever way you see fit then burn the paper, mix the ashes with crossroad dirt, add three coins, go to a crossroads and toss all this into the center of it then walk away without looking back.
Crossroads represent timelessness and to me, a nomad, new direction and possibility.
RED BRICK DUST: A sprinkling of red brick dust in a doorway or threshold prevents any who may mean you harm from crossing over it. It can be used for protection in the home by simply sprinkling it around the home, outside and in. It is also used in mojo bags and carried on ones person for protection wherever they go. Red brick dust works for warding off any negative effects that a person or even a spirit may have put out to you. It has long been used in house cleansings to clear the space of negativity and can be used to ward off evil spirits once a home has been blessed to keep out negative energy that may try and return.
HOT FOOT POWDER: Often, hex work and jinxes are placed by using a powder or oil and sprinkling an enemy’s foot print with it, this is referred to as “foot-track magic.” If someone has done this to you, you can return it to them. Lay a line of hot foot powder in their path, once they have stepped into it or over it their working will be undone and they will be forced to leave you alone. You can use some dirt from their footprint mixed into some hotfoot powder as well. Take the mix and throw it into living water such as a stream, lake, ocean etc. With your back to the water, throw it over your left shoulder and walk away without looking back. Make certain to clearly state your intent. It can also be used in mojo bags, washes or sprinkling it, the general use is to rid one of enemies.
CASCARILLA POWDER: This is simply finely ground eggshells, eggs have long been held useful in Hoodoo magic mostly for protection. The shells are ground into a powder so fine it is almost like talc, in this form it can be used to draw symbols or sigils on the ground for magical workings to bless and protect sacred space and repel negativity. Some folks make it into chalk for drawing their sigils and protective symbols and the like. It can be used in mojo bags, bottle magic or by just sprinkling it. I have held it in my palm and blown it into my car to protect me on a long journey and have even blown it on people (with their blessing) to protect them when they have felt they needed it.
COFFIN NAILS: Mostly these are used in bottle spells and generally with malice in mind. It has been said that in the old days they were used to cause illness or even death. Of course that would NEVER be my intent. In the old days one might put 3 coffin nails into a bottle along with Goofer Dust, Hotfoot Powder and Crossing Powder as well as a piece of paper with an enemy’s name written on it 9 times and a tag-lock. The bottle would then be buried at their doorstep or on their property somewhere, some would keep the bottle and give it a shake now and then to “stir things up.” Be wary if you think someone may have done any of this to you. I have coffin nails at my disposal to counter anyone having used them on me but I have never had to use them, they are serious and not to be trifled with. I think of them in the same way some think of having a gun, I’d rather have one and not need it than need one and not have it.
FIVE FINGER GRASS: As the name indicates, this is a good herb to enhance the power of anything one does with their hands. This is part of why it has been used by gamblers, who play cards with their hands, to bring good luck to their game. Personally, I use it when I do Tarot readings where I too am using cards. I also use it as a massage therapist as well since it is effective to aid in all skills that five fingers can perform. Five Finger Grass wards off evil and brings good in. It also helps to clear away crossed conditions and has been used as a wash or mixed into oil to that end. It brings good fortune and self-improvement and protection while traveling. I have heard of it being used as well in the following manner: Fill an empty eggshell with it and place this somewhere in the home to repel negativity and as powerful protection.
HIGH JOHN the CONQUEROR: The root is most commonly used to draw luck and personal power. High John is said to bring about personal mastery as well as bringing luck into every aspect of life; relationships, family matters, business, love etc. It has even been used to bring luck in games of chance. Some carry a bit of root around with them to remain self-assured and to bring luck.
MOJO BEANS: Also known as African Wishing Beans for it is said that back in the day folks actually used these beans to make wishes. Personally, I believe that wishing is dangerous; there are many cautionary tales to back me up. They can be placed around the home or on altars. As to wishing for positive outcome one could carry one in their pocket to a job interview or a court date and hope for a positive outcome. Bringing a few with in your pocket or in a mojo bag when going into a new situation where one will be meeting a bunch of new people is also a good idea as it helps one to be at their best and make a good first impression. They are also said to bring luck.
MASTER ROOT: Also known as Masterwort or Ruler’s Root this is a power enhancing root. It enhances ones psychic abilities and brings about inner strength and enhancement of personal power. It is thought that the Iroquois used a tea of the plant to dress their rifles in as they thought doing so would improve their aim. This root has long been used to conquer obstacles. One person recommended to me a mojo bag with Master Root, High John, Master of the Woods and Sampson Snake Root inside and then dressed with Victory Oil. I haven’t made one as yet, but I am intrigued as it sounds mighty powerful indeed.
BLOOD ROOT: Blood root, as the name suggests, is used as a powerful guardian for those bound by blood, family blood ties or otherwise. Since family is at the center of much of its use, it is logical that it is used also to ward off evil in the home; it also brings luck to a home’s inhabitants especially in family matters. A mojo bag or bottle for the home can include blood root and rosemary. Best if hung somewhere in the home where people will pass under it when they walk in, this will negate any negativity they may be carrying with them and create a familial feeling in general shared by all who enter. It will bring peace and good relations and an overall feeling of good will throughout the home. Of course there are other uses for blood root besides just these mentioned and doing a bit of research is evidence of that, this is simply how I use it.
GOOFER DUST: Traditionally used in “enemy tricks” and creating crossed conditions, for me, not so much. I have found it useful though. If someone has cast against me it is handy to return their malice to them. I modify the ingredients to use it to my own purpose, which is not only to return the negativity sent to me back to the sender but to protect myself from further attack from them, for that I add a bit of cascarilla and red brick dust. I have also added white sage to purify my own intent.
VAN VAN OIL: I like to think of this as the Citrine of oils as it changes negative energy to positive. Van Van is an excellent all-purpose oil. It clears away negativity opening the way for new opportunities. In ritual use it is great when stating intent, it adds strength and purity to the statement and it purifies and protects practitioners. It has long been used in consecration of tools and in ritual preparation and for dressing amulets, charms, candles, mojo bags and the like. It has also been used effectively in meditation and is said to bring prosperity especially in cases where it is made with a bit of pyrite in the mix, small chunks are often added to this end. Van Van oil has also been said to be useful for balance during such times as a Mercury retrograde to cleanse the mind and heart and draw in helpful spirits as well as strengthen one’s life force.
TAR WATER: Tar water, in its base form is simply water and pine tar. In medieval times it was used as medicine. In magic it is used for cleansing and protection, often used when clearing a home of negativity. There is a history of its use in clearing negative entities from homes and it has been used to expel ghosts or spirits that are negative. For a more general use it has been known to remove hostile energy from any space.
BLACK SALT: Black salt is used to drive away evil in a very specialized way. It is placed in the space that is in need of cleansing from hostile or negative energy and as it sits there it absorbs all the negativity from the space. Once it has served its purpose it must be discarded. To properly be rid of it, it can be tossed into the center of a crossroads, thrown into a fire or into living water. Once tossed, walk away and do not look back. It is important to NEVER use it more than once as it absorbs negativity. Use it one time and then sweep it up and be properly rid of it. It can be buried, just bury it far from where it could do any damage. Due to the way it works it is often used in house cleansing/clearing. It can also be used in a mojo bag, a small amount in a mojo bag placed under the pillow will prevent nightmares and protect from unwanted entities being around whilst you sleep. Spread around doorways it wards off evil, on the porch it will ward off unwanted company and used around certain appropriate areas it will deflect gossip. It can also be sprinkled on items or in spaces where negative energy is attached to remove it. I cannot stress the importance of the fact that black salt absorbs negativity and must be discarded once it has served its purpose and it must be disposed of properly.
*A copy of this can be found in the “docs” section if you would like it formatted to print.