Hoodwitchery Problems | Cross Post from my personal blog.
I have some eclectic hood witch things I like to do and whatnot and I’m coming across some issues I remember running into when I was full Witch Woo back in the day.
For my particular flavor of woo, I work and check myself to not be appropriative or gross in what I do. Call it Hood witchery, Kitchen Witchery, Eclectic Pagan- I don’t really feel attached to the name of any one tradition and as I’ve gotten older, Hood Witch is where I feel best.
Currently I don’t have a space for a full sized altar so I’ve been gathering bits and bobs to put in my bag to carry with me. I was gifted some beautiful chunks of crystals and I have a list of other things I want for it.
Now here is the problem.
Some of the things I want come from the diaspora and I don’t want to buy them from white people who group things like the I Ching, tarot, quasi Buddhism, Hoodoo, Voodoo a smattering of Santeria and other Columbused sacred things. Also, I live in Seattle so a lot of that is fairly unavoidable.
I keep searching etsy and other places and try to vet who I’m purchasing from but y’all….shit is tiring as fuck.
I don’t want to have to cleanse items of their residual Columbusing bad feelings before I can use them.
I’m searching carefully, I don’t need to rush the process.
My personal methodologies of magic have started to intersect with my general self-care practices and for me that feels very right.
I’m finding that right now with the rise of witchy imagery and a (at least aesthetic) acceptance of darker things, is that I cannot get away from white folkx Columbusing the magic of POC. On one hand, after so many years of my life having these interests (spiritually, aesthetically etc) and having to just deal with having zero representation save for the Columbused occasional depiction of a Loa, now there’s some representation but sometimes I have some issues.
The Black witchy aesthetic tends to mirror the White one. Thin, willowly and beautiful in expensive clothes with beautiful background images and Insta photos that are yes super beautiful to look at but for me are so well filtered and presented there’s nothing for me to connect to.
I have a lot of conflicting feelings about it. On one hand, I really do love looking at beautiful people doing stuff I think is beautiful. One of the best things about social media like tumblr (you can follow me if you wanna not always sfw) is that I’m able to fulfill the hunger I have for looking at and talking to my fellow Black weirdos. It is fucking amazing. I mean I’ve found some Black witch groups on the facebooks and it feels overall super good.
This uh, melding of the aesthetic and spiritual is great for me emotionally. I had an essay in Witch Craft magazine (read the playlist for it here and pick up a copy it is amazing) about my magic and embodying dark scary magic and that is what I crave. And for a while I was able to escape Whiteness in this and currently not so much.
As I’ve gotten older, learning to embrace these things about myself more fully and not argue with myself about it has been great. Reclamation and creating myself are very important to who I am as a human and currently this is what my remaking is made of.
So yes, I’m having some issues with this but, overall I’m making it work.
How about a Flash Back Friday photo?
Me showing a friend, my big hair and when I was just starting to re-enter my woos.
At some point when I’m comfortable I’ll talk more in depth about my woo. Suffice to say, it’s pretty all over the place like me and it is perfect.
Photo circa maybe 2013?
Originally published at auntieshannon.net on February 24, 2017.