Mojo Bags – Gris-Gris – Mojo Hand
MOJO BAGS CRAFTED BY PAPA GEE FOR YOUR SITUATION
When you order a mojo bag from me, I craft it specifically for you according to your petition and what is going on in your life. Based on your needs, I carefully select which herbs, roots, minerals, flowers, or zoological items go into the bag along with the basic elements of your petition. When I ship the mojo to you, it will arrive with instructions on how to care for your mojo bag along with a small vial of oil (chosen for the type of bag you need) so that you may continue to ‘feed’ it.
WHAT IS A MOJO BAG?
First, you might ask, what is a mojo bag? Basically, it is a prayer or spell in a bag. In simplistic terms, it is an amulet. In the Hoodoo tradition, we customarily use the term ‘mojo bag, ’ but it can be called by many other names: a mojo hand, gris-gris bag, toby, or trick bag. The word ‘gris-gris’ means charm or fetish. Hoodoo believers treat a mojo bag as if it were a living being, which is why it can be classified as a fetish. Some people might just throw together a bag of herbs and minerals and call it a day, but most experienced workers know that you have to blow some life into the bag before you can tie it off. To sum up, the synergistic blend of magic created by the bag’s inside contents (and the creator’s energies) makes these bags true charms. Even though red flannel is the standard material, some professionals have started using other colors to better signify the purpose of the item. A green money mojo is only one example. Still, custom says it should be made of flannel. Another belief is that it is best to include an odd number of ingredients such as 3, 5, 7, 13, etc. Workers may also choose to include a certain ingredient in all of their mojo bags as a ‘signature.” I, myself, include lavender in all of my bags – unless a client asks me not to because of allergies. It is rather expected that the conjureman with the lavender tattoo would include this as his signature herb.
FEEDING MOJO BAGS
It’s not as simple as one might imagine to make a mojo bag. Herbs, minerals, bones, flowers, and even a locket of hair or other mementos from the wearer’s life may find a home inside. If the mojo bag is being constructed for a specific person or event, it will also include a petition (a written prayer or intention). In order to conjure their mojo, some people employ physical drawstring bags. Flaming comet-style mojo bags, where a square of flannel is gathered up around the contents and tied off with string or twine, are my favored way. It needs to be compact enough to be worn. After it is created, it is fed with a liquid of some sort. While many use Florida water cologne or some other type of alcohol, I am one of those who prefers to feed the bag with condition oil — one that corresponds to the nature of the mojo bag. A love mojo, for example, should be fed with love oil. The bag is carried with you to impart its magic into your life. For the first three days, it should be kept against your skin and placed under your pillow at night. As the weeks go on and if your petition doesn’t seem to be manifesting, it may be time to feed your mojo bag again. Simply rub a little oil on the bag whenever you feel it needs a magical lift.
ORIGINS, VARIATIONS, AND DETAILS
The gris-gris bag is a type of amulet with its roots in Ghana, a country in West Africa. It was similar to a mojo bag in that it held several items that worked together to ward against misfortune and the evil eye, such as stones, bones, perfumes, and plants. The gris-gris evolved after they arrived in the New World. They were frequently left on the graves of tyrannical slave owners or nailed to the sides of houses and dwellings, leading some to conclude that they were evil curse instruments. They have made their way into Voodoo rituals because they are still seen as positive and lucky in Haiti. To conceal a gris-gris, put it in your left pocket, as that is where it is considered to belong. Scholars have traced its origins to the West African word juju, which means fetish or sacred thing.
A nation sack is a type of mojo bag used by women to exert influence over a guy. There is some discussion as to whether the correct term is “nature sack,” and whether white researchers misread the black respondents’ accent. Most reports only place the country sack’s production and use in or around Memphis, Tennessee, suggesting it was not a widely known instrument. Its contents are tied to love, dedication, and domination, and it is also employed to keep a lover faithful or a husband from straying. Traditionally, a nation sack would contain orris root (Queen Elizabeth root), the blood of the woman undergoing the ritual, and the man’s sperm.
A jackball can be mistaken for a mojo bag at a glance, but they serve very distinct purposes. Wax (or beeswax) is slowly added into the ingredients and shaped into a ball, encasing the herbs, roots, and other components contained in a mojo. The final step is to encase it with crimson yarn or twine, leaving a lengthy tail. The energy required to generate a jackball is similar to that required to create a witch bottle, hence the two are often grouped together. Like a pendulum, they are used for divination and as a talisman to ward off harm, affect others, and give the keeper control over their lives. Swinging a jackball in the air gives it more strength, or so the myth goes.