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African Divination Systems pt1

Nana

Neophyte
Joined
Apr 25, 2021
Messages
18
Points
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The first divinatory system I'll discuss is the Ɔga or cowbell. This is a relatively simple instrument given to most priests at the start of their training.
It has the ability to demand attention from the spirits and compel honesty from spirits over whom your vodous has granted authority.
It is a symbol of human authority over earth and is considered unplesant to entities antithetical to humanity.
 

Mart

Chaos Alchemist
Archivist
Joined
Apr 20, 2021
Messages
178
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43
Interesting, I use a copper bell muself, but only for banishing and opening/closing of rites up until this point.
 
Joined
Apr 17, 2021
Messages
152
Points
43
The first divinatory system I'll discuss is the Ɔga or cowbell. This is a relatively simple instrument given to most priests at the start of their training.
It has the ability to demand attention from the spirits and compel honesty from spirits over whom your vodous has granted authority.
It is a symbol of human authority over earth and is considered unplesant to entities antithetical to humanity.
What about the bell is supposed to give it the power it does? The spirits themselves, the type of sound, material it's made of? Sounds interesting.
 
Joined
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Messages
152
Points
43
Interesting, I use a copper bell muself, but only for banishing and opening/closing of rites up until this point.
I have to be very silent with all my practices, lest I be found out. But sometimes whenever I'm home alone or something for new year's, I'll blast some obnoxious out of a recorder.
 

Grundy

Apprentice
Joined
Apr 18, 2021
Messages
68
Points
18
I have to be very silent with all my practices, lest I be found out. But sometimes whenever I'm home alone or something for new year's, I'll blast some obnoxious out of a recorder.
to be fair, the term occult literally means secret or hidden haha. I feel ya tho on trying to be a ninja occultist hahaha
 
Joined
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Messages
152
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to be fair, the term occult literally means secret or hidden haha. I feel ya tho on trying to be a ninja occultist hahaha
It's because I live with normal people who have no idea about my practices. One in particular would probably get super triggered, and they're almost always home. With paper-thin walls, you really do have to keep sound to a minimum. Though sometimes I'll go out to the woods to have some real privacy, the heat half the year makes it hard to do stuff out there for too long.
 

Nana

Neophyte
Joined
Apr 25, 2021
Messages
18
Points
13
What about the bell is supposed to give it the power it does? The spirits themselves, the type of sound, material it's made of? Sounds interesting.
The flippant answer and the honest answer are the same... Yes.
The Ɔga is an iron bell tied around a staff or stick. Iron and fire are the elements of the spirit Egu, who rules over artifice, technology, and war. As the bell calls and lead the cows to their owners, so too does the bell call and lead the spirits to who has lawful authority over them. When they hear it they are compelled to find the source. If the person is either duly initiated and trained or strong and experienced enough to force submission and lead correctly, the spirits will obey.
And yes, this essential dynamic occurs with all bells, though I haven't tried to see what happens with the recording of a bell. Intuitively, it would seem that only a priest, sorcerer, or witch could effect results with a recording of a bell. In any case, awareness of the spirits is necessary for the bell to amount to more than a new layer of fickle fortune. But for the initiate, the beginning of the bell's power is divination.
 

Grundy

Apprentice
Joined
Apr 18, 2021
Messages
68
Points
18
It's because I live with normal people who have no idea about my practices. One in particular would probably get super triggered, and they're almost always home. With paper-thin walls, you really do have to keep sound to a minimum. Though sometimes I'll go out to the woods to have some real privacy, the heat half the year makes it hard to do stuff out there for too long.
true, I live a predominantly catholic country as well, its pretty necessary that I keep my practice a secret lest I be labeled a satanist and ostracized or exorcized hahaha. You know what they say tho necessity is the mother of invention. :)
 

Grundy

Apprentice
Joined
Apr 18, 2021
Messages
68
Points
18
The flippant answer and the honest answer are the same... Yes.
The Ɔga is an iron bell tied around a staff or stick. Iron and fire are the elements of the spirit Egu, who rules over artifice, technology, and war. As the bell calls and lead the cows to their owners, so too does the bell call and lead the spirits to who has lawful authority over them. When they hear it they are compelled to find the source. If the person is either duly initiated and trained or strong and experienced enough to force submission and lead correctly, the spirits will obey.
And yes, this essential dynamic occurs with all bells, though I haven't tried to see what happens with the recording of a bell. Intuitively, it would seem that only a priest, sorcerer, or witch could effect results with a recording of a bell. In any case, awareness of the spirits is necessary for the bell to amount to more than a new layer of fickle fortune. But for the initiate, the beginning of the bell's power is divination.

This concept of a bell makes me curious as well as Egu? Is he a local deity in your culture? I did a search on him but found very little information as there seem to be some differences between New World Vodoo LOA nd its root culture of Vodoo practices in West Africa.

I ask because here in the Philippines, our ancient animist and Shamanism traditions were erased for the most part when we were colonized by Spain with all thats left being localized folklore. I do see some parallels between current day Vodoo with what little I have pieced together from my research.

Now all we got left here is a hodgepodge of oral traditions, mixed with catholic practices. (Most black books here contain orations/prayers in latin but also hints of blood and animal sacrifice whic I find so uncomfortable to work with). I mean who prays to God to curse someone?? So I am tryig to return to my peoples roots.
 

Nana

Neophyte
Joined
Apr 25, 2021
Messages
18
Points
13
This concept of a bell makes me curious as well as Egu? Is he a local deity in your culture? I did a search on him but found very little information as there seem to be some differences between New World Vodoo LOA nd its root culture of Vodoo practices in West Africa.

I ask because here in the Philippines, our ancient animist and Shamanism traditions were erased for the most part when we were colonized by Spain with all thats left being localized folklore. I do see some parallels between current day Vodoo with what little I have pieced together from my research.

Now all we got left here is a hodgepodge of oral traditions, mixed with catholic practices. (Most black books here contain orations/prayers in latin but also hints of blood and animal sacrifice whic I find so uncomfortable to work with). I mean who prays to God to curse someone?? So I am tryig to return to my peoples roots.
Reclaiming our original covenants is precisely what led me to Vodou, so I understand your struggle and offer my condolences for your loss and the sacrifices you must make to achieve success in your endeavor.

Vodou is not monolithic it's megalithic. What popular culture knows of Vodou is a fraction of what exists and no where near what is greatest or most widely esteemed among those who practice. The cults themselves are mind staggering in scope and diversity and that is just the traditions. When you consider the societies, crafts, and solos it becomes incredibly diverse. And mind you, Vodou is only the West African traditions of the Gbe speaking peoples. The others have totally different traditions that are only indistinguishable to people outside of any of the African Traditions.

Egu is more familiar in the west under the Yoruba name Ogun, but in the east you may recognize Him as the problematic Hanuman. All indigenous practices are essentially Vodou. That's not to say they all come from Vodou, but that they all come from the same place Vodou comes from but only the Jews and the Hindus bothered to write it down and they only did so after thousands of years of keeping it pure, unadulterated and sacred.

You being uncomfortable with animal sacrifice is a result of the excessive artifice of modernity. Killing for purpose is a basic, natural, function of animate life but we have been educated to revile our own self sustainment. Ask yourself why it should bother you to pray over an animal, to offer thanks for its life and meat and ask the spirits to accept its blood as sacrament between you and them, but you are considered godless if you dare eat a meal without saying grace over countless animals whose lives were lost to sustain yours and to whom you give no consideration? Sacrifice in religious and magical practice is an affirmation of your need and the spirit's need. The blood does more than tie you a result, it cements good will and equity in support. I will speak more on sacrifice and offerings later.

As for who prays to God to curse someone, have you ever heard the expression "Goddamn"? English speakers pretty much curse things in God's name everyday.
 
Joined
Apr 17, 2021
Messages
152
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43
So you'll be sending your next email without the internet then?
I meant that as a joke. I can and do use tools in workings, but a lot of years I had to learn to make do and improvise. So I don't always find myself needing them, depending on the circumstance.
 

Nana

Neophyte
Joined
Apr 25, 2021
Messages
18
Points
13
I meant that as a joke. I can and do use tools in workings, but a lot of years I had to learn to make do and improvise. So I don't always find myself needing them, depending on the circumstance.
Of course it was joke, my friend! Do I have to put a smiley emoji on everything?!
And of course I agree with you ultimately.
 
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