Vodou Love Magic: A Practical Guide to Love, Sex, and Relationships
Kenaz Filan’s book Vodou Love Magic: A Practical Guide to Love, Sex, and Relationships is just that—a practical guide, arguably perhaps a little too practical. At times, it even felt like I was reading a self-help book with Vodou spells thrown in as a bonus. The chapter that focuses on treatments and cures for lovesickness has more detailed information than you may want to read about on codependency, sexual addiction and stalking—if you’re just trying to learn more about Haitian Vodou, that is.
Filan not only provides an in-depth definition of these issues; they are dissected and analyzed with the eye of an amateur psychologist with lots of “practical” advice on how to deal with them. So, what’s the first thing you should do if you realize you’re being stalked by a jilted lover, stranger, or an ex who just can’t accept it’s over? “Cut off all contact with your stalker now”, Filan recommends. Also: “Record every stalking incident” and “Take steps to ensure your safety.” If that isn’t practical advice, I don’t know what is.
Yet in this chapter, as in the rest of the book, the spells Filan suggests we consider trying in order to help us work through our problems will keep you interested. Having a hard time battling your sexual demons? Go to a crossroads with a tiny pouch filled with a corncob pipe, tobacco, a bottle of rum, and some loose change to consult Papa Legba (guardian of the gateway between the two worlds) for guidance. Feeling intense sadness and depression after a breakup? Performing Damballah’s (the most ancient and powerful of all the Iwa) Transmutation of Love Spell may help.
For those new to Haitian Vodou, Filan’s work is a good introduction to the Iwa (spirits) and how to go about contacting them for counsel. Along with Legba and Damballa, descriptions and spells for other Iwa include Freda (“bringer of beauty”), La Sirene (“bringer of glamour”), Ogou (“bringer of strength”), Simbi (“bringer of communication”) and Ghede (hilariously described as “bringer of booty calls”). Filan is an official Houngan (Vodou priest) and seems to have extensive knowledge about the spirits and the history of Haitian Vodou—though much of that knowledge is absent here). This is simply a light, enjoyable introduction to Vodou and how the ancient spirits can help you handle any kind of love drama imaginable.