lunedě, novembre 20, 2017 05:47

The Romanian Folk Witchcraft – 1

First of all I want to apologize to all my readers for the long pause from this site-I assure you all that it wasn’t intended but I was very busy with my new book, gathering information, asking for permission from people that I talked to in the past to quote them etc etc…you know all the process.

I wanted to write about folk witchcraft in the part of the world where I lived and grew up first of all because, it seems, nowadays the term ”witch” equals to a Wicca practitioner (in the West society) and someone that is on the edge between mental illness and criminal activity (in Romania). It is true that due to the modern society, the destruction of the traditional village and family structure, the  real witch starts to fade to a point of myth and legend just like  the history of thousands of years of that land. No one seems to care anymore about the traditions and everyone imports fake western holidays, so alien to our country but sell well…Also the witch, that had more of a shamanic role in the Romanian village society has been replaced with the gypsy witch that is in 90% of the cases a fraud and a criminal(it’s enough to see the huge palace where she lives and her 2-3 Mercedes cars in front of it to realize that something is fishy, not to mention the latest scandals ending up with this kind of ”’witches” being put to jail).Here I do not want to put the finger on one particular ethnic group in Romania, I am far from a racist so do not accuse me of such things but am only objective!Again I said 90% of cases NOT 100%, I’ve met real gypsy witches- they didn’t have a material wealth though but a magickal one.

Here I will add some quotes from the book, hope you will enjoy it :

” As I said before, in the other chapter, the Romanian peasant never wrote those spells but inherited them from his ancestors and sometimes he added some new words or new gestures and practices. That happened usually when other civilizations interacted with the natives, such as the Germans that settled in some parts, the gypsies nomads that brought with them some weird customs from far India,the Hungarians, Turks and even Russians. For example the Tarot cards are not a Romanian custom but some of the old practitioners do have either Hungarian Tarot cards or the Gypsies ones, nor is the coffee fortune telling that was inherited from the Turks.

There are hundreds of magick words but most used are those for the evil eye. In that case the words want to remake the path of the victim  from that day or the imaginary path of the evil eye or of the one who has put the evil eye.

Descântec de deochi (Marcel Olinescu – Mitologie Româneasc?)

Vine ciuta de la munte
Lingându-?i puii pe frunte.
ĂŽi linge pe pistricei
?i pe cei frumu?ei.
?i eu pe N. Ă®l ling –
De deochi,
Dintre ochi.
Cât o sta vântu-n gard
Atât s? stea deochiu-n cap,
?i s? fug? prin sat
Ca un câne turbat
Cu coada îndoit?,
Cu gura c?scat?
?i unde-o c?dea
Acolo s-o frângea,
Acolo o muri.
Pe N sa-l lase
Curat luminat,
Cum Dumnezeu l-a l?sat!

English Translation :

Evil eye spell (Marcel Olinescu – Romanian Mythology)

Comes the deer from the mountain
Liking her babies on their forehead
The beautiful ones
And I lick N.
Of evil eye
Between the eyes
As long as the wind says in the fence
So the evil eye says in the head
And run into the village
Like a mad dog
With broken tail
With open mouth
And where he fells
There he breaks
And dies.

All of the verses are considered to have a magick power, that in order to be accomplished must be followed by certain gestures and a proper intonation. All of them use certain symbols and are invocating forces of nature, viewed as deities:moon,sun,stars,wind,rain;animals used as totems:wolf,bear,crow,snake;plants that have magick qualities and can cure certain diseases but in Romanian culture they have also a soul and an understanding:willow,cedar,apple tree,hazel/nut tree,wormwood,mandragora, belladona etc.;the days of the week are seen as sacred and each has a deity:Saint Friday,Saint Tuesday etc; characters from the folklore such as:Muma Padurii,strigoii,iele,Aghiuta,paparuda etc.”

” A very interesting method that is used in a medicinal purpose is the use of the spiral. In case of fever diseases, or bad wounds or even infections, the woman paints on a white piece of paper or a lamb skin a spiral that looks like a snail shell and a equal arms cross that that shapes it in four. Starting from the middle of the shell she writes in black charcoal saints names or holly trinity followed by the name of the victim but all of them backwards. In the four corners of the cross she writes the name of the victim split in four. After that she covers that piece of paper or skin in honey and sometimes paprika, then puts it on the wound.

When I asked what is this spiral for the old woman said just for the disease to go back to it’s source.”

”   Plants are the base  in Romanian magick, and in fact there is almost no spell without the involvement at least on the words level of some plant. In ”De insemnanatea botanicei romanesti” 1874, the plants were categorized as : mythological,poetical,incantation,spell,medication types. There are also plants used for astral travel, visions or just calm pain. Here I will deal only with the most used plants nowadays and those that I used and I will give also an example of a possible ”mythological” type of plant.

1. Matraguna(Atropa Belladona)

Is considered the Queen of the plants and also called The Empress, Light Lady,Lady of the Plants but also Wolf’s Herb in many of the incantations. Her use vary from good to evil, from love and wealth to death and poverty. It is mostly used into love spells and incantations though, on the same side with the basil and horseradish. It is picked during spring/summer until the holiday called Rusaliile (50 days after Christian Orthodox Easter) being considered even by the Orhtodox Chuch as the oldest holiday after Easter of course, it’s roots being Dacian though and not Christian. Rusaliile are a sort of feminine deities, different from the Iele though, being more on the evil and revengeful side( we don’t have Tinkerbell type of fairies by the way). In that night it is said that they take the top of the plants, thus stealing their magick and powers. It is a hallucinogen plant, giving fearful visions of hell and monsters and also it is said that will show what you fear the most, your fear taking a terrible form. It is also a highly poisonous plant, many people being poisoned after eating it’s fruits(that could be mistaken to some other sweet fruits that grow in Romanian forests).It’s ingestion of any part of the plant could lead to death! Even the touching with bare hand could be dangerous so I will be very clear about this. It is a dangerous plant, EXTREMELLY poisonous,- 3 of those small fruits fruits could kill a child and one leaf an adult, so I don’t advise anyone to touch, eat or inhale it without knowing exactly what to do and how to do!”

Article by Kirke

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