HOUSTON – “Rootwork, Hoodoo, Conjure, Juju” … these terms are often followed by horror stories that exemplify their negative connotations. The question is why are these terms describing an ancestral form of alchemy as “evil” when these rituals of resistance were brought to America by enslaved Africans?
In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, let’s begin by discussing rootwork and love spells. Do they really work?
“Most people associate this with the negative connotations of controlling someone to love against their own will,” said Ikeoma Divine, a Southern American rootworker. “However, this knowledge should be used to empower a current mutual relationship and/or enhance one’s own self-love. The latter will actually draw love to you.”
Ikeoma, who grew up in southwest Houston, says there are several techniques used to incorporate such enlightenment. There is no “One Size Fits All” method. Each remedy is prescribed per situation. Ikeoma decides, based off a consultation with a person, which method is best for their needs. There is nothing to be afraid of. In fact, the practice of rootwork dates back to our ancestors.
Rootwork is an ancestral form of alchemy which includes herbalism, mediumship and divination.
Herbalism (herbal medicine) is the use of plants, roots, grass and weeds for therapeutic remedies. When you were growing up, did your mother, grandmother or other older family members go into the woods to pick leaves, weeds, roots, etc. to make teas and soups to drink for illness or to prevent illness? This is a form of herbalism.
Mediumship is the practice of communicating with spirits. Did you have a family member known to be able to see spirits, usually dead family members, or would get messages in their dreams?
Divination means to prophesy, predict, foresee or gain insight into a situation by way of mediumship, and tools such as the Bible, cartomancy, pendulum and/ or a set of bones. Some people grew up with a mother, grandmother or other family members who would use tools for insight into and to help with their personal situations.
Many of us have been in church and someone said to us, “The Lord told me to tell you…” You see how it is all connected?
In a nutshell, Rootwork was used for everything from healing, protection, love and money. So why the negative connotations? Because people fear what they do not understand.
Time to “debunk” those myths of things you’ve heard.
IT’S WITCHCRAFT– This propaganda was enforced by the protestant Christians who needed to control the enslaved Africans through their religion. These teachings were heavily internalized as generations were raised in these churches. Many rootworkers assimilated into the church and became leaders and healers in their communities. Many preferred to go to these healers/conjurers over white physicians who used them as degrading experimental projects or their white owners who lacked medial knowledge. Read Medical Apartheid by Harriet Washington.
VOODOO AND HOODOO (ROOTWORK) ARE THE SAME– Voodoo is a West African traditional religion. It mainly came from the area known today as Benin. Hoodoo (Rootwork) in the American South originated out of the struggle to maintain a relationship rooted in ancestral guidance and reverence. You may have heard someone say that someone put Voodoo on them or someone else. This is impossible because Voodoo is a religion (noun) and not a verb. Originally, these rituals were used for survival against enemies but when the knowledge got into the wrong hands, people used it for their own egoic, petty purposes. When the outcome was negative, the results were blamed on the practice and not the practitioner.
ANYONE CAN PRACTICE– Rootwork is not a religion but a practice that one inherits by birth line. One is born into this practice. If someone is drawn to this practice, it’s usually because a family member, more than likely an ancestor, also practiced. Every family has a healer among them. Therefore, the gift is passed down from generation to generation. This is an ancestral-based practice, therefore anyone who has no DAEUS (Descendant of Africans Enslaved in the US) ancestors lack the spiritual connection that is required. European and enslaved Africans were segregated and did not socialize. So, any recipes that claim a European influence are not authentically derived from original Southern American Rootwork.
By debunking these myths and understanding its origin, rootwork can be viewed as a cultural practice that can be incorporated into everyday life. Educate yourself before passing judgment.
October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit www.edwardsforhouston.com
As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.
Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.