Of Garbage and Rebirth

All my life I’ve known some form of magick. Even though I had no idea what that meant. Things I overheard while at the kitchen table helping the adults make Puerto Rican dishes every weekend. From family involved in Santeria; a Shaman maternal great grandfather, a powerful paternal grandmother (who tried to kill me at the age of 5), my Mami who read people from toe-to-head, never the other way around. My childhood was filled with magick. And yet I struggled from early on for the recognition of Elders in Santeria. I wanted that moment of acknowledgement to confirm for myself and others that I was indeed, gifted in ways I couldn’t even begin to explain. There are memories that live inside me that are such a mystery, I’ve given up trying to figure them out and simply accepted them.

I was never initiated into anything my family was a part of. Mami wouldn’t allow it, telling me I had plenty of time to decide my path. So it was to her that I would tell my prophetic dreams to, but not the endless nightmares. It was her that I would tell who would be dying soon when the acrid smell and taste of death permeated the air and my food. It was her that I would tell the secrets the Orisha statues would tell me. But I would also listen to the advice she would tell those who came to her and kept a mental Book of Shadows written in my Mami’s voice, which I still hear even now, five years after her passing.

I would write things down in pencil on small pieces of brown paper torn from the bodega paper bags and stuff them in my shoes. Forgetting about them for as long as I had the shoes. I played with candles, I created spells, I played with fire – a lot of fire; called to the wind and the birds. I watched my Mami do workings for others, always listening intently to her warnings and instructions. I read all of my Papi’s books on symbolism and numbers in dreams, my Mami’s books on numerology, palmistry, even her book on Nostradamus. She taught me to read the Spanish tarot cards. And yet, I still longed for what would make me different but mostly, accepted. Truthfully and perhaps selfishly, I wanted to be honored, heard, and loved.

I often look back on my life, especially after learning about past lives and how they can affect our current life, and I’ve seen some patterns repeat over and over but none so much as suffering and loneliness. I’ve searched for the remedy to both to no avail. It was only after meeting the man I decided would become my Godfather in Santeria, that I learned of my path; I’m a daughter of Oshun, which surprised me, and one of the avatars of her path is called, Oshun Ibu Kole. He told me it was the path of the vulture goddess and to research it. He explained how this particular avatar was one of a beautiful Oshun who had the ear of Olodumare and other Orishas and yet fell so far down that she was often seen rolling around in the mud; dirty and in misery. She sacrificed herself for humanity and was left to pick up what she could to survive. He compared it to what I’d been through in life; I gave and gave and was always the one left behind to suffer and pick from what was leftover. This Oshun was powerful and honored because of her sacrifice. The vultures were her messengers. There’s also a story I’ve heard since finding out about this path, that says if one is ever out and gets lost in the wilderness or the desert and sees vultures looming and gathering overhead ready to pick at the carcass, they are to shake their arms or dance so that the vultures know they aren’t dead yet.

No one wants suffering and loneliness.

No one wants to struggle and feel as though they are alone in this world and on this path.

And yet I see the path of where I’ve been so clearly now.

The cycle of garbage and rebirth.

And maybe that’s why I’ve always danced.

Lost in my thoughts: A Witch’s Take on the Murders in Florida

María José García

Image: Maria José Garcia

“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

Martin Luther King Jr.

I have had a busy week full of amazing moments with my family, and a few Divine interactions; now that I can finally sit down and write an actual blog I am going to take this time and write about the triple murder that happened in Florida days prior to the blue Moon, and believed to be associated with the lunar activity. I am not the first to write about this, and I will not be the last.

Many experts on Wicca have shared their point of view, and are visibly, obviously enraged at the demonization and ignorance towards their path. I am not an expert on Wicca, in fact when I started my journey I skipped right over it; I found it was too structured and ritualistic for me, personally.

So, to be fair it is probably the one path that I know the least about, I even giggle among my friends about how fluffy Wiccans can be, how offended they get when they hear someone mention darkness, I admit it. I also admit I am stereotyping and profiling an entire group of people based on the actions of some. I am working on it, I am aware of it and if I hurt someone’s feelings, I always apologize and admit to my wrongdoing. Self-awareness, humility, and personal responsibility are the keys to a rewarding path.

I will always maintain a level of respect because that is engraved into my moral compass, even if I slip up from time to time. Jokes are all in fun, never in malice, and I will go to war for any of my Witch, Pagan, and Wicca Sisters and Brothers; this includes Satanists, Luciferians, Atheists, and every other combination that isn’t Abrahamic.

The fact remains, I am connected to them through the things of nature I adore, and the deities we have come to mututally love.

Wicca’s number one rule, and everyone knows it, is “Ye harm none.” Wiccans themselves are nature based, followers of the wheel, who serve their purpose in our community as all of us do. I find it defaming to all Wiccans, Pagans, and Witches that such ignorance, without thought, was blast into the media.

Why do people blame murder on everything from mental illness, drug abuse to “bad circumstances” and Witchcraft? Why can’t we just call a murderer a murderer? Why do we make excuses for bad behavior, instead of promoting a society of people who take personal responsibility, and can think on their own?

I have had a hard time with life and I haven’t killed anyone, not out of rage, mental defect, or a fucking ritual. It should be more common knowledge that when you do fucked up things, you have to own it, and suffer the consequences.

Now society has become even more terrified of an already shadowed practice. No matter how outspoken us Witches are, or how comfortable we are with proudly speaking of our belief, the fact is that we are still, always have been, and always will be a target.

We have been thrust into a modern day Witch hunt.

If a Christian family, or group were to be involved in a murder such as this it would be labeled a “cult” and there would be blame put on one of the members, most likely a leader, who led his people astray.

We would then take a collective gasp at the horrific conditions the victims were exposed to, as if a chain reaction had set off, the entire world would then feel bad for the idiots who were brainwashed, and “drank the kool-aid”.

Meanwhile, in Florida a murder happened to occur under the blue moon, and had evidence of “ritualistic practice”. What does that even mean? How did it get associated with Wicca? Why it was even brought to the media’s attention in such a careless way is beyond me.

Yes the details should be made available to the public, but the media, the investigators and the peanut gallery all seem to be focused, if not obsessed with the ritual aspect of this crime. Any criminal analyst, or psychoanalyst for that fact will point out the ritual aspect does play into what type of mind frame the killer was in, but to immediately without further investigation claim it to be Witchcraft is reckless, and could further hinder the investigation of the case itself. The public’s opinion, even the investigators has now been tainted. How can they now objectively handle this case?

They need to not look at the ritual as literal, or part of Magick but as a metaphor; the motive is in the ritual.

Why not call in an Occultist, a Witch, a Wiccan elder? Call in an expert, do not rely on the Christian perspective of the police in Florida, of all places to decide if something was done out of depravity, and insanity or if it was truly Magickal in nature (a perverse form, but nonetheless).

What happened in Florida is tragic, whenever someone loses their life it’s tragic. My heart goes out to the remaining family and friends left with questions unanswered. In my honest opinion the events that took place that night were cold blooded murder, not Magick. I say let’s just call it like it is, stop fear mongering an already tense public, we don’t need any more divisions, or distractions.

I think I can speak for most of us when I say that murdering someone for ritual is not exactly something I have ever run across, or anticipate running across. I practice what I refer to as “dirty Magick”, I relish in it;  I have hexed and harmed, and I am the first to admit that but murder someone?


I will never walk this earth, in this life or the next with the blood of an innocent on my hands. There should never come a point in any Magickal practice that human sacrifice is the answer, and if that is your answer you may want to exchange the title of Witch for psychopath.

Here is a link to the news article: