X is for X Marks the Spot

A veve is a ritual marking used in Vodou. Each Lwa (spirit) has a veve that is used to represent them. The veve is used both as a beacon to alert the Lwa of the ritual and as a gateway through which the Lwa can move into our realm.

While I do not practice Vodou, African syncretic religions have been a topic I’ve studied a lot recently. With that being said, I believe that the use of veves can be and have been adopted by other magical traditions. One example that comes to mind occurred during a full moon ritual. During the Charge of the Goddess, a priestess used salt to create the outline of the Triple Goddes symbol (a full moon bracketed by two crescent moons). Then several offerings were placed in and around the symbol. To me, this seems awfully similar to the use of a veve.

As a magical practitioner, I rely heavily on the use of symbols. In fact, I often trace out sigils in the dirt or create them out of herbs or salt. With this in mind, I have begun incorporating the use of veves in my magical and religious practice. One of my goals is to create a veve for each of my patrons (or use the veves that already exist for the Vodou counterparts of my deities).

What do you think about borrowing aspects of one practice to supplement your own? How else can we use veves outside of the context of Vodou?

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