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Voodoo Authentica™ Cultural Center & Collection is located in the Historic New Orleans French Quarter at 612 rue Dumaine. Since 1996 we have been providing Authentic Ritual Entertainment, a complete line of Voodoo Dolls and Crafts, Voodoo Spells, Spiritual Work & Consultations by experienced practitioners, and much more!

 
 
VOODOO (FAQ ANSWER'S)
Frequently Asked Questions || Glossary of Voodoo Terms || Vevers
 
SYMBOLS
 
Questions: (Answers Below)

(1)What is a Vever and how are they used?

(2) Hi, I hope you can answer my question. I have seen a certain symbol that I believe is related to Voodoo. I'll try and describe it the best that I can. It is a heart with what looks like a cross coming out from the top, and another extension coming from the bottom with a swirl design on it. In the inside of the heart, part of it has a grid pattern going through it. That's the only way I can explain it. I hope someone knows what I'm talking about. I'm interested in knowing what this symbol means and where I can find a good picture of it. Thanks!

(3) What is the significance of the rooster in Voodoo? I've seen it in many designs in both Haitian and Nigerian Voodoo-related art.


(4) I am interested in the symbolism behind the various objects of voodoo.  (Specifically, the machete.)  Do you have any information on this?  Anything you have would be of great interest to me! 


Answer:

(1) What is a Vever and how are they used?
A veve/vever is a symbolic design, formed on the ground (in the peristyle) by sprinkling wheatmeal, cornmeal, or some other appropriate powder from the hand, at or before the beginning of a ceremony. Such a design represents a Loa to be invoked, and serves both as a focal point for invocation and a kind of altar for offerings. Several vevers of different Loa may be drawn for one ceremony. The designs incorporate well-recognized traditional elements, but reflect also the individual intentions and creative skill of the Houngan or Mambo.

(2) Hi, I hope you can answer my question. I have seen a certain symbol that I believe is related to Voodoo. I'll try and describe it the best that I can. It is a heart with what looks like a cross coming out from the top, and another extension coming from the bottom with a swirl design on it. In the inside of the heart, part of it has a grid pattern going through it. That's the only way I can explain it. I hope someone knows what I'm talking about. I'm interested in knowing what this symbol means and where I can find a good picture of it. Thanks!
Hi, thanks so much for your inquiry. It sounds like you're speaking of Erzulie's veve. Erzulie is the Voodoo Loa (Spirit Force) of Love in the Haitian pantheon. A veve is a Loa's Spirit Symbol, like a signature. These intricate patterns are drawn, most often in cornmeal, to call down a specific Spirit during a Voodoo ceremony. You can learn more and view Erzulie's & other Loas veves at our free "About Voodoo" section -- we have a part that is dedicated completely to veves. The URL which brings you there directly is: http://www.voodooshop.com/voodoo/vever.html.

(3) What is the significance of the rooster in Voodoo? I've seen it in many designs in both Haitian and Nigerian Voodoo-related art.
Hi, thanks so much for your inquiry! In the Voodoo religion, there are 7 primary African Spirit Forces (Loa/Orisha), often called the 7 African Powers. Each Spirit has His/Her own day, number, favorite foods, animals, etc. Their names are: Papa Legba, Obatala, Yemaya, Oya, Oshun, Chango and Ogun. The rooster is one of the favorite animals of both Ogun & Papa Legba. Papa Legba: Likened to St. Michael and St. Peter, Legba is the guardian, and opener, of the crossroads of the world. Legba's day of the week is Monday and His number is 3. His colors are red and black. His favorite foods are corn, candy, and rum. Voodoo practitioners place representations of Papa Legba behind the front door of their home in order to clear their path in many ways and to bring protection.

Ogun: Likened to St. Anthony and St. George, Ogun rules over iron and the deep woods. Ogun's day of the week is Tuesday and His numbers are 3 and 4. His colors are green and black and his favorite foods are roots, nuts, meat, and berries. In ritual, practitioners often do a sword/machete dance in Ogun's honor. He is considered to be the Guardian of Truth and is often called upon when help is needed with a court case or issue of honor. He is also excellent to call upon for help with problems many of us have with modern technology (computer glitches, etc.) as He rules over machines as well. Representations of Him can often be found behind the front door and around machines. Hope this info is helpful!

(4) I am interested in the symbolism behind the various objects of voodoo. 
Thanks so much for your inquiry. The machete is connected with an Orisha & Loa called Ogun and Papa Ogou respectively. He is the Spirit of Iron, Justice & the Father of Technology & Modern Machines - among other roles. A machete dance is often done to honor him during ritual. Below, I've pasted the link to our online books section. I recommend reading "Jambalaya" by Vodou Priestess Luisah Teish and Fatunmbi's "Ogun: Ifa and the Spirit of Iron" for more info about the powerful Spirit Forces & the symbols connected with them. Good luck to you! http://www.voodooshop.com/products/books/index.html
 

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New Orleans, La. 70116
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