Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Hoodoo Truth: Santa Muerte

1.) Santa Muerte is not a part of hoodoo/rootwork/conjure.

2.) Be very careful of the information you will find online. Most of it is incorrect and people will give instructions to do very disgusting and offensive things.

3.) There is an "inner circle" and an "outer circle". 99% of the people who venerate Santa Muerte belong to the outer circle and know nothing about how she has been traditionally venerated before she became popular as a folk saint in Mexico. The shrines, temples, and even churches you will find in Mexico are not composed of the inner circle. The people who run those belong to the outer circle who want to turn it into a religion.

4.) There is more than one Santa Muerte. Repeat, there is more than one Santa Muerte.

5.) There are only the red, white, and black forms of Santa Muerte. All these other colors of Santa Muerte were created by the people of the "outer circle".

6.) There is a male version of Santa Muerte that is found in other traditions. The statues and other items look almost exactly the same except that the male one is usually shown seated while most statues of Santa Muerte show her standing.

7.) Santa Muerte is not a pagan Aztec goddess of death. This belief seems to have started amongst Mexican pagans who tried to claim her as their own and who were never part of the "inner circle" of her veneration.

8.) The people of the outer circle view her as the angel of death, not as the skeleton Virgin Mary or other saint. She is the angel of death to them.

9.) Santa Muerte's primary role is not making sure men are faithful. Instead, her primary role is to make sure a devotee "dies right", meaning they don't in a manner that will bring shame upon their family and communities. "Dying right" is the same as "living right". She rewards devotees by preventing them from dying before their appointed times, and by performing other miracles for them when they are in need.

10.) I'm not an expert on the "inner circle", but from what I can tell the inner circle is composed primarily of women. You pretty much have to be initiated into the ways of working with her and most people will simply never get a chance to be part of the inner circle.

11.) In recent years a non-skeletonized version of Santa Muerte has been popping up and becoming popular. She appears as a beautiful female angel. This image is not used in the inner circle, but appeals to those of the outer circle who do not like the grim reaper images.

Now, I will be honest and admit that I've attempted to work with her in the past. However, I dont' feel my spirit is compatible with her and I didn't achieve successful results. I personally believe this to be the case because of my refusal to give in to her excessive demands. I probably will not attempt to work with her again. I need to state this. Santa Muerte is not more powerful than other saints or spirits. She is just more demanding. The recent negative news stories about Santa Muerte do not help matters either.


  1. #1-#11 absolutely correct, although you're probably going to get hate mail from the self-appointed experts for saying so.

    "She is just more demanding." So true. The statue of La Flaca that I have is about 25-30 years old (I'm not in the inner circle btw because I'm a mestiza-- American born and mostly white at that) and she has flesh on her hands and feet, standing over a two-headed serpent.

  2. @ Wendy,

    I would love to see a pic of that statue!

  3. I emailed you a picture and a little of the background, what I know at least.

  4. I've heard very similar information about her. Very nice post. But I've heard she's death herself or rather a face of death.