Here’s a comment I received on my paper doll post. It went into moderation because it included a link. I still haven’t “approved” it and, well, I see no need to now. I won’t name the person here, but say only that he’s never made his presence known on this blog before. For all I know, he was a first-time visitor.
And if you’re reading this, friend, well, ya bugged me. You REALLY bugged me. But I’ll get to that.
On to the comment first.
(And the “definition” in this comment is where I simply cut and pasted the link he used as corroboration that I apparently worship dandelions or practice voodoo or WORSE!!)
Here we go:
I’m concerned you may have re-invented the “Poppet,” a device commonly used in Wicca and Santeria.
Definition: A poppet is a small doll or figure that represents a person in a ritual or spell. These items are NOT evil things for you to stick pins into. Poppets are frequently used in healing spells, and are usually hand-sewn and stuffed with the appropriate herbs. Magick of this kind is common in Santeria.
Of course, the purpose is prayer, not magic, but the similarity is, at least on the surface, disturbing.
Although it has to be said that Pagans do a lot of things Christians also do, such as prayer, fasting, eat, drink, et al. The mere presence of an equivalent in a non-Christian religion doesn’t mean they are one and the same thing. Must think about this…
Ya know, friend ….. thanks for your concern and sorry you’re disturbed and all, but if you’re going to lay a charge like that at my feet, you’d better do your homework. Seriously. And I’m not buying the guise of benign, Christian concern, either. You come on my blog as someone previously unknown to me, and THIS is where you comment and what you choose to comment upon? Listen to your WORDS. You are basically accusing me of engaging in occult practices and I CANNOT tell you how offensive that is to me. And you offer, as substantiation of your concern, a single link to a page that contains ONLY that definition above? NOTHING more? You have no other proof than that? So I guess it’s just maybe I’m an occultist?? I know I’m laying into you here and I wish I could say I am sorry, but I’m not. I imagine I don’t sound too “nice,” but I see no call to “niceness” in Scripture.
We ARE called to speak the truth, though.
So in speaking to THAT, I did your homework for you. I’m sure you won’t mind if I demonstrate the difference between my doll and these poppets and giddily demolish your charge, will you?
First, “poppets” ARE used in healing and other spells. They’re used for specific intents — “healing” of illnesses, for creativity, prosperity, help with relationships, improvement in grades, pretty much whatever. Lengthy rituals surround the use of these poppets.
Here are a couple of personal stories on the creation and ritual of poppets that I gleaned from a site called Earth Witchery. Oh, and these are not MY personal stories, just in case that’s NOT clear:
For a friend who was addicted to cocaine… On a very windy day when the moon was waning, I made a poppet out of red wax, for life force and survival energy. I used a piece of amethyst as its heart to give her a clear mind. To make the poppet symbolize her, I used pieces of her hair and carved a small tattoo on the poppet representing the one on her body. Once I felt the poppet was united with her, I used knot magick to rid her of the need for coke. I then made the cord into a necklace and let the magick take its course. Between the poppet and an intervention of friends, my friend had turned herself into a rehab center. It must have been hard but she is better now.
(Yeah. And I’m SURE it was mostly because of the poppet.)
Anyway, here’s another one:
I propose to make a healing poppet for my mother. She is 81 years old, visually impaired and has recently moved to a hostel [aged care facility] (ed. here: um, I think she means “hospice.” Maybe she needs a poppet to get ‘erself some brraaaains. But Gammie in a “hostel”? Now, that’s funny) where she is not settling well.
I have asked for guidance and will make paper poppets. The first will be on grey paper. I will cut out a small poppet and draw grey hair, closed eyes, and a sad mouth. I will write the reasons why mum had to leave her home. I will set up a cleansed area similar to an alter (we know, hon) and have ready a green or white candle, a shallow dish and a box of matches. I will also have another paper poppet of green or white paper and also coloured textas. I will call on my guardian, my guides, and Kwan Yin to assist me. I will meditate and ask my mother’s higher self if she will accept this healing. If the answer is positive, I will proceed.
I will light the candle and use it to light the grey poppet, which I will place in the shallow dish to burn. As this poppet burns, I will use the coloured textas to write on the other poppet all the benefits of being in her new place of residence. I will say these aloud as I write them on the front of the healing poppet. On the back of the poppet I will use the ashes of the grey poppet to draw, with my licked right forefinger, the Rune – Nauthiz- the banishing rune. This will help turn frustration and stress to one’s advantage and will help turn a bad situation into a good one.
Finally, another elaborate description of one practitioner’s ritual:
I was going to work on a prosperity poppet, but decided to work on one for protection instead. I am constructing it out of dogwood twigs, lashing the twigs together with black thread, so the twigs will be like the “skeleton,” using an acorn for the head. I’m using nine herbs, cotton thread, cotton, eucalyptus, sage, thyme, oak leaves, parsley, some dogwood shavings, fern and birch bark. I began consecrating these items and grinding them last night, meditating on the purpose all the while. Also I have mixed in nail clippings, my hair and some blood. I will be mixing this over the next two nights, completing the spell on the 20th during the full moon. On a piece of birch bark I will draw the rune of “Ohl” with Dragon’s Blood ink, roll it up and tie it to the “torso’ of the poppet with black thread. I’m fashioning clothes out of an old pair of shorts beyond repair but dear to me and an old t-shirt. I’m applying my own hair to the poppet. I won’t be doing the face thing since I feel that there will be enough of my own energy within the poppet already between my own “body parts” and my favorite clothes .
On the night of the full moon I will cast my circle, sew my clothes onto the little guy and stuff him. After I’m done stuffing him, I will be anointing him with cedarwood oil and placing him on the pentacle on my altar. I will meditate in his purpose and then dedicate him to the south and do my incantation.
Notice a similar theme in these descriptions, friend? Besides the gross, exhausting, and nearly obsessive-compulsive ritual of it all? I DO. A poppet for another person is meant to symbolize the OTHER person — with pieces of her hair, her characteristics, etc. For these occultists, the poppet becomes that person. Notice how the one description spoke of the poppet being “united” with her friend? I can’t help but notice, too, that these practitioners call on “guides” and “guardians” and “higher selves” for assistance in these poppet rituals. They chant and burn and futz about with herbs and twigs because they actually believe there is power these THINGS.
MY doll was an image of me, NOT my friend, with some verses from Psalms on the back.
I did not chant over her or burn her or smear her with blood. I did not draw runes on her or anoint her or dedicate her in ANY direction. There were no twigs or fingernails or ratty old shorts involved in her creation. I did not call on guides or guardians or Kwan Yin.
Rather ….. I sat at my kitchen table, sick and depressed, frankly, and needing to reach out to someone ELSE. As I created this doll, I thought of my friend far away who was sick, too, sicker than I. Thinking of that put things in some much needed perspective for me. During the process of making this little thing, somehow, I recovered small bits of myself that I’d lost over many, many months. Frequently, I found myself thinking of how WONDROUS it is that, as believers, we have this bond through the Holy Spirit. A bond that crosses all boundaries and covers all distance, connecting me to my friend. It is transcendent. I do not even understand it.
While I worked, I prayed, yes. I prayed that my friend might be encouraged by this small token of affection. I prayed that the Lord might use even someone like me, who at that moment was a low, self-pitying wretch, but someone who needed, who HOPED to be used for something right then, no matter how small.
In a way, my doll was a greeting card, although more elaborate, pehaps. And, you know, every Christmas, millions of people send out cards with their pictures on the front and a joyful greeting or some Scripture on the inside. Maybe even a prayer for the new year. Still other people actually send get well cards expressing fervent prayers for the restoration of a sick loved one. I wonder if you, friend, have ever sent out something like these yourself? Or received such evils into your house? *Gasp!*
This was just a paper doll with my picture and God’s Word on the back. By itself, it had no special powers except that it cheered both the giver and the receiver.
So, really, really, how dare you drag a such a simple thing through the mud of your “concerns”? How dare you throw careless words around with no corroboration? How dare you suggest it was something occultic and sully everything it meant? How dare you, without even knowing me, assume the worst of me?
Comment on this post, if you choose, but then, please don’t come back here again.
(And ….. you know ….. just now …. after I mixed Dolly’s toenail clippings and blood from her chopped-off heads into a roiling smelly brew which I used to doodle random runes on her butt, she bubbled to life long enough to say, “Taa-taa and tooodles, Judgey-duuudles!”)