People are often surprised to learn that the Devil – Ole Satan – plays a key part in voodoo conjure. The reason for this is simple: Old time hoodoos see Ole Satan as one of the greatest conjurers there ever was.
As one of the old religious songs from the American South states: “The Devil is a liar and a conjurer too, if you don’t look out he’ll conjure you too…”
Further insight into the Devil and voodoo conjure can be found in Esteban Montego’s Autobiography of a Runaway Slave, published in 1963 when he was 105-years-old.
“This Congolese from Timbirito told me a lot about his meetings with the Devil. He saw him as often as he wanted. I think the Devil is a smart fellow; he obeys when people summon him so as to work evil and give himself pleasure. But don’t try calling him for some good purpose because p-h-h-t! he won’t come! If a person wants to make a pact with him, the old Congolese told me, he should take a hammer and a big nail, look for the young ceiba tree in the countryside and hammer on the truck hard three times. As soon as the bugger hears this call, he comes, quite cool and cocky, as if he didn’t care a damn.
He sometimes appears dressed very smartly like a man but never as a devil, for he doesn’t want to frighten people. In his natural shape he is all red like a flame, with fire coming from his mouth and pitchfork in one hand. When he appears you can speak to him quite normally, but you have to make your meaning very clear because to him years are just days, and if you promise to do something in three years he will think you said three days.
If you don’t know this, you are in trouble – I’ve known it ever since I was a slave. The Devil reckons things up in quite a different way from men. He loves doing wickedness. I don’t know what he’s like now, but he used to give all the help he could, so that spells would work.
Anyone could summon up. A lot of aristocrats, counts and marquises, had dealings with him. Also masons, and even Christians.”
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