Erzulie was one of the most recent Lwa I have really gotten to know. I began to honor her about 10 years ago and then really came to learn her story and spirit about 6 years ago. She is the patron lwa of New Orleans and most Haitian women serve her. She is similar in her area of rule to the Orisha Oshun.
She is the spirit of everything one could ask for or want in their lives; wealth, love, passion, romance, art, creativity, dance, sex and success. She is also the spirit of jealousy and can behave much like a spoiled child. The more you give her, the more she wants until she bursts into tantrum. Crying out of frustration and, because she is the spirit of love, for the suffering of the world. Our human desire of continuously wanting more is seen in Erzulie. She is us and we are she. At the root of our want for the material is the void that we are trying to fill-the void of enough or the right kind of love that we eternally seek.
Erzulie seems to be a paradox as a spirit but is she any different than the human spirit?
Erzulie is of Dahomey descent. She is either depicted as a light skinned black woman or a woman who is of mixed race and often with tribal scars on her right cheek. The knife and heart are her most common symbols as she fought with her people during the Haitian Revolution. To keep from revealing their secrets if ever captured, her people cut her tongue out rendering her mute. Again, the many aspects of love present themselves. Sometimes those who love us most, hurt us worst of all.
There are several facets of Erzulie; Freda, Dantor, and La Sirene. I will not go into her facets here but just mention them so readers are aware that she is a complicated spirit.
Erzulie embodies everything a human would pray for and about-especially women. Much like Oya she will provide women protection in the way of a mother-seen in her Black Madonna personification. She will fight for women's rights and ensure them success when attempting to be self sufficient. She will provide you opportunities and constant work for the independent woman. She is the epitome of female power.
She rules all matters of love. She is said be particularly fond of homosexuals and bisexulas and those who have experienced domestic abuse. I believe because these are complicated matters of love. Those who have these experiences or lifestyles have experienced persecution for their love. They have experienced cruelty, injustice, and self esteem issues. Those who have been betrayed by those they love.Erzulie has a soft spot in her heart for the warrior who has been treated unfairly, abused, and still manages to love. Enlightened men, who treat women with respect and value, are also her children.
Colours if pink, yellow, and blue are acceptable for all of her aspects. She loves sweet potatoes, cooked ham, rice pudding and bananas fried with sugar. The bowls that hold her food offerings should be reserved only for her use. Her candles should be blue and yellow and she loves anything feminine and beautiful such as perfume, florida water, rose water, champagne, silver chains, gold rings, hearts, and floral incense. She has 3 husbands; Damballah Wedo, Met Agwe Tawoyo, and Ogoun Feray. You may want to get to know them as well.
She is commonly depicted as the Black Madonna and Mater Dolorosa. Mater Dolorosa is a Mary who is depicted draped in a blue robe and precious jewels with silver and gold chains. She wears a beautiful, large crown, may rings, and holds a sword in her heart-also jewel encrusted. Another symbol of her willingness to mourn and understand the pain of the world's sorrows. Her motherly aspect is seen in these depictions, the aspect of La Sirene who is mother to all and controls all matters of wealth-fertility, abundance, and prosperity.
In order to petition Erzulie you must first evoke Legba of the petro branch as she is a petro Lwa who is considered a "Djab". Only he can open the gate to communicate with her.
"Legba, Papa Legba, open the gate for the lwa!
Open the gate for the djab, Papa Legba!
Open the gate for the loa!
I have arrived, I am waiting for them.
Let us go, Papa Legba, let us go!
Let us go, Papa Legba, let us go!
We will go see what is happening in that house,
We will go see where Legba commands."
"Erzulie Dantor, you are strong and powerful! Do you see these offerings I give to you?"
Sprinkle the offerings with water.
Pick each offering up and holding them above you and offer each item to the four sacred directions. Then touch each bowl or plate to your head and groin.
"I offer some of your favorite things to eat and drink and these beautiful objects for you.
Erzulie Dantor, I am in need of your protection and guidance. Help me, defend me,
fight for my family! Beautiful spirit, spirit of luck, spirit of my house, be here now and accept these offerings!"
"Do you see this food? Do you see this drink? Do you see me? I need you to be my mother
Now you must be specific with what you need her to do. Write down your request on a
piece of decorative paper. Place the paper on the altar and stab it seven times with a small
Each time you stab it say something to the effect of:
I am empowered!
You no longer affect me!
You can't beat me!
My mother is Erzulie, and you can no longer hurt me or my family!
Away with you!
Down with you!
What you say, of course, will depend on your situation and petition.
After this, spend time watching the candles burn down and listening for her help, guidance, advice, and
support. She is there. Within you.
These are items I create to evoke her power in your practices;