Gypsy Pouches and Mojo Bags
Magickal pouches are found universally. Australian aboriginals, Amerindian shamans, Voodoo Bokos, African medicine men, European wisewomen – all employ pouches stuffed with various ingredients that they feel bring health, wealth, luck (good or bad), and/or protection. They may be called wanga, gris-gris, mojo bags, or whatever.
The Gypsies, too, make and carry such items. Depending on the purpose, so do the contents vary. The name for a Gypsy pouch is “putsi,” the real meaning of which is “pocket.”
For love, the Romanis make little bags of red silk, which they fill with rose petals, acorns, a piece of amber, cinnamon, two cloves, a bean, a piece of orris root, and a silver or gold coin. This is worn next to the skin. Occasionally they use small chamois leather pouches rather than silk.
Some Gypsies also include such items as a small bird’s feather, a piece of lemon peel, lavender, a wedding ring (perhaps the mother’s or grandmother’s), and a small piece of coal. Many Gypsies have two pouches. One is the silk one, which hangs around their neck, and the other is the leather putsi, which they hang from their belt. Into this second one it is easy to slip any new item that is spotted and recognized to be of value. I do this myself. Always keep your eyes open … you never know when you might spot something that could be a very powerful amulet.
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