|Black Witch's Boveda decorated for Ye Olde Dark Arts Coven-Tradition's Festival Of Souls October 31 2006 with her spirit dolls on both sides of the Boveda|
* © Excerpts From A Section Of My Completed and Soon to be Published Book "Mi Cuadro Espiritual" Which My Students Must Obtain When They First Join Ye Olde Dark Arts Coven-Tradition. I Will Soon Be Making This Book Available To The Public *
The Boveda is NOT ONLY a sacred space where we can connect with our spirit guides and protectors but also a power center where various spirit servers of common interests converge whose powers can be evoked by the devotee. Your Boveda is a place for you to meditate, pray, desquitarte and also a tool to pick up negative vibes throughout your house as well. Depending on the house you are involved in will come about the way your Boveda will be constructed as some houses have 1, 7, 9, or 21 cups.
The meanings and representations of the cups will also vary as well. For some the cups represent the KNOWN nations of the spirits within the cuardo espiritual (Spiritual Quadrant) while others will have a set designation for the cups. The cups represent the delegations of spirits which are:
This is an example of a set designation of the cups which will vary slightly from house to house:
1) Main Cup - Large brandy snifter type of glass placed in the middle for your spirit guides
2) Eggun or Familiar Spirits: Family Members that have passed (NOT PETS)
3) Spirits Of Labor: The Spirits that work with you
4) Protector Spirits: Spirits that assist your labor spirits to protect and defend you
5) Spirits In Need: Spirits in need of thought and prayer
6) Obsessor Spirits: Spirits that can obsess us into fanaticism, (Keep Them In Check)
7) Fe, Esperanza Y Caridad (Faith, Hope and Charity): One Of The Principles of Spiritism
In My House we have seven cups, three on either side and the Main Cup in the center that represents "El Santisimo" or your Protector Spirit. "El Santisimo" refers to the Catholic Terminology "El Santisimo Sacramento" or in English "The Blessed Sacrament" referring to the Eucharist, Corpus Cristi being the Feast Of The Body Of Christ.
The Corpus Cristi is the Santisimois. It is the white bread wafer (only after it has been blessed), Before that is is simply called "Hostia." Sancity is a Catholic word and found in the Catholic Catechism meaning "Holiness. In non Catholic Christian refers to the "Holy Of Holies" the place where the Arc Of The Covenant was placed.
"The Most Holy, could be construed to refer to the Godhead, For the Boveda El Santisimo cup is a sacred cup representing God. Some Espiritistas look at it like the larger cup being the main spirit guiding or controlling the other spirits represented in the small cups. The main larger cup being in the middle and the smaller cups surrounding the larger cup as a representation of protecting you from the front, back, and the sides thus forming and invisible protecting shield.
The list above is not set in stone simply because with very individual the spirits change. The main cup which is used to crown you will be a cup slightly different from the rest and will have a crucifix placed in it afterwards. It is recommended that you first do a Misa De Investigasion or Spiritual Investigation to determine the identity of some of your spirit guides and their applications, so that the attention given to them will be optimal.
You should also pay close attention to your intuition because you can receive messages from them to put some extras on your Boveda as time goes on. During your time in front of your Boveda you will pray to your ancestors, spirit guides, teachers and advisors for health, stability and spiritual guidance for you and yours from God, Jesus, The Virgin Mary and all the spiritual beings around you.
To construct a Boveda one will need the followings items listed:
1) Square, round or rectangular table
2) Plain white tablecloth
3) 6 clear* PLAIN clear or brandy glasses and one slightly bigger glass that goes in the middle
4) A small or medium size crucifix or plastic rosary that will go in the Main Cup
5) A candle holder
6) White Candles dipped in Holy water at a Catholic Church
7) Candle snuffer
8) Flower vase
9) Florida Water or Kolonia 1800
10) Holy Water From A Catholic Church
11) Incense burner
12) Swisher Sweets Cigars Or Cigarrillos
13) Small Plate and Cup for Food Offerings, a shot glass for liquor
14) Ash tray
15) Collection of Selected Prayers by Allan Kardec
* These glasses CANNOT be colored, have markings, engravings or fancy decorations, they MUST BE PLAIN. Also do not get glasses that are too thin otherwise they will break when you wash them and you will be making a lot of trips to the store to replace them so make sure that the glasses have a bit of thickness to them. I have found that the Anchor Hocking Brand is the best*
First you will to select a space that is quiet where family members will not bother you and where your pets will not knock things off your Boveda so preferably an area that family and friends don't frequent.
There are places where you CANNOT have your Boveda and they are the bedroom, in front of a mirror and the closet. Why do you ask, because the spirits would not find your sexual escapades of interest aside from the fact that they would be offended. The mirrors reflects everything backwards as well as the fact that they can be used as portals and unless the closet is completely empty and is not located in the bedroom so you don't start a fire by lighting candles.
Also another important piece of information is to not like I have seen people do because they think it "looks cool" is put a mirror tabletop on top of the white table cloth then put the glasses on it. BIG NO NO. If a spirit asks for a mirror then you may place one BUT always either place it facing mirror side down or cover it with a cloth, NOT A BLACK CLOTH. Since this is your first time setting up a Boveda you must first sweep, mop, vacuum and dust your entire house aside from the area where you will set up your Boveda and get rid of any broken items or junk from your house.
Once this is done open up all the windows and doors to your house (unless its winter of course) and burn a bit of Frankincense and sprinkle or spray Holy Water to purify the area (DO NOT use Cedar, it is a taboo to do so) then place the table, wipe it down with a solution of Florida water and Holy Water and allow it to dry before placing the white table cloth. YES kiddies it HAS TO BE PLAIN OLD WHITE, not green, red, purple or any other color from the crayon box or with fancy decorations on it. Why white you ask, because in African Traditions white is the color of the dead so what better way to start your connection correctly than by using the correct color.
Next you will take your glasses and wash them with either a bit of ammonia, bleach or a solution of White Rum and Florida Water and a bit of dish detergent and allow them to either air dry or dry them with a fresh clean dish towel. Now place the glasses in a row and add one small mint leaf in each glass then light a cigar or cigarillo and blow smoke into each glass. If one of your glasses should break you will have to repeat this step with the new glass every time you replace it before adding it to your Boveda. Now run your cold faucet and allow it to run for a few minutes to make sure the water is really cold then beginning with the small glasses first fill each one up almost to the top but not to the rim to avoid having the water run over which is another NO NO then place them on the Boveda with the Bigger cup in the center adding the crucifix inside the glass then the other six around it forming a circle then to the left and right two small white candles.
You are probably asking "Why do you have a crucifix on your Boveda?" The cross is not just a image of worship but a symbol of hope, faith and charity which is what Jesus practiced during his walk on earth. The cross does have magical influence against evil. A reminder to them of how Jesus conquered death and Evil itself and Jesus did not call us to join a religion but to be religious; he called us to be his disciples and follow his lead example. The cross is not about religion; it is about relationship with God and your fellow brothers and sisters. So when faced with darkness, doubt, fear or being attacked by dark influences remember these words as an Espiritista working El Campo Espiritual: "For he has said 'never will I leave you; never will I abandon you,' therefore we can with confidence, " the Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can anyone do to me" (Heb 13.5-6)
Knowing the Power of the Cross, Demons, evil spirits fear Christ: "And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made public spectacular of them, triumphing over them by the cross." (Jn14:30)
"Many came to him that were demon possessed and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick" (Co 12:15)
"I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you." (Matt 8:16)
As the examples above clearly state, that is the reason WHY we have a cross on our Boveda. You should have a crucifix placed on or in your large glass. Beside it representing " El Santisimo", it will let the spirits that walk the earth know that your Boveda is strictly in harmony with GOD Almighty and the good of mankind. It is believed that without the cross you allow yourself to be open to muertos (oscuro, dark, low class spirits) to invade your sanctuary being your Boveda and to approach with maybe not so good intentions and this can cause serious harm to you and your family. Only spirits of peace, love and unity will approach your Boveda when called upon in times of prayers, devotions and supplications.
Now back to the construction of the Boveda, add the flower vase with the white carnations then light the white candles and ask your Spiritual Court to protect you from all evil around you, from those that wish you harm, to guard your head and the thoughts and that your steps be firm and secure.
Now you will sit in front of your Boveda and for the rest of the week pray, meditate ans seek guidance from your spirits, with time you will be able to distinguish between the spirits talking to you and your own thoughts and develop your mediumistic abilities BUT ONLY if you continue to sit daily to pray and meditate. After the first week is over take the water from your Boveda, a few petals from the flowers and some fresh sage leaves and make a spiritual bath from it. Clean your glasses and refill with cold water then you arrange the glasses in two rows with the Main Glass in front then a white candle in front of the Main Glass. Should you notice that the water looks mirky, milky and filmy before the first week clean out the glasses and refill them anew.
This is a sign that there is a lot of negative energy around you that is being collected and that blockades in your path are being lifted, the muertos are warning you of trouble, gossip, misunderstandings, conflict, physical or spiritual attacks or danger, that there maybe stagnation of energy in your home, a muerto oscuro maybe around you or a loved one, you could have an enemy within the religion or are trying to weaken your guides and protectors, that your guides and protectors are hard fighting hard and are being depleted quickly. During this time you have to do your part and change out the water to refresh them so they can regain their strength back and also let your Padrion/Madrina know of this so that a reading can be done to determine the exact cause and if a Rompimento (breaking) is needed. The position of your cups might also have to be changed to either attack or defense.
Once you have changed out the water make sure that you keep an eye out for changes and pray a series of prayers as instructed by your Padrino/Madrina as well as to keep a white candle lit at all times until the cups go back to normal. You will also need to cleanse your house and yourself both physically and spiritually. Before starting prayers, you will take the Florida Water and pour a bit into your hands, dab a bit on the back of your neck, your arms, then passing downward throughout your body as you have been taught to do in order to desporjarte (cleanse yourself). Once you are done you will knock three times on your Boveda with your dominant hand. You will spend anywhere from 10 minutes to half an hour praying daily.
There are offerings that you will place on your Boveda on a weekly bases:
With regards to food offerings you can take a small portion of whatever you have cooked and offer it to them then throw it away the following day. When presenting yourself to your Boveda it is important to salute your spirits, this is done by extending the index and middle finger of both hands and tapping three times on your Boveda. When you visit the house of another Espiritista and especially your Padrino/Madrina you must also pay homage to their spirits with this salute unless told otherwise as some practioners do not like others touching their Boveda. Each Boveda is the spiritual and artistic representation of each individual so no two Bovedas will never look alike.
When you set up your Boveda you will notice that there are bubbles in the cups, the bubbles can mean one of the following:
1) Energy is rising with the spirits
2) They are working on something
3) The spirits are trying to connect with you and are giving you signs
4) They could just be happy
5) Bubbles in the main cup alone while the others are still means they are extremely happy.
These are the meanings that were taught to me and will vary from house to house. I also teach this to my students/godchildren. This is also a first level initiation in my Coven-Tradition before they move further to the inner circle. You will need to change out the water every few days depending on how much of a milky film develops in the glasses but for the most part the water needs to be changed once a week, preferably on the same day that you set it up. Now in my Coven-Tradition we put colorful flowers and decorations as the seasons change and fest days come about but I want to STRESS the importance of following the instructions of your Padrino/Madrina's house.
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