|Offerings to Erzulie Dantor|
Anyone that works with spirits knows that presenting offerings to them is a good way to establish or maintain working a relationship. Everyone gets caught up in knowing which spirits prefer what offerings, or trying to buy the most expensive things that they can. It is all fine and well to purchase expensive items for your spirit allies that have helped you to attain the means to do so. It is important to remember the nature of what offerings are and why they are given to get the most out of the act of giving. To me the act of ritual offering at its core is an energy exchange. Be it food, alcohol, blood, incense, or candles, all offerings are consumed by a spirit on the subtle level. Some workings will even call for giving a direct offering of spiritual energy by way rubbing your hands together until they are hot and then directing energy to flow at the working altar. With this being the case, one of the most important things to consider during the act of presenting offerings is your sincerity.
Why sincerity? Let me offer a somewhat morbid analogy. Consider for a moment flowers left at a grave. Usually a loved one will stand there and have a mix of emotions and feelings going through them at that time. Some of what they are feeling will be expressed vocally in an attempt to reach out and connect to the spirit that is being remembered and honored. Their feelings in that moment are genuine and this act facilitates a flow of energy toward where they are focusing it. The flowers only serve as a token to symbolize what they are feeling and wanting to express. That’s essentially what a spirit offering amounts to in ritual, a symbolic representation of what you want to express rather it’s gratitude or a desire to have them work on your behalf. Even if you view your transactions with spirits to be purely business, sincerity should be considered. If you were to invite a potential client or partner to lunch and simply went through the motions it would be plainly obvious. There is a good chance that you would lose that business. But if during the meeting you were able to show a sincere desire to obtain their business and show how it would benefit them you would have a better chance. In that scenario lunch is the offering, just a token.
So just remember that in the process of giving offerings that your own mindset is just as important to the process as what you give. You can’t bullshit a spirit.