Death, Motherhood, and Fertility
Maman Brigitte, wrapped in allure and mystery, is the Loa of death, cemeteries, and fertility. The short version of the story; she is a badass. The long version is an interesting dive into history and myth from around the world. This loa is a sultry, lively, strong, woman. She also inspired our best selling scents. February 2nd is the Feast of Maman Brigitte, so we are honoring her with an indepth look at who she is, where she came from, and what she stands for.
Who is she?
Maman Brigitte is the wife of Baron Samedi. Together they are in charge of the randy and rowdy group of spirits known as the Gede (also Guede, or Ghede) family. These are the spirits of death and fertility. The Gede, the Baron, and Maman Brigitte all party like there’s nothing to lose. They are dead after all. Wikipedia states Maman Brigitte as the “Goddess of life, death, justice, motherhood, fertility, cemeteries, crosses, gravestones, women, souls of deceased relatives, obscenities, and passion”. As a bonus her favorite drink is rum infused with hot peppers. Now this is someone I can get behind! In each cemetery the first woman buried there is dedicated to Maman Brigitte. Maman Brigitte is often flamboyantly dressed in brightly colored and seductive clothing. She loves to dance, laugh, and drink her spicy rum. Maman Brigitte, just like her husband is known for her foul mouth. She is a sexy, powerful, and dangerous spirit. Maman Brigitte has the sole distinction as being the only Loa not to originate in Africa. She came all the way from the land of the Tuatha de Danann; Ireland. As a reflection of her Irish heritage, she is often portrayed as a fair woman with red hair with green eyes. So how did this lass from Ireland find her way into Vodou?
When did she come from?
In the 1600’s the British colonized some of the Carribean islands. They took this opportunity to ship the poor and often Catholic Irish people they didn’t fancy too much off to the Carribean as indentured servants. Those people brought with them their Celtic goddess, Brigid, for protection and comfort. This is how another population who were also in desperate need of protection and comfort came into contact with Brigid. Of course, this is the African slave population. It was there that Brigid met the loa and eventually entered into the Vodou pantheon as Maman Brigitte.
Quick Facts: Color: Purple, Black, Green Symbology: Black Rooster, Rum, hot peppers, crosses, gravestones. Synchronized: St Brigid Kildare, Mary Magdalene Offerings: Tobacco, Rum, Spicy peppers, black hens
It is known that the Irish called Brigid to them by makeing poppets. These poppets may have been the origin of the popular Voodoo dolls we've all seen. Voodoo dolls have become an iconic symbol. Most associate these effigies as being malicious, as a form of revenge a practitioner targetes at someone that did them wrong. This is a complete misconception. Voodoo dolls are typically made as a form of protection, healing, and a means to communicate with those that have passed on.
Maman Brigitte, Light into Dark
Is it realistic to think that a Celtic goddess of fire and spring transformed into a goddess of death and cemeteries? On the surface they seem to be opposites, but their essential nature actually shares more similarities than differences. Both, for instance, are fierce protectors of women. Both have a fiery nature. Both are revered as powerful healers.
What is Maman Brigitte all about?
Maman Brigitte takes her role as caretaker of the dead and protectress very seriously. Don’t mistake the foul mouth and partying as frivolity. She not only looks after the dead, she teaches us to respect and revere them. Maman Brigitte is a strong and ferocious protector of women. She will watch over those who ask for her assistance, particularly in cases of domestic violence or unfaithful lovers. She is a very potent ally who knows women deserve a stable, trustworthy partner. Woe to the mate that disrespects you if you have Maman Brigitte on your side. Maman Brigitte is fierce. She is a loa that does not back down from the truth and will tell it like it is. Her truth is normally peppered in rather colorful language. This is why she is often sought after in matters of justice. If you are in need of justice Maman Brigitte is your new BFF. She is a mighty punisher of the wicked.
Mamand Brigitte and V is For Voodoo
Maman Brigitte products The Maman Brigitte essential oil blend manifests Maman Brigitte’s powers of comfort, healing, and sauciness. This blend of coriander, allspice, patchouli, dill, thyme, and anise is relaxing, and is inspired by compassion, the other world, and mystery. Individually these oils are relaxing, supportive, and many are aphrodisiacs. You can either enjoy it in the form of a Lather, or an Aromatic. Lathers are our vegan, all natural, cold processed soaps. Aromatics are our essential oil roll-ons.
Scent profile This blend of essential oils is evocative of passion, balance, and (if you’re into it) a connection with the other world. Admittedly, this unusual essential oil blend looks weird on paper. Make no mistake. It works! Combined, these essential oils produce a scent that is spicy, and herbaceous. Patchouli sits at the bottom of this blend. This provides a strong, earthy base for the rest of the blend to rise from. The combination of anise, dill, and allspice in the middle results in something that is a little sweet, sultry, and exotic. If you’re feeling a little mysterious and saucy Maman Brigitte is for you!