Voodoo expert shares how you can use the religion to bring financial success your way

This article originally appeared and was published on AOL.com

Dabbling with the unknown can be quite terrifying, especially when it comes to other customs, religions or spiritual practices that seem ‘odd’ in comparison to what we know.

Voodoo is a perfect example of this — the word itself often conjures up images of evil spells, dolls and secrets intended to inflict pain and trouble onto other people in an effort to gain more individual power.

But perhaps the greatest irony is that the message, meaning and purpose of Voodoo could not be further from those connotations.

Voodoo’s ideology is to push away negative energy and hone in on positivity, and those who practice most often use the religion to bring “good luck, good fortune, money and prosperity,” says Megan Houlihan, who specializes in all things Voodoo at Marie Laveau’s House of Voodoo in New Orleans.

We chatted with Megan about Voodoo itself, myths and judgements about the religion, and most importantly, how it can be used to bring financial success and prosperity.

Here are six items that Megan recommends for those looking to reach new heights in their business endeavors and financial lives:

“We have all sorts of voodoo dolls for all sorts of things, but this one itself would be for money and prosperity. You want to look for something that has a green tag. We have ones for good luck and good fortune, for protection, for fertility and for abundance. Abundance is something else that you can use as far as businesses go, to kind of just bulk up what you’re looking to do. If you’re looking for funds for something, that’s another way that you can go with that.”

“We also have these awesome little kits that are made in-house…they are money-drawing kits. [The kit has] instructions inside —you have a candle, you’ve got a small doll, you’ve got some oils, and you just follow the instructions and it’s like a little spell that you can do all on your own. Everything is very simply laid out, as long as you follow the directions you’re good to go. Voodoo is a lot about bringing things to you that are positive and pushing things away from you that are negative. So, you always want to have something going on that’s good.”

“We’ve got a bunch of different candles — Everything from money drawing, to bringing in customers.”

[These dolls] are for protection and prosperity. You would hand them over the doorway of any business to kind of protect your business and to draw customers and money towards you.”

“You want to give [the doll] some attention — if you want to pin a dollar bill to it, or if you want to paint it or do something to make it more personal to you, you can, but that’s not required. You just hang it up and make sure you kind of know that it’s there, give it a little bit of love occasionally!”

[The Gris bags] are just a couple of little small [bags] … One would be for success, this one would be for gambling, this would be for money and prosperity. It’s just a little bag that you carry with you — If you’re a guy, generally you throw it in a left pocket. If you are a lady, it’s better to keep it in your purse, because women keep more energy in their purses, they don’t keep things in their pockets.”

“Keep it with you, just hang on to it — Don’t ever open it. You just want to leave it as it is — They’re little bags of herbs that would get everywhere. And they’re made by practitioners with a specified purpose, so you don’t really want to mess with them a whole lot.”

These are called mojo bags — these you can mess with! This is a little bag of stones that has a specified purpose, but what you can do is make them more personal to you. If you have something that you feel like brings you luck, or you have something that you feel like really represents you that you really want to throw in here as well, you can always do that. You can take the stones out and hold them, you can do whatever you’d like with them. But you don’t ever want anybody else to touch them, because once you’ve opened this bag, your energy is all over it and you don’t want anybody else to taint this thing that’s yours.”

AOL: Why do you think people are so apprehensive to experiment with Voodoo to begin with?

Megan Houlihan: “I think that Voodoo’s spent so much time being vilified because it is so secret, but the religion itself is all about service in the community, making sure your life is better but not by making somebody else’s life miserable — just by making sure that bad and negative things are kind of brushed off of you, that they stay away.

AOL: What is one of the biggest myths that people have about Voodoo?

MH: “Voodoo dolls, specifically! Voodoo dolls, historically, if you had a doll, that doll was like a physical representation of that person, and the pins were used to — say your knee hurt, and they gave you something to make your knee not hurt anymore. They would pin what that was, so that if your knee hurt again, the root worker would know what had gone wrong, and what had fixed you last time…It was more of a physical/medical history than it was a thing to do bad things to people.”

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