The following post from the Devoted to Death Facebook group provides a powerful perspective on current events from a U.S. devotee of Santa Muerte. In this piece Robin Artisson reflects on some of the extreme political changes occurring and what place Saint Death may have in helping to focus these issues for those pushed to the margins by what is happening:
I’m just having this strange, as-of-yet unformed idea working its way through my mind. Obviously, I’m in the United States and watching the system of the country crumble, under the hand of a madman who only got into the office of the president 10 days ago.
But this madman is more than just a large child and bully and more than just very ignorant. He has launched racist, defamatory, and unjust attacks against the people of Mexico, and Latino people as a whole. He is working a ridiculous and insulting plan to create a stupid “wall” across the US-Mexico border.
No man who ever sat in the oval office has ever been more of a foe to the ordinary people, the common people, the poor or underprivileged people, of this setting. Even if just through ignorance, no man has ever been this blatantly reckless, clearly controlled by larger, darker, evil forces (largely in the form of white nationalists and special money interests that he stacked his cabinet with.)
I view Mexico as a kind of sacred place to Santa Muerte, her true homeland, though I comprehend that her power extends to wherever there is life. I view this madman’s treatment of Mexico and Mexicans, of Latino people, and of all people anywhere who weren’t lucky enough to be born into a rich family, to be a great spiritual crime- a crime in the making, and manifesting daily. I know that it can and will get worse.
At what point does this involve Santa Muerte? I believe it already does, of course, but at what point do those who are her friends, her faithful, her worshipers, the people who love her, recognize that the current president of the United States represents, in human form, every single authoritarian injustice that was ever leveled at common people, and the essence of every gringo condescension that has ever been leveled at the nation “South of the Border?” People on both sides of the “border” stand to suffer from this, very much. And I suspect people south of the border even more so, in some ways.
Santa Muerte is the protector of the downtrodden, the outsiders, the people who must live below and outside of the “law.” She is the power that protects the powerless from the haughty arrogance of human lords. Is it possible, would it be possible, for the beginning of a spiritual resistance to the Trump administration, unified behind the power of Santa Muerte?
I’m sure that more than a few of Santa Muerte’s people have prayed dearly to her to halt and blunt the boundless power to harm that is wielded by this wicked administration. But can an even more “organized” movement of those who pray to the Godmother rise up, specifically to target the Trump administration with ceaseless petitions, gifts and requests to The Bony Lady, to shield this world and all its peoples from the dangers that loom so clearly and presently?
Trump has run on an authoritarian platform of “law and order” which is another way of saying that the poorest need to be menaced in the name of making society seem safer. Who stands to suffer the most from such a thing? And who stands to gain the most? We all know.
What would this spiritual counter-movement I’m talking about look like? How could it be accomplished, in a formal-yet-informal way, owing to the organic nature of Santa Muerte’s devotions, and her devoted? How could the word be spread?
Could one day a month be chosen for all who wish to be part of this spiritual crusade to put just 15 minutes or half an hour aside for prayers, novenas, intentions, offerings, specifically devoted to hindering the Trump Administration and all of its acts, by the power of Holy Saint Death?
I believe in two things, very strongly. The first is the power of Santa Muerte. The second is the power of hundreds of thousands of people- or more- coming together, united in intention and in belief, with a powerful helper like Santa Muerte. I really believe- and I cannot really explain how I believe it so- that this could make a real difference.
I can’t shake the feeling. People on both sides of the border, people in every place where Santa Muerte’s generosity and protectiveness and faithfulness has spread- all at once, all at the same time, asking for her help against this present darkness.
And where else will we ever find such a large group of people as we who love and respect and adore Santa Muerte, who are so unified in devotion to the ideals embodied in her holy skeletal image? We are all that a spiritual counter-push needs- we are all prepared, already. We just have to decide, spread the word, agree, and then act- and we already pray to Her and give offerings. We’re 90% of the way ready.
Saint Death holds the world in her hands. But an existential threat to the health of countless bodies and souls such as we’ve not really seen before has appeared out of the folly Trumpistas. No matter how bad leaders have been before, one quite like this has never been seen. I feel like the great throng of Santa Muerte’s following may contain the best possible place to look for a rapid and unthinkably powerful spiritual counter to him and those who work to control Trump or help him in his horrific policy decisions.
This FB group, Devoted to Death, connects to 730 people, the vast majority of which are already Santa Muertistas. Through them, countless thousands of other connections can be made, and then thousands more. Every single thing we need is right before us. Can we bring it all together? Or was my weird feeling and idea just that? A weird thing that fades away eventually?
Robin Artisson is a writer on the subjects of folklore, supernaturalism, spiritual ecology, and pre-modern British witchcraft. For more information on his work, visit him here.
Featured photograph by Fabiola Chesnut, Chair of Foreign Languages and Fine Arts, Huguenot High School.