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Witches and a snake

Bosnian magic draws strength in its entirety from nature of which man is an inseparable part, therefore we shouldn't be surprised that witches pay more attention to the signs and symbols which they receive from nature. Since the times of the Illyrians and ancient country Bassania the cult of snake was worshipped, the snake was represented as the most perfect animal in nature and that's why it became their symbol. All Illyrian tribes dispersed across the vast Illyrian kingdom (Illyricum) considered the snake as their national and religious symbol, totem, with which the traditional legend about the genesis of the people was tied to.

The Illyrian cult of the snake remained in Bosnia and Herzegovina after the departure of the Slavs in the seventh century as a cult protector of the house and family and with it numerous beliefs about the snake. One of the beliefs is strongly implanted into Bosnian witchcraft since in essence it represents directions according to which a witch receives an answer from nature itself, embodied in the snake, if supernatural forces are inclined towards her or not. Namely, at spring, when encountering the snake for the first time, that year the Bosnian witch would receive an answer if in the following period she will be powerful and full of strength or will she have to reach for some rituals and techniques to acquire the necessary magical strength for reaching her occult goals. If she sees a live snake it is a very good sign which promises her the blessing of nature, that year she will be full of strength and health, but if she sees a dead snake the opposite will be true.

However, if she happens to come across a dead snake the witch can, with the help of magic, again asking for help from forces of nature, rectify her unlucky future, reaching for certain magical rituals.

According to beliefs, evil witches have the power of transformation into a black snake which you can come across in graveyards or you can see her crossing the street. In such circumstances you shouldn't touch that snake, you should allow her to go where she wants. Unlike the black, the white snake is considered to be good among the folk and she can open the door to the spirit world for an experienced witch. Even though in the past there was a greater number of witches, today there are only a few and the information about their work is rare and short, reduced to the level of a common gossip. The last information which correctly speaks about their practice dates from 1996 when a case, which can be characterised as a medical miracle, happened.

A husband of one of the witches got cancer which appeared in the throat of the unlucky man. Since the doctors didn't offer any other solutions besides chemo therapy and surgery, not leaving a lot of room for optimism and a happy ending, the witch decided to use an ancient ritual which exists since the time of ancient Illyrians. In the forest she searched for a white snake, she beat it with a stick and brought it home. She placed the dead snake in a metal bowl and then cooked it in a fire until the body of the snake turned into coal and dust. She placed the dust into a glass and went with it into the nature. She searched for a place where she couldn't hear human voices nor that of a rooster, a place that has a wide meadow that borders with a large forest. All these conditions are not accidental, they correspond to the representation of the place where energy and forces are in their full capacity and where one can only accomplish a contact with the spirits of nature.

When she found that oasis of magic the witch placed some of the snake dust under her tongue and uttered an ancient prayer to the spirits of nature so they can answer her call and open the door for her. She didn't wait long for the fulfilment of her wish. Suddenly she heard one, then two, three and then more whispers which reached her ears. When she got used to these small voices she could then clearly hear what they were talking about and she could communicate with the forces of nature and she could ask them to reveal to her which plants will heal her sick husband. The epilogue of this story is a happy one, the spirits revealed the secret of the cure to her with which she cured her husband from the unlucky disease in a short time. When, after some time, she visited her doctor he was amazed because he couldn't believe that cancer in an advanced phase could recede and disappear?! The only explanation that the patient offered to the doctor is that he cured himself with some tea which his wife made for him. The husband himself didn't know what she used to get the recipe. I think he will never find out since magical secrets are reserved only for those that don't have prejudices.


Little secrets of Bosnian witchcraft

The palm is considered to be an extremely favourable part of the human body which has the power to receive and emit energy. All Bosnian witches know this secret. Every time when another witch came to meet them, an enemy or a person full of negative energy, which has the power of spellbound eyes, the witch would then point her right palm in front of such people, fingers spread and she would gaze through her fingers into that person. With such a simple ritual she would annul all possibilities of negative effect from the person she would shortly meet.

In everyday life one should watch out for the destructive influence of spellbound eyes. When a person falsely pities you, but actually is happy because of what it sees, and tells you: "Oh you so skinny?!" or "Oh you are so sick?!" or something else, you should immediately in their presence perform the ancient ritual from Bosnian witchcraft with which you protect yourself but at the same time send back the negative energy of that person. Touch your backside with the palm of your right hand, then point that hand into the direction of that person, showing her the palm with your fingers raised, uttering: "Here is your thinness!", "Here is your disease!", etc.

According to belief the backside is the only part of the body which cannot be affected by spellbound eyes. That's why many mothers in Bosnia and Herzegovina still today while holding their child in their arms, before guests enter the house or before going out to the streets, touch the child's backside and then his forehead and utters this prophylactic formula: "Whosoever harms with spellbound eyes this down here (touches the backside of the child) and then harms this up here (touches the forehead)".

Belief in apotropaic power of the backside is evident in the following example; whosoever wears his drawer's upside-down gains immunity from black magic or spellbound eyes. It is considered that it is extremely effective to wear overturned drawers on the first Wednesday when the new moon appears, since it neutralises all danger from evil spells and in the case of it being sent by a black mage, the magic shall be returned to him.


Bosnian prophecy

Since the times of Bosnian forefathers the Illyrians, who were regarded by the Roman empire as people adept in magic and divination, in Bosnia and Herzegovina there were special people with mystical abilities who have been, through the long and turbulent history, called by various names such as stuhe, zduhači, faladžije, gledaoci. Some of them were recorded with the help of certain ethnographers while most of them were remembered by oral traditions which were transferred into various legends.

Thanks to the fact that the communist system in Yugoslavia wasn't as rigorous as in the SSSR the people were allowed to practice their religion, go to mosques and churches, but with a "punishment" that such individuals could not be members of the party or government. There is some information that even Tito visited some Imam's in Bosnia in order to seek help and advice from them and perhaps that was a reason why the attitude towards the spiritual was relatively relaxed. This is a well-known fact in Bulgaria whose customs agents stopped buses of pilgrims from Bosnia each year, who were headed towards Turkey towards Saudi Arabia, in order to find out which one of them knew how to augur with beans. They were aware that Bosnia was famous for Imam's who were healers and soothsayers and they wanted to use the opportunity and consult with them about life issues.

Two most famous soothsayers of former Yugoslavia were clairvoyant Vava and clairvoyant Semiza from Miljevina near Foča. Clairvoyant Vava was born in 1925 in Bosanski Novi as one of twelve children of mother Sultanija and father Murat. She had 8 sisters and 4 brothers out of which none males survived their twelfth year. She stemmed from a very religious and educated Bosnian family, which was a combination of two richest families of that region, namely Cerić and Kapetanović.

Her clients were almost all members of the elite of former Yugoslavia but also politicians both local and international. One of her brilliant moments was when the president of Gabon sent an airplane so she could be the guest of honour for two weeks. From Gabon Vava returned from Africa with numerous African figurines which she received as present from the president's family. During the 90's of the previous century and until her death, Vava lived in Belgrade and she couldn't avoid contacts with the members of the Serbian political and military elite. The same ones that supported and celebrated the destruction of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the killing of Vava's countrymen. Her prophecies will be remembered and especially the ones given about public figures, thus Vava foretold a violent death to Serbian war criminal Željko Ražnatović Arkan, the wife of Slobodan Milošević, also known as the Balkan Hitler, Miri Marković she foretold the fall of the regime and an infamous end, etc.

Clairvoyant Semiza gained her popularity in the 80's of the previous century when she suddenly gained the power of divination. She claimed that her dead brother appeared and told her that he will help her uncover peoples destinies. According to testimonies of various people that had the opportunity to visit her, every one of them were impressed by the woman they described as "petite with a gentle gaze" behind which calmness was hidden. As soon as a person would sit in front of her Semiza used a calm tone to tell that person why she actually came, what was her problem and how it can be solved.

Besides Vava and Semiza, the Sarajevo based soothsayer Mevludin Duvančić was also famous, also known as the Balkan Nostradamus, whose numerous prophecies came true. However, he was the only one that correctly predicted the wars in North Africa and he claimed that the USA won't attack Iran.

Bosnian prophet - sleeper

Omer Titorić from Višegrad is another example of a prophet who gets his visions through his sleep. Magazine Aura from Sarajevo wrote in a few instances about his prophecies. In an interview published in 2006, Omer announced that in 2011 the world will be met with a calvary of atomic centrals and deaths of numerous people. In the following interview published in December 2007, Omer said the following: "Europe will be struck by such floods which were not remembered by human minds. All towns that have rivers or are located on river beds will be flooded." His prophecy came true in May of this year when unheard of floods struck Bosnia, Croatia and Serbia.

Omer claims that he is infallible in his divinations which are often not positive. However, there are such - Palestine shall become an independent state despite the fact that Israel has performed genocide for centuries over the Palestinian people and has been managing the world's largest concentration camp in the world, Gaza.

According to his prophecies another pyramid shall be discovered in Bosnia and Herzegovina which holds a secret that is thousands of years old which will make the pyramids in Visoko seem miniscule and irrelevant.

USA shall be punished by god

From those negative prognosis the ones that deal with Holland and France are especially bad. Namely, Holland will completely disappear underwater until 2024 and a large part of France will be flooded. In 2044 an even greater catastrophe will occur and it will hit the USA as a sign of god's punishment for killing Muslims in the Middle East. Let's remember that USA with its war aggression on Iraq killed over half a million of Iraqis, and if we add all the wars it financed from Libya, Afghanistan, Syria, Palestine, we come to an even larger number of murdered Muslims. That's why, according to clairvoyant Omer, in 2044 god's wrath will reach the USA - half of the USA will disappear completely due to a large cataclysm.

When asked by a journalist of the magazine Aura if something nice will happen to us in the next thirty years, Omer replied: "Well, at one time the world shall be peaceful and blissful. My dreams tell me that it shall happen when Qur'an is translated to all world languages."

Destruction of disbelievers

Besides gifted individuals and their visions, among the Bosnian people there are a lot of prophecies for which the author is unknown but they are present in the tradition. According to one of them there is a gigantic rock above Saudi Arabia which is stationed high in the sky which will in the future fall onto earth and destroy it. Today this prophecy is interpreted as a punishment for perversity and evil which is spread by the royal family Saud and financing Al-Qaida and terrorist which are killing Muslims in Syria and Iraq. Even god's messenger Muhammad announced that at one time the centre of Islam (Mecca and Medina) will give way to evil and viciousness so much that it will cooperate with the enemies of Islam (Israel, USA, France, Britain, Qatar, Turkey) and that it will have to be destroyed in order to cleanse the holly place from disbelievers and murderers.


Illyrian god’s and goddesses

In order to grasp the pagan world of our ancestors, especially the one connected with their religious life, we need to gather all the names of the god’s and goddesses of the Illyrian pantheon from the entire area of Illyricum from Albania across Bosnia and Herzegovina to Slovenia. Individual deities had several names but an identical function which is the reason why the Illyrians failed to establish a unique religion across the territory of Illyricum and why it was divided into many cults. But, according to all available data, worshiping the snake, the reincarnation of the Grand Mother, Thane and Vidasus were common to all Illyrian tribes mostly because these deities were connected with the cult of agriculture and fertility.

Dracon and Draccena: divine couple.

Nutrika: goddess, protector of children.

Sentona – goddess tied to the cult of agriculture.

Ika – goddess of fertility.

Histria – goddess, protector of the entire geographical area of Istria.

Boria – god of wind.

Nebra – goddess of storms and mist.

Trita – goddess of health. Her name has no connection to the Istria area, instead it can be recognized in the names from Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the form Tritan, Tritanon or Traitano. It is believed that the name of the goddess has an Illyrian-Celtic heritage.

Melosok – local Illyrian god, protector.

Anzotika, Irija or Prende: goddess of love.

Boa: divine snake.

Verbti: god of fire and the north wind which causes fires.

Beautiful celestials (in Albanian: Bukuri and Qiellit) in ancient Illyrian times, three gods which divided the world into the heavens, sea and underground.

Thana, Tana, Thiana or Zana (Albanian): Illyrian goddess equated to the Roman Diana. She is followed by three goats with golden horns. In Albanian mountains Zana lives as a faery adorned by bravery and beauty. Among the Bosniaks Zana or Tana is a forest faery (Zlatna) which lives in Bosnian forests and helps great warriors, such as Mujo Hrnjica. Deep connection of the goddess Tana is evident through folk songs where the scene of Mujo Hrnjica meeting with the faeries is described, the fairies were disguised as goats, with his shrewdness he manages to unmask them and subject them to his will. Even though in Bosnian mythology it is considered that the forest faery and Zlatna are actually two different faeries i.e. mother and daughter, we are probably talking about one faery which probably has a different name in various parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Identification of the Illyrian goddess in the name of the queen of faeries Zlatna (Zlatana) is more than evident in the name itself, namely, if we subtract first three letters from Zlatana we will get the name Tana or if we subtract the second, third and fourth letter – Zana.

Zlatna is called forest or mountain faery in north-western part of Bosnia with clear meaning of mountain i.e. forest faery or forest mother. Her epithet of queen, confirms her privileged position which she has as the goddess of our Illyrian forefathers.

Medauros or Armatos: god of war. Depicted as riding a horse, with a spear in his left hand.

Redon: protector of seafarers. God in the form of a boy next to which a dolphin appears.

En: one of the three supreme gods.

Perendi or Shurdi: god of thunder, husband of the goddess Prenda. A curious similarity appears between the “Slav” name of the god of thunder Perun and the Illyrian Perendi. If we take into consideration that the Illyrians, besides the Greeks, are the oldest people in the Balkans then it is easy to conclude that Perendi or Perin is nothing more than an ancient Illyrian deity which is wrongly connected with the forced Slav pantheon.

Vidasus or Vidas: one of the names of this grand god of the Illyrian pantheon is Messor or Žetalac which clearly alludes to his dominant role in the cult of fertility i.e. agriculture. Time of harvests was a period dedicated to him.


Vještičije lutke za ljubav

Vjerovatno su takozvani ljubavni napitci i ostale pojedinosti iz ljubavne magije zanimljiviji od bilo koje druge vrste magijskog djelovanja. Ogromna većina ovi receptura ipak pripada području fikcije. Ali postoje obredi koji djeluju. Jedan od najpoznatijih i najučinkvitijih je onaj koji uključuje korištenje lutaka. Ove lutke predstavljaju ljubavnike. Kao i kod svih drugih suosjećajnih magija, ono što je napravljeno lutki, napravljeno je ljubavniku.

Lutka je posebno pripremljena krpena lutka. To je jednostavan, grubi oblik, izrezan iz dva komada platna. Dok režete platno, trebali biste se koncentrisati na osobu koju predstavlja. Može se zatim dodatno izraditi vezenjem crta lica; posebnih karakteristika (npr.brade i brkova; duge kose koja pada). Čak se mogu staviti i astrološki znakovi osobe. Ako niste veoma dobri u vezenju, onda ovo stavite sa markerom ili olovkom. Sada zašijte figure unaokolo, ostavljajući samo vrh otvorenim. Figura bi se onda trebala napuniti s odgovarajućim ljekovitim biljem, opet se koncentrirajući na osobu koja je u pitanju. Mogu se koristiti biljke poput limunovca, sporiša, povratića, gorčice, stolisnika, valerijane, srdačice, crne bazge ili damiane. Ovo su biljke kojima upravlja Venera. Vrh se onda može zašiti.

Dvije figure se pripremaju na ovaj način; jedna koja predstavlja muškarca, a druga ženu. Sve se ove pripreme, naravno, trebaju odvijati u Krugu, i mogu ih raditi pojedinci ili cijeli skup. S obzirom da tražite svog „idealnog druga“, onda, kao i u gorenju svijeća, drugu figuru napravite sa svim kvalitetama koje tražite. Bezimeno je, ali opet može odražavati fizičke želje (npr.duga, plava kosa) i biti napravljeno sa svim atributima koje imate na umu. Zapamtite, ovo je jaka magija. Ovo je za stalnu vezu, zato je ne koristite da dobijete partnera za kratku aferu.

Kad su spremne, lutke položite na oltar, jednu na lijevi kraj vašeg mača ili noža, a drugu na desni kraj. Trebale bi biti ispred oružja. Na oltaru je također položena crvena vrpca, dugačka 53 centimetra.

Ovo je što Vi izgovarate: „ O moćni Bože i Božice, počujte sada moju molitvu vama. Moju molbu za istinsku ljubav za ... (ime) ... i za njezinu žudnju“.

Molitelj uzima jednu od lutaka i, nakon umakanja prstiju u posoljenu vodu, cijelu je prska. Zatim ju provlači kroz miris tamjana, okrećući je tako da svi dijelovi budu okađeni. Dok ovo radi, govori: „Ovu lutku imenujem ... (vaše ime) ... to je ona u svakom pogledu. Kako ona živi, tako živi i ova lutka. Što god učinim lutki, činim njoj“.

Molitelj odlaže lutku i uzima drugu. Prskajući je i kadeći, govori: „ Ova lutka je njen željeni drug u svakom pogledu. Kako on živi, tako živi i lutka. Što god činim lutki, činim njemu“.

Molitelj odlaže lutku, zatim klekne ispred oltara s jednom rukom lagano položenom na obje lutke. Sa zatvorenim očima, on zamišlja dvoje predstavljenih ljudi kako polako dolaze, susreću se, ljube i grle. Dok ovo radi – što ne bi trebalo biti požurivano – trebao bi polako micati dvije lutke duž duljine mača, jednu prema drugoj sve dok se napokon ne susretnu. U ovom trenutku može otvoriti oči i, držeći lutke okrenute jednu drugoj, reći: „ Ovako neka se privuku jedno drugome, jako i istinski. Da budu uvijek zajedno kao jedno. Više neće biti razdvojeni; neće biti sami, nego uvijek svezani jedno uz drugo“.

Lutke bi se sada trebale položiti zajedno na sredinu oltara, sa mačem postavljenim preko njih. Sljedećih desetak minuta, moliteljica (ako je Samotnica) ili cijeli skup mogu započeti sa plesom uokolo i činiti magiju, na uobičajen način, usmjerenu na cilj spajanja dvoje ljudi. Kao alternativa, molitelj ili moliteljica ili cijeli skup, mogu jednostavno sjediti meditirajući i koncentrisajući se na gledanje dvoje ljudi zajedno – sretni, smiju se, uživaju u društvu onoga drugoga i očito zaljubljeni.

Obred bi se trebao obavit u petak, za vrijeme rasta Mjeseca, i ponoviti se sljedeća dva petka. Ako je kalendar takav da je nemoguće imati tri petka u fazi rasta Mjeseca, onda to činite u petak, srijedu i petak. Uvijek ciljajte da imate završen obred u petak što bliže punom Mjesecu. Između obreda, ako oltar ne može ostati postavljen, sa dvije lutke na njemu (koje leže ispod mača), onda ih treba uzeti (držati zajedno, licem u lice) i umotati u čisto, bijelo platno i ostaviti negdje gdje neće biti uznemiravani.

U završni petak, kada je gore navedeni obred bio obavljen, nastavite kako slijedi. Recite: „ Neka sada Gospodar i Gospodarica spoje ovo dvoje zajedno, kao što ih ja ovdje vežem.“ Uzima lutke i veže crvenu vrpcu oko njih nekoliko puta, pričvršćujući krajeve zajedno. Govorite: „Sada su zauvijek jedno, kao sami bogovi. Neka svaki istinski postane dio drugoga, tako da se odvojeni čine nekompletnim. Neka tako bude!“

Povezane lutke se opet stavljaju ispod mača i ostavljaju nekoliko trenutaka dok moliteljica meditira (bez plesa i pjevanja ovaj put). Nakon završenog obreda, lutke bi se trebale zamotati u čisto, bijelo platno i pažljivo držati tamo gdje nikad neće biti odvezane.


Initiation into Bosnian witchcraft

Hasiba Medinica from Cazinska krajina can be called one of the last representatives of Bosnian witchcraft. She possessed vast magical knowledge, which was unfortunately, lost in great part together with her. She had a long life which ended at the beginning of this century. She didn't have any children, and she died alone. But, she left many true stories and legends behind which made her a controversial figure.

The magical knowledge of Hasiba according to her own reports she inherited from her aunt for whom she said was a very wise woman which was well acquainted with magic. Hasiba discovered her gift for magic accidentally, namely, she managed to heal the neighbours cow which had a large warts on her udder. The cow refused to be milked. Hasibe offered to help which the neighbours accepted. Using a string of hair from a horse's tail she tied the warts while uttering a magical formula. Tomorrow morning the neighbour came to tell her the good news - the warts disappeared overnight?! 

Even though that wasn't her first magic ritual, Hasiba presented it as such because she didn't want to reveal her initiation into witchcraft. She was an exceptional expert in love magic which she used to help numerous women, for a fee, to calm the tensions in marriage, eliminate competitors, or to separate a husband and a wife. She also helped girls seduce a certain man and to marry him. She used her magical knowledge in her private life in order to be more dominant in the household and marriage.

According to stories of her neighbour Ajša one time when she was visiting Hasiba, Hasiba and her lover, which she managed to separate from his wife and children, started a heated argument with a lot of insults and threats. The fight resulted in the lover leaving the house demonstratively threatening her that their life together is over and that they will never get back together. He will go home to his wife and children. After she closed the door behind him furiously, she walked back into the room surprisingly calm. Her neighbour felt unpleasant since it all took place in front of her, but what happened next caused an even greater surprise.

He will be forced back, you will see! - as soon as she uttered those words she took her panties off in front of her neighbour, she slipped through a broom that she used to clean the room three times between her legs and turned it over three times uttering a magical formula. After that she turned the broom upside down and threw her panties on top of the broom. Then she drew with her index finger a circle on the floor of the room constantly uttering a magical formula. That entire ritual lasted for ten minutes. After that Hasibe put on a new pair of panties and calmly sat next to her neighbour continuing to drink coffee. After some twenty minutes a loud knocking was heard and a quiet pleading voice of her lover continuously repeated : "Hasiba, please open the door!"

Hearing that Hasiba laughed loudly, defiant and full of herself, she told the neighbour: "Let him wait, let him wait in front of the door!", she continued to drink her coffee calmly. After a few minutes she stood up, and approached the door and told him that she was hurt by his words that he uttered during the fight, and she refused to open the door for him.

A few days later, Hasibe answered her neighbour's question why her lover was sweaty and of heavy breath by telling her that ritual Djin made him come back to her running. That's why his face was all red and full of sweat. - If I didn't open the door for him it might have ended badly, he could have been mentally retarded or he might have had a stroke.

According to story of other neighbours, the first year of her life Hasiba used to disturb and invoke Djin with her mystical rituals which she conducted naked visiting the local graveyards, forests and all those places that are known for their magical power. In the next years, until her death, the Djin disturbed her tormenting her with insomnia every night. While all slept peacefully she would light candles in her home, she would walk up and down nervous, restless, always moody and full of evil. During midnight she would open all of her windows, and under candlelight she would appear naked performing some of her rituals, which she did for some local women. She was proud of the fact that she could influence a person in a circle of 30-40 kilometres. According to her she could return every husband to his wife and vice-versa but only during the first four months of the breakup. She would regularly advise every woman to use love magic when there are no problems in marriage because if you start using magic then, the marriage will be perfect for the rest of their lives.


Sexuality and witchcraft

Eroticism is prominent in Bosnian witchcraft, the rule is that a considerable amount of the ritual, especially the one from the domain of love magic, is performed naked. That is the standard practice of every witch coven in Europe, since the whole system of paganism was based on the cult of fertility in which nakedness and sexual relations between men and women weren't tabooed. The concept of witchcraft is based on glorification of intimate relations between the goddess and god, which in their eternal cycle connotes the creative power of nature. Among the Bosnian witchcraft the nakedness of the witch represents certain exhibitionism since she goes outside naked and encircles the house or frees herself of her clothing in nature, some grove or near a river, subject to danger of someone seeing her.

When a witch wishes to utilise evil spirits for her own goals she goes to a graveyard, strips and lies on a certain grave in order to offer her body for the entrance of spirits which will in turn help her achieve a certain goal. This form of supernatural prostitution is not reserved exclusively for witches since among the ghosts, as among humans, there are female and male demons whose sexual urges are quite potent and are directed towards humans. In exchange for sex, which takes place on a different plane from the one between two human beings, the witch or wizard gain allies from the world of ghosts and in such a way they achieve grand magical effects.

The pronounced sexuality is a common occurrence among witches which is confirmed by numerous examples from the real life where women who actively pursued magic were known as promiscuous individuals. Various affairs were often linked to them, they were considered main culprits for divorces, especially if the witch served as a lover, etc. The sexual urges of the witch don't wane over time, she uses her magical knowledge to win over younger men as lovers. We can conclude that witchcraft frees women from the false morale which was thrust upon us by monotheism, whose doctrine specifically imposes feelings of shame - in order to be "good Samaritans" we need to feel shame for our bodies and sexuality. Sex is exclusively allowed in marriage as a method of continuing the species. Even then the enjoyment in the sexual act isn't viewed favourably especially if the woman dominates. She needs to show submissiveness and shame during the act.

The tendency but also the possibility of the free life of witches usually carried with it reclusive lifestyle. Namely, a large part of women who actively practiced magic were usually widows or they never married. Usually most of them never had children. In folk lore about witches it is claimed that ghosts - lovers are the ones to blame for the witches infertility. Apparently, each witch has a "husband" among the ghosts which don't allow her to have children with another man. The primary goal of the demon lover is to impregnate the witch with his child which would be a mixture between a demon and a human. Here we come across perhaps the most mystic tradition among the Bosnian people and it is the one about the birth of snijet.

It is considered that snijet is actually a dragon's baby, because according to belief in Bosnia among the dragons there are no females but only males and the only possibility for the continuation of the species is for the dragon to impregnate a woman or a cow. But, also among such stories we can hear the ones that do not fit the framework of the classic description of the birth of snijet. Namely, individual women didn't even give birth to a snijet since their pregnancy was normal but it had one key difference. After nine months a child wasn't born nor was it a snijet?! There are numerous such descriptions of phantom pregnancies throughout history and one of the best examples is the pregnancy of the English queen Mary (of England) Tudor. Among our folk there are stories about phantom pregnancies which always ended in the same manner - the woman would go to sleep at night with a large stomach and in the morning she would wake up with a normal stomach, as if the pregnancy never took place.

The whole event was tabooed in the past by silence and no questions were asked and no explanation was sought. Usually all was finished with the claim "that snijet was born!" Of course, there was infanticide in such cases and snijet was a good excuse to hide the crime, but some stories, especially from women that lived through a phantom pregnancy talk about a completely different background. They believed that "something" was born that night and disappeared or ran away not wanting to show it true face. Among such women, according to stories from older people, there were a considerable number of them for which it was believed that they practice magic and that's why the possibility that there was a demon lover responsible for the phantom pregnancy imposes itself.


Invocation of the Bosnian fairy

This is a witch's ritual of invocation of the Bosnian fairy. During any night that has a full moon she undresses completely. She draws a protective circle in front of herself in which she will stand during the invocation. Once you enter, finish encircling closing it completely while you are inside. Then turn your face towards the east. Close your eyes and listen for the vibration of the circle in which you are. Let your breath follow the vibration of the circle. Once you succeed in doing this let out a voice from the depth of your chest and utter the ritual chant: "Apo Pantos Kakodaimonos"- allow the last letter to echo out of your mouth even when the invocation is finished. Place both of your palms on your stomach and breathe in with your entire lungs. Once your lungs are full, exhale, help yourself with your palms by pressing on your stomach. Do this a couple of times in order to cleanse your spirit and then slowly spread your arms in a swimming motion. Once they are spread, utter the following: "Apo Pantos Kakodaimonos". You will repeat the palm action on the stomach and breathe again, repeat the spreading of the arms and once done utter for the third time: "Apo Pantos Kakodaimonos".

You will then slowly spread your legs but you will not raise the feet from the ground. The feet need to slide on the ground. You will light a blue candle which shall be turned towards the east, then a black one turned towards north, a green one facing west and in the end a red one facing south. When you do this, you will utter a new oath, fully concentrated:" Ordao Alim". You will turn your body towards the east, spread your arms and utter:" In the name and power of the ghosts I'm calling you, my sisters from the east". You will pause shortly, then utter: "Vau". You will then turn towards the north and call the spiritual powers from the north. Then the invocation of the powers from the west follow, then the ones from the south, in the same manner. Once you do all of that  you will be standing in the centre of the circle, close your eyes, cross your arms on your chest and utter: "Yod". This is repeated three times in a row, each time with a deeper and deeper concentration. Then, the moment when a Bosnian fairy appears in front of you outside the protective circle will come. She will be wearing a see through dress which will accentuate all of her curves. Unbridled golden hair will descend to her shoulders. She will be holding a book in her hand. She will ask you what is it that you want from her. You have to tell her in a loud voice what is it that you want to know, she will open her book, leaf through it and find the answer to your question. You mustn't record what she tells you, you need to remember it. And there is no secret that she cannot give you. And there is no problem that she cannot solve. And there is no future which she cannot see into. Thanking the power which appeared in the form of a Bosnian fairy, she will give you all you want. When the time for conversation is up she will tell you she needs to go. She will disappear. You mustn't leave the protective circle since the invoked power is too strong for the human body and you could die if you do it. Wait for the Bosnian fairy to disappear, then perform the ritual of dismissal but this time in a reverse order. Only when you have done that, you can delete a part of the circle with your hands, exit it, and then delete it completely.

After that wash your entire body with cold water, rinse your mouth with which you asked questions, ears that heard the answers and hands that lit the candles and participated in the ritual. The things that you wash don't wipe rather wait for the drops to dry by themselves. What you found out you mustn't tell to others, not even to the other witches, because if they want an answer from the fairy they will perform the ritual themselves. The answers will be given only to you and only you can use them in your witchcraft. Only after the invocation, if you are uncertain that you will remember what has been said to you and only after the water has dried from your skin, you can record the revelations in your witch's book which you will destroy before you die, leaving the human form.    


The Witches Garden - Cikorija

Cikorija (Ciciborium intybus): besides nacre this is the second favourite plant among Bosnian stravarke which is used as a necessary prop when it comes to healing skin rashes for which it is believed that had originated from a person stepping over a place where dirty water, blood, urine or something else which attracts the Jinn has been spilt. After crossing over the tabooed place the person will start to feel a slight tingle in the feet, depression and suffocation. These symptoms point to the fact that an attack from a spiritual being has taken place on the human and that's why the ritual of melting lead needs to take place. After the ritual has been performed a stem of Cikorija is submerged in water and then the part of body that has the rash is sprinkled with it.     

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