COMING EVENTS CAST THEIR SHADOWS BEFORE

fiction

Papa Justify speaks:

I am a hoodoo priest of sorts. If you want to summon the spirits, I can help. In fact, I’m probably the only one you’ll ever meet who can actually deliver the goods. Everyone else who claims to be a hoodoo priest is usually simply an unemployed alcoholic, and they are legion.

Predicting the future is simply a matter of seeing correctly, and most people are capable of doing so with the proper instruction and encouragement. Many are afraid to go down that path, because they’d rather avoid the responsibility of knowing. They’d rather pretend to be helpless in the face of coming events.

The fact remains that we all know what’s coming, but are frightened or lazy enough to pretend we don’t. It comes as a feeling, a taste, a smell, a vision, sometimes as a sound. We are not alone. We are surrounded by spirits who are doing their best to contact us and guide us if we consent to be guided.

Those of us who wish to go it alone are free to do so. The Spirits are not jealous regarding their domain. Think of them as real estate agents. If you can sell your house at a good price on your own, by all means do so. If you can’t, give them a call.

There are many more spirits than most practioners will acknowledge. I am personally acquainted with forty-one, and suspect there are ten times than number who are yet beyond my ken. Each spirit has an area of expertise. In this way they are like craftsmen. A good plumber can recommend you to a good electrician.

My closest relationship with a spirit involves TongoBongo, a Fijian headhunter and cannibal who died in 1921. I don’t know why we hit it off, but we did. I’ve never really seen him, just heard his voice in my head, but I imagine he’s heavily tattooed, painted and wears a bone in his nose. Sometimes we talk for quite a while, usually while I’m falling asleep.

“Nothing you people value as important really is. It’s all nonsense. Fads. Marketing. You can prove it to yourself. You can never get enough of what you don’t need.”

“But what do we need?” I ask.

“Community. Extended family. Nothing else matters in the long run.”

He’s probably right.

The spirits told me that I’m special, that I’m an advanced life-form who is obligated by karmic debt to devote myself to a life of service to others. I had no problem accepting this. In fact, I’m surprised it took them so long to get around to it. I’ve know it, at some level, for most of my life.

But exactly how am I to do this? What guidance will I receive, who will grease the wheels to help me succeed in such altruism? I wait for answers, but so far none arrive.

No problem. I have all the time in the world.

Nobody I’ve ever spoken to can imagine his or her own death. Secretely, we believe we’re the exception. Jesus will return and personally escort us to our heavenly reward, or else science will finally discover the cure for all disease. We know it doesn’t make sense, but deep down be believe it to be the case.

As a hoodoo anointed practioner, I have access to priviledge information. I might be able to predict your future, including the date of your demise, but rarely do I exercise my precognitive powers in this way. How would it help?

We must learn to relax and enjoy the bliss of the present moment. Now already contains everything we need in order to be content and even happy. Many of us lie to ourselves in order to believe the opposite, and this gives us an excuse to run away from what we have in search of what we don’t. As if this were some form of progress.

True progress rarely results from running away from or toward anything. Calm introspection advances our cause more often than frenetic action.

But you already know this, otherwise why would you have read this far? I am not only preaching to the choir, I am being serenaded by my fellow choir members. We are all in this together. Don’t pretend you’re not a dues-paying member of this club.

Admit to yourself at least that you can kill another simply by cursing that person. Hoodoo gives you that power. You may have forgotten the exact nature of the ritual, but it will come back to you if you simply try. That’s how it worked for me and countless others.

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