In some versions of the Sleeping Beauty story, the handsome prince would very much like to save Sleeping Beauty from her hundred years’ sleep but is initially unable because the road leading to her castle is obstructed with thorns. The prince can’t pass until, frustrated, he takes his sword and cuts his own path. In other versions of the tale, his sword won’t cut; he’s unable to pass through the thicket until powerful fairies recognize his predicament and cut a road for him.
That’s exactly what unblocking or road-opening spells do.
When your life seems stagnant, when opportunities always seem to peter out, when no viable alternatives seem to exist, when no roads open for you, you may have what is magically known as a blocked condition. Blocked conditions stem from a variety of causes:
Blockages may result from insufficient magic power: your magical gas tank is empty; therefore you can’t proceed
Blockages may be the result of a hex or curse. However the emphasis with Unblocking Spells is emphatically on repairing the situation at hand: opening the roads. There’s little emphasis on who may have placed a hex or on returning it
Blockages may result because you’re desperately in need of magical cleansing: too much accumulated negative debris is weighing you down, preventing mobility
Blockages may result from spiritual causes
Unblocking spells remove blocks, obstacles, and hurdles, opening the roads so that you can proceed happily with life. Blockages are the opposite of a crossroads. Crossroads offer possibilities of change, motion, and power. Blockages weigh you down, removing avenues of opportunity and limiting you to travel a path not of your choosing. There are two aspects to unblocking spells:
Specific spirits, magical owners of gates and crossroads, control access on all roads. They determine who passes and who is blocked. These road-opener spirits may be petitioned to remove your particular blockage
Other spells take advantage of the power of botanicals and magical items to remove a block
Abre Camino Spells
“Abre camino,” literally “road opener” or “make way,” is the name given to a plant (Trichilia havanensis) used in Latin American magic to open blocked paths. Carry an abre camino stick with you at all times to keep roads clear and remove obstacles from your path.
Abre Camino: Road Opener Spell
Bring an abre camino stick to a crossroads. Hold it in your hands, and turn around to face each direction in turn, focusing on removal of all blocks from your pathways. Murmur affirmations, petitions and prayers if desired. Burn the stick and leave coins at the crossroads.
Abre Camino: Road Opener Oil
Abre Camino or Road Opener Oil is a popular condition oil. Supplement with other botanicals as desired. This is the bare-bones formula: potent, concentrated, and effective.
Soak abre camino twigs in olive and jojoba oils. Let the oil mature for one entire lunar cycle before using.
This oil is indicated when nothing seems to go right, especially for blockages that manifest in regards to love and money.
Add essential oils of anise, bay laurel, cinnamon, frankincense, myrrh, rose, and vetiver to a bottle of sweet almond and jojoba oil, together with a tonka bean. Soak a cotton ball in Arabka Soudagar and carry in your pocket.
Arabka Soudagar Candle Spell
Hold a white candle in your hands and envision all your frustrations and fears.
Dress the candle with Arabka Soudagar.
Burn the candle in the moonlight; now envision all your blockages vanishing into thin air.
Take a cleansing or unblocking bath; put on clean clothes and start a fresh.
Baduh is the name of a benevolent Arabic spirit, responsible for swift transmission of messages. Invoke his assistance by inscribing “8 6 4 2,” signifying reversed Arabic script for his name. Place this series of numbers on documents and communications, spiritual and otherwise.
Benzoin Unblocking Spell
Benzoin allegedly melts away blockages. Burn as needed.
Request blessings of open paths and plentiful opportunities: blend lilac, rose, and wisteria and burn at midnight every night from the New Moon until the Full. Mark the Full Moon by bathing in salted water. (Add as much sea salt as possible.) Then dress in clean white clothes and go to bed in brand new, never before used, white sheets.
Break Through Blockage Bath (1) Devil’s Shoestring
Boil devil’s shoestring roots in water until the liquid is reduced by half.
Strain, cool, and pour over your body.
Allow yourself to air dry.
Dust with Fiery Wall of Protection Powder or rub the protection oil onto your body.
Do this daily for seven days, then once a week, and finally once a month as maintenance.
Break Through Blockage Bath (2) Flower Essence Remedy
The flower essence remedy Chestnut bud (Bach) is indicated when you’re stuck, blocked, or trapped in repetitive cycles with no transformation.
Initiate use by taking a single intensive bath: add 20—30 drops of the remedy to the bath before bedtime. Pay attention to your dreams for clues on resolving your blockage.
Do not add more than half a dozen drops to any additional baths. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for internal administration or apply topically.
Break Through Blockage Bath (3) Sour Sop
The sour sop, also known as custard apple (Annona genus), is a small tree native to the Congo region of Africa. It also appears in Brazil, where it is known as malolo. It’s used in powerful unblocking baths when a person is absolutely desperate, miserable, oppressed by fate, and at the end of their tether. Make an infusion by pouring boiling water over sour sop leaves. Let it cool, strain and add this to your bath.
Break Through Blockage Bath (4) Vetiver
Create an infusion by pouring boiling water over dried vetiver roots.
Allow them to steep. When the liquid cools, add the infused water to a bath.
Repeat for nine consecutive days to break blocks, inertia, chains of misfortune, and periods of bad luck.
Citrus Unblocking Bath
Collect as many types of citrus fruits, emphasizing the sour ones. There can’t be too much fruit in this bath.
Quarter each fruit, squeeze the juice into a tub of bathwater then toss in the rind.
Add a bottle of orange blossom water or hydrosol.
Enter the bath, rub yourself with the fruit, envision your blocks cleansed away and then allow yourself to air-dry. (Depending on the quantity of fruit used, you may be sticky. Leave the fruit residue on for as long as possible before showering it off.)
Larch Unblocking Spell
Larch, a unique evergreen in that it sheds its needles, is the tree of New Beginnings. Burn larch woodchips, resin, and/or needles to liberate blocked energy.
Road Opener Spells
Any powerful and sympathetic spirit can remove a block. However there is a genre of spirits known as “road openers.” These spirits are said to “own” roads; thus playing the role of a spiritual gatekeeper they determine who may pass and who can’t, whose road will be easy and whose will be
obstructed. On the whole, these spirits possess a somewhat sardonic sense of humor; they tend to be volatile tricksters. Their stomping ground, the place to meet them, is invariably that opposite of the blocked road, the crossroads.
Road Opener Coyote
In Native American mythology, Coyote is the trickster who weasels out of all situations, finding opportunities and loopholes where none seem to exist. Coyote leads people into disaster, then rescues them again. Petition or contemplate him to locate hidden pathways.
Burn desert sage and inhale its fragrance deeply. Contemplate images of Coyote and allow inspiration to arrive.
Road Opener Elegba
The most famous and popular modern road opener derives from West Africa, where he is known as Eshu-Elegbara. As befitting a spirit of many disguises, he answers to many names: Elegba, Legba, Papa Legba, Exu (in Brazil), and in his New Orleans Voodoo incarnation, Papa La Bas. Choose the one that suits you.
In West Africa, his most ancient manifestation was as a beautiful young man, demonstrating and maintaining the virility that links him to magical phallic cults.
That manifestation didn’t survive the Middle Passage: in the Western hemisphere, Elegba typically manifests either as a young, mischievous boy or as a frail, lame elderly man. Don’t let any of the manifestations deceive you: underneath each one, Papa Legba is a trickster who delights in practical jokes and word games, often to the displeasure of his devotees although he can also be a spirit of amazing generosity and protective care.
Papa Legba speaks all languages: speak to him as you will. If you prefer him in the guise of a saint, he’ll wear that mask, too. Elegba is identified with Saint Anthony, Saint Peter, the Holy Child of Atocha, and the Anima Sola. Afro-Brazilian traditions sometimes syncretize him with Satan, based on the European folklore that envisioned the devil as a lame, quick-witted, bantering black man loitering at the crossroads.
Papa Legba’s days are Monday and the third day of every month. His colors are red, black, and white; his numbers three and twenty-one. He protects infertile women, removing obstacles on the road to motherhood, and he assists the poor whose avenues are limited. Papa Legba stands at the crossroads with his shepherd’s crook, where he opens and closes access to life’s paths.
Papa Legba Basic Petition
Obtain an image of Elegba in any of his guises.
Place this behind your door.
Feed the image every Monday with a shot of rum, candy, cigarettes or anything that evokes a practical joke.
Papa Legba Doll
Elegba was syncretized to Saint Peter specifically because of the keys Peter holds in his votive image. Keys are magical amulets to unblock life’s roads.
Create a small doll to represent Elegba: wrap fabric in one of his favorite colors around a stick.
Stick a cork on top of the stick to serve as his head.
Decorate and embellish as you will.
Crown Elegba with a shed rooster feather, if possible.
As the final activation, tie a key around his waist, knotting your desire into the cord.
Talk to the doll nightly or at least on Mondays. Express your wishes and watch the roads open.
Road Opener Ganesha
Perhaps the most beloved Hindu deity, the elephant-headed Lord of Prosperity and Wisdom is the son of the primal deities, Shiva and Parvati. This patron of good beginnings had an inauspicious start. Born in his father’s absence, father and son were unknown to each other and Ganesha grew up devoted to his mother. One day, while Ganesha stood guard while his mother bathed, Shiva returned unexpectedly and attempted to see his wife. Ganesha refused to allow him, and so Shiva cut off Ganesha’s head. When the truth of the situation was revealed, Shiva resolved to replace his son’s head with that of the first creature he next saw: an elephant. Because he no longer looked “godlike,” Shiva decreed that no prayers would begin without first evoking Ganesha. He is traditionally invoked before beginning any endeavor or project, so that he will open the way.
Request Ganesha’s assistance with new projects
If old projects are blocked, ask Ganesha for his late blessing and request that he perform an unblocking for you
Offer him candy, peanuts and golden raisins
Ganesha Plant Unblocking
Collect leaves from 108 different botanicals and offer them to Ganesha. Request that he unblock your path.
Road Opener Hecate
Hecate presides over three-way crossroads. Hecate truly controls all roads: not only does she control avenues of opportunity, she also guards the frontier between the realms of the living and the dead, and the various planes perceptible only with psychic vision.
Hecate’s color is black. She only accepts petitions after dark, the only illumination permitted being torchlight. The last day of every month belongs to her, as do the days of the Dark Moon. These are the best times to request her favor.
An ancient method of honoring Hecate was to hold a supper in her honor.
Any festive meal may be served, however fish is traditional. Honey and garlic are sacred to her and should be incorporated.
Gather everything up and bring it to a three-way crossroads.
If appropriate, sit and picnic with Hecate. If not, merely leave her offering at the crossroads. Either way, a plate of food should be offered to her. Leave it there; do not return for any part of it including the plate.
Walk away and don’t look back. Once the offering is on the ground, it’s Hecate’s to do with as she pleases. Ancient Christians scoffed that Hecate’s suppers were routinely consumed by feral dogs and homeless people rather than by the goddess. However they misunderstood that this is one way Hecate accepts petitions. Don’t stop anyone from picking up what has been placed down.
Petition Hecate to break your block through the use of her sacred emblems.
Hecate’s attributes include a key, a broom, a torch, a cauldron, dragons, and dogs.
Collect charms representing these images to place on a charm bracelet.
This is a spell in progress. Each time you locate a charm, consecrate it to Hecate and request that she unblock your roads.
Wear the bracelet or carry it in a conjure bag, especially when free access is needed.
Road Opener Maximon
The traditional votive image of Maximon, primal spirit of male vigor, depicts a man dressed completely in black seated at the crossroads. Maximon has the key to all roads; he opens the door to opportunity and unblocks passages for his devotees.
Create a shrine for Maximon with a votive image as the focal point. Although other images exist, for purposes of unblocking the image of Maximon seated at the crossroads is most potent. Maximon likes gifts and expects to be paid for his services. Serve him rum and Coke, cigars and cigarettes, and offer silk scarves. Light black candles and explain your situation to him.
Road Opener Ogun
Ogun cuts through obstacles with his machete, as if they were blades of grass. He may be petitioned to break through any blockage, open any closed road and create passable roads where previously none existed.
Offer Ogun rum, fine cigars, and dragon’s blood incense
His numbers are seven and three; his colors are red and black
The best day to petition him is on a Wednesday, however it is traditional never to petition him when bleeding. If you’re menstruating, if you cut yourself shaving, save the petition for another day
Road Opener Pomba Gira Maria Padilha
Few spirits have as strange a history as Maria Padilha. She began her earthly incarnation in Spain as the secret wife of Pedro the Cruel, King of Castile and Leon. She was considered so beautiful that courtiers competed to drink her used bathwater. Her pleasure gardens may still be seen in Seville.
Hundreds of years after her death in the fourteenth century, Maria Padilha re-emerged in Brazil as the most popular and powerful Pomba Gira. Although these spirits derive from Afro-Brazilian tradition, the Pomba Giras embody all the stereotypes of the Iberian Gypsy. Think Carmen, just more so. She is a powerful, volatile but generous spirit. In her guise as Maria of the Seven Crossroads, she is a profound opener of roads.
Offerings to Maria Padilha are made at a T-crossroads. No need to stand in the middle of a traffic intersection, it’s the bar at the top of the “T” that is her sacred space
She also accepts offerings at the foot of the large cross in traditional cemeteries or at the cemetery gates
Her days are Monday and Friday; her colors are red and black; her number is seven
In Brazil, offerings to her, including burning candles, are left outside at the crossroads so this is specified in her spells. However in other communities, if you’re caught abandoning lit candles at a traffic intersection you may be subject to arrest or fine; adapt these spells to suit your needs and situation.
Maria Padilha’s Standard Unblocking Spell
The Pomba Gira’s spell offerings are detailed and elaborate:
Lay red and black cloths on the ground to form an altar at a three-way crossroads.
She expects a bouquet of seven long-stemmed red roses. If there are thorns you must remove them by hand. If they have not already been removed, do not ask the florist to remove them for you. If you are absolutely broke, she may accept red carnations in lieu of roses, but remember that she was a queen in life and expects to be treated like one.
Offer Maria Padilha a small bottle of anisette (open it for her) or pour her a glass of champagne in a champagne flute.
Offer her fine cigarettes; open the box and bring her matches.
Light red taper candles or a red and black double-action candle.
Tell her precisely what you need (she’s another spirit who enjoys practical jokes; be explicit and be careful regarding mixed messages or words with double meanings).
If she provides it for you, she’ll expect another, larger offering as payment.
Three Road Openers’ Super Strength Unblocking Spell
To open one’s path and clear a major blockage, invoke Elegba (Exu), Ogun and Maria Padilha simultaneously. This offering is made at midnight at a crossroads.
Sprinkle the ground with anisette.
Lay down a red cloth; cover it with a black cloth. All offerings and candles should be placed on these cloths. The two male spirits will accept good rum, over-proof rum or cachaca. Maria Padilla likes a small bottle of anisette or a glass of champagne served in a champagne flute. All three appreciate fine cigars and cigarettes.
Make an offering to Elegba/Exu of alcohol, candles, and fine cigars or deluxe cigarettes.
Make an offering to Ogun. Give him alcohol and a cigar, and light a red or black candle inside a cauldron.
Make an offering to Maria Padilha of red roses, red candles, fine cigarettes or cigarillos, and a libation.
Talk to the three of them and tell them what you need.
Back up seven paces before you turn around; leave via a circuitous route. Do not return to that spot for at least seven days.
For the equivalent of magically dynamiting a blockage, repeat this spell at seven different crossroads all in one night.
Road Opener Saint Expedite
Saint Expedite hates delays. Blockages inspire Saint Expedite to break them. If things are stalled, if there’s no forward action, petition Saint Expedite, Patron of Those in a Rush, Spirit of Fast Action. Appeal to him when you need something now!
Saint Expedite is traditionally depicted in the guise of a handsome young Roman centurion squashing a crow underfoot. This isn’t meant to celebrate brutality toward magical creatures but is actually a visual pun. The Latin crow says “cras,” meaning “tomorrow.” Saint Expedite smashes tomorrow and demands action NOW not later.
Offer Saint Expedite a glass of rum and a slice of pound cake. Tell him what you need. Allegedly he likes public testimonials detailing his good works. He is among the spirits most open to bribery
Some turn him upside down until he gets the job done
Petition Saint Expedite as you need him (“why wait?” he’d say), but his feast day is April 19th
Road Opener Teramo
Teramo is the Italian name for Hermes. He sends fast messages to other spirits and between realms but he’s more selective than Elegba. Teramo only sponsors those he perceives as his own: thieves, merchants, psychic workers, and those born with the planet Mercury prominent in their natal chart—particularly those with sun in Gemini or Virgo and those born during a Mercury retrograde.
Capture Teramo’s attention by erecting a small pyramid of stones.
Light a candle beside it and talk to him quickly. Unless your petition or proposition is incredibly intellectually stimulating, assume that Teramo’s attention span is brief.
Road Opener Xango
In the Afro-Brazilian cult of Umbanda, the orisha Xango is considered an opener of the ways.
Venture to a large rock or cliff. Signs of previous lightning damage are very auspicious.
Open a bottle of dark beer.
Spill about half of it on the ground, forming the shape of a cross.
Put a red candle in the now-half-filled bottle. Light it.
Petition for what you need.
Road Opening Spell: Mojo Bag
This bag may need to be contained within a second bag to keep the dirt from slipping out.
Gather pinches of dirt from seven different crossroads and place them in a red bag.
Add salt, an old key, and pebbles or nails found on or beside train tracks.
Carry it with you to keep all avenues open.
Road Opening Spell: Oil
Start with a coconut oil and jojoba oil base.
Add true coconut extract, ground allspice, peppermint, and licorice (not the candy, the herb).
This oil may be added to the bath or used to dress unblocking candles.
Seven African Powers Spell
For insoluble problems invoke the Seven African Powers.
Name the problem by writing it on a piece of brown paper.
Dip it into Seven African Powers oil.
Place this inside a small bottle and cover it with black coffee.
Invoke the Seven African Powers.
There are commercially manufactured Seven African Powers candles and incenses: burning them to accompany your petition would not be amiss. You may also burn seven individual candles, one in the color of each power (see the table on page 1065 for details), or seven white candles.
Stimulate Change Spell
To stimulate change, movement, and transformation gather a handful of dirt from each of the following places:
The local police department, courthouse, or jail
The local fire department or blacksmith
A butchers shop
A place of higher education
You will need five handfuls in all. Place them all in a red flannel bag together with a High John the Conqueror root to unblock your paths.
Unblock a Mind Spell
Sometimes what needs to be opened is someone’s mind, so that that person will be willing to listen to you, to hear you.
Carve a skull candle with the name and identifying information of the target of this spell. Choose the color of the skull to suit your purpose: red for romance, green for financial discussion, black if the person is dense or is stubbornly refusing to consider your position. White may be used for any purpose.
Dress the candle with Command and Compel Oil. Add any other formula oil that matches your needs.
Burn the candle.
Intensify the spell by dedicating it to Papa Legba, Opener of the Ways, Eliminator of Obstacles.
Unblock a Situation Spell
Charge a peridot, sardonyx, or quartz crystal.
Place it on an altar.
Focus your desires on the stone.
Carry it with you in a lucky charm bag.
Recharge it periodically on your altar.
Place an incense burner filled with frankincense under a straight back chair. Light it.
Sit on the chair, ideally in the nude.
Wrap a plain white sheet around yourself, just under your chin. The chair will be covered up as will you, except for your head. Be vigilant for fire safety.
Sit for between five and fifteen minutes, focusing on the smoke driving your bad luck away.
Unblocking Spell (1)
Get rid of blocks and bad luck:
Go through your home and premises looking for extraneous sharp items: pins, tacks, anything similar.
Place them in a jar or bottle.
When it is approximately half full, take it outside and bury it, preferably not on your property, but at the least at the absolute furthest edge of your land. Don’t dig it up.
Unblocking Spell (2)
When your cross is too heavy to bear and you’re sick of being in such misery.
Collect a bowl of rainwater or seawater. You can keep it in reserve. It’s hard to plan to do this spell: you will know if and when the right time arrives.
Cry into the bowl of living water.
When you can’t cry anymore, take the water and feed a plant with it.
Nurture this plant; tell it your desires and dreams.
Write your wishes on a piece of paper and bury them together with a small crystal beside the plant’s roots.
Unblocking Spell (3) Crossroads Unblocking
Bring bread and a libation to a crossroads.
Request that the general assembly of spirits remove obstacles from your path and grant you good fortune and smooth traveling instead.
Leave the offering and depart without looking back.
Unblocking Spell (4) Crossroads Cash
Fill a paper bag with candy and pennies. Fill your pockets with additional pennies.
Rub this bag over your entire body, from head to toe, not forgetting your palms and the soles of your feet. Ideally this is accomplished while walking to a four-way crossroads, however it may be done at home first.
Go to the crossroads; as you reach the first corner, drop three pennies and some candy on the ground, as an offering to the spirits of the crossroads, saying “I ask you to remove the blocks from my path.”
Circle the crossroads, dropping three pennies with candy and repeating your petition at the next two corners.
At the last corner, offer “clean money” from your pockets and ask the roads to be open to you and filled with good fortune.
Lose the bag used for the cleansing, together with the rest of its contents, before you return home.
Unblocking Spell (5) More Crossroads Cash
This variation of the above spell may be more discreet and thus easier to accomplish.
Fill three paper bags with candy and pennies.
Rub each bag over your body, from head to toe, visualizing your blockage dissolving.
Keep some extra pennies in your pocket.
Carry the three paper bags to the crossroads; when you reached the first corner, simply let one bag slip to the ground. Murmur a request that all blocks be removed and your path become obstacle-free.
Repeat at the next two corners, so that none of the bags remain in your possession when you reach the final corner.
Drop the pennies from your pocket there and request blessings of open roads with no obstacles to hinder your passage.
Return home via a circuitous route.
Yemaya’s Unblocking Spell (1)
Life is filled with obstacles and unhappiness. However Yemaya is the all-powerful mother of all, who desires happiness for her children and will do whatever she can to obtain it for them. To obtain joy and smooth sailing:
Go to the beach.
Dig a small pit in the sand.
Light white and/or blue candles. Make your petition.
Enter the water. Greet Yemaya in her guise as mermaid or as a beautiful woman rising up from the sea. Offer her seven white roses.
Immerse yourself completely seven times.
Yemaya’s Unblocking Spell (2)
If you can’t swim or are afraid of water, you may still petition Yemaya:
Sit down in the sand at the waterline.
As the waves come in, greet them with your hands, gather up the water from the waves, and toss some over your head, some over your body.
Throw seven white roses to Yemaya.
Come out of the water without turning your back to the ocean. Let the candles burn out.