Pomba Gira is the death mask of Venus, she is sensuality, transformation and challenge manifesting in beauty, truth and ordeal. She is every woman and knows the heart of every man. She is the bitterness of scorn and she is the ecstasy of obsession. She is legion. We come to her with broken and confused hearts; she is the spirit of solace and of solution. She is the fire of transformation that all Exu seek to preserve and take nourishment from. As such she is the serpentine heart of the cult of Quimbanda. Any attempt to define her as this or that is something she simultaneously affirms and escapes. She is the embodiment of the sensual and finds her mystery spoken off in woman, both mortal and stellar. Quimbada itself can be seen as a cousin of the cult of Ghede who also walks on the points of death with erotic and sexual steps.
Death and sex, the alpha and omega of human life, our journey’s beginning and end, so often diabolized, is what lies at the centre of Quimbanda and because of this these spirits have also accepted its diabolic imagery in a crooked demonstration of escaping to the centre of the diabolic.
Quimbanda is also a necromantic cult, because many of the spirits found within the cult were once men and woman who continues to tell their stories and teach their remedies, herbal and magical, to those who uphold their legacy. In this we find a bridge to the goes and to the greater array of necromantic specialists and of the nigromancers.
Pomba Gira, like her cult, Quimbanda is about transformation, the changing of hue in conformity with a full specter of influences ranging from the personal to the magical. She can be a comforter and a destroyer and she plays at all times on unpredictability and insecurities. She is a particular theme that finds resonance in the history told by men and gods. I would like to read one passage from the book Pomba Gira concerning this:
“The particular theme that manifests her essence is one of extremes. She moves from the ecstasy of the saints through cruelty and abuse and to voluptuous desire for pleasure. This opens for a wide scope of historical and celestial characters used as the blood to draw her form with within the greater theme of Pomba Gira. In her theme we find Maria Magdalene and Venus side by side with Erzébeth Báthory, Joan of Arc and the Iberian exiled witch Maria Padilha. The theme reveals violence, sorcery, mercy and sensual joy.”
PombaGira and the Quimbanda of Mbùmba Nzila is a book of necromancy and sorcery – but it is also a testament given to Woman in all her glory and diversity of manifestation. By gaining knowledge of Pomba Gira, we can gain knowledge of self and death, as much as findings ways of understanding and dealing with life. Pomba Gira is Woman and she is Solace, the whisper of wise death as it guides the living. The book can be ordered through Scarlet Imprint: http://www.scarletimprint.com/pombagira.htm
Illustration: Enoque Zedro