Magic Works in Its Own Way – San Benito’s Santa Muerte Statues in perspective

Most Holy Death

Sta Muerte Apparicione“There are no accidents or haphazard events in this world of U.S.-Mexico witchcraft (brujeria).” – Dr. Antonio N. Zavaleta

During my undergraduate studies I was fortunate to spend a few semesters with Dr. Joann Scurlock, a professional member of University of Chicago’s Oriental Institute and an expert on folk magic practices around the world. She taught two extended classes on magic, one on healing traditions, and the other on traditions of malevolent magic. Before both of them she gave a curious warning, although we’d be dealing with anthropological, sociological and historical source material the mindset of the ‘magical worldview’ carries something of a contagion. As she put it:

“It’s not a matter of whether you believe or disbelieve, nor is it relevant whether magic is real or not, anthropologists and psychologists who have studied these areas have shown that magic works in its own way, and the more you study…

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