Recording: "The First Spell Book: Ozark Bible Magic"
Class Description: Along with the almanac, the Bible was often the only book owned by Ozark hillfolk until the modern era. At one point in our past, the Bible was the source not only of spiritual teachings, but also a combination reading primer, divinatory system, and spellbook.
In this class we will be looking at the position the Bible has held in Ozark traditions of healing and folk magic. In many cases, hillfolk families might not have had a spiritual connection to the Bible but still recognized the text as a valuable text for working magic in the world. We will be looking at verses and passages that have long histories of use in the Ozarks for specific purposes like healing, protection, retribution (or cursing), as well as love and money magic. We’ll also look at rituals that have developed amongst hillfolk using these biblical texts as well as using the Bible itself as a magical object or talisman.