This book is about La Santa Muerte, also known alternatively as simply Santa Muerte (“Saint Death”), “The White Girl,” “The Bony Lady,” “la Flaquita,” “The Pretty Lady,” “The Skinny Lady,” “Our Godmother,” and even “Mother Death.” If you’re reading this description, you’ve probably heard some anecdotes from friends or relatives or the rumors and media reports that have become increasingly commonplace concerning Santa Muerte that intrigued you enough to learn more. That’s important because as this book explains, countless reports of inexplicable and miraculous occurrences of all types have been made by the followers of Santa Muerte in recent years, and ardent believers maintain that Santa Muerte not only answers their prayers, but does so in a nonjudgmental way. Not surprisingly, these reports, many of which have been verified by independent observers, have attracted attention from others who are also in need, and her legions of followers continue to grow in numbers.
This book is a part one of two. This book introduces readers to the history, rituals, backgrounds and current affairs with Santa Muerte and part two of the book will discuss in details the prayers, rituals, magic spells and the offerings a devotee offers and can offer to Santa Muerte. In addition, part two will also describe how the author, as an agnostic Muslim, uses a combination of Islamic offerings and a fusion of cultural rituals when praying to Santa Muerte which are introduced and briefly described in the chapter on Santa Muerte rituals and practices in this book. In sum, this book’s aim is to serve as a brief introduction to devotees and non-devotees based on my own experiences, my own learnings through books, articles, videos and other resources as well as my empirical observations from learning and practicing living with several devotees from Mexico during my time in prison.