A collection of ConjureMan Ali's thoughts about magic, the occult, and spirituality.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Book Review: Pomba Gira and the Quimbanda of Mbumba Nzila

Nicholaj de Mattos Frisvold is one of my favorite modern authors. His scholarly approach tempered by practical experience makes each of his works throughly engaging and enlightening. His new book, Pomba Gira and the Quimbanda of Mbumba Nzila is no exception.

The book arrived a couple weeks back, a bit later than one would hope for given that it was pre-ordered, but Scarlet Imprint does their best.

I opened my package and was greeted by the luxurious scarlet outer cover and the letter-pressed image of Pomba Gira herself. Scarlet Imprint is to be commended for their beautiful texts and truly they have out-done themselves with the book I hold in my hands. The silken feel of the book, the vibrant color, and the enigmatic images scattered within all bring Pomba Gira to life; as if these mighty Queens themselves have breathed life into the pages and transformed the book into a conduit of their sulfur, blood, and beauty.

My compliments to Scarlet Imprint for capturing the mysterious, erotic, and dangerous element of the Devil's Mistress so elegantly.

Like the spirits themselves, the outershell is but the beginning. Just as the spirits invite you into their mysteries with their volumptous and deadly nature, so too does this book invite you in. The elegance and beauty of the the form compliment the depth of the mysteries convyed by the author.

I found myself unable to put the book down, entranced by the seductive dance of this noble Queen of darkness, magic, and wisdom. Her temptation was strong and her allure, the most powerful of enchantments.

Frisvold delves deep into the mysteries of one of the most misunderstood spirits of the African Diasporic World, Pomba Gira. He reveals that beneath the mistaken title of harlot actually lies the noble spirit of Queens who are cruel in their vengeance and wise in their guidance. Here we find a dark mirror into ourselves where we are dared to have the courage to meet truth. Many have forgetten how awesome and terrible truth can be, but Pomba Gira remains ever tied to the raw power of this force.

The author reveals that these spirits are deeply complex and should be honored and respected, rather than treated as servants or whores. In the process of revealing the complex nature of Pomba Gira, Frisvold illuminates some of the depth and mysteries of the cult of Quimbanda, its necormantic nature and the implications that the relationship between devotee and Pomba Gira hold for Woman.

This book is deep, but engaging. I find that over the coming weeks I shall be turning to this book over and over again, letting each layer of meaning and revelation sink in. One is left feeling a glimpse of the depth of the cult, understanding how much more remains shrouded in the shadows of night, and hoping that more will be revealed soon.

Yet I also add this caution to those who think they can use these spirits without proper guidance and respect. Pomba Gira and her consort and cult are not a fad, they are beings of primal power and amoral natures who do not hesitate to make a toy of those weak of character and constitution. Tread carefully on this razor path.

For all of this, I highly recommend this book to those interested in learning more about Pomba Gira and Quimbanda. You can find it here.

Salve Pomba Gira Rainha! 

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