Pennsylvania German Powwow

Faith healing and folk magic of the Pennsylvania Germans


Even though this entire website is technically my "blog", this page will hold my extra articles that don't really fit in well on the other pages, or maybe there will just be ideas that jumped into my head that I wanted to share here. Some of the older blog entries are helpful and so I recommend you scroll down and look through the entries from 4 or 5 years ago. 

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shotguns in powwow

Posted by Rob Phoenix on August 17, 2018 at 5:30 PM Comments comments (0)

Back in the day, life was a little different than it is now. Farmers and other rural folks could shoot a rabbit or a pheasant or whatever that happened to be on their property or in the nearby woods, and that might end up as dinner. Because of the commonality of shotguns, it's no suprise that guns would have folk magic purposes.

In powwow, a gun can be used as a method of ending witchcraft. The witches name is written on paper, attached to a tree, then shot at. This repels t...

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using a knife in powwow

Posted by Rob Phoenix on August 5, 2018 at 8:20 AM Comments comments (0)

Next to my bible, my pocket knife is my favorite tool for powwowing. I use it in healing charms, anti-hex work, weather work, and all manner of other types of powwowing. My pocket knife is like an old friend, always on hand when I need it and the work I do with it never fails.

In the early days, I used a large red-handled kitchen knife. This worked fine for the time but it was large and tricky to carry around, which meant I was always cutting myself! After a while I grew so ...

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Jesus; the first Hex Doc

Posted by Rob Phoenix on July 29, 2018 at 7:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Ask any of the old timers who the first powwow doc was and they will undoubtedly tell you it was Jesus himself, "the Good Lord". He went around, preaching the Word, healing those who needed it. Then he passed it on to his disciples, as we read in Mark 14...


14Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had ri...

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The devil and his meddlesome ways...

Posted by Rob Phoenix on July 23, 2018 at 9:25 PM Comments comments (0)

I believe in the devil. I don't say that lightly. There was a time when I thought it was nonsense... Propaganda created to instill fear and obedience in the hearts and minds of the early Christians. But I've seen the devil. I've experienced him. If there is good in the Universe, it stands to reason that there must be bad. If there is light, there must be dark. If there is day, there must be night. If there is holy, there must be unholy. This is balance. The devil is God's great adversa...

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Death of a teacher.

Posted by Rob Phoenix on July 3, 2018 at 6:15 PM Comments comments (1)

I received an email late last night to inform me that one of my powwow teachers had passed away. I didn't read the email until this afternoon and I have some surprising feelings about it. 

My teacher was an interesting woman. Because I promised her that I would not share her name with the public, I will only share with you my feelings about her.

She was abrupt to the point of seeming rude. She was unconcerned with anyone's (including mine) impression a...

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powwow and the politics of healing

Posted by Rob Phoenix on June 23, 2018 at 9:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Believe it or not, I've received some nasty emails over the past three years claiming that I'm not a "real" powwow because I don't endorse Candidate A or Candidate B. Politics has unfortunately infiltrated the folk magic community and I'm not at all surprised by this. Our country is currently going through a very dark time. Our current administration in Washington has brought out the worst in our society. Racism and bigotry run unchecked these days and the white house revels in fanning the fl...

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Passing on the powwow...

Posted by Rob Phoenix on June 22, 2018 at 9:45 PM Comments comments (0)

As I get older, I find myself thinking about all the interesting and useful powwowing charms I've learned over the years and what will happen to these things as I age and eventually pass on... My son is only 7 so he barely has a passing interest in powwowing. Hopefully as he ages he will develop the calling for it like I did. But if not, I'll want to pass it on. A few people have come to me over the years that have expressed an interest in learning. But it seems like once I start opening up t...

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Rocks used in braucherei, by John Ramsey

Posted by Rob Phoenix on June 9, 2018 at 6:10 AM Comments comments (0)

John Ramsey is a fellow powwower and author of Pennsylvania German Powwow (I'm having trouble putting a link here but it is available on amazon) He sent this information to me to share here on this site. I'm fascinated by this info as it's more than I knew about the use of stones for powwowing. Enjoy!

Stones can be a powerful tool for the powwow to work with. Many times in the Bible, Christ is referred to as a rock; see Matthew 7:24. Many of the rocks that the braucher ...

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Catching a thief - a lesson in being cautious

Posted by Rob Phoenix on June 2, 2018 at 6:40 AM Comments comments (0)

Last fall, my son's bicycle disappeared. He insisted he had it in our carport, where he always parked it. He was upset and I was furious. We live in a relatively quiet neighborhood and our neighbors are mostly older folks with well-tended lawns and respectable reputations. Why would someone come around and steal his bike? I couldn't imagine. So we went to Wal-Mart and got him a new bike and I did some powwow.

I had no idea who may have stolen his bike, which was probably a g...

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folk magic vs ceremonial magic

Posted by Rob Phoenix on November 18, 2017 at 4:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Sometimes people are surprised to find out I have a few ceremonial ritualistic elements to my powwowing. The surprise is understandable because powwowing is fairly simplistic no-frills sort of folk magic. So what's the difference between folk magic and ceremonial magic? And how can the two work together?

Folk magic is, for our purposes, the simple day-to-day magics of the powwow. These would include the removal of warts using a potato or apple or penny, the soothing of a burn from the s...

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