Saturday, February 18, 2012

Despacho Medicine Bundles

Want to learn how to make a Despacho? It's a type of medicine bundle used in the Andes Mountains and contains items that signify a specific intention wrapped in a paper bundle...very cool.

What it takes:

A sheet of fancy paper large enough to wrap up the other items. Handmade paper is a nice touch and adds a bit more power if you make it yourself. It has to be large enough to fold into thirds and refolded until you have 9 squares-the items will go in the middle square. If you just fold it letter style into thirds, you will place the items in the middle flat, refold it like a letter, then fold in the sides from the left and right.

Bay leaves ( the original uses cocoa leaves which are illegal most places) At least three of uniform size and shape. Up to twelve groups of three, the number of mountain spirits in the Andes.
The design will be a madela of sorts.

Prayers, wishes, etc, written on small slips of thin paper. It can be a single word or a photograph of the item. I'd photocopy any personal photo because the bundle is going to be 'released' (destroyed) later.

Trinkets like small seashells, beads, seeds, feathers, etc. that are meaningful and apply to the intention.

Herbs, flower petals, powdered incense, a splash of essential oil or perfume of your choosing.

** The Ritual
Light a candle ans smudge the area where you will be working; focus on your intention or prayer offering to set the power in the items. Lay the items out in a pleasing manner,arranging them in anyway you desire. Fold up the paper around the items, making a neat package and seal it by tying with string, making a paper band, or using a wax seal. Decorate it as you wish, maybe using a sprig of rosemary or sage, a feather, or a few pieces of pretty string. Hold the package and imbue it with a final bit of energy. You must now decide how to 'release' it- by burning, burying it in the earth, leaving it for the elements, placing it in water, etc. It doesn't matter what method you use, as long as you also release any expectation about how the prayer will be answered. The Universe, Spirit, God/dess, etc. will answer in the most appropriate manner in the correct time period for the request.

The Despacho can contain as little or as much as you wish, and be of any size. They can be small and thin enough to send to a friend in a card, or carried in your pocket, or as large a greeting's up to you.

In the Andes, Despacho practitioners receive special training in this ritual and are set apart for the task.


  1. I enjoyed your post. This was something new to me. I am going to put it in my BOS. I hope to be able to use it soon.

  2. Great post, you have pointed out some superb details, I will tell my friends that this is a very informative blog thanks.
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