Hoodoo vs Voodoo

Hoodoo vs Voodoo: A Spiritual Practice With Nontraditional Means

March 29, 2022

Hoodoo and Voodoo are the two trending terms often used in place of each other. Both are quite different. Though both Voodoo and Hoodoo have the same existence, the meanings are not similar. This article is to clarify the difference between the two.

Hoodoo: An Adjective For The Magic Or Magician

Hoodoo is the specific magic craft or a magical practice of Voodoo. The magical hoodoo tricks are based on the teachings of Voodoo, or more clearly, hoodoo tricks are derived from voodoo art. 

Hoodoo is more like an adjective given to describe a magical practitioner or to the things used to perform magic or a verb to define the act of performing magic.

Hoodoo doesn’t depend on God or any other religious trappings. Conjuring spirits and ancestors are considered here. It is performed for the practitioner’s personal gain, but it doesn’t disrespect mother nature by any means.

Things used in Hoodoo:

  • Minerals
  • Plantlife
  • Animal body parts
  • Herbs
  • Fluids of the body, etc.

Voodoo: Actual Practice Of The Magic

It refers to the African religion or a fixed belief system. It is mainly followed by the African population living in Mississippi. 

Origin Of Voodoo Craft

Voodoo is the cultural base of the Afro-American religion. It was rooted in West African Dahomeyan Vodun. The voodoo craft was developed along the Mississippi in the South and Louisiana. It was practiced a lot in the town of New Orleans.

Discovery Of Voodoo Craft

Voodoo, an outcome of the African diaspora, took birth due to the trade of slaves, which was common in older times. Slave trade was practiced a lot in Western parts of Africa. 

West African Dahomeyan Vodun was linked with Catholics and French beliefs in the Southern regions of Africa. Voodoo is a result of it.

Later on, Voodoo art was fused with Spanish, French, and Creole influences. This religious fusion introduced voodoo dolls, Mojo bags, and many more.

What Is Voodoo?

Voodoo craft revolves around a belief that there is only one detached God. They believe that God stays away from humans, and it only interferes in one’s life if called. They believe that spirits are the ones who help humans on a daily basis. 

These spiritual forces are of two types:

  • One, which are helpful 
  • And the others who are manipulative ones.

It is the reason that protection against them is needed. 

For safety purposes, they use numerous things like:

  • Crystals
  • Spells
  • Elixirs
  • Dolls
  • Powdered charms, etc.

How Is Voodoo Performed?

In Voodoo, the spirits living around us are connected via:

  • Singing magical songs and spells
  • Performing unique dances
  • Writing
  • Candle spells
  • Symbolism
  • Self-connectivity

Voodoo is performed in private, which is a symbol of respecting spirits.

Steps Involved In Performing Voodoo

It is performed in five steps:

  • Diagnosing the issue
  • Attempting a cure
  • Locating and getting rid of the main cause of the problem
  • Destroying the problematic issues
  • Cleansing the negative residue

Things used to perform Voodoo:

  • Snakes are used as symbols and loa
  • These snakes or spirit forms add a new intensity to the voodoo magic.
  • The snakes here represent knowledge and self-healing connection. 

Why Is Voodoo Performed?

Voodoo is performed to make an ever-deepening bond with mother nature and the spirits around us, including our ancestors.

 Various healing practitioners cover the ground for voodoo tricks.

  • Rootworkers: They sell herbal remedies which cure physical and psychic problems.
  • Faith Healers are the ones building connections with energetic forces of the world like spirits and ancestors. It is to discover wisdom and space from the words of their ancestors. 

Voodoo is used for good purposes and as a positive influence in today’s times.

Goals of Voodoo:

  • Healing the voodoo practitioners
  • Improving magicians’ daily lives via maintaining connections with supernatural energies.

How Is Voodoo Seen In Modern Times?

Voodoo is seen as a form of folk psychiatry in the modern era, and it works for those who believe in it. However, it is also a source of living for many people in Western countries. 

Voodoo magicians are usually termed as voodoo vendors known for crafting and selling dolls, mojo crafts, elixirs, etc. They sell all these to earn greater profits.

Hoodoo vs Voodoo

Hoodoo is the practical thing, whereas Voodoo is like its theoretical portion. Hoodoo is the magical craft or practice, whereas Voodoo is the mindset and monarchy.

Both Hoodoo and Voodoo are individualist practices.

Hoodoo & Voodoo: Often Used Interchangeably

Since the nineteenth century, both Voodoo and Hoodoo have been used interchangeably. Both arise from the same base, but they have a striking difference which is important to understand.


Numerous people have made these tricks a part of their daily lives. Some are writing about it, and some are selling herbal remedies made with Voodoo and Hoodoo to cure patients. At the same time, there are hoodoo women and hoodoo men who perform Voodoo to build a knowledgeable and solace bond using their energies to bind with supernatural powers and spirits around them. It is practiced for their personal gain or the betterment of the world.

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