Magickal How-To: Red Brick Dust
What is Red Brick Dust?
Red Brick Dust is exactly as described: it's dust from crushed red bricks.
In the world of magick, red brick dust falls under the heading of ingredients known for their pragmatic, or practical, application. It is often used as an agent of protection by American practitioners of Hoodoo, Rootwork, Conjure, and/or modern Voodoo origins. However, the use of red brick dust is not exclusive to these traditions and can be used by anyone.
What Makes RBC a Potent Ingredient?
Red brick dust is a potent ingredient because of its primal origins and modern uses.
Red ochre,the original red brick dust, has been used since the time of Neanderthals and early modern humans in Africa for decorative and practical purposes (Roebroeks et. al 2012). Red ochre, made of iron oxide clay, was an effective paint pigment, sunscreen, adhesive, and insect repellent as found from various archeological dig sites dating back from the middle stone age and onward (Tammy Hodgkiss 2015). It is thought that red ochre was the first substitute for blood, and more specifically, menstrual blood - the most powerful thing a woman has in her natural magickal toolbox.
Why is RBD Used in Spellcraft?
To understand the why red brick dust is used in magickal workings, first we have to think about what bricks do and how they are made.
Bricks are made by firing iron oxide clay, mixed with other natural additives, at extremely high temperatures - between 900°C and 1,000°C! The high firing temperature ensures the cohesion and strength of the brick. The color of the brick is determined by its contents. Bricks that are rich in iron and left in cooler temperatures will be red. And that's how bricks are made!
Bricks are used to build walls and foundations. Foundations serve as the base for which we build everything else upon. Without a strong and sturdy foundation (one free of negative energy) we can't build anything else whether mundane or magickal. Walls serve as barriers to provide protection to the people inside and to keep people on the outside, out. Brick is strong and can withstand harsh weather conditions. Brick is also a great building insulator - keeping heat and cold inside a structure.
Now that we know how bricks are made and what they are used for, we can talk magickal application. RBD is the equivalent of building a virtual wall. It is used by practitioners as a measure of protection to keep those inside protected from those outside who bring negative energies either consciously or unknowingly to the property. It is effective in deflecting/reversing hexes/curses, protecting homes from negative energy and intention, and protecting businesses form thieves. It is also an effective agent in prosperity as it utilizes the insular and foundation uses of brick pragmatically.
How To Use RBD
Red brick dust can be used in a variety of ways for the sake of protection of people, homes and businesses, as a remedy for negative energy, to counteract negative magick, and for attracting prosperity. My favorite way to use this ingredient is in protective workings designed to keep negative energy out and it works every time. Here are a few of my go-to methods, both old school and with a modern twist:
- Sprinkle in a protection mojo bag to carry on your person (personal favorite of mine)
- Mix with black or white salt to lay a protective ward around a building's perimeter (this works WONDERS!)
- Use in all entryways including front doors, back doors, windows, garage doors, etc.
- Mix in a carrier oil alone or with other ingredients to use as a candle dressing for reversal, protection, and/or cleansing
- Rub onto any object carrying negative energy to dispel it
- Effective in the reversal of hexes placed by foot track magicks like goofer dust and hot foot powders
- To clear negativity out of a space, sprinkle red brick dust on the floor and sweep outside with a broom
- Lay a line across the entryway of a space you want to protect. It is my understanding that this is the most traditional use of red brick dust by modern Voodou practitioners.
- Red wash (aka Reddening) the doorways of your dwelling by combining red brick dust with ammonia, lye, vinegar will proved protection and cleansing.**
- For prosperity mix red brick dust, cinnamon, and brown sugar in water. Wash the steps leading into your dwelling (whether business or home) in an inward motion to keep continuous prosperity flowing into your space.
**If you want to go super Hoodoo traditional: Wake up before the sun on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and don't speak to anyone. Mix your urine (or vinegar) with water and scrub your front steps and/or your doorway. When finished, lay red brick dust across your doorstep. Alternately you can dilute red brick dust into your floor wash.
Where Can I Get RBD?
RBD can be purchased at most conjure shops. These shops specialize in Hoodoo and Voodou supplies. However, most home supply stores sell red bricks. RBD is easy to make yourself with a few red bricks, a large plastic tub, and a sledge hammer. Put the bricks in the large plastic tub and smash with the hammer until nothing but dust remains....and WALA! Red. Brick. Dust.
Can't find any red bricks and don't want to go to a conjure shop? As with any magickal ingredient, there are substitutes. If you can't easily get RBD, dragons blood and myrrh gum are acceptable after they have been made into powders.
What is the most effective use for red brick dust?
Roebroeks et al. (2012). "Use of Red Ochre by Early Neandertals." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 109. 1889-94. 10.1073/pnas.1112261109.
Hodgskiss, Tammy. "What the Use of Ochre Tells Us about the Capabilities of Our African Ancestry." The Conversation. May 10, 2018. http://theconversation.com/what-the-use-of-ochre-tells-us-about-the-capabilities-of-our-african-ancestry-47081.
© 2018 Allorah