The long and awaited topic. Chango Macho. I am very excited about this topic. Chango Macho is a commsion or spirit guide that has truly impacted my life and my upbringing. Chango Macho has many different approaches according to practitioners. I have met people who view him as a individual spirit and I have met others who view Chango Macho as a commsion/court of spirits. Either or I have seen that this spirit has impacted many parts of Latin America and the rest of the islands in the Caribbean. The image of Chango Macho has truly made itself very known in many places . But where did the image of Chango Macho come from?
History of the image of Chango Macho:
As we all know The name Chango itself derives from the Yoruba people. The practices of the Yoruba people made there way through many parts of Latin America and the Caribbean Islands like Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Brazil, Haiti and Dominican Republic amongst many other more countries. Chango is a name that has been very prominent in many practices from Santeria, 21 Division's, Espiritismo Cruzado, Chango Baptist, Latin American Folk Practices, Haitian Vodou, Candomble , ect ect ect. Chango is just one of those names that has really brought a lot of attraction and it is very powerful to the point that it was a name that was given to people of African descent in many Spanish speaking countries. But what does all of this have to do with the image of Chango Macho you ask?.....The Image of Chango Macho was not even made to be a image of Chango period. This image came from the statues or wood carvings that were called the Blackamoor statues. The one we know as Chango Macho actually came from an artist called Balthasar Permoser. That particular piece is called "The Moor With Emerald Clusters". This piece became the inspiration of what we know now to be Chango Macho. The current location of the original piece is located in Germany in a museum called the Green Vault. At one point in history many Europeans would purchase these statues of the Black Moors and set them as decorations in there homes. Most likely to be reminded of there dominance over African descent. I dont agree with the history behind it because we can clearly see that it is steeped in racism. These statues are a big reminder of how racism and colonialism impacted Latin America and from European influence. Remember at one point all people of African descent were considered Moors. It didnt matter where you came from or what eithnic group you were a part of....You were a Moor. These statues made there way to Latin America due to the influence of Spain. So the question still remains....why call this statue Chango Macho?
Chango Macho in Latin American Spirituality:
How this image became Chango Macho...historically we have no clue. Some can assume that it came from a black and white picture that we see with the names of different Botanicas with them labeling it el Espíritu de la buena suerte / spirit of good luck (which was its original name as told to me by one of my sources.) It was first named Espiritu De La Buena Suerte and then later on it started to be called Chango Macho. This was to set apart the image of Santa Barbara and give Chango a male representation of a Black man holding a bowl full of gold , treasure, abundance, money, ect ect. The representation of the spirit or Orisha Chango represents Royalty, Abundance, Prosperity, Wealth, Beauty, and Confidence which makes lots of sense why use the image we see today. We start noticing that this image becomes popular in the 70s and 80s with the black and white image displayed in the bottom. We have to understand that because this image might have a bad history attached to it, our elders and ancestors have always improvised with imagery to use it to represent a particular spirit they work with and manifest through it. Taking anything and turn it into a spirit or fetish, or what other brujo/as call it disguising it behind the saint. Hence why we see lots of Catholic imagery in our traditions.
Who is Chango Macho and what role does he play?
Chango Macho for some represents the spirit of wealth itself because of who Chango was being the embodiment of Royalty. Others see him as a being or representation of a Eggun /Ancestor or Spirit Guide that is the embodiment of that Wealth.
Others see it as a representation of a commsion of Spirits that were initiated under that particular diety or a group of spirits of kings and leaders that are emmisarios of Chango to help humanity in there financial affairs. Either or it is a very miraculous being and from my travels and visits to many brujos/as this spirit has helped many people get out of poverty and has even helped and guide people to have better positions in there career, and even own business. Chango Macho is the leader in some Centros of the 7 Potencias Africanas or the 7 African Powers. Many may not agree with this practice but it has been done for so many decades that we see the resilience of our people on how they can turn one thing that was created to belittle a people and now become the symbol of wealth, confidence, and beauty. Many and i can safely say the Majority of the practitioners don't even know the history behind the original statue. I don't think anyone did they just say the majesty behind it and named it Chango Macho when it was originally was to represent a spirit of wealth, good luck and fortune. This is something that many have not even written about till today. I will be speaking about this spirit/commision Chango Macho and how to work with him in my next video. Stay tuned.
This was not intended to create a division or to prove anyone wrong. This content was created with the spirit of showing our history and practices to those who want to learn and are interested diving deep into these spiritual practices.
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Animero Yamil Henriquez
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