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Why We Burn Our Shed Hair?

I've always been fascinated with hair burning. Here's what it looks like.

Why Do You Burn Shed Hair?

It's a form of physical and spiritual protection.

My great-grandmother said if shed hair is not burned or flushed, birds will collect and make a nest with it. Then you will always feel birds pecking at your head until you eventually go crazy. I do not know if this was just a funny story my great-grandmother told her granddaughter (my mother). But I do believe our hair has supernatural powers.

A viewer said...

YouTube Comment about hair strands being used for witch craft

"my mom told me the same thing but that's not the real reason. The reason is so that ppl don't take your hair and use it for witch craft." - La Original

Using hair for voodoo doll story

I too have heard that hueman hair can be used for witch craft. Allegedly creating a voodoo doll that resembles you and has real-life parts (like your clothing or hair) gives the owner power over your real body. Meaning the creator can cause real harm simply by harming the doll. This isn’t a story passed down in my family, but I'm sure other cultures have different hair rituals and meanings behind them.

For context, my great-grandmother was of African and Native American descent. I'm not sure which part of her lineage practiced hair burning, but as a believer of oral traditions, I still burn our family's hair today.

So Hair Burning Is A Superstitious Tradition?

Absolutely!! my humble opinion.

Some define superstitions as cooky ideas that don't have any real backing. But I believe superstitions are beliefs in the supernatural. The supernatural goes beyond what we can see and hueman understanding.

If you listen to the underlying message behind my great-grandmother’s story, hair burning protects our mental health. In her story it was a bird that could get inside your head and wreak havoc. In the voodoo tradition it was another person. And in the loc community, it's believed that hair absorbs energy. Which is why we have to protect our minds and our thoughts -- especially from negativity.

So while the primary function of hueman hair is warmth and protection. Meaning, our hair literally covers our head and keeps us warm. Hair's significance goes beyond the physical. Our hair is our spiritual crown.

In Beyonce's Black is King, she mentions our coils "catch our ancestors' prayers through smoke." Which means, lint and debris aren't the only things that get caught in our curls. Vibrations and divine messages do too. By burning our shed hairs, we are releasing our thoughts and centuries of prayers back into the Universe.

spiritual meaning behind hair burning

If you watch closely as the hair burns, you’ll see a white puff form within the coils then dance away in the wind. If you're thinking, fire almost always releases white smoke. You are right. But this smoke has traces and particles of hair that was once attached to our head -- it's a true collector of information -- a part of us.

Hair is so powerful in holding information, it's "scientifically" used to learn more about a person. For example, hair samples being used as a requirement for a job. According to a 2019 WBUR article, hair testing (also known as follicle tests) began in the 1990s. Samples are gathered by shaving or cutting a section of hair close to the scalp. If an individual is bald, according to National Drug Screening Inc, they can submit body hair (like from the armpit). The samples are then used for drug testing.

However, hair tests have recently been challenged for being bias. The medical world agrees more research needs to be done, but a 2018 study revealed that certain substances easily bind to melanin. This finding is being used to demonstrate how people with darker hair do not have to ingest a drug, they can just be surrounded by it to test positive for that substance. These findings compliment the belief in the loc community that hair absorbs energy from our surroundings.

Nevertheless, many still believe hair testing may be more accurate and have a bigger window for measuring certain substances (compared to breath or urine). While hair testing is legal in some states (like Massachusetts), it hasn't been adopted everywhere.

So whether it's for medical or spiritual purposes, our strands carry vital information about who we are (and our past). And similar to how one wouldn't just throw away a personal document (like old mail). We know that there is a proper way to discard it (like shredding or burning it).

Some may argue that there are more modern ways to collect information. For example, people freely give tons of personal information online, which can make hair burning obsolete. But if you're a believer in oral traditions and like contributing metaphysical wisdom to the universe and future generations -- you may be attracted to the spiritual practice of hair burning.

Until next time...

Love The Journey,

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