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  • Ignacio J. Ceja

Santa Muerte Devotional Series - La Santísima Muerte

Updated: Apr 21, 2022

Santísima Muerte was the name by which I was first introduced to Santa Muerte, but is "Santísima Muerte" another nickname?

Our journey has brought us at last to the final line in the devotion. This post was originally published on February 22, 2018.

Ave La Santísima Muerte, She who blesses me throughout life, and will greet me at life’s end. Bendita Sea.

Santísima Muerte was the name by which I was first introduced to Santa Muerte back in 2006. This name means “Most Holy Death.” “Santísima Muerte” is Santa Muerte’s formal name. “Bendita Sea” is Spanish for “Blessed Be.” Some people translate it as “God bless you.”

Silver figure of Santa Muerte, on a box resting on a table with a black tablecloth, situated before a scarlet drapery.
Silver Santa Muerte, from the author's collection

Because this devotion utilizes her nicknames, some might ask if La Santísima Muerte is another nickname for Santa Muerte. I have no answer for that. We call the Divine Creator by a variety of names. We call Death by a variety of names. In the end, these are all names that we as humans have created to represent forces beyond our complete comprehension. Just as “the Tao that can be written is not the Tao,” the names we give to the gods, spirits, and other forces in the Universe cannot possibly fully represent them. In this case, all names that we consider divine are nicknames.

Santa Muerte blesses us throughout life. James 4:8 reads “Draw nigh to God and he will draw nigh to you." So, it follows that as we develop and deepen our relationship with Santa Muerte, she blesses us. Santa Muerte is generous with her blessings because everything she gives comes back to her in time.

I wrote this devotion to utilize the power and beauty of Santa Muerte’s nicknames. The inspiration for the devotion came from Napoleon Hill, businessman, author, and public speaker. One doesn’t often find Santa Muerte and Napoleon Hill mentioned in the same sentence, but I’m delighted to have them shake hands across cultures and time.

Napoleon Hill believed in the power of thought from a scientific point of view. Over his lifetime, he interviewed doctors, scientists, chemists, tycoons, and entrepreneurs in an effort distill a formula for success, and he did just that. He wrote many books and lectured all over the country. In one of his lectures, he talked about his invisible guides that kept his life in order. I am not quoting him directly here, but this information comes from his audiobook, The Science of Personal Achievement. These invisible guides* were psychic constructs, what magicians call thoughtforms of egregores. He had ten in all, among them, one was for love and romance, which kept his marriage going right. He had one for health, and that one maintained his body when he lay down at night. He had one for prosperity, and indeed he and his family had all they needed and more.

I realized that I had the same system in Santa Muerte, if only I could find a way to organize that system. The first step was putting together the right altar space, exclusively for her. Up to that point, Santa Muerte and Guadalupe had shared space. I moved Guadalupe to her own altar space, then cleaned and dedicated the altar to Santa Muerte. Next, I set about gathering Pretty Girls in various colors to represent the different powers that I wanted present in such a personal system. It was during this time that the devotion began to take shape in my mind, and I began to research the nicknames. The whole process took about two and a half years. After I wrote the devotion, I wrote a rosary to go along with it.

Thank you for taking this journey through the devotion. Now that the eight lines have been examined, I may come back later and rewrite these entries more fully. If that happens, I’ll let you know. May the blessings of the Divine and of Santa Muerte be with you always. Ave La Santísima Muerte, She who blesses me throughout life and will greet me at life’s end, Bendita Sea.

* Note, 23 February 2018:

The above text was published on 22 February 2018. I was listening to The Science of Personal Achievement, trying to find the place where Dr. Hill mentioned his invisible guides. Here it is. If you get the opportunity to check out this audiobook, it will certainly be worth your time.

Napoleon Hill’s Guides, The Science of Personal Achievement, Disc 2, tracks 7-9.

The guide to sound physical Health.

The guide to financial prosperity

The guide to peace of mind.

The twins, the guides to hope and faith.

The twins, the guides to love and romance.

The guide to patience.

The guide to overall wisdom. Benefit of all experiences, positive or negative. “Everything is grist for my mill.”

The final guide, named NormHill, to do the jobs not assigned to the other nine.

That's it for the devotion. If you choose to use it in your own practice, know that as a living document, it can be changed to suit your needs. If you are new to Santa Muerte and her devotion, there are so many good books available. One of my favorites is "Santa Muerte Devotion 101: Answers and Explanations for the Curious Readers and New Devotees" by Arnold Bustillo. You can read more from Mr. Bustillo at his blog, "Santa Muerte Magick."

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