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A Black Girl’s Guide to Spirituality: An Introduction

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

By Zoe DeFazio

I’ve been lost for a long time now. I’m getting better but I still can’t find my way. I don’t openly talk about the pain I went through for so long. I feel as if I talk about it and then I’m reliving it. I tried for so long to find a remedy for this internal struggle that I was going through and everything I was recommended only made me feel even more lost than before. 

Growing up I always heard tales of spiritual practices from my mother who grew up in the metropolitan city of Belo Horizonte in Minas Gerais, Brazil. From the stories of the deities to hearing the mythology of how the universe was created, I knew I had to be a part of this. I didn’t divulge into this until I knew I was ready, which was pretty recently. From then on, my life started to get better, I was getting in tune with myself and my path was getting clearer. This is my personal guide to the spiritual side.

Spirituality isn’t just about carrying around pretty rocks to help you out. Spirituality is about ignoring the materialistic side of life and digging deeper. Spirituality is about getting closer to yourself and understanding your soul. It’s about seeing the world for not what it looks like but its components and how we can use it to our advantage in mindful ways. Spirituality is about forming a relationship between you and the universe while practicing gratitude. 

As helpful as gratitude may be, it can be hard in present times to be grateful for waking up, especially for black women. Black women deserve so much and yet they receive less than the bare minimum. Growing up, being created, birthed and raised by a black woman,  I continuously saw how the world treats black women. Black women are one of the most unprotected and unappreciated people in the world. Black women suffer so much in their lifetime; they work twice as hard to get half as much. After having so much stripped from them, black women should embrace spirituality even more than before. 

Having both sides of my family being particularly spiritual and into a witchcraft lifestyle, I didn’t have any issue finding support. With my Candomble Voodoo mother and my Wiccan aunt on my fathers side, I was completely indulged with information and bottomless support. 

With spiritual practices becoming increasingly popular on apps such as TikTok, sometimes it can be overwhelming. The amount of information being fed to a newly spiritual individual can be immense; it’s important to take it one step at a time. 

This June, I made the major decision to quit vanity-based social media such as Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter. I still kept TikTok so I wouldn’t completely lose my mind. Apps like these have the ability to cause a disconnect between the human spirit and nature. 

The first step and most important step to any major change in your life is acknowledging what you want to change. So ask yourself questions about who you were, who you are and who you want to be. Acknowledgment is such a powerful quality to have; it helps us as people realize what is what and who is who. 

I wanted to change how I viewed the world around me and become the person I once was but with more knowledge of the world I live in. However, as a black woman, I was so blinded by the jarring treatment we face. It’s the never ending trauma that blocks our souls ability to grow. 

We as Black women need to tap into our spiritual side and embrace the African Goddesses that formed us. With the great and powerful goddesses such as Yemoja, Oya and Oshun we as Black Women can learn from their stories to help empower ourselves.

Zoe DeFazio

Manhattan '24

Zoe DeFazio is a bright-eyed woman with a taste for the finer things in life, the very definition of a libra. Zoe is inquisitive with a passion for boundary pushing journalism and an interest in analyzing the ways in which marginalized people exist and move through the world
Jana Clark

Manhattan '22

Jana Clark is a senior at Manhattan College majoring in Communication with a minor in Environmental Studies. Her passions include writing, photography, and health/nutrition! One day she hopes to work for a nonprofit organization where she can be part of the effort to end the marginalization of vulnerable communities and fight for social justice. You can often find Jana volunteering, at the gym, or exploring different parts of the Big Apple.
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