In Vodou, Vodousaints will sometimes marry the lwas, who propose to them in dreams or via horses when they come down in human bodies at fetes. It is ill-advised to ignore a spirit’s proposal – Erzulie Freda can leave a man impotent or in ruins, Ogou may drive a woman mad with lust. The same, I believe, can be argued for gods and other spirits. The Maryaj Lwa is the longest surviving extant tradition of divine marriage between mortals and immortals, one of the most common practices in indigenous religions throughout the world. The story of spirit wives amongst Siberian shamans is quite well-known, the En-priestesses of Ancient Sumeria were considered brides of their gods, there is the Freyr’s wife and priestess in records, and so on and so forth for most major religious traditions. The most obvious example would be nuns, who are literally and figuratively Brides of Christ. And of course, there are godspouses in Paganism, from Freya Aswynn to the many, many Lokiwives. Remember the fairy lovers that populate the Child Ballads, from the famous exchange between and elven lover setting a series of impossible tasks for his human woman in Scarborough Fair to the dastardly werefox Reynardine to, of course, the Ballad of Tam Lin. Sacred sexuality with the divine is an ancient tradition, from the many mortal wives and queens of the gods in Ancient Greece to the modern day, where more and more humans find themselves in relationships with the divine.
I never expected this would be my path, not in the forefront of my mind, though I have been in love with Samael since I was a child and in awe of Michael since I first met him.
And oh god, how I ran.
In Vodou, hot spirits favor rum and chili peppers, while cool spirits like Damballah favor sweets and white colors and water. Michael is very much a cool spirit, and Samael hot as coals. Almost always, if a man marries Erzulie Freda or Erzulie Danto, the other jealous sister will propose to him as they are always arguing over each other’s possessions.
I’ve spent most of my life torn between Heaven and Hell, between Samael and Michael, and though I’m sure, deep deep down in a place they don’t want to admit, they still harbor a sliver of brotherly love, they mostly hate each other’s guts. Michael harbors remorse at a brother he sees as having succumbed to greed and corruption, to sin and fallen from grace. Samael sees a xenophobic righteous asshole that hates celestial diversity with a stick up his ass. They can both be the sweetest people ever, and they can both be total arses. Just wait until they go all destruction angel or death angel or general on your ass. Between Michael’s sternness, discipline and rigidity and Samael’s tricks, lies, temptations and threats and outright temper tantrums, dealing with either one of them can be overwhelming, but when you’re stuck in the middle between the Prince of Heaven and the Prince of Hell it’s like being a teddy bear two toddlers are trying to pull apart in their desire to hoard their favorite toy.
Samael basically raised me, and Michael was much more hands-off, I’ll step in to save your life but you learn independence best by burning the back of your hands on celestial fire. They’re both boringly and patronizingly paternal and at the same time expect an President Obama level of maturity from me and to do the Work, Work, and Work some more. Balancing intense relationships with both of them is draining if I don’t practice self-care, and sometimes they don’t understand the limitations of a human. Michael especially is overwhelming, with his hard-headedness and bluntness. Samael, the eponymous serpent, is much more subtle and charming, and I’ve already done over a decades worth of shadow work with him, so he goes a bit easier on me now. If you asked me what I thought of Sam as a teenager, I would have called him Corpseboy, arrogant and rattled off a bunch of unpleasantries.
Samael first proposed to me when I was 18 in an astral dream. He referred to our upcoming marriage when we were in his courtyard at night, in a porch swing, and I laughed like he was insane and said I would never marry him. He simply told me I was his and didn’t have much say in the manner. I ran away to hide, he turned into a black dragon and chased me and breathed fire and picked me up and flew to the top of his tower where a nice dinner was laid out. He’s a total creep and weird and obsessive to a fault – I’ve found pictures of me from being an infant to now scattered throughout his desk, and his diary is totally lame “Allie aced a test today. I’m so proud. Tonight we will go boating on the Styx and to a nice restaurant. The maggot is growing up.”
Anyways, many dreams followed between the age of 18-23 wherein we got married, with either Loki or Beelzebub as the best man, and every time I woke up annoyed with Sam who couldn’t get a hint. I tried friendzoning Death. It didn’t really work. Actually, it didn’t work at all. As Misha so eloquently said, I was running for five years, and I’m glad I did. As a teenager, I so did not have the emotional maturity to marry someone as brilliant, treacherous, and tempestuous as Bonebutt. I owed him my life, true, but sometimes he also made me want to kill myself. I don’t think any relationship that is romantic with Sam can truly not be abusive. He doesn’t understand boundaries, and he is the most evil, chaotic person I know. Beelzebub and Asmodeus are Princess Peach compared to Sam. He is a monster, truly, but don’t call him that or he’ll cry. Don’t call him heartless either. That results in bawling and lamps being thrown.
Also, if you’re with Sam, don’t get with Michael. That pretty much equals meltdown.
I was all set on marrying Sam on Halloween of 2016 at the ripe old age of 23 due to a series of intense courtship and relentless pursuit on his part in September. I told him I would only marry him if he was Alucard, just being snarky, forgetting his favorite thing is cosplaying and next thing I find myself in the astral with Sam dressed as my favorite vampire, with ME proposing to HIM with my favorite ring, Beelzebub reading the vows, with all the archdemons in a fucking GRAVEYARD, and we’re married.
I woke up from that dream and literally told him I’d marry him IRL if he just shut the fuck up already in my dreams about the occult and mathematics and chemistry and how great death was and stopped bothering me so much at work. Gleeful, he spent the next night on an astral honeymoon in his gardens with me where he cut roses for me and read me his shitty poetry and we drank way too much wine. He really can’t write poetry, it makes my eyes burn.
Just to confirm, I got a psychic to do an energy reading on my cheapo titanium Roman numeral Korean ring and the psychic was utterly shocked, was all like “I see you marrying… an angel??? No that can’t be right” and internal eye-rolling pursued.
Things were roses – rotting roses with like worms in them in a graveyard in Hell – until October rolled around.
I was in Michael’s palace in the fourth heaven with Raphael, Gabriel, Azrael, Metatron, and Uriel. We were drinking and eating and sword fighting, which is kind of par for course for Michael’s place. I was really tipsy. My cheeks were flushed red, and I have no idea what the hell I was drinking, but all I remember was stumbling away from Gabriel where he was telling this long-winded joke and hiccuping and seeing double vision and stumbling into Michael. Michael caught me and smiled in his fatherly way and I just started babbling. Literally, truly, babbling. It consisted of “You’re so much nicer than – hic – Samael, why am I – burp – marrying him, he’s such a – hic – asshole. I should marry you!” And then Michael blushed furiously after I’d put my amethyst ring on his finger, screamed “MARRY ME!” and passed out from being wasted.
Next thing I knew, Michael had carried me to my quarters in his palace and I pretended to be asleep. He lingered by the doorway. He was still wearing the god damn ring. I was terrified. Did he actually take my drunken words seriously? Next thing I knew, he was nervously mumbling to himself, wings trailing the floor, wiping hair back from my sweaty head and leaning down to kiss me, chickened out, murmuring “I love you,” and just basically sniffing me. I started laughing. He, embarrassed as hell, flew out the window and hid behind a fucking bush in the courtyard behind a Corinthian column.
I woke up knowing I had seriously fucked up. First off, I was pretty sure Michael was asexual, beat it to the Bible, or his stupid flaming sword, and that I must have been so drunk and hazy that my mind was playing tricks on me.
Not the case. Not at all. Michael took my on my very drunken word, and Sam made his displeasure known by biting me on the neck on the fucking Metro so hard and painfully I nearly screamed. He sent me a dream that same night of me dancing in my favorite red dress with Samael in Hell in a hospital, my bare feet dancing on broken glass. He was seething with anger, a predatory glare in his eyes, like he would eat me right there.
I ran. He sent his legions after me. I hid in the forest with bloody feet. There was a whole demonic SWAT team.
Michael returned. Again. And again. He fucking courted me. He was so much nicer than Sam, but awkward as fuck. Like so fucking awkward and bashful. He treated me like a princess. I thought I was losing it. Archangels aren’t supposed to marry people. That’s what makes little baby Nephilim that devour your crops and then your children. Meanwhile Samael was going fucking insane, drinking his misery, taking out his anger on his other wife, my best friend Misha, who prayed to Michael, her guardian angel, for protection, only to have Samael accuse her of leaving him for Michael (who she barely even interacts with), and Samael was writing poems in my dreams about me being a temptress and ruining his life. Michael didn’t give two fucks.
Did I mention I was running an international conference while this was happening, and instead of getting peaceful zzz’s at night, I got these two fighting over me in draining sleep – if you could even call it that. They bothered me incessantly during the day while I was trying to work, and I was stressed to the point of breaking. I finally told them both that I was marrying both of them, because I couldn’t choose and maybe just a little to make them feel an ounce of guilt for acting like children.
The next night, they drew up a contract to divide me up, down to who got what times of day, what nights, what offerings, etc., with Metatron as the witness, and I felt completely bewildered.
I married them both IRL the weekend before Halloween with Misha as the priestess and an altar composed of candles and statues and offerings from the local botanica. Then, the night of Halloween, we were married in the astral in a joint wedding where they were both on their best behavior, and that lasted until we went back to my astral palace and Sam started trolling Michael and kidnapping me from the couch while we were watching a movie. I felt like a spoil of war. Sam has this thing where he picks me up like a sack of potatoes over his shoulders and transports me away to whatever dumb activity he has planned. Only this time, Michael punched Sam in the face and knocked him out, caught me, and apologized. We went back to watching the movie.
Since then, I’ve found balance. It was rocky at first, and for the first two months, I thought I was going crazy. I’d heard of Samael and Michael god spouses, but not fucking both at once. The only thing similar I could find were men marrying Erzulie Danto and Erzulie Freda. I also wondered, why me?
At the wedding, I asked them where my parents were. Michael blushed (the red matches him being a ginger), and Samael cursed.
“We have to tell her now, don’t we?” Sam cursed.
“Oh God.” Michael didn’t look up from his shoes.
“What? Where are my ancestors?” I asked.
“We created you,” Sam muttered.
I felt like my whole world had just crashed down. “Why?” I demanded.
“As a pact between us. A bridge between heaven and hell. In essence, we’re your spiritual fathers. It’s how many of the first angels were created – Samael and I were the first, and we helped in Creation,” Michael admitted.
I sat down on a log and reeled. Michael showed me images of my angelic form, Jophiel/Zophael, full-formed in a kind of galaxy, with Michael sculpting me into the form of a woman with long flowing blonde hair and golden skin that hummed with heavenly light. He pulled me out of the swirling galaxies and breathed life into me.
Samael appeared from the shadows, pulled aether from the clouds, and formed my wings. He whispered to me, and my eyes lit blue, my heart and blood vessels pulsed red, and I became.
I don’t know where I’m going with this. I sort out a lot of my feelings through poetry and venting to my friends. I joke I’m either going to end up the mother of the Messiah or the Antichrist, but really, I don’t know any pagans married to an angel and a demon that hate each other’s guts. I know people married to triads of archdemons, duos of gods, Lucifuge and Lucifer, etc., but no one married to Michael, much less Mike and Sam, and to be honest, it’s scary. I try not to think about what it means too much. I’m not Christian or Jewish or Muslim or a Satanist in the slightest, as worshipping God and venerating angels and demons would be too close for comfort, as they feel more like family than anything. And it leaves me in a quandary, because if I ever have to choose between them – not that I think they’d ever make me, not even Sam is that stupid – I don’t know what I’d do.
I love them both with my whole being, and that, I suppose, is enough.
Relationships are works in progress. Esoteric ones are too. I could give a crap about summoning demons or angels to do my bidding, or celestial power or glory. I don’t even do the smallest spells, all I do is pray and leave offerings. I’m just a meme loving writer. Misha is still working on her relationship with Sam, and they’ve been married since 2011. I know pagans that have been married to other gods even longer, and you’re always discovering more things about your Beloved.
Everything I do is probably sacrilegious as fuck, and I struggled with feeling like I was disrespecting the entirety of the Abrahamic religions by being with Michael, but honestly, I could care less what people think. I know him as a person, not some venerated holy angel. Same goes for Sam, who is the most powerful Satan tbh. To me, at the end of the day, they are my protectors and best friends, the people I would die for, would burn at the stake for, and honestly, I’m okay with that. They make me smile. They make me cry. They make me laugh. They make me a better person, and for that, I am forever grateful. When I have been in the depths of my despair, suicidal, they always save me. I owe the my life over and over again. Michael is my rock and Sam is my inner flame.
So that’s how you balance a hot and cold spirit. With love, and lots of work.