(Above) Edouard Vuillard, The Artist’s Mother Opening a (magical) Door [Remixed]
Last time in From the Broom Closet, I went over some quick ideas for uses of standard cabinet spices. In this article, as a continuation from the last, I’ll give some examples from my craft of how I’ve subtly used said cabinet spices for spells of all sorts. As usual, these are only meant to serve as a springboard for inspiration and ideas for yourself.
#1: Improvised Spell Jar
This one is one of my favorites due to the recent rise of popular “spell jars”. It’s a simple and versatile concept – take a tiny jar, set an intention, fill it with corresponding ingredients, and just like that, you have a tiny little energy beacon for your metaphysical needs. However, these are often out of the reach of the closet practitioner, too bulky to easily hide but near impossible to give a mundane excuse for. The spell lead case, on the other hand, is small, portable, and won’t be questioned. Plus, it doesn’t take many ingredients at all to fill one of those up, and if you wanted to, you could essentially copy one of the many spell jar recipes out there.
Originally, I made one of these when I realized my lack of motivation to complete everyday tasks was chronic, so I wanted to try my hand at some metaphysical solutions.
First, I made a sigil for energy and motivation, and wrote the alchemical symbol of the sun on the back to charge it. I then added ground coffee for awareness, cayenne pepper for motivation, and lemon zest for energy into an emptied pencil lead case and stuffed in the piece of paper. It’s still a valuable tool to me to this day – I grip the case and take some deep breaths when I’m severely lacking in energy to do all the things I need to do, and it’s so small that I can fit it in my pocket.
#2: Candle Dressing
Candle magic, also called the intention candle, is another incredibly popular type of ritual, largely for convenience. It makes sense for the closet practitioner – most of us could light a nicely scented candle without being accused of sorcery. However, naturally, there are many aspects of the practice that would seem off-limits to us; namely, using candle dressings. These are usually oil blends that are physically applied to candles in order to align said candle with an intention. However, through spices and herbs, one could create an invisible or “dry” dressing that achieves the same purpose.
There are two dry dressing methods I use, depending upon my situation. In the first, I set down my candle and encircle it in a ring of spices that align with my intention. I leave this circle for as long as I have the flame burning, and clean it up whenever I snuff or blow it out. In the second, when my candle will be seen by others while it’s burning, I will pour my chosen spices into a pile and roll the candle in it, visualizing the energy held within the herbs being pulled up and absorbed into the wax and wick. That way, I can dispose of the “discharged” spices, but still have the intention integrated into the candle itself.
This is similar to the second example in execution, but serves a very different purpose, providing a long-lasting and drawn out effect. Through ritual, everyday objects can be enchanted to hold a specific intention, energy, or program. This means you can turn whatever mundane item you choose into an arcane tool.
Enchantment, in general, is the closet practitioner’s best friend. However, for now, I mainly want to talk about using spices to enchant jewelry (or anything which you can consistently have with you).
Let’s say you wanted to turn a necklace of yours into a charm for protection. You would first pour a small bowl of salt and immerse the necklace in it to cleanse it of anything unhelpful. Then, you would fill a shallow dish with, once again, spices pertaining to your intention. You’d place your necklace in the dish, and say some cute rhyming chant over it expressing your intention as you visualize the power of the herbs rising and filling the matter of your necklace.
Additionally, you could ask a spirit or deity to bless it too in the process. Once you’re finished, you can throw away the remains, and now have a fully magical item in a totally mundane facade.
Check out Volume I of From the Broom Closet here