When following the crooked path, one sometimes comes across dangerous beasties, nasties, nargles, and malignant monsters. It’s dangerous to go alone. But there are allies, guardians, and protections we can call upon to safely traverse all realms. In an earlier post, https://ivyandwine.wordpress.com/2016/05/08/rites-of-spring/, I gave my perspective on a truly enchanting weekend among the stars. This is a companion post to describe the nitty gritty work that went into to prepare and protect the physical bodies as well as our spiritual selves.We must always remember my lovelies, that roses have their thorns and it is my hope you can use this post as a guide. In your own wanderings, so that you carry with you a friendly light as well as a protective dagger.When we are bathed in light, we attract entities like moths to a flame.the best witchling knows that there must be practicality in all things. So use your best judgement, your intuitive goose bumps and that telling gut instinct to craft your own barriers against the things that go bump in the night.
Before setting out to travel, revel, or get down and dirty in a magick-fueled-frenzy its wise to cleanse and protect the space from baneful influences entering and disrupting. You van think of wards as walls, fences, or hedges with locked gates to which only you hold the key. Its important to note, that the oogy-boogies are not always external in origin. We protect against outside influence, yes, but also from the things we manifest ourselves that would ruin a delicate working.
To prep for this weekend I forged physical homes for the elements, as well as protective allies among the plant and animal guides and spirits.
From left to right we have the fire ward, the air ward, water and then earth.
All of these were made from essentially flotsam and jetsam I have collected, been gifted or procured in my travels. These things spoke to me, and I used that inspiration to weave my will into the work. Find what works for you and go with it.
A vine wrapped, v- shaped piece of what I believe is Birch, tied with protective black string into a spider-web formation. Attached are mockingbird feathers. I chose the possible birch piece because I found it hanging in a favorite tree, clearly moved and touched by the wind. Mockingbirds fiercely protect their homes, their children and I wanted to add that energy. I used spider web as a sort of entrapment device for any baneful energies. To charge them I left them in the full moon and then spoke words of protective power while charging them with love and yellow light.
This is a blackberry bramble that caught my leg on a jaunt and refused to let go. I really loved that tenacious spirit and decided to incorporate that into the fire ward. I also attached a piece of red fox, my personal animal guide, but also one long associated with the fire elementals. Fox always seems to get out of trouble, whether by cleverly eluding harm, or by defending themselves. Fox and I are on friendly terms and I felt fine asking him to step in and help out. The fire ward is tied with a piece of purple string mostly because I had it on hand, and also to attract the kind of energy we wanted within the circle. Wards are boundaries yes, but we need gates for the good stuff too. Like the rest of the wards, I charged this by full moonlight and then spoke words of protective power over it while charging it with red light.
The wood for this ward is made of rose bush, one from my own garden. I have a new found love and joy with roses, and there can be no other watery protective spirit for me, The thorns found on almost all of my wood allies are for the personal protection of the plant, and I asked they extend that protection to all of us as well. I wrapped a web of silver thread on the ward and added a hagstone and part of a jawbone I had fished from a favorite river spot. Theres a history of hagstones in protective works in traditional witchcraft, as well as seeing things clearly, with no deception. The jawbone has canines, and while its not enough to know what the animal actually was, I feel a deep peace when I hold the fragment and knew it fit my purpose wonderfully. I again, charged these by moonlight, spoke words of power and placed blue light on it.
The Hawthorne branch that was used in this ward was a gift from a friend of mine.Its a much smaller part of a larger branch that I use as a protective canopy in my own altar space. Hawthorne is joined by python, graciously donated by my pet snake with his permission, and is tied on with green ribbon. Of all of these, Earth is the most personal, as I dedicated to it this year. Over this ward I asked for a firm foundation, a steady place to land and the vitality of the growing things. It joined its brothers in the moonlight and was bathed in green light. Of all of the wards, this is my favorite.