I’m excited to share this ritual with you for multiple reasons. First, I’m proud to share my first watercolour illustration – what started as an anxiety-relieving hobby is now something I can use for my business. Second, this is a full ritual, and I will be covering important steps, such as petitions and how to make them. Lastly, this is an important (if not THE most important) ritual to know, which is why I decided to write about it today.
Every once in a while, we will need to put protection around ourselves or a loved one. Technically, it can be as simple as picturing our target surrounded with white, protective light that shields them from danger. But it’s easier said than done, because when someone you love is facing any sort of trouble or danger, you are likely to feel emotional and scared for them. Doing a ritual with physical items helps you ground yourself and refocus your powerful energy on protection.
The situations in which a protection ritual comes in handy are various: illnesses*, travel, deployments, dangerous professions, living in a city/state/country with terrible drivers, difficult pregnancies, trying to leave an abusive household (or having to remain in one for various circumstances) and so on. It can also protect from gossip, bullying, slander, and harassment.
However, doing a protection ritual shouldn’t replace taking concrete action whenever possible to protect yourself or your loved ones – contact local authorities if you or anyone else is in danger. Likewise, while magic can help improve and heal illnesses, it doesn’t replace medical attention, especially for mental disorders such as depression, self-harm, etc. – If you’re going through a difficult time, please seek help or make sure your loved one does.
I have done this ritual (or a variant) many times, for myself and other people, in complement to taking proper action whenever possible. It has never failed me. I have been able to keep myself and my cat out from harm’s way in a few toxic living situations, helped a couple of friends who were dealing with health issues, and kept someone safe while they were in one of the most dangerous places in the world. And I just do it routinely for myself and the people I love, even if they’re not necessarily facing any specific danger. It is pretty easy to put together, and frankly, all you need is to refocus yourself and connect with your power; the rest happens pretty naturally.
You will need:
- Salt: you can use table salt if you have any, or black salt, which is great for protection rituals. You can easily make black salt by mixing regular salt with scrapings from a pot or cast iron skillet, or black pepper, or ash from your fireplace, or black sand, or powdered black food coloring.
- A black candle: it can be any kind of candle, scented or not, chime, votive, taper, jar… Whichever you have on hand. Make sure you have a heatproof surface or holder to safely burn it on. If you don’t have a black candle, you can use a white one.
- A pen and paper: to write your petition on.
- Crystals for protection: for instance, obsidian, smoky quartz, black tourmaline, amethyst, citrine, or turquoise.
- Herbs for protection (dried or fresh): sage, chamomile, rosemary, mint, or star anise.
- Protection hoodoo oil: technically, it’s optional but better to have on hand. I carry this one with me at all times and periodically anoint myself, my home, and my car with it.
- A token to personalize your spell: it can a religious artifact (I use my late paternal grandmother’s rosary beads because I know she is always protecting me), a photo of the person you’re protecting or something with their handwriting on it, or, if they’re a pet, some of their hair.
Note: Remember that rituals are a physical representation of your intention. You don’t need to go broke for a ritual to be successful. Use whatever you have on hand and make substitutions if necessary. The most important thing you need is your intention, and the belief that you already have the power to bring about what you want.
To begin, take a few deep, grounding breaths, especially if you are anxious, so you can reconnect with your personal power. Once you feel ready, take the piece of paper and rip its edges one by one, pulling towards you, and rotating it clock-wise. The reason for that is because it is said that straight edges are a barrier for the magic you’re creating. You’re also attracting something towards you (here, protection), hence ripping the paper towards you and rotating it clockwise.
Write your petition on the paper. It doesn’t have to be too complicated or even rime: for instance, “As I will it, so it is: [name] is safe and protected from any and all harm, now and always.” You can add prayers or biblical (or koranic) verses if you’d like – it’s the intention behind the words that matter. Rotate the petition clockwise and sign it with your name, appointing your authority on it. If there’s something else you’d like to add, rotate it again clockwise and do so.
If you have your protection oil, dab a little bit with your finger on all four corners of the petition.
Fold the petition in half towards you, rotate it clockwise, fold it again, rotate, and fold it a third time. Why three? Because it is a spiritually powerful number, and will infuse your ritual with more power. You can always use a different number that means something special to you, but keep in mind that it can be complicated to fold a small piece of paper more than three times.
Set your petition on your altar or working space (I generally use a large metal plate, which is great for burning candles directly), and take your black candle. Using your protection oil, anoint your black candle from top to bottom (because you’re attracting something to you in this case). Feel yourself charging it with your energy as you focus your intentions on protection. Once your candle is ready, set it securely in the center of your ritual space.
After that, you will be setting up the remaining items and ingredients around your candle. With the salt, draw a wide, protective circle, and as you do so, picture a bubble of protection surrounding your target. Set up however many crystals you are using within equal distance of each other, and do the same with the herbs you have on hand. Lastly, display your personal tokens if you’re using any, making sure that they will not catch fire from the candle.
Take a few more deep, centering breaths, and picturing your target surrounded by powerful protective energy, light your candle. Stay present for a few moments (I’d suggest at least ten minutes, though some witches wait for the candle to fully burn down), breathing and focusing on your intention, praying for protection and seeing your target safe from harm. After that, you can move on to something else. I prefer to let my candles burn down fully when I’m doing rituals, but you can totally blow them out if need be (in the aforementioned adverse living situations, I sometimes had to hide my magical workings, but they still worked because the intention was there).
I hope this ritual spoke to you, and that if you or anyone you love is in need of protection, it will help them. Please don’t hesitate to comment or message me if you have any questions about this or magic in general.
Much love to you all and namasté,