Just as the body is a vessel for our soul, so our home is a temple for our body.
Happy Ostara! The Spring vibes make me energetic and want to clean everything in sight, so I thought I would post about magical spring cleaning.
Witches and cleaning. I see a lot of people, witches included, posting about their boredom with mundane cleaning. I get it. There are 10,000 other things to do in a day. As a mom of two toddlers, cleaning doesn’t always happen the way that I would like it to in my house. Before my children were born, I’ll admit that I was very lack-luster when it came to housework. Since raising a family of my own, I now see the link between cleaning and health as well as the effects cleaning has on the mind and happiness.
That being said, I think that there are other ways to look at methods of cleaning, time spent cleaning, and expectations of cleaning.
Spirituality and Cleaning
In many cultures and religious practices, cleaning has a close relationship to the divine. Hinduism associates cleaning of the home and of the body to a devotion to the gods. Cleaning is also believed to be a form of spiritual purification because it is a time to tend to the self, family, and the home but not material or worldly pursuits (like shopping, working, money, etc).
Hestia, the greek goddess of the hearth fire, was said to bestow blessings on those who had clean and orderly homes. Eostre, the Germanic goddess of Spring, and her maidens were said to collect water from brooks on Easter morning. This water was sacred and was said to restore youth. The women used the magic water for their skin and clothes washing.
In Japan, Ōsōji, or “the big clean”, is one of the central cultural values and has its origins in Shintoism where cleaning was akin to purity.
Even in witchcraft, cleaning has metaphorical as well as functional purposes. We clean the altar, take ritual baths, and use salt to clean physically and purify our environment energetically. Modern witchcraft also uses crystals, incense, and magical aids to cleanse the home but some of these practices have origins in various shamanic or indigenous traditions.
I consider myself somewhat of a kitchen witch and I believe that the home is sacred. Wherever you may be staying, no matter your feelings about that space, there is something sacred about cleaning your space. It is an extension of you. Just as the body is a vessel for our soul, so our home is a temple for our body.
There are a large range of topics for magical cleaning. I’m going to go through the ones that I personally use most often being a busy mom and career woman:
- Air Purification
- Floor Washes
- Crystals and grids
- Baking soda and Essential Oils
Air becomes stagnant. My grandmother, who is an Aquarius, always believed in clearing stagnant air. When I was young, she used to put things outside to “air out” and let the sun freshen up pillows, cushions, blankets, etc. She also opened the windows often to let fresh air through. As an air sign, she is definitely a force of nature (she is doing great and is 89 years old!) and unconsciously feels that drive to clear out the stagnant things in life.
I practice her wisdom and open the windows often, run the fans, and clear out the filters in our home. But there are also more energetic ways to purify the air in a magical home.
The burning of plant materials such as sage, lemongrass, palo santo and other herbal smudges and incense not only kills certain bacteria in the air, it also emits positive ions.
I burn one of these plants at least once a week, clearing out my sacred space. I do leave the windows open at least a crack in order to allow the negative energy an exit but also to make sure it doesn’t irritate my sleeping childrens’ lungs. I’ve never seen them react adversely to any incense but I am cautious nonetheless.
For the rest of the time, I burn oil diffusers. I have 2 diffusers currently, one upstairs and one downstairs. The best oils for purifying and energetic cleaning, in my opinion, are rosemary, lemongrass, tea-tree, lemon, and mint. Often I will combine all of the oils and diffuse them (much like thieves oil).
Floor washes stem from the hoodoo practice of washing with particular potions, herbs, or vinegar in order to produce a desired effect.
Traditional witches often use this practice as well. I am not an expert on floor washes but have used them a few times.
The idea is to make an infusion of an herb with whatever magical properties you are after (lemongrass is the one I have used) and some kind of liquid (some choices are vinegar, herbal tea, water, or alcohol). Even though you will be physically mopping with your floor wash, it is not designed to thoroughly clean your floor. Most instructions for floor washes suggest cleaning the floor first with your normal cleaner. Hoodoo suppliers sell floor washes but you can make your own. Pour boiling over your herb and let it sit for about 30 minutes. Strain out the herb and pour the “tea” into your mop or a bucket. Add a few drops of an essential oil that corresponds to your magical purpose. Mop the floor with the infusion.
If you have unwanted (human) visitors in your home, you can ensure that they do not return anytime soon by mopping your floor from the back of the house to the front door. This act energetically “pushes” their footprints back out of the door so that they do not easily return. It also helps to clear the space of their unwanted energies.
Florida water is another great cleaner that can be used as a floor wash but I will post a recipe for this soon in another post.
Crystals and Grids
Crystals may not physically clean anything but energetically, they certainly do tidy up the negative vibes. I have never met a crystal that I didn’t like. To some degree, all crystals charge their environment with energy and assist in transmuting energy. My personal favorites are selenite, citrine, amethyst, smoky quartz, and quartz. I have large specimens of these crystals which fill my sacred space with a beautiful, spiritual light. I have a large flat selenite wand which I place beside me at night and it is glorious for that purpose. The large specimens of amethyst create a mystic healing vibe that I adore. Amethyst is not my birthstone but so far, it is my favorite crystal. It is so alive and has so much depth.
For serious clearing of negative energy, an absorbing stone (usually a black stone like jet, smoky quartz, obsidian, or black tourmaline) and a purifying stone (selenite, amethyst, citrine, or clear quartz) create the balance you need. The black stone will draw the negative energy into itself and the purifying stone will fill the space with positive vibes and healing.
Crystal grids are basically mandalas made from crystals. You arrange your crystals into a design. You can base this design on a layout that you find online, on sacred geometry, or you can use your intuition. Crystal grids help to amplify the energy of the crystals by allowing the crystals to interact in such a way that their energy is focused into the task you have charged them to do.
Baking Soda and Essential Oils
Baking soda is excellent. I love myself some baking soda. There is a look of concern on my loved ones faces when they see the size of the bag of baking soda that I buy. My toddler actually tries to eat my baking soda because he sees how much I adore it and use it for all of my cleaning purposes. Baking soda is so amazing because it absorbs a lot of nasties. The gross stuff sticks to it until it is vacuumed or swept away. I use it to repel bugs, freshen furniture and carpets, take baths with it, create homemade cleaners, etc. Anyway, enough of that gushing.
Magically, baking soda assists in removing the negativity in the environment. Infusing the baking soda with cleaning oils like lemongrass, lemon, mint, etc, will make any blankets, furniture, or carpets smell delicious (thus the reason why my son thinks it is dessert). The lovely smell of the oils and the super-clean feeling of the fabrics is bliss. Once you vacuum or wash the fabrics infused with the baking soda, the negativity sticks to the baking soda and is then disposed of.
Alright, well, I think this post has been long enough, perhaps too long! Drop a comment below on if you enjoyed this post or about your magical cleaning tips and tricks.