Plants in the sage family are some of the most powerful magical allies there are. Everywhere that plants of the salvia genus are able to grow, they have become a big part of local spiritual traditions. Fortunately, most varieties of sage are easy to come by. Even if you do not live in an area with its own native sage varieties, you can experience the benefits of these potent, unique plants.
Different Types of Sage
Not all sage plants are the same. They have different looks, scents, uses, and even safety profiles. White sage, Salvia apiana, is the type most often seen in dried bundles in stores. It has pale leaves and a very strong scent when burned. Blue sage, S. clevelandii, S. azurea, or S. pachyphylla, is less common. It is generally considered milder in fragrance than white sage. Black sage, sometimes called mugwort, can refer to S. mellifera, or either Artemisia nova or A. douglasiana. Black sage has green leaves that can darken during droughts, giving it a very different appearance from white or blue sage.
Using White Sage
White sage is regarded as a sacred plant by the Chumash people. Smudge sticks of this sage are burned as a way to cleanse and purify an area, though it is also possible to achieve this by anointing a white candle with sage oil and burning it, or sprinkling ground sage leaves in the corners or around the perimeter of a room. Many witches from European traditions save the ashes from burning sage (either white sage or common sage) to add to recipes for black salt, which is used for cleansing and protection.
If you need something to help you banish negative energy and cleanse your space, white sage is a powerful way to do it. The leaves smolder well on their own, you do not need to place them on top of charcoal. Cleanse your home or sacred space using by lighting a white sage leaf or the tip of a smudge stick, and placing it in a fireproof vessel. Carry this clockwise around the area you wish to cleanse, fanning the smoke with a feather so it touches every corner.
Using Blue Sage
Blue sage is often used similarly to white sage, to cleanse and protect. It is less pungent, and its soothing scent and "cool" nature make it very helpful in rituals for healing and abundance. Since it tends to be relaxing and less overpowering than white sage in small spaces, it is also a good choice for cleansing and preparing meditation spaces.
Dress a blue or white candle with angelica oil, and carve the ill person's name into the wax. Set it on your altar, or in a dedicated sacred space. Light the tip of a blue sage wand and waft the smoke over the area. Repeat your desire that the person be healed, or recite a simple chant, like:
Healing herbs, lend your power,
Chase away illness in this hour.
With your strength, relieve all pain,
And make [person's name] whole again.
Light the candle, and allow it to burn.
Using Black Sage
Different types of mugwort are often called "black sage." These are related to Artemisia vulgaris, the species most often sold as mugwort, though they do not contain as much of the hallucinogenic compound thujone. Still, black sage is extremely helpful for inner healing, dream magic, shamanic journeying, trance work, and protection during astral travel. Whenever you need to look inward, or access other realms of consciousness, black sage can help you.
Waft the smoke from a black sage smudge stick over yourself before getting into a comfortable position and clearing your mind. You may use chanting, rattling, drumming, or any other techniques you prefer to help your mind access the astral realms. Trust that the black sage smoke will keep you safe and protected as you travel, and see where it carries you.
Whether you need cleansing, purification, healing, or protection during meditative rituals, members of the sage family can help you. Choose the herb that calls out to you, and work with it regularly to access its deep natural wisdom.
There are so many superstitions regarding black cats. It was said that when a witch died, they became a black cat. That’s why cats are so prevalent in Halloween culture. Some European and Western traditions believe black cats are bad luck. It is an omen, some believe, if a black cat crosses your path. On the other hand, many cultures and [...]
Wicca is an earth-centered European magical tradition that gained popularity when a man named Gerald Gardner wrote several publications on the subject in the 1940s-50s. Though his writing is considered controversial, he is still credited with bringing Wicca to the public eye. While the religion has changed somewhat in the years since it was first [...]
Aries (March 21-April 19)This month the world is yours, Aries. Be certain that this is not the time to shy away from accomplishing all the goals you have always dreamed to accomplish. It is time to plant your flag and to claim what’s rightfully yours. You will be in a great position to make more money, and those of [...]
If you have ever smelled camphor, you know its pungently green, intensely cooling scent is unforgettable. This waxy white crystal has found its way into magical traditions all over the world, and it is a good idea to keep some on hand whenever you need a quick, easy, effective way to cleanse a space, banish [...]
Most of us are probably used to tobacco in a recreational sense, but it has a long history of use for magic. In different traditions, it is treated as everything from a sacrament, to a potent banishing or hexing herb, to an herb for placating spirits, to a tool for dominating your rivals. Tobacco For Banishing Even [...]
Each Orisha has particular requirements when it comes to setting their altars. Some items or offerings are sacred to one, but taboo to another. To connect with the Orishas, it is important to have their altars correctly set up and maintained. Here are [...]
As the archangel at the head of God's army and healer of those who suffer from illness, Saint Michael is one of the most powerful entities to call upon when you are in need of protection. He is a strong, calming presence, and he is always listening and able to answer prayers quickly. Whether you [...]
ARIES (March 21-April 19). You may be feeling lonely at this time or going through a period of introspection. If you are struggling to find answers to your questions give it time, they will come. This is a time for prudence and patience. If you have been unwell this is a time for rest and recuperation. What you most [...]
Banishment seems like a very strong word, because it is. Banishing is what you turn to when you want to completely remove something from your life -- whether that is a person who will not leave you alone, a bad habit, a negative [...]