“One’s sovereignty over the land is expressed most powerfully in the act of banishment. Perhaps the first eviction recorded in human history was Adam and Eve’s.”
– Matthew Desmond
What is Banishing? Magick bends and changes. Banishing specifically bends and turns negative energy – a ghost, bad luck, etc. The purpose of a banishing ritual sends the unwanted energy pattern back where it came, dispersing it (to dispel the power) by channeling it through the earth to ground it out.
Personal Preparation and the Magical Sacred Space
When you’re working with unproductive energy it’s particularly important that you’re cleansed and protected. Think of your aura like a canvas. Throughout the day that energetic surface gathers figurative dust. Not all that dust is positive. Some may be negativity from co-workers or friends, frustration in traffic, anger aimed your way, etc. Since you are endeavoring to “turn” destructive energy from your personal space, you don’t want to add any MORE adverse vibrations into the equation.
Pre-ritual Preparation Ideas
- Take a quick shower before your ritual visualizing water as sparkling white light.
- Dab yourself with a warding oil, such as patchouli or violet (Note: Patchouli is rather strong, so use it sparingly unless you want everything you wear to smell like patchouli for a long time).
- Visualize your aura as a solid sphere with a reflective surface facing outward (to reflect any negativity that may come your way during the ritual).
- Remove items from the room (when practicable) that remind you of the problem at hand. You can cleanse these with incense or salt water before you return them to their designated locations.
Magical Banishing Invocations
Because banishing has very specific personal elements, it may be worth your time to write your own invocation for this ritual. Don’t be shy—give it a try! You’ll find that the more you think about your Magick and the more personal effort you put into ritual, the better it will work. And, by the way, invocations don’t have to rhyme or follow any particular pattern, but with banishing it’s good to start in the North (to ground out the energy) and move counterclockwise (to diminish the overall power)
Remember this symbolism for other rituals where you feel you want to decrease various types of influences. Clockwise movement generates positive energy, counterclockwise movement lessens or shrinks. This is why some Witches like to dismiss the circle moving counterclockwise—it unwinds the spiral of energy in the sacred space and provides closure.
Sample Banishing Invocation
For those who feel more comfortable using a pre-made invocation this one is generic enough for you to change slightly as needed.
North: Guardians of the North, let your cold winds blow and surround my sacred space. Protect me from unwanted influences and keep me grounded throughout this ritual.
West: Guardians of the West, let your cleansing waters surround my sacred space. Protect me from unwanted influences and keep my intentions pure throughout this ritual.
South: Guardians of the South, let your vibrant fires surround this sacred space. Protect me from unwanted influences and keep all dark things in your sacred light throughout this ritual.
East: Guardians of the East, let the winds of change surround this sacred space. Protect me from unwanted influences and keep the breeze of truth present throughout this ritual.
So be it.
Banishing Meditation and Visualization
Meditation and visualization combine in your mind’s eye as a way of focusing your will and purpose. You know the old saying, “seeing is believing”? That is what visualization offers – a sense of trust and faith in the energetic work you’re doing. If you do not feel you can remember all the steps in this meditation, try tape recording it instead so you can keep your eyes closed and focus wholly on the activity.
Sample Banishing Meditation & Visualization
In your mind’s eye, try to maintain the image of your reflective aura as you work. Next, bring up a picture of the source of negativity as best you know it. If you’re not sure of the source, see it as a blob-like brackish ooze. Now, with conviction, in your imagination grab hold of the source and push it down into the earth.
Stomp on it. Pack it into the ground until it completely breaks apart and turns into a softer brown/black hue (like that of rich soil). You should notice a distinct shift in the overall energy around you when this happens as if a stifling weight has been lifted from your chest. Turn away from that place in your mind’s eye and don’t look back (you don’t want to re-accept that negativity). Return to normal levels of awareness.
Other Magical Banishing Activities
After your meditation, there are other methods available to you for supporting renewed positive energy. You want to maintain that positive shift and keep the good vibes right where they belong.
Ideas for Maintaining Magically Healthy Personal Space
- Light candles throughout the house on a regular basis. White is a good color for purity. The flame of the magic candle brings radiance where there was once a shadow.
- Play “happy” music. This brings a light-hearted ambiance into your space.
- Open the drapes: Let that sun shine in!
- Smudge your house or space: Using sage or other cleansing herbs. Think of this like washing the floor. When it gets dirty – clean it up!
- Place blessed sacred stones around the space, providing a magical network that expresses your will.
Closing the Banishing Ritual
This is one of those times when you may wish to release the circle clockwise, especially if your invocation was counterclockwise. The lessening of negativity has already been accomplished, now you want to take that neutrality and turn it in your favor by way of generating positive energy in and around your sacred space.
<Sample Dismissal for a Banishing Ritual
To the Earth: Guardian of the North, thank you for grounding out the negative energies today. Now take that mulch and create rich soil for my Magick to grow in.
To the Water: Guardian of the West, thank you for washing away the dangerous tides today. Now take those drops, cleanse and purify them, then water my spirit.
To the South: Guardian of the South, thank you for burning away the darkness today. Now take those ashes, mix them with the water and earth, and create a light that shines on my soul.
To the East: Guardian of the East, thank you for blowing away the negative winds today. Now replace them with fresh winds that inspire my mind.
Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again.
Adapted from “Teen Book of Shadows,” by Patricia Telesco. All rights reserved.