Thursday, January 31, 2019
In the midst of the worst polar vortex in recent memory, it probably will not a popular thing to admit that I like snow...but I do like snow, and collaterally, cold weather. It is, after all Winter.
I don't mean the kind of snow that socks you in for weeks at a time, but the subtle storm that leaves the ground covered a few days. I like the stark beauty of bare, clattering branches in a brisk micro-burst of wind.
A brief trip outside in Winter (appropriately dressed in layers of warm clothing) is invigorating. It clears the mind, too.
Incorporating ice and snow into spiritual/magickal practice is easy (and essentially free!) because the majority of us already have the few materials used lying around: scraps of paper, something to write with on the paper, a bowl, herbs of choice, ziplock bags...and of course, that freshly fallen snow just outside the door.
The only hard and fast rule here is to use clean ice and snow, and be clear in your intention.
To "put a situation on ice": You'll need a small scrap of paper, a pen, a small ziplock bag and some snow for this spell. Write the name of the person or thing you wish to "cool off" or "put on ice". Fold the paper away from you three times. If you wish, you may wrap a length of thread around the paper three times to bind it, but normally it's not necessary. Fill a small resealable plastic bag with snow and make an indent in the snow big enough to tuck the paper inside. Close the bag and place in the freezer. ( After you achieve your result, let the snow melt and dispose of the other contents. This spell is also useful for gossips or those speaking ill of you.
Ritual water : Collect a bowl of fresh, clean snow and bring it inside to melt. Use the resulting water in ritual or on a personal altar.
To watch a problem "melt away": Make a snowball and place it in a bowl. Bring it inside and place it on your altar. Project the situation/ intention into the snowball. Imagine it glowing or sparking, and sit quietly until the snowball melts. When it is totally melted, pour the water away outside.
To "hammer home" an intention : Find a substantial icicle and carefully break it off. Send your intention into the icicle. You will need a rock or hammer to drive the icicle into the ground to earth it, which will neutralize the intention by absorbing the negativity.
To "cool down" anger or negativity: Send your anger or intention into a bowl of snow, then rub your hands in the snow or rub it on your body.
Using fog on a cold day : I you need clarity of mind, go outside and breathe in the cold air for a few minutes ( obviously don't do this if you have a physical condition that will be aggravated by breathing cold air!) Focus your intention into the fog and scry for an answer. An alternative to this is to find a small stone, send your intention into it, and toss it away into the fog far enough it will be lost.
Snow, ice and cold fog are essentially water, which is most often used for cleansing, healing and purification. The correspondence for water is the West, also associated with emotion. A bowl of new snow can be worked into any spell for peace and tranquility. Symbols and sigils can be traced into the snow and allowed to work as the snow melts. A temporary poppet can be made from snow molded into the shape of a person with a few key ingredients tucked inside. Ice candles can be made to use to light your ritual space outside, or for spellwork. Think about other ways to use these water-related elements in your practice ( and feel free to share them in the comments below! )
And remember...if it's sunny and warmer on Imbolc, the Cailleach is out collecting firewood to keep warm because there will be a few more weeks of cold weather. However, if Imbolc is cold and dusky, the Cailleach is still sleeping because she knows the winter will end soon.
Bright Blessings to you!