Whether you have recently moved into a new home or notice the energy in your most sacred spaces is off, this is one of my most treasured spells of claiming (or reclaiming) my own holy spaces and the word ‘holy’ at the crossroads of my own ‘wholeness’.
The Witch’s Holy Space
The use of the word ‘holy’ here may inspire a backlash or knee-jerk, gut reaction in many witches. I see you. I could have easily used the word ‘sacred’ instead. Or ‘hallowed’. There are many different words that I could have used instead, but I find myself at the center of a crossroads of claiming my space and also taking up space as a witch. Maybe you have found yourself there too, reclaiming parts of yourself so you can stand in the center of the crossroads of Wholeness, Holiness, and creating your Holy spaces.
The Wholly Holy Crossroads
Spellcrafting is an artform, it starts with the witch and the witch’s intent. The intention, the ‘why’, behind the creation of any spell is the foundation upon which a spell is given the power to be successful. The etymology of ‘whole’ and ‘holy’ also intersect (from the Proto-Indo-European (PIE) “kailo”) and in this way, gives the ‘why’ for claiming it back in my witchcraft practice (just a little interesting synchronicity here “kai” from Greek translates into “and”, AND I am here for it!).
Douglas Harper (author, historian, and lecturer) explains the etymology of the word ‘holy’ in the following manner:
“Old English halig “holy, consecrated, sacred; godly; ecclesiastical,” from Proto-Germanic *hailaga- (source also of Old Norse heilagr, Danish hellig, Old Frisian helich “holy,” Old Saxon helag, Middle Dutch helich, Old High German heilag, German heilig, Gothic hailags “holy”), from PIE *kailo- “whole, uninjured”… Adopted at conversion for Latin sanctus.
Primary (pre-Christian) meaning is not possible to determine, but probably it was “that must be preserved whole or intact, that cannot be transgressed or violated,” and connected with Old English hal …and Old High German heil “health, happiness, good luck” (source of the German salutation Heil).“
The etymology of the word ‘whole’, also by Douglas Harper, is explained in this manner:
“Old English hal “entire, whole; unhurt, uninjured, safe; healthy, sound; genuine, straightforward,” from Proto-Germanic *haila- “undamaged” (source also of Old Saxon hel, Old Norse heill, Old Frisian hal, Middle Dutch hiel, Dutch heel, Old High German, German heil “salvation, welfare”), from PIE *kailo- “whole, uninjured, of good omen” (source also of Old Church Slavonic celu “whole, complete;”
The spelling with wh- developed early 15c. The sense in whole number is from early 14c. Whole milk is from 1782. On the whole “considering all facts or circumstances” is from 1690s.”
While Harper did not have a graphic for this one, I found one online from the Oxford Language database used by Google:
This is important to understand the journey between ‘holy’ and ‘whole’, which is in direct synchrony to our own holy journeys to wholeness through our witchcraft practices.
The Purpose of Holy Space
The art of spellcraft comes down to the witch, the way the witch carefully selects correspondences because of the connections we have to them. The relationships we have built with our tools, allies, and deity(ies) are holy because they allow our workings to become ‘whole’ or manifest. Those relationships also allow you to come into wholeness with your intention. When we do our workings, our spaces must be conducive to our specific flavor of witchery. Without claiming our holy spaces, without creating a sacred opening for only what we allow in, we risk allowing in energies that do not match our intentions. And that would be a ‘whole’ hot mess.
Spell of Wholly Holy Space
As mentioned previously, knowing the ‘why’ behind the tools and correspondences is akin to understanding intent. If you have built up the relationship, you can get into flow with their energies and command them with purpose in a unified manner. While I am giving you the foundations for the spell, the research and full attunement to each piece is your part of the work to make it more powerful and holy. Feel free to adapt this to your space, intention, or deity as you feel led. If you are big into Lunar considerations as I am, I find this spell worked amazingly well during the waning moon, about a week prior to the full moon.
3 candles (1 red, 1 black, and 1 white)
A lighter (or new batteries for flameless candles if needed)
Small amount of the following dried herbs:
4 drops of a personal anointing oil or 4 sprays of a personal spray (use this if you are in a space that you are wiping down or sweeping/mopping) or a small amount of a personal dried incense blend (if you will be in a space that you are vacuuming).
Broom/Mop and Water OR vacuum
Connect to your Mugwort, Bay, Sage, and Lavender prior to blending them together. We are creating a mix but you want to direct each of them as to what they are providing. It is like an orchestra that you are directing for the fullest impact to your space!
Once you are done and you have given instructions to your botanical allies, place half of the mixture in your small bag and add a little bit of salt.
Take the small dish and cover the bottom with salt.
Place the remaining botanical blend in the center of the small dish.
Now gather everything and take it into your space that you will be claiming as your holy space for your witchcraft.
Shift your awareness and your consciousness through your normal means of beginning any witchery. I personally spend 5 or 6 minutes breathing deeply, connecting to the space, clearing away any thoughts of the day and getting fully grounded.
Place the three candles together and light them (or turn them on) and place the small dish in front of them. Call to your candles based on how you have connected to their colors or what they symbolically represent for you. An example could be:
“My black candle, I command you to provide protection under the cover of darkness as I claim this space holy for my sacred rites. The power of the underworld, from which all is created and born, so too will this space be.”
Pause to connect, breathing deeply, notice the energy of your black candle.
“My red candle, I command you to fiery action, burning away what does not energetically belong in this holy space to make way for those I allow entry. The power of the middle world, from which my witchery is melded together and fully formed.”
Pause to connect, breathing deeply, notice the energy of your red candle.
“My white candle, I command you to connect my holy intention to spirit of place so that I may work my will here and now. The power of the upperworld, from which divine connection is drawn and illusions of separateness meet profound demise.”
Pause to connect, breathing deeply, notice the energy of your white candle.
“I call you together, woven into this space, wholly holy, as I begin this cleansing rite.”
Take your small bag of botanicals with salt and begin to sprinkle around your space, calling them to cleanse, to bring banishment unwelcome energies, bring protection to this space as holy space, and let calm awareness prevail. Let this sit for one to two minutes, allowing yourself to become aware of the energies in the space so you can write it down in your Book of Shadows.
Grab the broom (or vacuum). We are now going to sweep or vacuum the space as your botanical allies have done their work. While sweeping (or vacuuming) chant:
“Hail to worlds and this mighty tool, this space we claim, as within so without
I am a daughter of Hekate (or deity of your choosing or just say ‘I am (your name)) and this is my holy space, if you don’t belong, GET OUT.”
If you just finished vacuuming, grab your personal incense blend. Sprinkle in the corners of your space and chant:
“With this blend I declare this to be my holy domain.”
If you just finished sweeping, grab either your personal anointing oil or personal spray and put a drop or spray in the corners of your space and chant:
“With this blend I declare this to be my wholly holy domain.”
Breathe deeply for one minute and feel into the energy of the space, your allies and tools all weaving together in unison, as you have commanded them.
Begin mopping (or vacuuming once more) and chant:
“With this cleanse, a wholly holy space for my witchery and friends.”
Once complete, breathe deeply and approach the small dish in front of the candles and say:
“Thank you, Lavender, Mugwort, Sage, and Bay, casting your powers over this holy space, you shall stay.”
Leave this small dish out overnight if possible.
Breathe deeply again and thank your broom and mop or vacuum for attending and participating in your rite.
Thank your candles, one by one, and then say
“I claim this as my holy space”
Blow out your candles (or turn them off), willing the essence of each to shroud the space in sacredness.
Upon completion, dispose of your sweepings, mopping, and vacuuming. Allow the botanical dish to remain overnight as a reinforcement of your space, weaving together the wholly holiness of it. Make sure to allow yourself some time to get the spell and your experience into your Book of Shadows or at least a voice recording of the experience so you can revisit it the next day. Here are things that may be helpful to write or record:
Did you notice any specific energetic shifts in your space during your ritual? How about after? What about the next day?
How did you chant? Was it silently or with your voice? Did you do both? If you did both, were there any differences you noticed between doing the chanting silently versus using your voice?
How did you connect to the botanicals? Were there any parts that were challenging to connecting to the botanicals or directing them?
May you enjoy your claiming of your wholly holy space for witchery!
A candle and a key,
Feature Image Credit: Anshu A via Unsplash
Harper, D. (n.d.). holy | Origin and meaning of holy by Online Etymology Dictionary. Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved January 24, 2021, from https://www.etymonline.com/word/holy
Harper, D. (n.d.-b). whole | Origin and meaning of whole by Online Etymology Dictionary. Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved January 24, 2021, from https://www.etymonline.com/word/whole