How to Prepare for a Ritual
Regardless of the path you follow, preparing for a ritual is an essential part of the practice. It doesn’t have to be elaborate or complex, though. What’s important is that it sets the space – and you – for the ritual. No one practices in the exact same way, so we encourage you to experiment with your preparation to discover what works best for you.
Take ample time before your ritual to select a special soap, bath salt, or herbal bath for your pre-ritual cleansing. You don’t have to take your bath right before your ritual if you don’t want to. Some people do so the night before and find that it works better for their schedule and lifestyle.
You might also choose to ornament your bath with candles, add essential oils to the water, or place crystals around the bathtub. Just be careful how you use crystals around water. Some, like selenite, lapis lazuli, malachite, and kyanite should never come in contact with water or saltwater. Do a little research beforehand to make sure your crystals are safe during your ritual bath.
~Cleanse the Space~
Begin by sweeping and mopping or vacuuming the room in which your ritual will take place. Then walk in a circle with a smudge bundle or other herbs to cleanse the air. You may choose to stop at each of the four quadrants (north, south, east, west) as you do so. Use your smudge herbs to cleanse yourself once more and cleanse anyone who is participating in the ritual or spellcasting with you.
Sound can also be used to cleanse an area of negative energy. Using a bell, drum, chimes, or a rattle can move stagnant energy away from your sacred space and allow positive energy to flow in!
~Wear Specific Colors for your Spell or Ritual~
Color energy is another important aspect of ritual work to consider in your preparation. Choose your clothing or another adornment based on what energy you wish to bring into the space. Here’s an easy guide adapted from Wicca Living:
- White: cleansing, understanding, spiritual growth, establishing order or finding clarity
- Black: transformation; banishing and releasing negative energies
- Red: love spells and health rituals
- Orange: encouragement and power
- Yellow: communication spells; divination
- Green: money spells, prosperity and good luck, fertility rituals, and spells for employment
- Blue: healing rituals; psychic intensifying
- Violet: divination; balance
- Silver: psychic development, meditation, and warding off negativity
- Gold: health, success, divination, and good fortune spells
- Brown: balance and grounding, home rituals, and spells for your familiars
- Grey: binding negative influences; complex decision-making
- Indigo: spiritual healing; meditation
- Pink: love spells and romance, spiritual awakening, and children’s magick
~Create a Boundary~
Creating a boundary or casting a circle is essential to ritual prep. This ensures that only the energies – or beings – you intend to interact with enter the physical space you will be occupying. Some choose to trace out the edges of the circle with an athame dipped in saltwater while others set the boundary in meditation, creating a bubble of protective energy around the space. Still others mark the boundary with blessed water, oils, or salt.
~Invite the Light~
Light a single candle or multiple if you prefer. These aren’t the candles that you might use in your actual ritual but can lend a sacred ambiance to the space. You can even choose candle colors based on the color chart above to enhance that magick.
~Other Practices to Consider~
- Some practitioners suggest covering all clock faces – including your phone – to ensure the space is held in a timeless state.
- Consider dedicating your sacred space with oils and a white candle, or take some time to rededicate it to your practice if it’s been a while.
- Try preparing yourself mentally throughout the day of your ritual with grounding music, meditation, or prayer.
- Draw your curtains and close or lock your door to avoid interruptions.
- If it aligns with your practice, call out to the four quadrants before you begin to invite those energies into your work.
If you’re new to the practice of rituals and spellwork, don’t be overwhelmed, but instead make the preparation of your ritual its own special practice. With time, it will become a comforting and grounding ritual in its own right.