An offering is a gift we make to gods in exchange for something. Offerings can relate to simple foods, such as milk or bread or something we cook ourselves, but they can also relate to objects built with our hands. The quantity of the offer does not matter, but the quality.
However, today, we’ll learn how to dispose of food offerings.
The offer is not always made following a request made, but it can also arise from the simple desire to give something to the deities to thank them.
For it to be valid, the offer must arise from a renunciation that we make in giving what we want to donate. For example, if I offer a piece of bread that I know I wouldn’t eat anyway, the offer is invalid.
In my opinion, it is good to make offerings that have a spiritual side, but also material value; for this, I prefer to offer seeds, milk, fertilizer, or anything that can benefit nature and animals, rather than letting fruit rot on the altar.
Offerings are different according to the deity and the location where the act of offering should take place. The offerings can also include candles and incense followed by prayers.
These offers can be considered more than magical rituals; they are real holistic prayers addressed to entities to help us in the difficult moments of life or even just for the sake of making devotional offerings or thanksgiving.
How do you dispose of food offerings?
First, you need to wait around twenty-four hours, to see if a diety accepted your offerings or not. After that, you can eat the food offerings as the spirits feed on the essence and leave us gifts, so by eating them you assimilate them. But it depends on the tradition you follow!
|Burying||Bury the food offerings in the ground, preferably in a natural area.|
|Burning||Safely burn the food offerings in a designated fire pit or fireplace.|
|Composting||Place the organic food offerings in a compost pile or bin.|
|Feeding Wildlife||Offer the food to animals or birds in a natural and safe manner.|
|Returning to Nature||Scatter the food offerings in a natural environment, such as a forest or river.|
|Throwing in Trash||Avoid throwing food offerings in regular trash bins or garbage cans.|
|Dumping in Water||Do not dispose of food offerings directly into bodies of water.|
|Leaving in Public||Respect public spaces and avoid leaving food offerings in public areas.|
|Neglecting Cleanup||Ensure proper cleanup of food remnants to avoid attracting pests.|
|Disposing Carelessly||Be mindful of the environment and avoid littering with food offerings.|
We can give food to the earth. You can leave it in the middle of nature, it will be food for animals and fertilizer for plants. I think this is the best thing to do.
But you can also throw it into a river.
The important thing is not to throw it in the trash.
Why would you do that when your offering is biodegradable and can be a meal to any number of animals in the spot of nature where you leave it?
When we offer something to nature we should try to avoid toxic materials, food that is toxic to animals, or anything that can do harm.
What can you do if you live in a city?
In this case, you could leave your offerings at a park or just use candles and other magical items that you can reuse. But that’s totally up to you!
The power of food offerings
Since ancient times, eating has been considered a sacred act because it allows us to live and benefit from the gifts that nature has offered us. Our ancestors created a sacred moment when the whole family gathers at the table after a long day of fatigue, sharing their joys and their thoughts.
Food gives us both physical and spiritual energy because inside the plants, flowers, and fruits there is the spiritual energy of nature. Offerings are a sacred and important act in South American cultures.
Spirits like the Loa and Orixa and others feed on the offerings and take their energy; this is a very important act of faith and respect that we have towards our saints and spirits to whom we turn for help and advice.
How does an offering work?
Making offerings allows us to establish a link with the entities by coming into contact with their essence. The festivals that are given in honor of these spirits are full of dances, perfumes, and offers of food and drink.
Unfortunately in the West, with the advent of the Christian church, many recipes and ritual systems have been lost, while in religions such as Santeria, Voodoo, and Candomblè the rituals have remained intact thanks to religious syncretism which allowed these traditions to survive to this day.
Each deity has its own designed food offering
As I have already said, the food offers are specific to each entity but they can also change according to the type of offer and request you are making.
I will not make a list of all the offers and all the spirits because it would be an immense job, but I will share a small example:
An offer for love would include apples, honey, cinnamon, and powders designed to attract this type of energy with candles of the appropriate color and the most suitable incenses, always following the tastes of the entity to whom they will be offered. There are also basic offerings that each entity always wishes to receive, however, follow the advice of the ritual you’re following and adapt to the current situation.
Milk, wine, seeds, fertilizer, honey, eggs, flour, bread, cereals, salt are definitely the most common food offerings.
Considerations for food offerings
|Type of Food||Choose food items that are biodegradable and won’t harm the environment.|
|Cultural Practices||Respect and follow any specific cultural or religious practices regarding food offerings.|
|Location Restrictions||Be aware of any local regulations or guidelines regarding food disposal.|
|Wildlife Safety||Consider the impact of food offerings on local wildlife and ecosystems.|
|Intentions and Energy||Infuse your food offerings with positive intentions and gratitude.|