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What is Purification: a Removal of Impurities

Updated on:


Written by: Dawn Black (Witchipedia)


Reviewed by: Tina Caro

Purification refers to the removal of impurities or unwanted influences, toxins, filth, negative energies, etc. in order to leave a pure or at least less polluted product.


Purification is a fundamental practice in witchcraft, aimed at cleansing energies and spaces to enhance magical workings.

Many witches use purification rituals before spellcasting, divination, or entering sacred spaces to ensure purity of intent and focus.

Purification by smoke, commonly achieved through burning herbs like sage, frankincense, or palo santo, is a popular method to clear negative energy from objects and environments.

Salt and water are also potent tools for purification, with salt absorbing negativity and water washing away impurities, often combined in ritual baths or as consecrated solutions.

How and When it’s Used?

Many magical practitioners engage in purification ceremonies before performing magical work.

They may purify themselves, their tools and/or their ritual space in order to begin their magical work with a clean slate.

As water may be purified by boiling to destroy bacteria, filtering to remove sediment or heavy metals or distilled to remove virtually everything but the water, magical practitioners use a variety of means to purify their space, themselves and their tools and other materials.

Some methods include aspergingsmudging or fumigation, the use of salt, and ritual baths.

Purification by Smoke

Smoke cleansing or purification by smoke involves using smoke, usually from burning aromatic herbs or incense, to purify the body or space, usually to drive off unwanted energies and entities.

About Morningbird (Witchipedia's Founder)

I am a homesteading hearth witch who grew up along the shores of the Hudson River and has lived among the Great Lakes for the past 20 years. Together with my musical husband and youngest child, I steward a one-acre mini homestead with herb, vegetable and flower gardens, chickens, ducks, geese and rabbits, and areas reserved for native plants and wildlife. 

I have three children; two are grown, and I have been practicing magick alone and with family and friends for over 30 years.

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