More On Our Cleansing Protocols

I live in a small religious community. We are a small House of four devotees at various stages of training and experience and we are setting down the seeds of what we hope will grow into a proper, sustainable temple and religious House complex. It may take us years to realize this dream, but we are well on our way. As such, we’re always looking for ways to improve and, if possible, streamline our regular cleansing and purification protocols, just as we’re always trying to find ways to deepen our prayer practices. I’ll write about prayer at another time (though I think it’s the single most crucial thing anyone lay or specialist can do) and today I want to add more to what I’ve previously touched on with regard to cleansing. 

In addition to everything else we do, we have selected one night each week to do divination for the week, divination for other questions and issues that might arise, and more serious and more intense cleansing rituals. One important part of that is uncrossing. This is a conjure and hoodoo term (I got my start with conjure and I’ve studied and practiced it for years. I’d moved away from it for awhile, but lately I realize how foolish that was) for a cleansing that removes any curses, hexes, or other malefica thrown at one. So much of what rare fragments of conjure that I learned as a kid was about keeping the home free of negative spirits. Then as an adult when I really studied it (instead of just doing what my grandmother herself had done by rote – she hadn’t realized that her spiritualist aunt was also a conjure woman), I discovered how proactive in keeping spiritually clean and bringing luck and peace to a home some of these practices really allowed one to be. (Hoodoo itself is a blend of Afro-American, Native,  Scotch-Irish, English, German, practices all smooshed together – it’s eminently practical and what I learned from my grandma has a PA Deutsch feel to it as opposed to what I learned later from active practitioners). 

So, on that night, we take massive cleansing baths: varieties of salt, beer, milk, khernips, various herbs, flowers, honey powder, vinegars…in any combination thereof, depending what we feel needs to be cleansed and how we wish to fill the space that has been cleansed (nature abhors a vacuum. I always do a blessing after a cleansing). Usually I like beer, salt, and khernips OR milk, salt, and khernips. Those without tubs can pour the blend over their head and bodies while standing in the shower – this is actually a bit more traditional. 

Then, we do a cleansing with stalks of specific herbs, partly as an uncrossing and partly as blessing. I’ve been quite taken with this blend for some time now: hyssop, basil, rue, and marjoram. One might also add mint. We grow all of them in the herb garden. One of us will pick the largest stalks of each we can find and collect them together like a bouquet. Then, we take turns, sweeping it over each other’s [clothed] bodies, slapping the plants over them like a babushka cleaning herself in a Russian bath house. This is done in a downward motion. At the end, the plants are burnt (or taken out into the trash immediately and outside the house. Burning is better). 

Before the div, we make offerings and tend all the shrines, and then after all the cleansing work, we spend time in prayer. More and more, cultus to Askr and Embla has been growing as an essential part of recentering ourselves. Finally, at least once a week we have a full spectrum of protection, exorcism, purification, and blessing prayers that we do. The full rota takes about an hour, sometimes a little more. 

Our weak spot is that our home is cluttered but little by little we’re addressing that as we can (bookshelves are at a premium!). I wrote this mainly to give readers some sense of how seriously we take cleansing protocols and also a glimpse of how they can be integrated, relatively easily, into one’s devotional life. I’ll close by sharing one prayer in that rota that I note above. Feel free to use it, but please do attribute it me. 

Prayer of Purification  

Hail to You, Oh great good immortal Gods, Mighty Brothers Odin, Hoenir, and Loður,

Sovereign Powers over all the Worlds, Unyielding Conquerors in the face of evil, You Who made all creation, setting into place the orbits of moon and sun, crafting and honing the bones of Ymir into the beauty of Midgard, Who wrought the Nine worlds by will alone, and sacral vision, You Who ward and protect Your children, hear my prayer. 

Odin, Sig-Father, unafraid of sacrifice, Who blessed Ask and Embla, and every human after with breath and soul, Who brings healing when all other healers have failed, I beseech You now to stand as healer to my soul. 

Hoenir, Who infused Ask and Embla and every human after with sense and intellect, bless my mind that it may remain free of the fury of the Unmaker. Turn my mind to You and the works the Holy Ones have made. Always. 

Loður, Who blessed Ask and Embla and every human after with life and warmth and feeling, increase my love and devotion to the Gods a thousand-fold, until my prayers are a raging inferno burning away anything unholy. Fill me with the fire of devotion. Always. 

I beseech You, oh Great Good and Glorious Gods, render powerless, banish, and expel every diabolical power, presence, and machination; every evil influence, malefica, or evil eye, and all actions aimed against Your faithful servant (NAME). Where there is envy, jealousy, hatred, and malice, grant us instead an abundance of victory, benevolent blessings, endurance, and piety. Oh dear Gods, Makers of all the Worlds, Who love us faltering human beings as fathers love their children, I pray that You extend Your wills, that You reach out Your powerful hands, and come with mighty arms and focused power to our aid. 

Help us, weapons-wise Allfather, cunning and clever Skyfarer, and Mighty Marsh Lord, help us Whom You have so carefully crafted. Send angels and disir and good but fierce helping spirits to watch over us, and to protect us body and soul. 

Keep at bay and vanquish every evil power, every servant of the Enemy, every poison, malice, or malefica invoked against us by corrupt, envious, and bitter people. Free us from oppression that we may serve You in gratitude and joy. You are our shield and buckler, invocation to You the weapon in our hand, Your blessing our preservation and salvation from harm. Whom should we fear? Who is as powerful as You? Under Your gaze, I shall ready myself for battle. Under Your gaze, and in the solace of Your protection, I shall gird my spirit as I prepare to engage the foe. Let my hands, my will, my words, and my soul never falter and let my mind ever be turned to You, and the works You have so carefully wrought. ALU.

About ganglerisgrove

Galina Krasskova has been a Heathen priest since 1995. She holds a Masters in Religious Studies (2009), a Masters in Medieval Studies (2019), has done extensive graduate work in Classics including teaching Latin, Roman History, and Greek and Roman Literature for the better part of a decade, and is currently pursuing a PhD in Theology. She is the managing editor of Walking the Worlds journal and has written over thirty books on Heathenry and Polytheism including "A Modern Guide to Heathenry" and "He is Frenzy: Collected Writings about Odin." In addition to her religious work, she is an accomplished artist who has shown all over the world and she currently runs a prayer card project available at wyrdcuriosities.etsy.com.

Posted on August 7, 2021, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Question…on the cleansing mixtures (beer, salt khernips, etc) what are the proportions? Equal parts of each or just a dash of salt in the mixture?

    This would make an awesome book!

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    • ganglerisgrove

      I’ve written a book on dealing with Miasma already lol.

      I don’t worry about proportions. Usually I put in a can of beer, as many handfuls of salt as I feel like and then when the bath is full, I light a coupe of bay leaves and make the whole thing a tub of khernips. If I’m using milk, I pour a whole container in — whatever size I have.

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  2. Wonderful prayer. Thank you for sharing it.

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  3. Four devotees, eh? Did one of you get a new apprentice?

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  4. Selena A. Durante

    Rev. Krasskova, I want to thank you for your guidance, and give thanks to members of House Sankofa for the teaching by example that you provide. When I have occasion to visit Denmark again, I will bring rye bread and butter and mineral oil to the the Gfijon Spring, in gratitude for the guidance you and yours have given to those of us struggling alone.

    May the Ancestors smile upon your work.
    May your House never want.
    Maythe Gods and Holy Powers honored by House sankofa bestow blessings and good fortune to All who shelter beneath its roof and seek teaching from its Elders.
    May the holy Sancta be honored in word and deed.
    May Priest and Votary, set the example for those who seek to restore the reverence of theGods..

    May all whom shelter under the name of yourHouse thrive,teach well,and be the example we all seek to emulate.

    Praise be to your holy work. Infinite gratitudnfrom those who seek the Gods and Holy powers.

    Hail Odin, hail Sigyn, Hail Saga, Hail Dionysus, hail Hodr.

    Rev. Krasskova, may yup be everpriased as the Good Ancestor.

    And hail to the beloved Samcta, Fuenseta.

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    • ganglerisgrove

      Selena, thank you so much for your beautiful prayer. I am honored and humbled and deeply, deeply grateful. It is my own prayer every day that my work be clean and that my work be of use. House Sankofa disbanded several years ago. the House I have restored and within which I am working now is our Comitatus pilae cruensis (name chosen by divination hail Odin!) within the Starry Bear tradition. Please remember us in your prayers, and may you and all good people, devotees of the Gods, ever be granted joy, fulfillment in the Work, and may you always be able to stand before Them with honor. Blessings on you and yours.

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