Banishing is a basic skill that all witches should cultivate, it’s one of the cornerstones of our practice and often one of the first things we learn as new witches. Whether banishing an unwanted spirit, a person you no longer want in your life or even a situation that you’re sick of having in your life, banishing gives you the power to clear and remove things from your life, giving you the power to control more of your life.
This is a foundational skill for a reason, magic can be uncertain territory and learning to protect and defend yourself is paramount. Nobody likes finding themselves in a scary situation that they don’t know how to get themselves out of and in the realm of magic, that goes double. Ending up on the wrong side of another witch or a spirit is a big fear for many new witches but, thankfully, it doesn’t have to be. Learning defensive magic and prioritizing your security goes a long way toward giving you the confidence that you need to handle any situation that arises head on.
This kind of spell is best done while you are calm. Excess negative energy from anger or other strong emotions could cause a more hex-like effect than you would like. The result could be unintentional harm to your target as opposed to simply removing them from your life.
Below are five different basic banishing spells as well as what each spell is good for and what its weaknesses may be.
Burn It Away Banishing
You Will Need:
- A slip of paper
- A pen
- A fireproof bowl
- A heat resistant work surface
- Matches or a lighter
This spell is very simple to execute. Begin by writing down what you’re banishing, be it the name of a person or spirit or something more intangible like procrastination or negative self-talk. Focus on what you’ve written for a moment, call it to mind as clearly as you can.
Light the slip of paper on fire and drop it into the bowl. As it burns imagine your target leaving your life and then focus all of your attention on what your life will be like after the banishing takes effect.
When the paper is finished burning, you should dispose of the ashes away from your house, you can scatter them on the ground or into the wind or even just dump them into the trash bin outside of your house but get them away from you as soon as possible.
This form of banishing is excellent if you’re short on time or energy, it’s simple, quick, and to the point. Of course, proper care should be taken not to light yourself or anything else on fire. Don’t perform this spell on flammable surfaces, outside on windy days or in any environment that you can’t control. Also make sure that any pets you may have are out of the room, you wouldn’t want any curious whiskers getting singed during your spell.
4 Thieves Vinegar
This banishing concoction gets its name from a folktale that tells of four thieves who, during the height of the Black Plague, would steal into peoples homes and rob them in the night. Instead of catching the plague they grew healthy and rich. When they were finally apprehended they struck a bargain to trade their secret recipe in exchange for their freedom.
I can’t speak for the effectiveness of this vinegar against the plague but it’s long held a place in witch’s circles as a protective and warding brew.
You will need:
- Apple cider vinegar
- A jar or other airtight container
To make 4 Thieves vinegar fill a mason jar or other airtight container loosely with your herbs (fresh herbs are best). Cover the herbs with apple cider vinegar and screw the lid on tightly. Vinegar can erode metal lids over time so it’s suggested that you use a plastic lid instead. Label and date your jar. Store the vinegar in a cool dry place (your pantry is ideal) and gently shake it once a day for 4-6 weeks. Strain the herbs out of the vinegar and your brew is ready to use!
When your 4 Thieves vinegar is finished you can use it in a variety of ways. Traditionally, sprinkling it over your doorstep is thought to ward away your enemies. I find the taste of the vinegar quite agreeable so if you’re inclined to kitchen witchcraft you can include it in recipes (it makes a lovely salad dressing) to ward yourself against evil and even break spells placed on you.
You Will Need:
- One black candle
- A candleholder
- Black or white pepper
- A carving tool
- Anointing oil (this can be any kind of oil you prefer)
Begin by slowly sprinkling salt in a counterclockwise circle around you and your work area, visualize the salt creating a barrier, protecting you during your ritual. Call the target of your banishing spell to mind and carve your intention into the candle. For example, you might carve “Mark will never speak to me again” or “My anxiety is gone”. You may also wish to carve a banishing sigil into your candle.
When you’ve finished, anoint your candle with the oil and sprinkle the pepper over it. Set the candle into your candle holder and light it, speaking your intention aloud. If it feels good you can turn your intention into a mantra to chant while the candle burns.
Allow the candle to burn itself out, this should be done on a fireproof surface and again, away from pets. Depending on your choice of candle, it may take several hours to completely burn. Do not leave your candle unattended! If you don’t wish to burn the entire candle you can carve a line halfway or a third of the way down the candle and confine your spell carving to the top portion. This can be tricky if you use a taper candle, be gentle so as not to snap it. When the candle burns to this line you may blow it out and reserve the rest of the candle for another banishing spell.
Cleansing & Banishing Bath
You Will Need:
- A bathtub
- Epsom salts
- Chamomile (tea bags work nicely)
- Unsweetened coconut milk (optional, it has protective properties and softens the skin but milk baths are not for everyone)
This spell is one of my favorite methods of banishing. Unlike some of the others, it’s very relaxing and feels freeing as opposed to the more forceful natures of the other spells.
If you like you can light candles and turn the lights down, music is a nice addition but whatever makes a bath enjoyable for you is perfect. Run your bath and add your Epsom salts, herbs, and if you like, a cup of coconut milk. Swirl the water counterclockwise three times and chant the following spell. Fill in the blank with whatever you’re banishing.
“Troubles be gone, washed clean away, leave me free of ______ this day.”
Now all you have to do is relax, enjoy your bath allow the charmed water to do its work.
You Will Need:
- A small mirror (craft mirrors with unfinished backs are best)
- Something to write with (sharpies or oil pencils work well)
This is a very simple sort of banishing designed to reflect negativity back at the target so this is for use only on troublesome spirits and unwanted people in your life. You certainly don’t want your anxiety or procrastination reflecting back on themselves!
On the backside of your mirror write the name of your target and underneath it write:
“You’ve sent me strife and caused me pain, I now reflect it back again.”
You can also add a banishing sigil if you like. Keep the mirror with you until the offending being has been removed from your life.
All of these spells are basic templates, more elaborate banishing rituals can be created by adding to these or combining them together. After completing your banishing there is a vital finishing step, make sure you check out the post I’ve written about protecting an energetic void!
Ever wondered if you’re really prepared to handle the dangers of the craft?
Or maybe you’ve recently come face to face with these dangers and you’re determined to be better prepared next time.
Either way, you need to learn magical defense. This set of skills is absolutely essential for new witches, witches looking to take their work to the next level, and even witches who are just looking for a little more peace and quiet in their spiritual lives. The craft doesn’t have to be dangerous, stressful, or traumatic!
In Defensive Magic For Beginners, I’ve created a step by step learning path that will give you the boost you need to start defending yourself confidently today.