How To Use Your Cauldron & 9 Amazing Ways To Get Started
When I first learned about modern witchcraft, I was surprised to discover that witches actually used cauldrons. From that moment on, I knew I needed to get my hands on one of my own. Granted, modern witch cauldrons don’t always look the like those big, black, cast-iron pots filled with a bubbling brew, heated over an outdoor fire like in the movies, but the modern cauldron is still definitely reminiscent of the witches of the past.
I love using a cauldron in my magic because it connects me to all the witches who came before. When I do a cauldron spell, I feel like I’m calling in an ancient power from long ago. If you’re intrigued about this lovely magical tool, consider bringing a cauldron into your witchy practice. With a little time and patience, using a cauldron can open up new ways of performing spells and experiencing magic!
Where To Buy A Cauldron
You have plenty of options for where to buy a cauldron. Online shops like Amazon, Etsy, and eBay have gorgeous new and used cauldrons (with cheap or free shipping). The benefit of these online retailers is that you can read up on customer reviews before you place an order. New age and occult stores are also great places to purchase cauldrons. Modern cauldrons come in all shapes and sizes, so it’s it’s a huge advantage to actually see and hold the different types before you make your purchase. Some cauldrons are as tiny as tennis balls. Others are the size of big beach balls.
There are three main things to keep in mind when purchasing a cauldron
- You’ll want one that’s cast iron. Not only is this the most traditional material for a witch’s cauldron, it’s also the best to use for your spells and rituals since this metal can stand up to high heat. Plus, it’s relatively easy to clean after even your most extravagant spells.
- Choose the cauldron size and shape that fits your lifestyle. If you travel a lot, you might want to buy a small cauldron to take on the road with you.
- Decide on what kind of magic you plan on doing with your cauldron. If you want to do mostly incense cones and paper burning, a smaller cauldron might be the perfect size. If you love brewing magical teas and potions, maybe try a larger one.
The choice is totally up to you, and by the way, no one said you can’t have more than one cauldron in your magical toolkit. Often times, you can get your hands on quality cauldrons for under thirty dollars.
How To Care For Your Cauldron
When you first get a cauldron, you’ll want to cleanse it immediately after you receive it. Cast iron tends to hold tight to magical energy, as well as the energy of everyone who came into contact with the metal while shipping, at the shop or even when it was being made.
You can multitask by making black salt, a magical ingredient perfect for protection spells or banishing spells, while you cleanse your cauldron.
Cleanse your Cauldron and Make Black Salt
Dip your cauldron in the cool water of a running stream and let the power of the current wash away any weird energy that has settled into your cauldron. Thoroughly dry it off with a towel.
Mix sea salt and olive oil or almond oil in your cauldron and wipe the inside and outside down with the mixture. Rub in the outside oil to the best of your ability and place your cauldron (uncovered) in the oven at 450 degrees Fahrenheit for ninety minutes. Turn off the oven, and wait for the cauldron to cool. Then pour the salt residue (now black salt) into an airtight jar. Rub a little more salt and oil into the cauldron (inside and out), and set the cauldron in the oven upside down for another ninety minutes at 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Let it cool, and you’re all set to use your cauldron!
Ways to Use your Cauldron
Burn Incense in Your Cauldron
- Burn loose incense herbs with charcoal discs positioned in the middle of your cauldron.
- Incense cones are extremely simple to use with a cauldron as well. Set the cone inside your cauldron and light the tip.
- If you have incense sticks, light the end and let the smoking end rest gently at the bottom of your cauldron.
For all these incense burning options, you can leave your cauldron in one place (like your altar) to burn or hold your cauldron by the handle and go from room to room for smoke cleansing rituals. Because incense smoke can be very strong, make sure you properly ventilate the area and do not light incense around children or pets who might be sensitive to smoke.
Collect Moon Water
Set your cauldron out on a rainy night to gather rainwater. Note what phase the moon is in that night so you know what moon phase energy that water is charged with. Pour the water into a jar and store it until you need it for a spell. Dry your cauldron completely after this process to prevent rust. Don’t leave your cauldron out for multiple nights even in dry weather. Extended exposure to even a small amount of humidity can cause your cauldron to rust.
Scrying with Your Cauldron
Take the moon water you’ve collected in your cauldron and use it as a “scrying mirror”. You can also use water from a flowing spring, ocean water, or water charged with crystals to promote psychic abilities like amethyst or bloodstone.
Oil Reed Diffuser
What You’ll Need:
- 1/4 Cup Safflower Oil
- Two Tablespoons of Vodka
- Fifteen to Twenty Drops of Essential Oil
- Seven to Ten Reed Sticks
Combine safflower oil, vodka and essential oil in your cauldron. Like with all magic, focus on your intention as you do this. You can experiment with different combinations of essentials oils to suit whatever spell you’re performing. Stir up the mixture with one of your reeds. Place the lid of you cauldron so there is only a sliver of an opening. Position your reeds in the sliver, fanning them out along the narrow opening. Flip the reeds every day or so until the oil mixture has evaporated.
Boil magical herbs in your cauldron to create a powerful tea or elixir. You can add loose herbs into your water and heat up the cauldron. If you are making tea to drink, make sure your cauldron is cast iron and that it's totally clean. Otherwise, you run the risk of ingesting something harmful that was left over from a previous spell.
If you have a small cauldron, a tea light candle under your cauldron will do the trick. If your cauldron is larger and you want to work outdoors, dig a hole under your cauldron and build a small fire with sticks and bits of wood. If you choose to go this route, have a bucket of water or fire extinguisher nearby in case of an emergency. Fire is a wonderful element to bring to your magic, but it can be highly dangerous. Always exercise caution when working with fire.
Cauldron Oil Diffuser
Pour 1/3 cup of water into your cauldron and add four to six drops of essential oil. Place a tea light under your cauldron and enjoy the subtle scents of your essential oils filling your witchy space. If your tea light burns down, light another one! Just make sure to extinguish your candle once you’re through. This is a perfect way to set the mood before pulling tarot cards, journaling or performing a spell. Make sure to clean your cauldron well after using it with essential oils!
Buried Cauldron Spells
If there’s something you need to cleanse, place it in your cauldron with the lid and bury it in the earth for a few hours. The cauldron will protect it from the elements while it’s submerged. I’ve done this with bottles of essential oil, crystals, candles, necklaces, altar cloths, rune stones, and rings.
You can also place journal entries describing things you’re working to manifest in your life into your cauldron and bury it. The earth energy will take your hopes and dreams from the air (your mind) and bring them into the physical world. Make sure not to leave your cauldron buried for too long, remember exposure to moisture can cause rust!
Cauldron Wishing Spell
Similar to the above manifesting spell, write down your wishes onto paper, parchment or bay leaves and burn them over your cauldron. Watch the smoke send your desires right up into the abundant, limitless universe.
Cauldron Candle Spells
Line your cauldron with foil and perform a candle spell right inside. Your cauldron is a perfect fireproof container, and the foil will make for easy cleanup once the candle has burned out completely. Depending on the size of your cauldron, you can use a variety of different sized candles. Try melting the bottom of a birthday candle to make it stand upright in your cauldron. Mount several candles in your cauldron to make different shapes like a pentacle or square. Pillar or votive candles always work well in a cauldron. Remember to NEVER leave a lit candle unattended, even in a cauldron.
Final Thoughts on Cauldrons
There is something incredibly special about working with a cauldron. Sometimes I notice non-witches sort of “shy away” from the idea of a cauldron. It’s inherently witchy and it can be hard for people to get the image of the green-faced Hollywood witch cackling and stirring that big black pot. But the reality is, cauldrons are practical, symbolic and fun. Using a cauldron is a beautiful way to pay your respects to all the brave souls of the past who practiced witchcraft in the face of adversity. If you feel called to try this magical tool, go for it! Embrace your wild, witchy self!
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by Julie Hopkins
Julie Hopkins is a writer, yoga teacher, and founder of Power Within, a whimsical online space created to help others improve their lives with magic. She’s from Chicago, but spends most of her time traveling to cool places.
Julie discovered the world of magic after she got tired of reading personal development books and hearing the same ideas over and over. Looking for a new way to grow, Julie started experimenting with tarot cards and felt an immediate connection to her intuition in a way she’d never experienced before. After that, she began studying magic in all its forms, never looking back. When she’s not writing about witchy things, you can find Julie making candles, daydreaming, and playing with other people’s dogs and babies.