Welcome to Samhain now cleanse your trick for a treat

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Out of Broomcloset for October 2014 photo by Leon CalifioreOut of the Broomcloset

From ghoulies and ghosties, and long-leggedy beasties, and things that go bump in the night, Good Lord, deliver us!” Traditional Scottish prayer.

Welcome to Summer’s End, or Samhain, a major Celtic holiday marking off the start of the Year. Welcome as well to the start of the 12th year of publication of Out In Jersey. My, how time flies!

Followers of many Pagan pathways consider this a time to let go of things that you don’t wish to bring into the New Year, and to honor those who have departed. Just as importantly, it is when the barriers between the tangible and unseen worlds are their most porous.

This is also a good time to review security measures. Despite such wonders as electric lights, chain-link fence, motion detectors, and off-site monitoring (not to mention floors, walls, and doors), we sometimes feel not much more protected from the rest of the world than our ancestors, who survived without a Slomin’s Shield.

However, the feeling of having taken prudent precautions often gives greater peace of mind than living under severe security measures. Trying to be completely insulated from all the potential dangers that might be lurking “out there” just isn’t viable. Who wants to live in a Super Max prison anyway?

Try as one might, the rest of the universe will penetrate your carefully crafted bubble; bears will swim in your pool, coyotes will snatch pets, hurricanes and other forces of nature will sweep aside what we have created. So, the best course might be having a cautious mind, while remaining flexible.

All of the above is a preamble to introducing some magical tips to augment ones efforts on behalf of self-preservation. Anecdotally, there appears to have been an increase in unwanted “visitors” reported by my own social circle. As a group, both Pagan and non-Pagan, these are not the sort of people who are prone to giving themselves the frights, so it would appear that the equilibrium mentioned above is changing. To avoid the same thing occurring to you, here are some tips.

When moving into a new abode (even a sublet), it wouldn’t hurt if you gave the place a good cleaning before you move in. The first thing you need is a new broom (yes, I know a new broom sweeps and cleans, and yes, a Witch is talking about brooms, go figure). It should be easy to get one made out of real broom straw (and if you’re really particular, one of Birch would be even better).

Next, you’re going to pulverize some rock salt, egg shells, Juniper berries, Hyssop, Thyme, Basil, and, when ground fine, add some iron filings. Starting from the open front door, walk through the residence counter-clockwise, scattering your mixture on the floor and no, it’s the intention, not the quantity that matters.

Once you finish your circuit of the home and reach the front door, bring in the broom and begin sweeping (counter-clockwise, or widdershins), following the same route as before, and sweep everything out over the threshold. Gather it up, and toss it all away, including the broom. If by some chance you are moving into a place with wall to wall carpeting installed, I suppose you could do the same thing, using a Dustbuster, which you will then have to pitch away as well; ah, modern living.

Now, if you mixed up a large enough batch of your cleanser, consider mixing it in with some Juniper, Pine, or Eucalyptus-based potpourri, and leave a container of it behind the door, and on windowsills to extend the effect. This mixture may also be sprinkled on, and then brushed off any new acquisitions before they cross your threshold. This may be difficult to explain to one’s trick, but then, they might not get a treat.

For more visit www.bigbookofmagic-outofthebroomcloset.blogspot.com.