Beyond Betrayal: Artifacts and Energy Cleansing

by Thraicie Hawkner & Jane Hawkner

How do we as individuals deal with items left behind after a core betrayal by a teacher, leader or by someone else we trusted?

As pagans, many of us are called as healers. One of our greatest concerns is that we fall prey to the instinctive desire to rush the healing process and be “as we were before.”  If you or those close to you are feeling betrayed please do not rush forward to a false healing or some pseudo-spiritual concept of forgiveness. Take time to experience the grief, pain and yes, anger which may come forth. This is not the same as acting out or lashing out due to those responses. It is a time to acknowledge the dangers of the forest we are seeking a way through.

Dealing with those reactions and coming to a true healing is beyond the scope of this article. But we are somewhere in this process when we look around and find stuff staring at us which reminds us of the person, was created by them, or gifted to us by them. This article is all about the practical magic of dealing with the stuff that is left behind; and our intellectual, emotional and spiritual connection to these artifacts.

Many of us own books or music or other physical reminders of someone who has brought pain. The items themselves function as artifacts or even talismans to bring forth events and energies we would prefer to leave behind.  One technique is to physically destroy or discard the item.  We’ll leave it up to you to chose the method you prefer to do this. But if you have valued them in the past, you can also cleanse and cutaway the energetic ties of that item.

It is quite possible for a flawed being to have brought forth creations and gifts which hold wisdom or beauty. These qualities can and do often transcend the being who brought them forth. If we can cleanse the personality or unrelated action of the creator from that which still has value in the creation, then we can rescue something of meaning or value from the entanglement of trauma and remove the taint.

To cut and clear an artifact

Gather these items together:

  • the items in question
  • a suitable size box to put them in or cloth to wrap them in, preferably black in color
  • plenty of salt
  • ribbon, string or cord to tie around the item(s), and
  • cut and clear oil or similar cleansing/clearing oil or wash such as Florida Water or Chinese Wash.

Cast a circle or prepare your working space in the manner of your tradition.

Take three deep cleansing breaths to clear yourself of the distractions of the day and prepare your body to work energy.

Place the items before you on an altar or table and speak to the items.  Yes, aloud. Speak to them about their intrinsic value and purpose. Speak to them about the unfortunate energetic connection or associations that you would like to clear. (i.e. cutting the crap.)

Take the item(s) and place in the center of the cloth or in the box.

With your dominant hand take your cutting tool of choice: Athame, wand, feather, or just your hand. Cut through the air around the item, as if you are cutting a web of rubber bands. Cutting counter-clockwise and away from yourself is preferred. When this web is cut, the energy will snap back from whence it came.

The item is now free of external entanglement.

Next, take the salt and cover the item(s). This will help to draw any remaining “infection” out of the item so it can heal cleanly. Note that some items may react chemically to the salt over time, such as some metals, and you may want to cover with salt to cleanse, then wipe and cover with another thin layer of cloth and put move the salt around this second envelope, then seal the box or wrap the outermost layer of cloth in such a way as to keep the salt contained with the item(s) and take your cord or string and tie it shut securely with three knots.

Now set the item aside in an out-of-the way place for storage (You will set the package aside for an appropriate period of time, often until you forget about it, which may involve a cycle of the moon or of a season or a year. When you come back the item should be cleared and ready for re-integration into your life. If not, it may be time to let it go completely.)

Once you’ve completed this ceremony, take down your circle or close your working space in the manner appropriate to your tradition. But you aren’t done yet. It is equally important to acknowledge the way artifacts affect us and cleanse ourselves of the remnant energies.

Perform a Ritual Cleanse

If you have a bathtub, fill the tub with comfortably warm water and add several drops of cut and clear oil, Chinese Wash, Florida Water, or whatever you use for a complete aura cleanse. Soak in the tub, physically scrub and take a few moments to focus on your breathing. Specifically, when you exhale, release any inappropriate energies that may have attached to your person. When you pull the plug, all the oook (energetic crud) flows down the drain.

If you don’t have a tub, a shower will work just as well, scrub and cleanse your body as usual when cleansing. Then step out of the stream of water andput the oil or wash in your hands, starting at the crown of your head, work your way down, envisioning how the wash is drawing out the ookie energy, when you reach your toes, stand up again and breath, focusing on the exhale as you step under the running water and let the water rinse it all down the drain.

When you’ve dried off, take three deep breaths, bringing in a self blessing. You may want to use your favorite incense or anointing oil to seal your cleanse. Take time to meditate in silence, listen to great music, or drink some water to put a finishing touch on the cleanse and move forward released from entanglement, at least of the artifacts.

Obviously, this technique only works for small portable items, and it only addresses the excess energies of the moment. There may be more work to do. There probably is. But sometimes a little practical magic, like cleansing, is just the thing to shift the energy into a direction you want it to go rather than one you are dragged into.  Blessed be.

New Moon 2° 32′ Capricorn – Dec 24, 2011

Capricorn is the embodiment of maturity and common sense; of hard work, plain speaking, self-discipline, and taking responsibility. The prudent and cautious side of the Capricorn nature can be taken to extremes, so it’s best to maintain another good trait of Capricorn… a sense of humor.

New Moon with Capricorn Glypth24 December 2011, at 12:06 PM Central Daylight Time

Use the steady strength of Capricorn to turn towards the concept of freedom within a stable framework.

This is not to say that there won’t be obstacles, or that the way is easy or direct.  Just look at the Capricorn glyph.  It falls, it dips, it goes over and around obstacles, but it does keep going.  This is about climbing mountains, step-by-step, over rocky and sometimes uncertain terrain.

Start with realistic expectations, so when roadblocks come, you can adapt.


This is where we  find an important and much needed Capricorn trait: responsibility. You may think, well, I’m a Gemini or Scorpio.  But each and every one of us has a Saturn in our  charts, we all have Capricorn as well – those two ask us for one thing: to be responsible for our actions, for our speech, and even our thoughts as well.

With the New Moon in Capricorn, we can draw on those steadying aspects. Think of the positive traits of the sign of Capricorn, the Goat: disciplined, wise, ambitious, prudent, constant, tenacious and resourceful.

True Will

It is time to figure out the difference between will and whim.  When you know and follow your True Will, your Highest Calling, you can climb mountains or do whatever it is you are meant to do.  Following whims or fads will just get you going… here, there and everywhere.


[box] Capricorn
Element: Earth

Modality: Cardinal

Ruler: Saturn

House: 10th House[/box][/one_half_last]

Prepare for the future with what you have at hand. Don’t wait for someone else to make things  better or easier or give you a break. In this new moon do yourself a favor, don’t wait for anyone else to lead you, take responsibility over your own life.

Ask Yourself These Four Things

What no longer serves me? Release it, let it go.

What have I been avoiding? Face it, take at least one action step.

What really matters most?  Make the time for it.

Image source: Library of Congress

What would Grandma or Grandpa do in my situation? Okay, maybe your Grandma was a Burlesque star in the 1920’s, and Grandad ran a Speakeasy, but I bet they learned a thing or two along the way about stick-to-itiveness.  Perhaps it’s just me, but I feel like earlier generations didn’t just wait for someone else to give them a sign or a leg up or anything.

They had a dream, made a plan,  and went at it.

They learned from the school of hard knocks.

They walked 3 miles to school through snow drifts.


Both ways!

How Capricorn is that?

Or pick another role model of mature experience to guide you. Just pick someone you can readily identify with rather than Mother Teresa or the Dalai Lama.

What would they do in your situation?  How would they rework their life?

Focus on practical and attainable long-term goals, work on developing maturity and common sense, prepare for the future, make commitments and recognize responsibilities, and nurture your dreams in a realistic manner.

Mountain Goat Image

If he can do it... why can't we?

These qualities are often cast as boring, but the best mountaineers sweat the details, the mundane. Climbers do all they can to ensure their survival, they start small and learn the right  techniques, but they don’t stop with learning or practice. They climb, each step taking them closer to their goal.

Burlesque stars do the same thing.

Or fine jewelry makers, or great bosses, or brilliant students, yoga teachers, parents, friends or lovers.

Now is the Time

The Capricorn New Moon is aspected by Jupiter, Uranus and Pluto emphasizing our readiness for taking a giant step forward on our path. Setting goals for ourselves allows us to focus on what really matters. With this potent Capricorn energy, we have the chance to make important, and lasting, changes in our lives.

Pluto is conjunct the Capricorn New Moon. He will draw things up to the surface from the bottom of your subconscious. Whether it’s an issue you need to deal with, or some dream you had forgotten, make sure you take the time to listen to what your True Will tells you and take responsibility.

Suggestions For Your Altar


Success Affirmation Candle

Click on image to view Success Affirmation

  • Success Blessed Herbal Affirmation Candle
    Use for success and victory through self-mastery. Determination, courage, wisdom, vitality and a little luck combine to clear the way towards Victory.Triumph over what is blocking you – external conflicts, inner struggles, bad habits or financial/personal success.
  • Success Blessed Herbal Votive Kit
    A Triad of Emotional Balance, Vision Quest and Stability. Success is measured with the level of happiness experienced while creating and living your dreams. Let this triad of candles help you identify, love and manifest your dreams and goals.
  • Healing Moon Candle for Wholeness, Mastery and Recovery.  Master your well-being by tuning into your personal needs and fulfilling them. So light the Healing Moon Candle at any time of the lunar cycle or wheel of the year when you seek mental, spiritual or physical renewal; tap into centuries of wisdom for recovery; and fill your life with the Magic and Mysticism of Mother Moon.


Both of these exquisite Japanese Incense blends by Shoyeido include Benzoin as one of the ingredients. Benzoin is known for its ability to “melt away” blockages. Used in ancient times to drive away evil spirits.

Sapphire Devotion Incense by Shoyeido

Sapphire Devotion Incense


  • Citrine is a gemstone famous for its positive energy, promoting success in business and relationships.
  • Yellow Jasper
  • Sunstone

Ritual tips for the New Moon:

This is the time for starting plans, projects or relationships. With new moon in Capricorn, it is especially helpful for long-term planning, think practical, taking responsibility, stepping up and dealing with authority or business.

Don’t try to do everything on the day of the New Moon.  That’s when you work on your plan – From new to first trine-about 2 1/2 days after first quarter is best for planning. Then, do ritual.  Two and a-half to three days after New moon is one of thee most powerful times to work ritual or otherwise work energetically on a new goal or venture.


Looking up and looking forward:

  • Dec 24, 2011 12:06 PM New Moon
  • Dec 25, 2011 Jupiter Direct
  • Jan 1, 2012 12:15 AM First Quarter Moon
  • Jan 9, 2012 1:30 AM Cancer Full Moon
  • Jan 16, 2012 3:08 AM Last Quarter Moon
  • Jan 23, 2012 1:39 AM New Moon

Mars retrograde January 23, — April 13, 2012[/box]

How to Charge Your Pendant with Purpose

We are often asked if we magically bless or charge the goods we sell, but we don’t.  We just cleanse them, as we cleanse our whole store, so they start ready to receive your intention and work for you.  The most we do is put the intention in everything that it finds the “right home.”  It’s not because we are stingy or don’t know how to charge a pendant.  The fact is, only you truly know what you need or want.

Eye of Horus Pendant

Eye of Horus Pendant

How many times have you asked for something for a holiday gift and had what you though was a simple request curiously or disappointingly misunderstood?  Seriously, do it yourself – someone else might not quite understand, and no one else can put the same amount of desire or meaning into it. The purpose of charging is to get yourself in touch with what I’ve come to think of as a universal energy meme or magical subroutine attached to the symbol; to personalize the pendant with your specific intent; and to activate that intent in the universe. No one can do this better than you, because even the best psychic can’t feel, see and taste your purpose half as well as you.

What I am presenting here is not “the one true way” to charge your pendant, talisman or amulet.  There are as many ways to bless an object as there are religious, magickal and folk traditions. You can search the internet and find any number of ways.

You might want to do an additional cleansing of your pendant before you begin.  Set it out overnight under moonlight, sprinkle with salt, or smudge it with incense, etc.

9 Steps to Charge your Pendant:

  1. Gather your pendant, a small piece of paper, and a writing utensil then go to what you consider your sacred or private place. If you have a favorite incense, you might want to use that, as well.  Frankincense and Sandalwood are two options if you aren’t sure what to use.
  2. Light your incense, take a few clearing breaths – enough to let go of whatever you were doing prior in the day and what you might be fretting about or planning to do next. If it helps, visualize erasing a blackboard (or whiteboard).
  3. Connect to your higher self, patron diety or saint, spirit guide, your heart of hearts, etc. so you can put forth an intention for your highest good.
  4. Focus on the outcome you want to achieve, and how it feels, rather than your need . . . so focus on feeling safe and invulnerable vs. needing protection from harm, for example. Be as specific as you can, take time to ask for clarity, if needed.
  5. Take the piece of paper and draw the pendant or the symbol on the pendant on it.  (Or, if it doesn’t have a symbol, pick a symbol or word which represents the pendant to you) It absolutely doesn’t need to be exact. You are not being graded, even on a curve.  It needs to be your interpretation. As you draw, remind yourself of the outcome you want, so it flows through your hands into the symbol on the paper.
  6. Wrap the pendant in the paper, or just set the pendant on the paper, pick them both up and hold them in your hands, acquainting them with each other.  You are introducing your specific purpose to the universal meme, just as you would two people. Hold them for as long as you can keep the focus of what you want for your outcome, or until you feel that the two have “bonded” or become BFFs, soulmates, two sides of one coin . . . whatever metaphor works for you. Then press the paper to transfer your personal version of the symbol into the pendant, and vice-versa, so the “two become one”
  7. Send your intention forth to the universe by burning the paper (in a fireplace, fire pit or cauldron), composting, burying or otherwise sending that energy out into the universe, preferably without littering, please.
  8. Say “Thank You for” and name your outcome. (Some traditions say things like “So Mote It Be” but with “Thank You” it’s a done deal which flickers through space-time, not a hope. It’s also more polite.)
  9. When you put it on, remember your purpose, and when you take it off, give thanks again.

That’s it!  Now when you wear your pendant, it connects with the universe, and be ready for the hints the universe provides to keep to your purpose and respond accordingly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to charge my pendant?  Won’t it work anyway?

No, you don’t have to charge your pendant.  If it is designed for a purpose, it will serve that purpose, generally.  But if you’re reading this article, some part of you wants to put more specificity/energy/oomph into it. Be honest with yourself, if you have resistance.  You might need to examine the purpose you intended to use the amulet or talisman for. Or it might be this is a “next step” or “level up” moment. We often obtain amulets or talismans during transition moments in life and then wonder if we really are ready, after all. If that’s the case, review step 3 and do what it takes to get into even temporary alignment with your highest, greatest self. Then decide if you want to, or need to charge your pendant.

What if my talisman is lost or stolen?

I’ll deal with the second part first, if someone takes your pendant and wears it hoping to achieve the same marvelous outcome you did, they’ll only confuse it, because their intention doesn’t lock into that personalized version you introduced to the pendant. So they can clear it and personalize it for themselves, but it’s questionable whether the energy meme will cooperate. If the owner knows in his heart of hearts that it isn’t really his, there can never be a true bond or focus, and that knowledge of illegitimacy will work against him.

Many people are afraid if they lose their talisman, it could be used against them in some way.  Not if you use this method of charging! Here’s why:

First off, if someone tries to use a symbol for anything other than the universal energy which has been associated with it by tradition, it simply won’t work. Secondly, you put your energy into the paper which then transferred the purpose to the amulet or talisman, and you returned that paper to the universe. It acted as a sort of a translator or forwarding address. Thus, when you wear the amulet, it is perfectly tuned to you and to that universal energy working for you, but in the hands of someone else, there is less of an energized link to you.  The link goes first to that intention that has been dispersed to the universe as to a forwarding address.  Of course, if you wear a piece enough, or wear it during rituals, etc. it will still pick up your energy.  If that’s the case, you might want to do a cutting or misdirection ritual.  Since it is already associated to that forwarding address, you could invoke the symbol and cut your ties with it.

I did everything you said . . . why it didn’t it work?

Think about it.  Think about it seriously.  You will likely come up with some fork in the road, something else you could’ve done, advice you didn’t head, etc.  You might find some mental block, self-deception, disruptive pattern or the like. Your soul may have had a greater lesson to learn. Or it could be you were relying on a thing around your neck to overcome common sense, physical reality or your own inertia. A talisman or amulet is not an excuse for not engaging in life with your fullest ability.  It is a crutch, when you need it, or a boost when you are ready for the results.


Sometimes you may just need something simple, but sometimes something more involved helps you tap into the power of a symbol.  So, if you need or want more, this ritual will work.  Feel free to elaborate or adapt it for your own use, trusting your own intuition to guide you. If you’ve found this article useful, please comment or use the share links below. Thanks!

copyright © 2011, Jane R. Hansen