Salt of the Earth


My blogging rut extended to a great many areas, including this poor column. Which is silly because there’s so much that I haven’t even thought about touching.

A lot of them are just that basic to me that it doesn’t occur to me to actually write them down.

Conversation held earlier this week, about ghosts and hauntings.

Me: “Well, it’s not like I’m going to start handing out bathroom salt or something, you’re just going to have to go it alone.”

Person: “Why…why are we using salt to ward off ghosts, exactly?”

Why, I’m glad you asked, person I won’t identify by name!

The easiest answer to the question is that salt has a long standing connection to ghosts, hauntings, energy work, bindings, unbindings, hexes, crossing, uncrossing, so and so forth in multiple regions of world mythology because of its connection to the earth.

Invoking earth is what is sometimes called grounding and the general idea is push the energy that you’re with into the earth. The earth is a very big thing and it doesn’t matter if the thing you’re working with seems very big to you-it’s small to the earth. The earth is going to shrug and be like yeah, whatever, I’ll take it on (this is the basis for part of egg magic. Whether or not I write about eggs remains to be seen).

Americans’ outright obsession with the stuff aside, salt was also exceptionally rare. The rarity, the connection to grounding, and the way that salt has been known to preserve food for centuries combined to create a folkloric powerhouse material.

What you do with it is dependent on what you’re trying to do. Salt is an all purpose barrier; in this Supernatural is actually right-salt creates a doorway that requires an invitation to cross. Salting the corners of the room is saying that the room is off limits. Carrying salt with you wards off evil, bad energies and prevents malice. If someone enters your home that you would rather not return, sprinkle the doorway they left through with salt and sweep it out of the the house.

Salt Folklore and Magic



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