Magick Month Day 4: Leave An Offering For Your Ancestors

Hi there and welcome to Magick Month!  The Guitar Witch will be working every day in October to bring you great content to help you hone your magick skills and tune yourself to receive creative energy.

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Today we will be talking about ancestral offerings, and how simple it is to add this important practice into your routine. 

Why make offerings?

Offerings (as well as charitable work) are a way to show your gratitude towards the universe and the energies in your life, where you came from, and what gives you life and character.   Psychologically, they signal abundance and help us to pull out of a “scarcity mindset”. 

What kind of offerings can we make?

I leave offerings of clean water, food, and drink on a small ancestral altar once a day.  I keep things on this altar that remind me of my grandparents who have passed, as well as candles and a bowl to burn frankincense, sage, or sweetgrass (depending on the occasion or type of work).  

If you do not have a permanent altar for them, a temporary one is fine, but consider trying to set aside a special permanent place for them. 

As far as specifics, think about what kinds of food you like, what makes you excited, or what you think is special or beautiful.  For me, I made lilac jelly for the first time this year (and it’s amazing!).  It’s also this wonderful pink colour and every time I eat it I just get so giddy.  So in the mornings often what I’ll put on my ancestral altar is some of the jelly, distilled water, and a half cup of coffee.  I just assume they will like what I like!   

Sometimes I will use whatever I am making for meals, or whatever is in the fridge.  It is not necessary to be elaborate, but it is the thought that counts. 

How do you make an offering?

Sometimes I start with lighting a candle or incense, but for my usual short daily practice, I don’t.   If I am asking for a specific favour or am about to read tarot I usually will.  Set whatever things you will be leaving for them on the altar.

Hold the clean glass of water that you will leave on the altar in one hand and raise the other like you are taking an oath. 

Then I will do a short ancestral prayer:

Facing first east say:

To the ancestors on my mothers side and my father’s side, I love, honour and respect thee!  

Drip a few drops of water on the ground in front of you.

Then facing south say:

To the ancestors on my mothers side and my father’s side, I love, honour and respect thee!  

Drip a few drops of water on the ground in front of you.

Then facing west say:

To the ancestors on my mothers side and my father’s side, I love, honour and respect thee!  

Drip a few drops of water on the ground in front of you.

Then facing north say:

To the ancestors on my mothers side and my father’s side, I love, honour and respect thee!  

Drip a few drops of water on the ground in front of you.

Next, face the east again or wherever your altar is. 

Say thank you for who you are, for your blood, for whatever characteristics about yourself you like or make you special. 

Then, apologize for things you’ve done that you are not proud of, and would not make them proud. 

Next, ask for strength, courage, patience, or whatever else you need to improve yourself or to help others.

Say how long you will be leaving the offering there for them.

Lastly say thank you again, and close.  I usually close with the Qabbalistic Cross, but do whatever feels right, even if it is just saying goodbye. 

How long should I leave my offering there?

It really depends.  I would say it doesn’t matter much as long as you tell them how long it will be there.  If it is something quickly perishable I would clean it up later in the day, but I will often leave an offering until I replace it with a new one the following morning. 

In Conclusion:

Hopefully that was helpful to you!  Remember that respecting where you came from is an important aspect of learning to respect yourself.  Our ancestors weren’t perfect, but it was their strengths, weaknesses, loves, and passions that lead to our existence, and stretch back to the very first life on earth.  Taking a small time each day to recognize this lineage (or even every once in a while if that’s all you can manage), can be a humbling and affirming experience which can remind us of the sacredness and preciousness of life, despite of, or even because of, all of the death and violence in the world.   Even with all of the challenges over those millennia, you are here. 

If you have any questions do not hesitate to comment below.

Thanks for reading!

~ Blessed Be and Happy Creating ~

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