Cleansing an item for magick removes the any energies the item may have absorbed from previous magickal workings or from the environment. There are a number of ways to do this.
Rinsing the item in running water is good for those items that are not water soluble or will not be damaged by the water. It is generally preferred that natural water be used, that is, water that has not been treated or "purified". If you have a well and do not use a water softener or filter, you can use the water from your faucet. Or you can use rain water running out of a gutter. Or you can use water running in a stream. Leaving the item out in a rain storm is also an option, if you can do this safely.
It is also popular to use smoke to cleanse items for magick, suffumigation.
Covering an item with salt is another way to cleanse an item of residual energy. Salt is said to absorb any magickal energy it comes in contact with and then it can simply be discarded.
Many people use a combination of these methods to cleanse items used in spellwork and many will incorporate the classical elements into the cleansing. Purification by smoke then is cleansing by air and fire, and salt is added to water to cleanse by earth and water. If the salt is added, the water need not be running water, but it should still be natural water. The salted and blessed water is usually sprinkled or poured over the item.
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