In 2018, one of my favorite authors wrote a book called Protection Spells. A few weeks ago, I received a digital copy for review. Now, how I missed this book when originally published I do not know. However, I can tell you that it is an excellent book for most witches or magickal practitioners (especially beginners). Protection magick is a good thing to know, so please allow me to share this review of Protection Spells by Arin Murphy-Hiscock.
Protection Spells: A Review of Murphy-Hiscock’s Book (s)
When I say Arin Murphy-Hiscock is one of my favorite writers, I am not exaggerating. I own most of her books because she writes on a variety of topics– green witchcraft, house witchery, self-care, Wicca (this one I reviewed) spell-crafting, hedge-witchery, etc: offering a clear understanding of the topic in a well researched and easy-to-read format. While it’s true that Murphy-Hiscock’s books are a good resource for beginners, the information is helpful to any level of magickal practitioner. Protection Spells is no exception.
Divided into three sections, part one offers an introduction to spell-crafting that includes information about the mechanics of spellwork, protection magick, ethics, etc. Part two provides basic spells for body and spirit, house and home, family and friends, and out in the world. Finally, part three offers more detailed instructions for rituals or how to use herbs, stones, symbols, etc., in protective magick.
Smudging Vs Smoke Cleansing
Protection Spells does promote the concept of “smudging” for protection/cleansing. But smudging is, in fact, a particular ritual observed by some Native American tribes. Unfortunately, the way smudging has been used within Modern Witchcraft/Paganism by Non-Native people is (or should be understood as) cultural appropriation.
For this reason, we at 3 Pagans and a Cat do not practice “smudging.” Rather, we use the smoke of a variety of herbs meant for cleansing, purification, protection, etc. within rituals or spells of our own design. Rosemary and lavender are my herbs of choice for cleansing and protection.
Burning various resins or herb smoke is a practice that has been wide-spread among various cultures for thousands of years. But when it comes to “smudging,” please be sensitive to that particular cultural issue which the use of the term and ritual raises.
Protection Spells: Final Word
If like me you missed this helpful book when published a couple of years ago, then procure a copy. The information is solid and while it is geared toward beginners, any experienced Witch will find the information useful for more advanced workings. While you’re at it, get a copy of Arin’s most recent book– Spellcrafting, published in January 2020. This book is another excellent resource, a comprehensive and detailed guide to spellwork from beginner to advanced.