It’s that time of the year when most of us are taking a vacation. Perhaps you’re headed abroad for a few weeks or maybe you’re headed to see family only a few hours away. Wherever you’re going, it can be beneficial to work a little travel magick to make sure your trip goes smoothly.
As someone who spends quite a bit of time on the road (I’m currently in the middle of a three months overseas trip!), here are some of my tips:
Let’s be honest, flying completely sucks the life out of you. Whether it’s a two hour flight or a 30 hour flight (New Zealand anyone?), flying messes up your internal rhythms and leaves you disoriented and exhausted. I have found that spending the time before take-off and landing to meditate is a huge help. Reciting a mantra such as “ I am calm, I am safe, I am happy” can also be really beneficial. If you suffer from anxiety due to flying, this is crucial. I also find that meditating mid-flight, especially on those long-haul trips when you start to feel panicky, is very calming.
I have a few different crystals with which I always travel. If you have a particular one that you usually carry, bring that as well. When I am especially nervous or stressed, I will take one out and hold it in my hand. I also have two different stones that I wear as necklaces. Both were given to me as gifts and I always wear one of them when I’m flying. If you have a particular problem such as motion sickness, I would recommend doing some research to find some stones for more specific things. In no particular order, here are five of my favorite stones for travel:
Jade– My go-to crystal for travel, jade is a powerful protection and healing stone. I have a jade (pounamu) pendant that was given to me by a close friend while in New Zealand, and I ALWAYS wear it when I am flying. I recommend carrying it on your person so that it is easily accessible. When you are nervous or anxious, stroking jade can help to reset your energy and calm you down.
Rose Quartz– A great all-around crystal for almost any situation. I carry rose quartz on my body or in my purse. It is especially helpful for long distance travel as it helps aid sleep, jet lag anyone?
Moonstone– Known as the “Traveler’s Stone” in ancient folklore, moonstone is most beneficial when worn on the body. It helps ease stress, anxiety, and protects the wearer. You can also keep a moonstone in your car for extra protection.
Amethyst– One of the most effective healing stones, amethyst helps to ease stress and anxiety and offers special protection for travelers.
Aquamarine– This is a great stone for those traveling over, in, and around water. Known as the ‘Mermaid’s Stone’ it is calming, soothing, cleansing and can help alleviate seasickness.
For a more exhaustive guide on crystals check out the Crystal Vault
Ritual While Traveling
One of the most common problems I run into while preparing for a trip is what magical tools to bring. I am a chronic over-packer, so this trait is not good when I am trying to keep my baggage weight down. I spent 2016 backpacking through New Zealand, and as I didn’t have a lot of space, I was inspired to make a mini travel altar kit. This worked out swimmingly because I like to do impromptu rituals from time to time, and this way I had what I needed, but didn’t overpack. I put my kit in a small wooden box that fits into the top of my backpack. I carry a small container of salt, a box of matches, a small metal pentacle, tealight candles, a mini bowl and plate for offerings, and a goddess and god pendant. The one thing I make an exception for is my athame as I am wont to leave it behind. There are wonderful travel kits for sale on Etsy if you don’t have the time to prepare one yourself.
Petitioning for Protection
A friend of mine ran into some bad luck with her recent travels, and as she also has a big, upcoming trip abroad, she asked my advice in asking the gods for their protection/intervention. After giving her some tips, I was prompted to write this post as I figured this was probably a common problem experienced by many people.
Since there are myriad goddesses and gods, if you already have a patron deity, I would recommend you work with them. If you are not sure who to work with, here are four goddesses and gods commonly associated with travel, and some tips about how to work with each one specifically. Any and all of these suggestions may be done before, during, and after travel.
Hermes: One of the gods most commonly associated with travel, Hermes is the Greek messenger god who transmitted messages between Olympus and the human world. From passages in ancient literature, we know that the Greeks left offerings of strawberries and wine under a specific tree in their village for Hermes. If you would like to ask Hermes for a travel blessing and for his help, you can also leave strawberries and pour a libation of wine under a tree for him. He is also known as the god of gambling and commerce, so, in addition to the berries and wine, you could leave an offering of coins or even buy a lottery ticket in his honor.
Hecate: Known as the goddess of witches, Hecate is also the goddess of the crossroads. She helped Demeter in her search for Persephone by lighting her way through the night with torches. Hecate is associated very closely with dogs and the Greeks placed their leftovers after dinner outside for her hounds. Obviously, you probably don’t want to leave out food and indirectly attract unwelcome visitors to your house or apartment, so a great way to honor Hecate and her hounds is to make a donation to a local animal shelter. The ancient Greeks also used to placate her by leaving offerings of food at crossroads. This is another great way to honor, and ask for, her protection and guidance. Find a crossroad (any junction where four roads meet) near where you live and leave an offering of pomegranates, milk, or honey.
Odin: The great wanderer of the Norse pantheon, Odin, the All-Father, is a god of many aspects, including travel. He was known to travel between the worlds in disguise; therefore, one should always be kind to strangers. As Odin is also the god of war, making a donation to a veterans organization would be a suitable offering. The Norse gods are all fond of libations, especially Mead, red wine, and hard liquor. If you are a writer or artist, making an offering of something you created, or perhaps writing a poem would also please Odin, as he loved poetry and the arts. Huggin and Munin, Odin’s messenger crows are known to travel the world and bring information to him. You can leave out an offering of bird-safe food for the crows in your neighborhood and ask them to transmit a message to Odin from you asking for protection and guidance while traveling.
St. Christopher: The patron saint of travelers, St.Christopher is commonly petitioned the world over by people prior to commencing their journey. Despite this, the Catholic church removed his feast day during the calendar reform of 1969 due to the fact that not much was known about him, or if he actually existed. It seems to be one of the cases (like Brigid) where the Catholics took over a popular god and renamed him as a saint to appease a local cult. Regardless, St. Christopher has been worshipped for centuries and is especially prominent in hoodoo and conjure. Many people carry amulets with his image on their person while traveling or keep them in their car. Seven Day Pillar candles with his image are often available at Catholic stores or can be found online.