In 2010 our neighborhood was infiltrated by scammers. Someone was recruiting teenagers to go door-to-door selling all kinds of things from magazines to cleaning products. They were being groomed for the hard sell and although they appeared, superficially to be unrelated, I knew someone was investing in these youth. Their ruthless sales tactics were identical and all these kids exhibited a cool confidence rarely seen in such fledglings. I knew something was up when, week after week, new kids showed up at our door peddling various goods. My gut told me these kids were dropped off here from out-of-town (possibly out-of-state) to gather cash and credit card information. The one thing they lacked in their experience, however, was the trust factor. Being a great salesman takes more than fast talking. Where they excelled in confidence, they lacked in trustworthiness; in short, they creeped me the heck out! To be honest, I was a little worried they may be casing our neighborhood for homes to rob.
At the same time all this was going on, we were receiving regular visits from our local evangelist community. No matter how well-intentioned, these uninvited visitors were beginning to feel like a breach to my personal space.
One night when I had the house to myself I decided to ward the property against interlopers. I was already a skilled smudger, burning white sage to cleanse a space of stuck energies and unfavorable entities. I decided to take it to the next level by assembling a small pagan-style alter complete with symbols of the elements (candle, bowl of water, crystal to symbolize earth, and a wand that I whittled from a stick while camping years before as the symbol for air). If memory serves, I put on some music and imagined opening a circle. I took a few minutes to honor the compass points, attributing an element to each one. Then I invited in the god and goddess and asked them for a blessing. I sat in meditation for a short time and then finished by closing the circle. I should mention that I don’t identify as pagan specifically, but occasionally use parts of earth-based religious ceremonies in my own eclectic spiritual practice.
When the circle was complete I was left with the bowl of water, which now felt too sacred to simply toss down the sink. I decided to use it in a home blessing, or more specifically, as a filter to ward off negativity and to let through only that which supported our highest good.
I walked outside, circling the perimeter while softly saying my intention that only those who had our highest good could enter and all others were not welcome. I envisioned both corporeal and energetic entities to cover all my bases as I walked around the house. When I got to the front of the property, open to the street (and all my neighbors) I felt a little silly and self-conscious. I decided I’d rather my neighbors not see me sprinkling blessed water along the property line and instead walked only to our front gate, which sat back several feet from the street and out of view. I took extra time to draw a careful line across the threshold of the entry gate and reinforced that line at the other doors to the house.
That was it. I went back in the house and basically forgot about the blessing for several weeks (several quiet weeks without sales pitches or unwanted visitors). Then, one afternoon we saw the van pull up. Several evangelicals walked toward our house and our neighbors’. My husband and I looked at each other. Without saying a word, we drew straws with our eyes each pleading with the other. We sat in silence listening for the knock at the door. Moment after moment passed and I was growing curious. They had been heading directly for the house a minute before. I peeked through the blinds to find two pious figures fidgeting with the latch on our front gate. I snuck back into the living room, mouthing to my husband attempting to convince him it was his turn to politely pretend he was interested in their pamphlet, bible study and/or church group. Another moment passed and still no knock. Now my husband and I were passing questioning glances. I decided to check the window again… nothing. They were gone. I walked out to the gate to see why they couldn’t get through and inspected the latch they had been fiddling with moments before. It was fine. One flick of a finger and the gate swung open. It wasn’t until I got back to the house that I remembered the protective circle I had cast on the property. I remembered how my self-consciousness kept me from venturing all the way to the front of the property—how I stopped to reinforce my intention at that very gate.
More than a year went by before we received another unwanted visitor. Even still, the kids with the heavy sales training never showed up again. We’ve had one or two other sales people who work in town and two young women looking for Spanish-speaking neighbors to join their bible group (they weren’t interested in me as I don’t speak Spanish). I should note these two young women have only ever caught up with me outside the front gate. It’s been 4 years since I set up the ward. I did repeat it once for good measure since then in a more simplified ceremony. The second time, I simply filled a glass of water and envisioned fusing it with white light while setting my intention. Like before, I sprinkled the water around the property.
Of course, the less witchy-inclined would see this as coincidence, but I’m telling you we had visitors weekly when we first moved in and it’s been YEARS without any unwanted guests. Oddly, I also noticed one friend who has fallen by the wayside. On the bright side, we have made several new friends from the neighborhood, who don’t seem to be affected. Lucky for me magick doesn’t care if you are a formally practicing Pagan or just a New Age hippy wannabe like me. It’s the power of intention that matters. ∞