Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Bridging the Veil: An Anointing Oil Recipe for Ancestral Communication

ancestral communication, ancestors, ancestor veneration, anointing oil, spell, ritual, hedgecraft, hedge witch, green witch, kitchen witch, witchcraft, witch, pagan

As the veil between our world and the spirit realm thins once again as Samhain approaches, communication with our ancestors becomes easier. Across cultures, ancestors have been revered as guardians of wisdom and guides in our earthly journeys, with many cultures creating altars and shrines to honor said ancestors. Today we will create an anointing oil specifically attuned to the thinning veil of Samhain using herbs and spices associated with the season, a fragrant homage to honor, connect, and communicate with the spirits of our lineage.

What You'll Need

  • 1 part dried mugwort
  • 1 part dried yarrow flowers
  • 1 part allspice (1/2 the amount if you are using ground)
  • 1 part dried rosemary
  • Grapeseed oil or another oil base to cover
  • Obsidian or amethyst chips (optional)
  • Amber bottle

What to Do

There are two different methods that can be employed the create this anointing oil: sunning and simmering. Sunning will take approximately 4 weeks to create while simmering will take about an hour from start to finish. For the sunning method, combine equal parts of mugwort, yarrow, allspice, and rosemary in a clear jar and cover with grapeseed oil or your oil of choice. Seal and place in a sunny window for 4 to 6 weeks before straining into an amber bottle. Top with obsidian or amethyst chips and store in a cool, dark place until ready to use.

For the simmering method, combine equal parts of mugwort, yarrow, allspice, and rosemary in a saucepan and cover with grapeseed oil or your oil of choice. I fill my amber bottle with oil first then add it to my saucepan to ensure I don't create too much. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce the heat until the oil is lightly simmering. Allow the mixture to simmer for at least 10 minutes until fragrant. Stir clockwise often and adjust the temperature as needed to prevent the herbs from scorching. Strain the mixture into your amber bottle. Top with obsidian or amethyst chips and store in a cool, dark place until ready to use.

This anointing oil is pretty versatile and can be used to clean your ancestral altar, dress candles, or even as an offering to your ancestors. You can also use it to open the doors of communication with the dead by anointing your third eye prior to attempting communication.

Why You Did It

Understanding the whys of a spell (or recipe) is just as important as performing it. It helps you understand the process so you can modify the spell or ritual to suit your needs and helps guide you to write your own. It's my intention that by providing these explanations, you can build a better understanding of how spells are written and executed so you can modify and build your own spells (the goal of my Spellcrafting Series). 

This particular recipe relies on the power of several different herbs, each deeply associated with spirit communication, death, funerary rites, and ancestral veneration. Mugwort is one of the most potent herbs in this oil, historically being used to enhance and induce psychic visions, enhance spirit communication, attract ghosts, and aid in astral travel such as hedge riding. As a hedge witch, mugwort is a staple in my personal practice. While burning or smoking is the most effective use of mugwort for these purposes, they still lend their aid in this anointing oil. Yarrow was one of the first funerary herbs ever used by humans, its pollen being found in graves some 60,000 years old. While some debate whether or not this pollen was intentionally placed, it matters not. Yarrow has long been connected with death and our transition to the Otherworld. Yarrow has the ability to anchor us in reality while opening the lines of communication between the living and the dead. Its most often used to see the unseen and is therefore used in spirit communication and during divination rituals. Allspice is traditionally associated with good luck and fortune and its potent aroma is often used to awaken. In this particular recipe, it's used to awaken your ancestors, aiding them in finding their way to you, as well as to garner their favor and increase your chances of successfully communication with them. Finally, rosemary was added to enhance memory, gain clarity, and strengthen communication as rosemary is the herb of remembrance. Rosemary is also deeply associated with protection, warding off any negative entities that may try to interrupt, confuse, or hijack your communication with your ancestors.

Finally, obsidian or amethyst chips were added to the oil to further enhance ancestral communication. Obsidian has long been regarded as a scrying tool, its shiny glass surface being used to induce visions into the beyond. As such, it's associated with spirit communication. Amethyst is associated with intuition and increases psychic abilities, helping open the user's third eye so messages can be easily received. By adding amethyst to this oil, it increases the oil's potency.

Remember to record this recipe in your Book of Shadows for reference later.


As the veil continues to thin, I hope you will take this time to engage in spirit work, commune with spirits, and venerate your ancestors. This is the best time to work on forming and maintaining these relationships, so use it wisely!

Interested in learning more about ancestral communication and veneration? Below are some resources to get you started.

If you liked this post and would like to support future content, please consider leaving a small tip in the jar. 


  1. Love this recipe, was just thinking about finding one, and here I get your update ✨ what are your thoughts on adding purple dead nettle to this? He is one of the first herbs I felt an immediate connection with when I started my practice, and since has always felt like a grounding and protective, while simultaneously extremely powerful. Every time I use PDN, my spells feel… stronger. That being said, I’d love your insights since this is your recipe. Thank you for your continuous contributions to the craft and our community, I’ve valued your work for some time. Be well. ✨

    1. Thank you for reading! There is no reason purple dead nettle wouldn't work in this recipe if it's an herb that resonates with you. Purple dead nettle is associated with protection (which is helpful) and happiness, which can ensure that the ancestors you call visit in good faith. Thank you again for reading and your support. It means the world to me. :)


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