Honey in Magic and Folklore

During the late summer and early fall, honey is a staple crop in many parts of the world. This deliciously sweet and sticky gift from the bee population is considered a health food - it will protect you against allergies if you eat just a teaspoon of locally sourced honey each day - and also has a number of magical properties.

Hoodoo Honey

Honeycomb Rich With Honey
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In some forms of Hoodoo and folk magic, honey is used to sweeten someone’s feelings towards you. In one traditional spell, honey is poured into a jar or saucer on top of a slip of paper containing the person’s name. A candle is placed in the saucer and burned until it goes out on its own. In another variation, the candle itself is dressed with honey.

Cat Yronwoode of Luckymojo recommends using honey to sweeten the people in your life. She does point out that the sweetening element doesn't have to be honey, but it certainly does come in handy.

Ancient Honey Magic

honey in jars

 Waugsberg/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 3.0

Some ancient cultures used honey in embalming procedures. It’s always appropriate to leave offerings of honey at a gravesite. In addition, the folklore of a number of societies indicates that a blend of honey and milk is an acceptable offering to a deity. In particular, honey is sacred to Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty.

In Hindu texts, honey is described as one of the five sacred elixirs of immortality. The Buddhist faith celebrates Madhu Purnima, which honors the day that Buddha made peace among his disciples - and honey is given as a gift to monks in his honor.

Honey in Ritual and Spellwork

Honey Jar
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Honey, because of its sticky properties, can be used in magic to hold two things together. Some magical traditions use honey to bind a couple that has a shaky relationship. If you want to do a honey binding on a couple - or even on two friends who are struggling with their friendship - you can use poppets with a layer of honey between them, and then wrapped with a cord. Because honey does not solidify, you can always separate the two poppets later with minimal disruption.

Cory at New World Witchery suggests honey jars as a good way to get started with folk magic.

These jars are also known as “sweetening jars,” and can actually contain almost any kind of pure sweetener, such as brown or white sugar, molasses, or syrup...You can make jars for each person you want to sweeten if you’re working more elaborate spells on them, or keep one jar with lots of names in it for general sweetening. You can also make vinegar or “souring” jars, which is a form of hexing. I’d generally wait to do a souring jar until after you’ve tried a few sweetening ones, though.

If you do any kitchen magic, honey can come in very handy. Use it in dishes to bring about sweetness, fertility, or prosperity. You can even use honey in rituals as an offering to deity–many goddesses and gods seem to appreciate it. You can also use a blend of milk and honey to asperge a sacred space if you're holding ritual outdoors. Add some into a bath scrub for a ritual bath prior to working for love or romance, or anoint a candle with it when you're doing candle magic. Finally, include it in spellwork for bringing and keeping two things together.

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Wigington, Patti. "Honey in Magic and Folklore." Learn Religions, Apr. 5, 2023, learnreligions.com/honey-magic-and-folklore-2561474. Wigington, Patti. (2023, April 5). Honey in Magic and Folklore. Retrieved from https://www.learnreligions.com/honey-magic-and-folklore-2561474 Wigington, Patti. "Honey in Magic and Folklore." Learn Religions. https://www.learnreligions.com/honey-magic-and-folklore-2561474 (accessed June 9, 2023).