I am fascinated by ritual. Rituals of all sorts. In every culture, in every age there are rituals to commemorate births and comings of age and marriages and deaths. There are high holy days set aside to celebrate the gods, goddesses, fallen (s)heroes, venerated Ancestors and important moments in a culture's mythos. Rituals can be elaborate festivals lasting many days or simple, daily actions such as changing the milk in an offering bowl or setting a piece of food aside for the Fae folk or just taking a moment to pray.
Rituals are made up of many components. There's the liturgy, the actual words that are spoken. There may be songs and offerings and costumes and incense and props of all sorts. For me, whether it's a grand affair or the most humble of rituals, stepping into ritual space is a beautiful and necessary act, because rituals ask us to leave the mundane "outside" of the temple and allow us to connect with life and our past and our future, right now, in the present.
Stones that are used for healing and magic need to be cleansed and charged regularly. I think it's best to cleanse and charge a stone after any healing work; stones I use as part of my own ritual circles or for meditation can go a little longer, provided my environment is reasonably harmonious and clear.
There are many ways to cleanse and charge your stones. Purification is often done with incense or smudge stick smoke, or with water and salt. The cleansed stones are then often charged with moonlight, sunlight, reiki, or a witch's intentions. I frequently use some combination of these methods myself.
I mentioned in my past two posts that you can cleanse yourself before and after spirit work, and banish spirits as need be. Some of you may already have your own cleansing and banishing practices, but here are a few basic ideas to start with.