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Thread: Expiration date?

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    Expiration date?

    Hey, guys!
    I'm curious to know what everyone's experiences are with the 'aging' of empowered items? Do they have a 'shelf life' so to speak?
    Is there some way I can know if something needs recharging? Or does it not run out unless/until you use it?
    I generally recharge crystals at the full moon, but I have some charged herbs, and I just wondered if that can just hang out until I need to use them...?

    What do you think?

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    Kick Ass Little Crow Corvus's Avatar
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    Re: Expiration date?

    I think it depends largely on what and how it's been enchanted. All my blessed items, except my glasses, live on my altar and never seem less powerful over time. The glasses last a few months at a time. For anything actively being used in your craft I'd suggest monthly.
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    Opinionated Rae'ya's Avatar
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    Re: Expiration date?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nature's Steward View Post
    Hey, guys!
    I'm curious to know what everyone's experiences are with the 'aging' of empowered items? Do they have a 'shelf life' so to speak?'
    It depends on what the item is and whether it is discharging energy in order to fulfill it's purpose. Most stone, wood and metal items will hold infused energy for many years and are largely self sustaining if they are used regularly. If it has to discharge that energy for it's purpose, then it needs an ongoing source of energy or it will eventually run out... so intermittent recharging or setting it up to recharge itself is ideal. But if it's purpose is fulfilled just by it being present (like with most charms, talismans and amulets) then it shouldn't run out of oomph provided you constructed it appropriately. But a little cleansing and reaffirmation never hurts as a reminder for both yourself and the item.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nature's Steward View Post
    Is there some way I can know if something needs recharging? Or does it not run out unless/until you use it?
    If you feel like it's not working anymore it could be spent... or you could just be acclimatised to it and need to 'recharge' it as a little reminder ritual for your own self. People who are sensitive to energy should be able to feel the difference in the item. But again, having a regular cleansing ritual is good for empowered/blessed/ritual items anyway, so it's relatively easy to add in a little charging ritual to that if you are concerned.


    Quote Originally Posted by Nature's Steward View Post
    I generally recharge crystals at the full moon, but I have some charged herbs, and I just wondered if that can just hang out until I need to use them...?
    I don't bother to charge crystals, because they have their own energy that is constant just by their physical existence. Most of them will take a charge if you feel the need to do it, but I just don't find it necessary most of the time. I will infuse them with intent for specific purposes and cleanse them if I feel they need it... but otherwise I just let them be them. Herbs, resins, essential oils etc are all the same... their energy is inherent in what they are. So they don't really need to be charged in order to fulfill their purpose, and I'm not convinced that they would take a significant additional charge anyway.

    But then it also depends on what you mean by 'charge'.Sometimes we call it 'charging' or 'empowering' an item when really what we mean is 'cleansing', 'dedicating' or 'assigning an intent'. When I talk of charging an item, I mean infusing energy into it like a little magickal battery so that it can go about it's duty. But I know that sometimes that term is also used for assigning intent... which to me is simply aligning it's pre-existing inherent energy to my intent so that we are working towards the same goal... more of a 'harnessing' than a 'charging' action to me. Often the intent ritual is more about setting up a connection and trigger in our own subconscious than it is about about changing the actual item... for example, Epsom salts, herbs and essential oils will cause their subtle effect no matter what we do... but mixing them into a ritual bath soak to use for magickal purposes creates a connection in our minds so that we easily and automatically slip into a ritual state of consciousness as soon as we pour the salts into that bath, not because we charged them with energy they didn't already have but because we intentionally connected that combination and scent with that purpose. Do those bath salts lose their 'charge' over time... no. But our own minds can lose the automatic connection and we may find that it takes longer to shift consciousness when preparing that ritual bath. So sometimes 'charging' an item regularly is actually recharging our own psyche rather than the item itself.

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    Re: Expiration date?

    Thank you so much; this was exactly what I needed to know.
    I'm glad to hear that I was thinking along the same lines, even if I hadn't quite gotten there, yet.

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    Re: Expiration date?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rae'ya View Post
    Herbs, resins, essential oils etc are all the same... their energy is inherent in what they are. So they don't really need to be charged in order to fulfill their purpose, and I'm not convinced that they would take a significant additional charge anyway.

    (snip)

    for example, Epsom salts, herbs and essential oils will cause their subtle effect no matter what we do... but mixing them into a ritual bath soak to use for magickal purposes creates a connection in our minds so that we easily and automatically slip into a ritual state of consciousness as soon as we pour the salts into that bath, not because we charged them with energy they didn't already have but because we intentionally connected that combination and scent with that purpose. Do those bath salts lose their 'charge' over time... no. But our own minds can lose the automatic connection and we may find that it takes longer to shift consciousness when preparing that ritual bath. So sometimes 'charging' an item regularly is actually recharging our own psyche rather than the item itself.
    I'm going to agree with Rae'ya, but I want to add that herbs, in particular (not so much essential oils when they are distilled), and also carrier oils, and some other living matter that is harvested and prepared in certain ways for use do go "stale," the chemicals in them degrade, the potency of their active ingredients lessens (carrier oils go rancid). Dried leaves are probably the fastest of the bunch, followed by flowers, roots and small woody bits take much longer, but resins can be extremely long lasting...but there's no set timeline, it depends on the plant in question While this doesn't necessarily affect the purely magical properties of the herb, it will definitely affect the non-magical properties of the herb, which can impede the user from effectively using the magical properties of the herb. I've been practicing some form of herbal based magic for over 20 years now...much of what herbal magic can achieve is highly dependent upon or improved by the combined actual effects of the herb (medicinally, aromatheraputically, etc. AND magically). Fresher is better for that reason.
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