With the veil thinning, many of us are returning inward, getting rooted a little more deeply, and connecting with those who made us. We are bound to them, we are of their blood and bones. Our ancestors, the spirits of place and land, they speak. When we listen, they communicate the ways in which we can also release the spirit of who we no longer are because it is the requirement of who we are becoming.

“Whether we know our roots or just starting to grasp what it has taken to bring our spirit into a genetically coded body, our ancestral tribe can be both a source of strength and detriment. We can connect better by seeing symbolically through the lens of our own ‘root’, the first chakra. This is where the first echo begins, when we know that there is something tribal or of our animal nature (survival) that is preventing us from thriving in ways that align with our intentions.

It is here that they show up as strength, echoing for our attention on what we need to release into the earth during this season to create the space of growth in the next.”

~ Kaycee, Awakening the Ancestors

 HNewberry via Pexels

The Invitation

Many witches understand the patterns of nature and are multilingual. We speak many languages, including that of symbols. Our ancestors and spirits of land speak the same way, they will echo in symbols in nature and in liminal spaces. This is an invitation to sink deeply into our sacred spaces of self in relationship to the spiral of time that precedes us. When we do this, we can invite the spirits to echo in the here and now to provide guidance for our next season.

Unlocking The Gates

The purpose of unlocking anything is to gain access. Whether it a door, a gate, a computer, a phone, or a deep and intuitive knowing. There are two keys during this time of communion with the land and our ancestors. The first is our consciousness and the second is a symbolic personal ritual to invite the ancestors and spirits of land forward.

Photo by Author


My personal witchcraft practice often uses sacred smoke to enter different states of consciousness, however, sacred smoke is not the only way to do so. In whatever way we have learned, it is a gift of slowing down that allows us to tune in to the deeper world that we tend to overlook in everyday states of consciousness. Everyday states of consciousness force us to filter information at higher rates, searching for that which pertains to us. Here, we are engaging in a protected (but vulnerable) opening of ourselves that allows us to filter in the opposite direction.

Turn the Key

When I am ready to receive my ancestors and spirits of the land, I have a very special way of unlocking the gates and inviting them in:


  • Leftovers from a simmer pot (typically slices of apples, oranges, cinnamon sticks, cloves, rosemary)
  • A small planter (or you can use a shovel if the land is yours and you want to do the ritual outside)
  • Dirt
  • Stick Incense
  • A key
  • Your Black Sacred Candle
Photo by Eric Reeves


  1. Prepare the planter as a sacred object (cleansed and blessed). If digging a small hole in the ground, give an offering and instruction. Tip: I will offer a little water around where I plan to dig and just say I am creating gate to connect with the spirits of the land and my ancestors.
  2. Place a small amount of dirt in the bottom of the planter and place leftovers from the simmer pot inside, cover with more dirt. If digging a hole, place the simmer pot items in first and cover entirely with dirt.
  3. Place the stick of incense in the center and light it. This is a beacon to the Universe that we are looking to connect.
  4. Call to the ancestors and spirits of land that have messages to give, let them know the gates of connection will open soon. Let the incense burn completely. They will be waiting for us to use the key to open the gate.
  5. Once the incense is finished, light the Black Sacred Candle. Tip: If you do not have one, you will need to create a sacred and protected container for your ancestors and spirits of place that are welcomed.
  6. Spend time in meditation or with sacred smoke to altar consciousness in preparation to open the gate and receive their messages. When ready, place the key in the dirt and turn it. Once finished with the ancestors and spirits of the land (thank them), we turn the key back and take it with us.
Photo by Eric Reeves

The Messages

The messages and deeper connections may make it into our conscious awareness during the ritual. Only in the last few years has this been the case, as most of the messages and the underlying connections only made themselves known during my dreams. I want to point this out because so many of us get caught up in the ritual and sometimes we are left feeling like we are just going through the motions. Sometimes just being aware of the space we are in and any changes to it (smells, sounds, the way the air feels on our skin, energy, or static) is enough to let us know that messages are coming.

A Divination – Tarot

This is a 3-card spread to ask the ancestors for their guidance.

Tip: Look for themes or symbols that mean something to you, trust your intuition. Journal about your ritual, your spread, and revisit every few days to see if there are any additional insights made available to you.

A candle and a key,


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