Bones used in Witchcraft

Bone Magick: How to Use Bones in Witchcraft

Bone magick is one of the oldest and most primal forms of magick. Derived from the raw power of nature, bone magick taps into the earth’s currents to create change in the world. Though it is a simple form of magick, bone magick can be incredibly powerful if used correctly.

Bone magick is a type of witchcraft that often uses animal bones for a variety of purposes, including talismans, charms for protection, divination, healing, and hexing. While most people think of animal bones as being dark and spooky, they can actually be used to create powerful magickal spells. Some of the most popular bones for magickal purposes are skulls, teeth, claws and chicken bones.

Bone Magic

Chicken bones are particularly popular in bone magick as they are considered to be powerful good luck charms. You can also use animal bones to make poppets which are effigies that represent a specific person or target of your spellwork. Overall, bone magick is a versatile and powerful form of witchcraft that can be used for a variety of purposes.

History of Bone Magick

Bone magick is one of the oldest and most commonly used forms of magick, dating back to ancient times. Bones have long been associated with death, spirits, and supernatural power. In many cultures, they are believed to be able to commune with the dead and harness otherworldly forces.

Cleansing Bones

When using animal bones in spell work, it is important to clean and consecrate them first. If a bone has been handled by numerous individuals on its way to you, or if the animal it came from experienced a terrible end, it may contain energy that will obstruct your work.

Allowing bones to sit in the light of the full moon, passing them through incense smoke, or rinsing them with water while visualizing your desire are all ways to clear and bless them. Once the bones are cleansed, they can be used in a variety of ways.

On the other hand, if you are working with the spirit of the animal the bones are from, you do not want to cleanse the bones spiritually. Instead, you will want to make sure they are physically clean and treat them with respect. You may even give them a special place on your altar with offerings.

Using Bones For Magick

You can add or draw a quality of the animal to your working by adding a bone to a spell with the energy of the animal or the collective energy of the animal spirit. On the other hand, you can ask the animal spirit to assist you with your work by adding their bone(s) to your spell or ritual space.

The part of bone you’re using plays a huge role in the working you’re doing and into the energy you’re seeking. Depending on the size of the bone, it can be placed on an altar where the spell is performed, or it can be placed in a charm bag with herbs, crystals, and/or oil and carried on you (or the person) to perform the work or to attract anything towards or away from you.

Bones are often also used as spirit vessels for spirit familiars. If the bone belongs to a spirit familiar, treat it with care and respect as you would a loved one’s home. Give offerings to the spirit vessel and speak with it often. Once you have formed a relationship with the spirit, the animal spirit may offer to help you in your workings on a regular basis.

Bone runes by Luna2


There is no one-size-fits-all approach to bone divination. In certain cultures, the Diviner’s reading of the message is determined by how the bones fall. Some people utilize sheep knucklebones while others choose a combination of rib, spine, and leg bones.

Learn more about Divination Methods here.

Bone Tools

Smoothed, carved, and burned bones can be used to depict your path with symbols that are unique and meaningful to you. Bones from pigs, turkeys, and beef, which are longer or larger, make excellent Magick wands.

Ritual Arrangements

Bones in rituals

There are many different ways to arrange bones depending on the goal of the spell. For example, if you want to attract positive energy, you might arrange the bones in a circle. If you’re trying to summon a particular spirit, you might use a specific type of animal bone that is associated with that spirit. Whatever the arrangement, animal bones can be a powerful tool for those who know how to use them.

Connect with Animal Spirits

As stated above, bones are often used to commune with animal spirits, to harness their power, or to invoke their assistance in achieving specific goals. When working with animal spirits, it is important to choose an animal whose qualities you wish to embody or whose help you wish to invoke.

This animal spirit may become your familiar over time, but it is possible that the working relationship is only temporary. Be mindful and respectful when working with spirits of animals. If they choose to help you, be grateful. If they deny to help you, give thanks and move on.

When working with an animal bones, keep in mind that it can also connect you to the collective spirit of the animal as well. It may also connect you to everything that animal represents in the natural world, mythology, folklore, and the collective unconscious. Find out what energy the animal brings into your life by researching their stories, myths, and characteristics.

Bone Magick Misconceptions

One of the most common misconceptions about bone magick is that all bones must be buried in order to work. This is not the case. Bones can also be placed on an altar or inside a sacred space. The important thing is to cleanse and bless the bones before use.

Another misconception is that bone magick is only used for negative purposes. However, bones can also be used to bring about positive change. Whether you want to attract abundance, healing, or protection, the right spell, the right bones, and the right animal spirit are out there.

Finding Bones For Magick

Photo by IrisW

One of the most common sources of animal bones is the butcher shop. Many butchers will sell chicken bones for a very reasonable price. You can also ask your local farmer if they have any animal bones that they would be willing to sell or trade. Another option is to go on a hike and look for animal bones in the wild. This is a great way to get started if you’re new to bone magick.

Be sure to check the laws in your local area about scavenging and collecting bones. Some places allow you to collect bones, feathers, and other animal parts. Other places have laws against collecting animal parts, even if you find them while out hiking or on the road. Always follow your local laws.

Making Magick With Bones

Bones are part of nature, though not everyone is willing to work with them. That’s okay. Working with bones is a personal decision. Bones hold very powerful energy. Like plants and crystals, choosing to work with bones, and the bones you want to work with, may be based on their magickal properties. By understanding the symbolism of bones and how to use them in your spells and rituals, you can add a new level of power to your practice.

Bones and Symbols

Some may choose to work with bones while others do not. Keep reading to find more information about working with bones and symbols you might find helpful.

Good Luck Animals

Did you know that animals can be positive symbols for wisdom, abundance and success? We’ve created a printable to use with 10 different lucky animals. Here are just a few!

In Japan, frogs are a symbol of good luck. The cat is a symbol of independence. The bear is considered lucky because it is able to survive the long winter months by hibernating.

Read more and get the printable! »

Familiars and Animal Spirits

Familiars, also known as animal guides or family spirits serve the Witch or young Witch, providing protection for them as they come into their new powers.

Familiar spirits were most commonly small animals, such as cats, rats, dogs, ferrets, birds, frogs, toads, and hares.

Do you have a familiar spirit? »

Uses for Animal Bones

Iris was clearing out weeds and watering the plants at the front of their house when they found the partial skeleton of a small bird. Not wanting to waste it, they asked for opinions in the forum.

The coven came in with answers! »

Powerful Witchcraft Symbols

We are surrounded by symbols in our waking life and we don’t even realize it. You have probably seen at least five symbols today! Symbols are used in witchcraft, too, and their meanings and uses vary just as much from one witch to the next.

See an example of these symbols »

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