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Trolldom, Nytta & Mimicry: Their place in spiritual hygiene

Updated: Mar 9

My purpose in this blog is to highlight Nytta and its place in maintaining protection and spiritual hygiene. Nytta roughly translates to being of use or benefit to yourself and others. Nytta is a core concept within Trolldom. Trolldom is otherwise known as the Nordic folk magic and wisdom tradition. In folk tradition within Scandinavia, Nytta was an essential part of a person, if you no longer contributed or helped others you were considered outside of the community and society.

I will be discussing being of use or nytta specifically for the land around you, and how that impacts oneself as well as the spirits of place, the plants, and the animals in your local environment. I will also be discussing mimicry and how we can use this technique in cleansing and hygiene.

Running With The Wind at Your Back: Nytta

Being of use to the land around you is a way to build natural resilience to and protection from bad luck, evil eye, and negative energies. It can result in great health and ease of life. This all can be done through actions, words, or thoughts dedicated to the thriving, healing, or cleansing, of the environment you live in. Over time, this could build as a natural and easeful boundary between you and the murk and mire of the everyday. Doing so might help build a good reputation and rapport with the spirits in your local area. If you extend your hand in kindness without expectations, others might as well. The more you contribute and help the environment around you, the more that environment will want to help you. In Buddhism, being of use is thought to help one acquire merit. Gaining merit is thought to cleanse and purify the life, and make the mind happy and virtuous. And externally, present good circumstances, such as a long life, health and wealth.

These actions can be simply picking up trash in your neighborhood or singing a blessing song to the spirits of the land on a walk. It could also be planting rare native plants or giving the local spirits some cookies. Another simple act is wishing good things for the land while on a walk, imagining a future world in which the plants are thriving and growing. When you are having a good day, share that energy with the land by going on a walk. During that walk let the energy expand past your body and offer it to the plants around you. If you try this, notice how do the plants react to you? Then how do you feel afterwards? Now when you’re having a bad day go back to the same place that you shared, gave gifts, wished upon the land. Notice, do the plants and spirits say hello? Are they interested in you or are interested in helping your situation?

If you need a little more of something, say protection or clearing, first offer that service to the land before working on yourself. Try to first clean up some local waterways or possibly make a bee habitat. Do that with dedication to the land thriving, yourself included, and see, has your own energy shifted already? What does it feel like in comparison to only doing protection and clearing for yourself? When offering this service first, you are showing the environment and your subconscious that you already have this gift and can give it freely.

Another example of this could be planting deep rooted plants in an area that has been long disturbed by development. Deep rooted plants will break up compacted soil, and when they decay, their roots will help to create thicker top soil rich with carbon and nutrients. It will also bring biodiversity to the area. Critters above and below ground will come to this new habitat you have contributed. You are providing a home to another being. There is no separation between us and the land, so you could see this act as breaking up old conditions within yourself and ushering in nutrients to those deep layers that have been long disturbed. Another example of this could be with dedicated action, water the plants in your yard while also intending to bring nourishing and cleansing water to an area of your life or body. When including others in our work and doing this outside within the ecosystem, our work can become more potent. Others join in to contribute to it.

Being of use to the land might make you feel welcomed when you return to a place. When this happens, notice, how does your body feel when the land is joyful to see you? You might be surprised by how easy life can be that you might not need to do many healing and cleansing spells. Doing this over time you will notice you have less to protect from, less need for intentional energetic boundaries. Your friends in the local environment might look out for you, warn you of things incoming, or protect you from storms.

One Tree Can Heal a Forest: Mimicry

Another way that I work with plants and the environment for cleansing and hygiene is through mimicking nature. I watch nature and ask how would this thing or that thing in nature cleanse?

Recently I made a large bonfire and stared at the embers dancing in the sky. In those moments I asked how would an ember cleanse a body? Closing my eyes, I imagined the dancing glow shift things quickly within my body. The result was a new way to move the energy, in a way that I found beautiful and inspiring.

If you see something in nature you are inspired by, ask the question, how would this thing cleanse, heal, protect, etc. How is it different from your regular practices? Did you learn anything new? The benefit of mimicking nature is to learn something new, to inspire current practices, and to empower our work. Doing this, I often find that Nature is a bit more creative and almost always has a more interesting perspective than what I learn in books about cleansing practices.

Let Flowers Spring from Your Feet

Here are two specific practices that I have really enjoyed doing that I am happy to share.

1. Find the negative or not so helpful energy in your body, let it trickle down to your spine and down to your feet. Direct the energy into the earth. Asking the earth and trees if they would like to take the energy. Do this as you are walking. Then when it is all in the earth, turn around, and using spådom, see the energy you dropped into the earth. Then ask the energy to turn into flowers to spring up out of the ground. Watch the energy turn into flowers.

2. Anchor thriving and good energy to the bottom of your feet. So that wherever you walk you are spreading and sharing thriving with you. Anchoring this to your feet is also a type of protection that deflects negative energies from rising up the feet. Once this is done, anchor thriving to the top of your head. Notice, how does it feel to have this anchored to both your feet and head? I find it to feel quite good, often creating a feeling of thriving flowing up and down the body.

If you are interested in learning the basics of moving energy and anchoring energy please reach out to me for a private session.

One Leaf Holds All The Stars

Here are some plants that are dear to my heart who can help with specific things relating to spiritual hygiene.

Solomon’s Plume

  • Healing, protection, and divination related to Fire.

  • Can heal wounds from magical fire

  • Knows that which is hidden

St. John’s Wort

  • Helpful for remembering and seeing one’s brightness

  • Brings in joy, reminds one of joy, shows the importance of joy


  • Shows how to cherish people and life

  • Teaches how one tree can heal a forest

  • Shows how to be present and release stories


  • Shows how to have great kindness towards all things

  • Allows acceptance for where you are, but gentle nudging towards what you can be

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