You can easily understand the basic qualities of the earth element by looking at the ground beneath your feet. Earth's energy is stable, solid, practical, fertile, enduring, patient, and secure, depicted best by Mother Earth herself. You imply these characteristics when you describe someone as being “down to earth” or “earthy.” Earth provides the substance that gives form to your intentions. It is linked with the physical body and the five senses.
Myths from ancient Sumer and Guatemala describe humankind as being shaped from soil. According to the ancient Greeks, the heavens were born into existence from the womb of Gaia, the mother who oversees all the earth's abundance. Some Native American stories speak about the soul waiting for rebirth in the earth's womb (under the soil). In Slavic tradition the soil was so sacred that a person placed one hand on the ground when making a promise.
The pentagram represents the earth element. In the tarot, the suit of pentacles relates to the element of earth. The cards in this suit describe material, physical, and financial conditions. In astrology, Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn make up the earth signs. People born under these signs are usually practical, dependable, steady, persevering, sensual, and interested in financial and/or material matters.
As you become more familiar with the earth element and develop a deep, intuitive knowledge of the energy associated with it, you'll just naturally sense which things resonate with its vibration. Following are some things that witches associate with the element of earth:
The numbers four and eight
Onyx, jet, turquoise, malachite, aventurine, jade
Mint, sage, thyme, fennel, lavender, valerian, carnation, holly, oak, pine
Cotton, hemp, leather
Usually earth magick is done to encourage abundance, financial or physical security, fertility, health, or protection. Hanging a pentagram on your front door to protect your home is a simple, yet effective, earth spell.
Earth magick tends to operate at a slower rate than fire or air magick, but its results are likely to endure. Include items from the preceding list when working earth magick.
In early agrarian cultures, farmers gave offerings of bread or mead to the soil to ensure a good crop. People buried symbolic items in the ground to banish something or to encourage growth. A woman who wished to keep her lover from straying would gather a little soil from his shoe and place it in a white cloth bag.
Earth spells often draw upon the fertility of Mother Earth. Some prosperity spells, for instance, recommend planting seeds to represent your wishes.
As you care for the seeds, you symbolically nurture your intentions. As the plant grows and flourishes, your intentions will bear fruit.