The Element of Earth
The element Earth is a classical Western element associated with the physical body and material abundance. The energy of Earth is considered cool and dry and is feminine in nature.
In ancient Greek philosophy, Earth was one of four archai that formed the basis of everything in the universe. Plato associated the element of Earth with darkness, thickness, and quietness and visualized it as the shape of a cube. Aristotle believed Earth to be the heaviest element.
In ancient Greek medicine through to Medieval Times, the element of Earth was associated with black bile and the melancholic humor.
The elements are usually invoked during a ritual in order to balance the energy in the sacred space or the practitioner herself, but may also be invoked independently to lend their energy to spellwork within its sphere of influence or to help the practitioner balance out an excess of earth energy.
The element of Earth relates to stable foundations and rules health, wealth, prosperity, employment, and fertility. It is often evoked for stone, crystal and knot magic and spells related to the hearth and home, to gaining material things including money and employment and to general security and family matters.
Earth is often evoked from the North in the form of spirit creatures associated with Earth, including gnomes, Fauns, Goblins, Satyrs, Dryads or Sylvestres or by calling upon divinities or other spirits associated with Earth and Gods and Goddesses of Earth such as Demeter, Ceres, the Horae, Persephone, Proserpina, Hades, and Pluto.
Earth may be represented on an altar by stones or crystals, a bowl of salt or soil. Colors used to represent air include dark earthy colors, such and brown and black and green. The element may also be represented by statues of animals associated with the element of Earth, such as the bull, the stag, the dragon, the wolf, the owl, the cat and the sphinx.
In ancient Greek medicine, the element of Earth is associated with the humor black bile. Earth and black bile are cold and dry. An excess of black bile causes melancholy.
The alchemical symbol for Earth is a downward pointing triangle bisected by a line. Earth is cold and dry and represented by salt.
Plants that correspond with the element of Earth are nourishing, nutrient and calorie dense and often store for a long time. Alternatively, they may be earthy smelling or grow near or within the soil.
Minerals that correspond to the element of Earth are generally dark or green in color and often lack sparkle. They are usually heavy and cool as well.
Symbols of the Element of Earth
Pentacles also symbolize the element of Earth.
The element of Earth is associated with old age and the season of autumn or winter.