The mortar and pestle is a witch’s tool representing the unification of the male and the female; the phallic symbol of the pestle and the womb symbol of the mortar. Perceiving the tool as the mundane aspect of male and female, as well as the divine God and Goddess, is a powerful aid in our magickal workings. It is a vessel of transformation and by utilizing the energy put into the tool, the witch can transform a mundane ingredient into a sacred form.
A new mortar and pestle should be blessed simply by using it. Putting your energy into the grinding motion that comes natural with this tool is exactly the kind of energy needed to begin to bond with it. To season a new mortar, fill it at least half way with raw rice. Working the pestle very strongly against the mortar fills in the tiny crevices and removes any small bits of stone left behind by the manufacturing, especially in granite mortars. Take some time each day or night working the rice against the walls of the mortar for about a week. This is an excellent technique to use when refreshing the mortar after working with a particularly sticky resin, or just after a long time of use with different products.
It is recommended that you own at least two mortar and pestles. If you grind down herbs for medicinal use, you will want to keep this one separate from the one you would use to grind down resins and other materials that are toxic if ingested. Some like to keep one for herbs and one for resins and woods. Use your best judgment, but keep safety in mind.