Alexander the Great came across Himalayan rock salt deposit during his rampage through Asia. His men and horses were weary and dying from lack of salt minerals until his horses began licking outcrops of exposed salt, and he noticed that they immediately were restored to full health and strength with sufficient water intake. His men also began to eat the salt and of course he went on with his army and waged war on many tribes and travelled thousands of more miles, after trading much of his pillaged gold for the salt. From this came the saying, “you cannot eat gold”, as a pointer to the salts true worth to our life.


The word salary comes from the Latin word “salarium”, which means payment in salt.

Are you worth your salt?


Using of Salt as Highly Valuable Trade Item

  • Salt was used so much, so that it served as a monetary exchange. The word salary is derived from salt. Roman soldiers and others were getting paid in salt.
  • The Latin word salarium means payment in salt. Salt was treated with extreme value, and as a sign of ‘goodness’,
  • Hence the terms “you’re worth your weight in salt”, or “salt of the Earth”.
  • The Romans built roads specifically for the transportation of salt. One of them was the Via
  • In American society there are a lot of stories surrounding salt. Salt was a major factor in
    the outcome of many wars fought on American soil. During the Revolutionary War, the British used Americans who were loyal to the British crown to intercept the rebels’ salt supply. This action destroyed the rebels’ ability to preserve food. During the War of 1812 soldiers in the field received salt brine as payment because the government was too poor to pay them with money.

History of Salt in Religions and Cultures

Salt is known for its important place in religion and culture due to the long history of rituals regarding protection, purification and blessings. It has also been used to get rid of negative energies or evil my many ancient tribes and even now in this modern age.

  • Islam’s teachings point out that taking salt before and after every meal is a good practice. Salt is one of the best foods you can take before and after meals and the recommendation by the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) is very current and important. It is reported that the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) always used to have salt before and after meals, and he said that a person who does this act is protected from 70 different diseases and among these 70 diseases, leprosy in the minor one. Islam made this calling because salt benefits the human psychology and its energy system, in specific when taken before and after meals, when it has the most value during the digestion process.
  • In Christianity There are thirty-five Biblical references to salt. In the New Testament, Matthew 15:3, Jesus speaking to his disciples, “You are the salt of the earth.” Thus telling them how valuable they were. Catholic Church traditionally has been using salt for a number of purifying rituals.
  • Jewish people always dip the bread in salt, not only Challah bread on Shabbat. That is because our table is considered an altar, and the Holy Temple salt was offered together with every sacrifice. Salt is not effected by processes such as decaying, therefore, it is symbolic of our eternal bond with God. Salt also adds taste to everything. Our bond with God is supposed to acid meaning and flavour to every moment of our lives; even when we not directly involved in spiritual pursuits.
  • In Buddhism traditionally salt repels evil spirits. That’s why it’s customary to throw salt over your shoulder before entering your house after a funeral — it scares off any evil spirits that may be clinging to your back. In 1933 the Dalai. Lama was buried sitting up in a bed of salt.
  • Shinto religion also uses salt to purify an area. Before entering the ring for a match sumo wrestlers throw a handful of salt into the centre to drive off malevolent spirits.
  • In Germany salt was put into the corners of the homes of newlyweds to dispel any bad or negative energy.
  • In Greece worshippers used to consecrate salt in their rituals.
  • In India salt was a potent symbol of good luck and a reference to Mahatma Gandhi’s liberation of India.
  • In the Southwest the Pueblo worshiped the Salt Mother. Other native tribes had major restrictions on who was allowed to eat salt. Hopi legend holds that by placing salt caves away from human civilization, far in the mountains, the angry Warrior Twins punished mankind, requiring hard work and bravery to harvest the precious mineral.
  • The word salvation comes from the Latin word Sal which means salt.