BECOMING A WITCH
Many people just discovering the Craft have asked me how does one become a Witch
. The answer to that is one does not become a Witch…..they are a Witch, and it
is just reaching down and finding it within them. It is not a matter of
“becoming” a Witch, but finding the Witch within and, while the answer is quite
simple, yet; to some, it can be quite complex. It is really not difficult once
you find that inner Witch within. But that is where it must come from and not
from any book that you read. Reading books, joining covens and/or someone who
initiates one into Witchcraft does not make one a Witch. It is you and you
alone. Once you discover and decided that you are a Witch, you are deciding to
embrace a life-enhancing and joyful spiritual path. You are declaring that you
are willing to experience the wonders of the magickal web and encounter the
Goddess. You are daring to be different in a way that facilitates your growth
and empowers you. Most importantly, you are stepping into the spiral dance of
life, celebrated by Witches all over the world.
Becoming a Witch means learning how to work ritual and magick, methods of
raising, containing and releasing power, how to work with the energies of the
moon and earth and the principles of sympathetic magick upon which most
Witchcraft magick is based.
Witches are very unique individuals and some, no……. many, might call us
strange. We look at life differently; we live life differently; and we
experience life differently. We find beauty and laughter in the simplest things.
We believe that magick is in life itself.
Some people who become interested in Witchcraft have expectations that Witches
are gifted with amazing powers as the result of a particular ceremony or spell.
The truth is more mundane than the fantasy. Witchcraft is about growing within
your own spirituality, making contact with the web of magick, learning how to
weave, and observing the way the world works. Witchcraft is about working with
natural energies, observing how they work, and determining how you can gently
divert them and not about moving things around at will.
The decision to become a Witch is not one you should take lightly. It is not a
persona you can put on or take off at will. Witchcraft becomes your whole life
and can drastically change your perception of the world in which you live.
Becoming a Witch will affect everything and everyone around you. That it will
affect them positively does not alter the fact that you will relate to them
differently and you should be prepared for this.
To become a Witch is to become changed within yourself and a changer of things
outside you. This is your inner magick. Encountering the Goddess, working with
magick and connecting with nature will take a lot of time and energy until it
becomes second nature to you. You may find that you get angry with those people
who do not understand Witchcraft or paint it as “evil” but you will have to
resist putting them right until you have grasped some of the key concepts for
yourself. This can be achieved only through experience and this means practicing
patience which means embracing the Crone energies of wisdom and patience, and
this can take quite some time.
Once your decision is made, you have already stepped onto the path of
Witchcraft. The next step depends on the type of person you are. If you are a
fiery, adventurous sort of person, you will probably wish to throw yourself into
studying everything at once. You will want to read everything you get your hands
on, hoping that the more you read, the more experience you will have and the
wiser you will be. Unfortunately, experience and wisdom work together and that
comes with life experiences which comes with age. That is why so much emphasis
is put on the Crone for her having wisdom. She has experienced life; she has
stumbled and fell and picked herself up over the years until she hardly falls
anymore. She has learned when it is time to speak and when it is time to be
silent. She is the Raven and the Owl all rolled into one. The Raven is very
vocal whereas the owl practices silence and is silent in everything that it
does. If you are more cautious or laid back, you may wish to learn gradually and
thoroughly. One of the lessons that the Craft has to teach is to be resourceful.
So, I think the best place to start is within your heart and soul. I am not
talking about being a pagan but a Witch. Being a pagan and being a Witch are two
separate things. Pagans tend to work more with the Sabbats and attend
celebrations and many now call themselves Wiccans. There are many pagans who do
not have anything to do with magick. You may have heard that old saying that all
Witches are pagans but not all pagans were Witches. That is because before the
God of Abraham came and then later Christianity, most people were pagans and
their beliefs were centered around agriculture, because most were farmers.
However, you then had your mid-wives and healing women, who were pagans, who
attended to the towns people when they were sick or when a woman became with
child. These wise women were also consulted when women wished not to have a
child. They consulted these women from birthing to healing the sick through
herbs which were grown and tended to by these women. The wise women grew and
harvested their herbs by the Moon and lived also by the Moon. These wise women
were also consulted for divination purposes and potions. Years later these wise
women were called Witches and later on, they were tortured and burned. See Crone
Turns Witch for a more in-depth reading.
My first suggestion would be to get in touch with the Moon and knowing when She
is full and dark, and when She is waning or waxing. Notice how you feel when the
moon moves through the phases. Do not feel that the only time to do magick and
work with Her energies is when the moon is waxing to full. You can work with Her
energies any time of the month. I seem to come more alive when the Moon moves
into Her waning phase and up to Dark Moon, whom many call New Moon. But that
might be because I was born on a Balsamic Moon (Dark Moon). I prefer to call the
Moon what it is….dark, and give it back to the Crone, where it belongs, and
give the New Moon back to the Maiden, where it belongs, when it is the first
thin sliver in the sky. I also burn a white candle when the Moon starts to wax
in honor of the Maiden; I burn a red candle when the Moon is full in honor of
the Mother; and I burn a black candle on the Dark of the Moon in honor of the
Goddess. You will be surprised how this helps you to be connected with the Moon
and with the Goddess all at the same time.
My second suggestion is to read and read as many books as you can. We are so
fortunate in this day and age to have the abundance of books on the Craft. Even
if you are not Wiccan, there is a lot of material to be found in books on Wicca.
I think the most informative book and a must to have in every Witch’s library is
Scott Cunningham’s “Wicca, A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner.” His book is
very easy to follow, and he explains the art of ritual design, the Witch’s tools
and many other important things. If it is magick you want, then besides Hecate’s
Cauldron, you will find Scott Cunningham’s Book of Incense, Oils and Brews is
yet another must to have sitting on your Witch’s cupboard. But keep the spiders
away, as they love this book! There is also another wonderful book by Shekhinah
Mountainwater entitled “Ariadne’s Thread.” It is a workbook of Goddess magick
and many Witches today are discovering this wonderful book.
I would also suggest to jump right into ritual work and doing spells as well. As
mentioned above, Scott Cunningham’s books are excellent for the beginning Witch.
Remember, practice makes perfect. There are many new in the Craft who are afraid
to do magick, fearing that they might do something wrong. Witches of yesteryear
lived quite, simple lives and their magick was simple as well. Many did not even
do rituals when they performed a spell. They were Witches and not magicians. If
you follow the cycles of the moon and do magick according to those cycles, you
have accomplished half the battle. A little homework, and you will be fine.
If possible, growing herbs not only for cooking but for medicinal purposes as
well is very rewarding for a Witch. Did you know that during the Burning Times,
any woman having the herb Basil in her cupboard was considered a Witch? I love
Basil and have it growing in my herb box, as well as Thyme, Oregano, Rosemary,and Dill. Learn to know the magickal properties of herbs, and as you sprinkle these herbs in the cauldron on your stove, cast that magick into the food that you and your family eat. When I drink hazelnut coffee, I charge my coffee for my psyche, as hazelnut is good for psychic abilities. Cinnamon is also great for psychic abilities. . I always drink cinnamon tea before I do tarot readings. As you sprinkle nutmeg and cinnamon into your apple pies, charge your pies as well to help you in your psychic ability. If you cannot grow the herbs, there is always fresh herbs in your local grocery store. However, one small potted plant of a particular herb will give you much satisfaction. There is so much a Witch can do while cooking on the stove in her cauldrons!
As far as computers are concerned, I consider my computer a form of cauldron
where I conjure and stir things up. There are many Witches who have a special
magickal name for their computers, as do I.
There are more and more Witches wishing to connect more with the Moon and Her energies and walking Her path. Walking the path of the Goddess is a very simple one and it is very spiritual and brings you inner peace because it is through the Goddess that you will find this. So, get out in the fresh air and see all Her beauty and nature all around you and that includes the leaveless trees in
winter to the bursting foliage in the spring for the Goddess is not only the
Moon but nature itself and She is Mother Earth, and She is the seasons. More
information on the Goddess path can be found on The Path of the Goddess.
You can also start each day with a prayer to the Goddess to give you strength
and wisdom throughout the day and at the end of each day say a pray thanking Her for giving you the strength and wisdom. You can also light a sacred candle in Her honor each night when you get home from work. You can burn a scented candle as well. I burn a scented candle depending on what the Moon is doing. When the moon is waning, each night I light a candle scented with cloves to banish negativity and when the moon is waxing, I burn a scented candle to bring abundance into my life.
I would also like to add that you really do not need “magickal tools” in order
to be a Witch. Tools are nice to have and work with; however, they are not
necessary. Everything you need is inside of you. Tools belong in the category of
ceremonial magicians and Wiccans. Gerald Gardner was a Free Mason and belonged to the Golden Dawn. The Golden Dawn pulled things from The Key of Solomon.
Witches of yesteryear were simple folk who used what they had in and around
the house. And during the Burning Times, it could cost them their lives to have
“magickal tools.” Witchcraft is of the heart, mind and soul and not from
The sky is the limit, because we Witches reach for the sky~so fly!