Bone Magick

Bone Magick


Bone Magick works directly with the spirits and requires a great commitment by the practitioner. One you have your set gathered, you are bound to it even unto death and must make preparations for the set to be buried with you or you must pass on the set to a successor.

Collecting bones can be an adventure of self discovery and intuitiveness. It can sometimes take years to find all of the “right” bones for your set. This is a personal pursuit and some may find their perfect collection right away, but don’t be discouraged by the time it takes. It will all come to the correct conclusion for you as directed by the spirits. My bone set is of various objects that have meaning to me. You can make your own set with specific meanings as well, or you may use the list that I have provided here. Some add items for everything that could occur in a persons life. This can make for a VERY large set and, in my opinion, become unmanageable. I have seen Root Worker sets that have as many as thirty items. It is up to you, but from my experience, ten to fifteen objects is more than enough to account for every eventuality. I utilize bones and objects that are small enough to fit into my cupped hands and into a small pouch. This makes transport and reading much easier. My largest bone is approx an inch and a half to two inches. I use that as my guide on the rest of the objects that I collect and add to my system. As this is a very personal method, you may wish to include other objects with significance. Be fluid and do what feels right. You can never go wrong with your intuition.

What follows is my bone set and how I intuit their meanings. Also, I give my ritual for empowerment as well as instruction on how to cast and read them. I hope your adventure into this ancient oracle is rewarding and carries you unto deeper investigation into the great world of the spirits.



Bare Bones Cunning Crafte: An Arcanus Chapter Book (Arcanus Chapter Book Series 1)

David MacKenzie


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Nuin/Ash, Feb. 18 – March 17

Divination: Magic, peace

About Nuin / Ash

Tree- Ash
Month- March
Color- Green
Letter- N
Class- Chieftain
Animal- Snake, snipe
Planet: Neptune
Gemstone: Coral
Flower: Wood Anemone
Diety: Lir, the sea-god and Gwydion The Magician.
Ash: (Nion: NEE-uhn) Nuin. Battle of Draiocht Prosperity/Harm Nua/Nuin/Hardihood. Feminine — Moon of Waters . The fifth tree and its latin name is fraxinus meaning firelight. The Ash is also known as the Cosmic Ash, or World Tree. It is said to be an ancestor of humankind. In Greece powerful families were believed to have come from ash trees. In Celtic cosmology, it is said to connect the three circles of existence – Abred, Gwynedd and Ceugant – which can be variously interpreted as past, present and future, or as confusion, balance and creative force; there being no hell, but only continual rebirth as passage is made from circle to circle until the Land of the Blessed is finally reached.

The common ash is a major tree of the lowland forests in much of Europe & is considered an important timber tree. It is the traditional material for the handle of a besom & a popular wood for making wands.The Ash tree has the toughest, most elastic wood & is used in weaver’s beams. The women would weave cloth and intermingling threads together in a tight pattern as the microcosm and the macrocosm are united. The bark of the ash can be used as a substitute for quinine in intermittent fevers. Simmer 2 Tablespoons of bark for 20 minutes in one cup of water. Take a quarter cup four times daily. The leaves have a laxative effect. Steep 2 Tablespoons of the leaf in one cup of water for 20 minutes & take a quarter cup daily. The Ash tree symbolizes the linking of the inner and outer worlds. You may feel locked in or bound but this aids in realizing that all things are connected. Magickal Associations: Prosperity, protection, healing. Healing wands and protective staffs are made of ash. If you bury a newborn’s nail trimmings beneath an ash tree, it is said to ensure that he or she will grow up to be a good singer.

Physical: You and the world are interconnected & your actions echo continually, infinitely in the cosmos, so stay aware of the effects of your actions.
Mental:Your problems or questions do not solely belong to you. Many others have these same qualms & musings, so try & look at the question in a broader sense and ask opinions of others.
Spiritual: Try your best to realize & understand that all things are connected. Balance your needs with the Earth’s.

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Saille/Willow, April 15 – May 12

Divination: Intuition, creativity, fertility, mysticism

 About Saille / Willow

Tree- Willow
Month- February
Color- Bright Colors
Letter- S
Class- peasant
Animals- Hare, cat, hawk
Planet: The Moon
Gemstone: Moonstone
Flower: Primrose
Diety: Morgan le Fay or the Morrigan
Willow: (Saille: SAHL-yuh) Battle of Divination Support/Denial Súil/Séanadh/Resistance. Feminine– The Witches’ Moon; Moon of Balance. The willow is sacred to the triple Goddess, especially Cailleach the old Crone aspect; she represents the dark side and wisdom. The Willow in the Tree alphabet stands for the female and lunar rhythms of life. Water and tidal movements of the sea are governed by the pull of the moon. The moon in its monthly rhythms is female, contrasting with the male sun’s daily and yearly turnings. In many ways, the Celtic people held women in higher esteem than we do today. In the olde days, the celtic women were allowed to be property owners unlike women in other nations, and whoever controlled the property controlled the marriage. They were also allowed to keep their last names after marriage, depending upon the importance of the family name.

Today, both North America and Europe are home to a large number of the willow species. Two common tree willows are the white willow & the crack willow. The willow is another tree that loves water & the bark also contains a pain reliever called Salicin which is used in the treatment of rheumatic fever, arthritis, headaches, diarrhea, dysentery, fevers, edema, and ovarian pain. Salicin is the active constituent from which aspirin was first synthesized. To make the tea, steep 3 teaspoons of bark in one cup of cold water for 2-5 hours, then boil for one minute, and strain. It is also available as a powder. The powder dose is one teaspoon, 3 times a day in tea or capsules. The tincture can be taken in 10-20 drop doses four times a day. The Willow governs the cycles, rhythms, the ebb, and the flux. Magickal Associations: Romantic love, healing, protection, fertility, magick for women, and gaining balance. It is said that the willow tree has a healing aura that blesses all that it touches.

Physical:The material world is full of lessons and cycles of ever changing values. Change is necessary for growth, and values are no exception.
Mental: To gain understanding of something, a continued accumulation of knowledge is the foundation that brings it about. You can not take everything into yourself in a single lesson. Repetition is your key to greater knowledge & understanding.
Spiritual: Time to take it easy & relax. Learn to play with the cyclical nature of things.

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Fearn/Alder, March 18 – April 14

Divination:Resilience, strength, energy

About Fearn /Alder

Tree- Alder
Month- January
Color- Crimson
Letter- F,V
Class- Chieftain
Animals- Red fox, ram, stallion, gull
Planet: Mars
Gemstone: Ruby
Flower: Broom
Diety: Bran or Arthur
(Fearn: FAIR-n) Battle of Philosophy Shielding/Fury Fearn/Fearg/ Contention. Masculine — Moon of Utility; Moon of Efficacy; Moon of Self-Guidance. Fearn, the fourth tree is associated with water and stands for resurrection. The catkin bearing alder resists decay in its watery habitat. The water spirits, the undines, love this tree as well as the unicorn. The buds of the Alder are set in spirals, the symbol of life and re-birth, a balancing tree of Male and Female energy. Alders are members of the Birch family (Betulaceae) and are common along lowland rivers. Like willows, an alder sprouts from a stump & this allows them to regenerate after heavy flooding.

Bran the Blessed is the god associated with the alder. According to legend, he used his body to span dangerous waters and raise his followers above it. Mortally wounded in a battle with the Irish, Bran prophesied the events that would follow soon after his death, then instructed his followers to cut off his head and take it with them. They traveled to Harlech, where the head sang for seven years; then to Gwales, the head remaining uncorrupted and continueing to prophesy. Finally, stopping in London, Caer Llyndain, they buried Bran’s head at the White Mount, or Bryn Gwyn, now the site of the Tower of London. It was said that as long as the head remained concealed it would give protection against plague from across the oceans. Bridges were commonly constructed of alder. The Alder suggests protection and the powers of the oracles. They are used for spiritual guidance, protection and help in decision making, teaching, weather magick, duty, and mental prowness.

Physical: Be aware of singularity in yourself and in others. Be sure to acknowledge whatever you see in others if possible.
Mental: You will avail yourself of something you have previously overlooked. The skills of the Oracle are not easily acknowledgeable because the mind is more often than not, either unable or unwilling to deal with the intuitive part of itself.
Spiritual:You will offer spiritual aid and protection in a dispute or disagreement. Do not fear. Just allow your intuition to be your guide.

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Luis/Rowan, Jan 21 – Feb. 17

Divination meaning: Protection, ability to distinguish good from bad, insight

About Luis / Rowan

Tree- Rowan
Month- December
Color- Grey and Red
Letter- L
Class- peasant
Animals- Unicorn, bear, duck
Planet: Uranus
Gemstone: Peridot
Flower: Snowdrop
Diety: Brigitania (Britian)or Brighid (Ireland)
(Luis: LWEESH), rowan – Battle of Poetry Quickening/Illness Luis/Luim/Perspective. Masculine – Moon of Vision; Spirit Moon; Astral Travel Moon. The second tree and is useful for breaking evil enchantments. The tree of vision, healing, psychic powers. It is also known as, Wicken-tree, Wild Ash, Witchbane, Witchen, Witch wood and Tree of Life. Rowan is said to have come from the lands of the faery and is also associated with witchcraft. All parts of the tree are considered sacred and it is held dear by the Druids and the Celtic Goddess Brigid.

The rowan, or mountain ash is related to serviceberries. They tend to thrive in poor soils and often colonize disturbed areas. Rowans flower in May and can grow as tall as 50 feet high. They are members of the Rose family (Rosaceae). Runes are carved on this type of tree wood, and Rowan sprays and crosses were placed over homes for protection in the days of olde. The birds feast on its lovely red berries in winter, & if you look at these berries, you will find that they sport a tiny pentagram on them. The pentagram is the ancient symbol of protection. The berries are very high in vitamen C and are used for sore throats and tonsilitis. Take one teaspoon of the fresh berry juice or one quarter cup of tea. The tea is made by simmering one teaspoon of the juice in one cup of water for 20 minutes. The Rowan tree is used for protection and control from enchantment and beguiling. Also used for controlling your own life; Healing; Personal Empowerment; Divination. Wear a tiny cross of rowen wood on your clothing for protection when needed. The leaf and berries are used in incense to increase psychic powers.

Physical: You will focus your senses clearly so as to distinguish good from bad.
Mental: You will not be swayed, tricked or beguiled. Your senses will be in excellent order.
Spiritual:Have no fear. Your strength will turn away any negativity that threatens your purpose and your serenity.

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Beth / Birch, Dec. 24 – Jan. 20

Divination meaning: New beginnings, good fortune, luck, change


About Beth / Birch

Tree- Birch
Month- November
Color- White
Letter- B
Class- peasant
Animal- Cow, Pheasant
Planet: The Sun
Gemstone: Rock Crystal
Flower: Daisy
Diety: Taliesin, the bardic-god (Welsh)
and Lugh of the Long arm, the Sun-god (Irish and Gauls.)

(Beth:BEH) Beith. Battle of Nature Birth/Death Beith/ Bás/Will. Feminine- Moon of Inception; Moon of Beginnings; The Birch is the first tree, and symbolizes new beginnings, creativity, changes, and purification. This tree is sacred to cerridwen. The white bark of the birch indicates cleanliness and determination in overcoming difficulties. In the days of olde, it was thought that evil dwelled in the body & mind of criminals, so they were birched to drive out the evil, & to renew them for the new year.

The Birch is said to be a symbol of summer ever returning. It is also said that the birch is the mother of the oak tree because in prehistoric times it was the birch that prepared the earth floor for the majestic oak to be born. The Birch is ruled by Venus, and it draws out the beauty in us. The silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) is one of the most common birch trees of Europe. It can grow up to a 100 feet tall. The common birch (B. pubescens Ehrh.) is almost as widespread as the silver birch and it can grow up to 65 feet in height. The Birch is one of the first trees to grow on bare soil and it is said to give birth to the entire forest. Because it was said to be good for new beginnings, often children’s cradles were made of Birch. The inner bark makes a great pain reliever. Birch leaves are used to treat arthritis. It also makes a leaf tea that is said to dissolve kidney stones over a time long period.Steep 2 teaspoons of leaf per cup for 20 minutes. The dosage is 1-1½ cups over a day. Birch twigs and leaves can be simmered and added to bath water for itchy skin and falling hair. Taken before bedtime, the tea is sedative.

Physical: This tree provides new beginnings to those who are willing to start fresh and cast off negativity, unhelpful influences and bad thoughts.
Mental: Concentrate on your desire & hold the image of the desired results firmly in your mind.
Spiritual: For new beginnings, turn your focus to the white of the birch. It stands out clearly from distractions and obstructions.


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Oghams and Their Meanings

Oghams and Their Meanings

The trees listed below were among the trees revered by the ancients and as such were used in divinations by the Druids. They believed that the trees were inhabited by the spirits of their ancestors or had a spirit of their own. The Oak, Thorn, and Ash trees were called the faery triad and it is said that the faeries dwell where the three are seen growing together. Based on their love and respect for the trees, the Druids fashioned their alphabet after them, and it is called the Ogham (owen or oh-yam). They used it for writing, in magickal performances and for divination.

The trees were divided into three classes, by order of importance to the druids. The Chieftains were first. Then the peasants and the shrubs. Two of the symbols are not actually trees but point out the power of the sea and the groves. If you wish to use them for divination, you can make your own. Just paint or engrave them on something made of wood. Then you place them in a bag and draw out three (some draw up to seven). Then toss them on the floor. The closest ones represent the present, next the past and the future. You can also carve these symbols into candles or draw them on things for protection or spellcrafting if you wish.

The celtic people also had a calendar which we call the Celtic Tree calendar fashioned after the trees with each month corresponding to a particular tree. In the following posts, you will find information about each tree by month and it’s meaning when used in divination.

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The Ogham

The Ogham

The word Ogham (pronounced OH-yam) has been used to refer to:

A group of twenty trees, sacred to the Druids, that give names to the letters of the Ogham alphabet.

An alphabet of twenty-five characters used for inscriptions on magickal tools in Celtic Ireland & Britain.

An alphabet of twenty characters used for divination and hand-signing in Celtic paganism.

A calendar of thirteen months named for each of the sacred trees.

Below you will find a modern-day interpretation of the Celtic tree calendar. Besides using trees as a way of telling the seasons, the druids used them for many other things. These are called Oghams. Linked to this calendar, you will find much more information on each individual ogham or tree, including the meanings of each during divination.

Oghams were often used by the Celts of olde as a tool of divination, yet they were also used as an alphabet to inscribe many things. First, you must make your own set & inscribe each letter on something made of wood. (Some use stone or tile.) Then place them in a bag for storage. Now when you are ready to use them in divination, find a quiet, peaceful place to sit. Meditate briefly on the question that you want to ask. Then draw out 3 of the pieces and see what the correspondences are. This should help you determine the answer to the question. You may also use them to inscribe your name on your magickal tools or to write in your Grimoire or Book of Shadow, just to be on the safe side & so no one can understand your writings. Oghams are also often used on amulets and talismans.



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