The Psychology of Magic

This comes from the book Witchcraft an Alternative Path by Ann Moura copyright 2003, pages 114-116.

The Psychology of Magic

“Because time is fluid in Witchcraft, seen as a spiral that may be accessed at any point, it is not difficult to work magic with the future results in mind. The subconscious mind is accessed for magical work, and it is also the place where all of the activities of daily life first take place. Because of how the neural transmitters function, and the distance run by nerve impulses, all things known by the conscious mind actually take place earlier and are only remembered consciously. In other words, there is a time lag between an event and a person’s cognitive awareness of that event. This is why a person may not realize the bath water is too hot until after being in it a few moments — it just takes a while to register on the conscious mind. Meanwhile, the subconscious mind is already aware of the temperature. Witches practice opening the communication channel with the subconscious mind, so that in the tub example, a Witch would be aware before stepping into the tub that it is too hot. Most people simply go through life without noticing discrepancy of time, except when something called deja vu (“already seen”) occurs, and then they wonder why a place or event seems so familiar or has happened before. This is a clue that time does indeed spiral and you dip into it at will.

Since in deja vu experience you seem to know in advance what will happen, if only a short time, you can alter the event. What may be somewhat amusing is the reaction of other people involved in the event. Since they are not connectively using the subconscious mind and not aware as quickly as yourself, you may find they want to react to something that has not happened, giving them a puzzled pause. As an example, I once averted a disastrous dinner argument by keeping silent during the experience when I knew that I was “supposed” to make an innocent remark, which led to a fight the first time around. When the time came for my remark, I did not make it and the conversation at the table stopped cold, everyone turning to look at me! But I had changed history and the table chat resumed without the argument.

When you start altering the future, you may have multiple deja vus of the same event or experience. The meaning of this is that you ran the course of the event, did not like things turned out, changed it, ran the course again, and still did not like the results, so you are giving it another try or realigning the events prior to the deja vu to make the results more satisfactory. Another aspect, which you will begin to recognize with experience, is that there is a variation in the deja vu from what you knew it once was. That means your prior change has worked, and you are given a second chance with the new arrangement. This facet of time manipulation is characteristic of the Witch’s development of subconscious awareness. Witches are people who have refined their ability to process precognitive stimuli and hold on to it so they are able to then alter events before these even register on the conscious minds of other people.

The fluidity of time makes it possible for you to manipulate it so that you can stretch it out, making certain you are never late to any destination. the raising of energy you are working magic, the conscious mind is silenced or relaxed so the subconscious mind may come forward as the active principle. Doing drumming, breath work, chanting, and dancing during the raising of energy when in the Circle is a way to move yourself into an altered state. Drugs and alcohol are not good for this since these inhibit your awareness. When working magic, the subconscious mind creates the reality, which will then be perceived by the conscious mind.

To be a Witch, you have to be ready to live in multiple layers of reality with multiple worlds (Physical, astral, psychic, spiritual, etc.) since these are what you access when practicing your Craft. These worlds exist and are approached with mediation, astral projection, out of body experience, visits to Otherworld or Underworld, pathworking and spell casting. IN the ritual of casting the Circle, you create a space not only to hold the energy you raise, but one that is apart from the rest of the physical world. When you draw the cosmic lemiscate (Smaller INFINITY 2) over the altar, and say that you are standing between worlds, you say you are “in a place that is not a place, and in a time that is not a time” as a reminder for the subconscious mind to be open. You stand at the nexus of other worlds, where the magic you conduct may travel to affect your physical world.

 

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Let’s Talk Witch – How to Cleanse Your Living Space

SPRING FANTASY

Let’s Talk Witch – How to Cleanse Your Living Space

Clear away any clutter that’s collected on floors or surfaces. Recycle those stacks of newspapers, throw away those old bills, and send out that dirty laundry.

Using an old cloth or your broom, dust the corners of your ceilings for cobwebs. Dust the tops of your curtains and windowsills as well.

Starting at the doorway of your house, sweep the floors in a generally clockwise direction. Sweeping is an excellent example of practical magic, cleansing on both a physical and spiritual level.

Be sure to take the dustcan with you as you sweep. As my mother used to say “bring the garbage to the dustpile, not the dustpile to the garbage.”

Once you’ve finished sweeping, fill the bucket about halfway with hot water and floor cleaner. I recommend Murphy’s wood oil soap, or a pine-scented cleaner.

Add a few drops of the pine oil and eucalyptus oil to the bucket of water. Crumble up a leaf or two of sage and add that as well. Drop the pennies in.

Say a little prayer over the water to the God of your own understanding. Ask that your house be blessed, peaceful, and harmonious.

Starting again at the door of your house, mop the floors in a generally clockwise direction. Envision the charmed water clearing away old, muddy energy and leaving your house sparkling and new.

When you discard the old mop water, be sure to save the pennies from the bottom of the bucket. Wash them under warm tap water and say a blessing over them.

Now, place the pennies in the outer four corners of your house, beginning in the north and moving clockwise. Ask the spirits of the four directions to make your home safe, secure, and prosperous.

Using the lemon-scented polish, lovingly polish any wooden furniture in your house. Once again, envision old vibrations being cleared away.

Light your sage or sweetgrass and smudge the outer corners of each room, moving once again in a clockwise direction.

If this feels comfortable, use either your athame or the index finger of the hand you write with to sketch a pentacle in the air over each door and window of your house, envisioning the opening sealed against unwanted energies.

Tips:

Pagans believe that moving clockwise (“deosil”) invokes and that moving counterclockwise (“widdershins”) banishes.

If you have wall-to-wall carpeting or are very allergic to dust, you can perform this ritual with a vaccuum cleaner instead of a broom. Simply sprinkle a small amount of the charmed water (minus floor cleaner!) on the carpet.

You may wish to chant softly to yourself while cleaning. Any simple, rhyming chant will do. Here’s one example: “Gunk away, good stuff stay.”

When I smudge, I like to chant the names of the Goddess to myself: “Isis Astarte Diana, Hecate Demeter Kali, Innaana.”

Feel free to experiment with what you place in your mop water. I also like to use rose oil (love) and patchouly oil (prosperity).

 

–Wicca Chat

Wiccan Adoration

Star
Wiccan Adoration

One does not read about the Wicca.
One does not study about the Craft of the Wise.
The knowledge I will teach is not idle.
You can only learn this knowledge if you use it — if you put it to work.
This study is only for those who have a willingness to learn
Each of you has expressed a desire to learn.
Each of you has shown talent at being magickal — at making things happen.
If you are to learn the Craft, you must swear that you will work all your Magick in Perfect Love.
Work negative magick and you are not one of us.
You must work at growing positive, even if it requires change.
Each of you has shown that you are capable of making changes in the self, in order that your Magick be more positive.
Each of you has learned that change allows you to be happier.
To learn the Craft of Wicca, you must make changes.
Each of you has done this, and it is joyous and beautiful of you, and it is this happiness we share.
At this level of your training, you must maintain secrecy.
If your friends, your family, your lovers were truly ready for this knowledge, they would be here — now.
But if they are not; that is proof that they are not yet ready.
Speak no Magick to those who know less than you, unless you are prepared to tell all of us that you are a teacher of the Craft.
A true teacher does not teach teh Craft until s/he has completed the training.
If those we are with are in positive Craft Traditions, we can speak to our peers and to those more wise than ourselves.
Each of you has your own timing.
You learn at your own rate.
Should you leave this study, there is no sorrow, only joy at the love we have shared.
Each of you has shown the ability to work together to raise good, positive energy.
Each of you knows how to help and to share.
Each of you will learn to trust each other.
You must have with me Perfect Trust.
If you do not trust me as your Mentor, I cannot teach you.
And I give you Perfect Trust.
If you swear to trust me, it is because I swear that I trust you.
You have not arrived here by chance.
You have displayed a desire to learn.
You have displayed a talent at Magick.
This Magick is to heal, to help; it only works in Perfect Love.
You are here because you have shown us that you are learning to work in Perfect Love.
It is the only way to happiness; and you are here because you are growing in happiness.
You are learning to unlock joy.
Each of you is capable of becoming a teacher — to learn the Craft of Wicca and to share that knowledge.
Each of you must grow into becoming a teacher.
Each of you has taken the Path of being willing to learn, the Path of wanting to learn.
Each of you is growing.
Each of you is creative.
Each of you is special to the Magick of the Universe.
Each of you perceives the Magick of the Universe as a balance of Yin and Yang, of masculine and feminine, of God and Goddess.
Each of you recognizes the feminine and masculine within the self.
Each of you has been told this knowledge is only for those who seek to become of the Wicca.
Each of you is here because it is felt by the Wise, by the Wicca, that you are capable of knowing stronger Magick than you have thus far conceived of.
By being here, now, you have demonstrated a desire to take this Path.
You have already begun.
You are here because you have shown love to the World.
Because you, also, are Wise.
The Wicca means the Wise: The Wise Ones.
We meet together to talk as wise people and celebrate our happiness.
All of us, even your teachers, are pursuing wisdom and we all follow the Laws.
To complete this study, to follow this Path into Initiation means you will be ready to celebrate the Wisdom you have attained, to celebrate in ritual the knowledge that you are Magick;
To share with us wine and happiness, words of beauty and laughter…

By the time you complete this course of study you will be a Priest/ess and an Initiated Child of the God and the Goddess.

Wicca

Wicca

Wicca, as it is performed today, is not modern witchcraft per se, but a contemporary neo-pagan religion. It is, however, one of the major forms of witchcraft. It began in its modern form with the teachings of Gerald Gardner after the repeal of the Witchcraft Act in 1951, though its descent can be traced to the ancient nature religions. This traditional method of Wicca is quite formal, with covens using ritual tools and learned invocations emphasising the Goddess and her representative, the High Priestess, as their head. The Goddess is the archetype or source energy of the ultimate feminine power or principle. All the named goddesses represent aspects of particular qualities of the Goddess in
different cultures. Her consort is the Horned God and his representative in the coven is the High Priest. Though each coven is autonomous, formal Wicca follows a system of degrees of learning and does not permit self-initiation. The High Priest initiates the female members and the High Priestess the male. They celebrate eight sabbats, or seasonal celebrations.

There are, however, numerous forms of Wicca and of witchcraft, many of which draw on ancient traditions. For example, the feminist Dianic Wicca, founded in the 1970s, is spiritually descended from the nature religion of the Italian witches who worshipped Diana as the Triple Goddess of the
Moon from about 500 BC.

Since the 1970s, less formal practices and covens have evolved, which may or may not have a structured learning system, and these create their own spells and ceremonies, rather than using an existing system, such as that recorded in Gardner’s own Book of Shadows, revised by his High Priestess Doreen Valiente. These individual ceremonies are recorded in books created to reflect the evolving rituals of each coven and its own emphases. This method is much more conducive to solitary practitioners who can incorporate magick into their domestic and working lives.

Wiccan Rituals And Ethics

Wiccans believe in polarity rather than a single godhead, both in magick and in life. Evil is therefore not a separate demonic force to be eradicated, and the darker aspects of life emanate as a result of
alienation from the natural order of things. However, even those things that are bad can act as catalysts for change; death and endings are as much part of the cycle of life as are birth and beginnings. Dark and light, night and day, positive and negative, destruction and creation are two sides of the same coin, a principle that finds expression in Eastern Taoism and underpins the ancient Chinese / Ching (The Book of Changes), often used for divination. Negativity can be transformed into
healing energies through positive ritual.

The Goddess is the source of all creation, from whom, in the original virgin birth, her son-consort, the Horned God, came. The Horned God and the Goddess are the creative male and female principles that act and react, not in opposition to each other, but as complementary and necessary parts of a whole.

There are variations on this idea within the teachings of Wicca. Some traditions consider the Goddess to be of greater significance than her male counterpart.

Others regard them as equal, assuming different aspects according to the season and ritual: she as the Earth or Moon deity, ruler of the summer months, he as the Sun or Corn God, ruler of winter and Lord of the Underworld after his death.

Along with other nature deities, the Horned God became demonised with the advent of Christianity,and the Goddess was either depicted as a wicked witch or downgraded to the status of a faerie. Thus the Celtic warrior goddess Maeve became the faerie Mab, described thus by Mercutio in
Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet:

She is the fairy’s midwife, and she comes
In shape no bigger than an agate-stone
On the fore-finger of an alderman.

Contrary to popular belief, Wiccans do not ‘hex’ (cast curses) or seek revenge, although some Dutch and Pennsylvanian witches consider that it is justifiable to ‘bind’ those who harm children or animals or actively promote evil or corruption. Wiccans prefer to rely on the principles of natural justice that under karmic principles will redress the balance, either in this lifetime or the next.

The chief moral codes are the Wiccan Rede and the Threefold Law. The Wiccan Rede states simply:

‘An it harm none, do what you will’.

This deceptively straightforward statement refers to the self as well as others. I have already mentioned the Threefold Law whereby magical intent – and, many believe, actions and thoughts – return to the sender with three times the intensity.

Because people are responsible for their own actions, everyone -witch and non-witch alike – can choose to do good or evil. Many witches and Wiccans believe that they are reincarnated in some form and also that the results of past deeds can follow a person from one life to the next.

You can compare this to the concept of karma found in Hinduism and Buddhism, which says that the thoughts and deeds we accumulate in our lifetime may either progress us towards spiritual perfection – if good – or indicate, if bad, that we need to learn lessons in subsequent lives to right our mistakes or attitudes. Other witches say there is an afterlife, spent on another plane of existence. Known as Summerland, Avalon or Valhalla, and akin to Tir na n’Og, the Celtic Otherworld of eternal youth, it is a place where joy and light are experienced.

Reincarnation, on the other hand, is a form of bodily transformation. Some may choose to be reborn in another body, perhaps as an animal or bird, sometimes to teach or to complete unfinished work. For example, Merlin, the magician, was believed to have been incarnated in several lifetimes and to have entered willing bodies, including the sixth-century bard Taliesin.

Wiccan rituals are held at esbats and sabbats. An esbat is a monthly coven meeting, traditionally held 13 times a year during each full moon. The eight sabbats are described in the chapter Seasons and Festivals, and celebrate the eight major divisions of the Celtic year on the solstices, the equinoxes and the old Fire festivals. These festivals mark the coming of early spring, the start of the Celtic summer, the first corn harvest and the start of the Celtic winter.

There are also many lovely ceremonies to mark the transitions in the life cycle, such as handfastings, or weddings, and rites of passage to welcome recently deceased Wiccans to the familiar circle whenever they wish to draw near.

 

–Practical Guide to Witchcraft and Magic Spells

Cassandra Eason

WOTC Extra (a) What is Psychic Protection, and How do I Develop It?

AnkH

WOTC Extra (a) What is Psychic Protection, and How do I Develop It?

Lee Anne was a client who had been working on developing her psychic abilities. She was naturally clairaudient but also had been practicing her clairsentience. An empath by nature, she liked being able to feel information in her body. But she also noticed that, as her psychic abilities grew, she was becoming more easily overwhelmed by energies around her, and she was scared that perhaps she would become a target for entities.

It’s true that as you grow in your psychic capability—whichever “clairs” you cultivate—you may find yourself becoming impacted by energies not your own. Clients get very excited as their psychic abilities begin to unfold and often forget that they have to learn to set new boundaries and develop techniques for psychic self-protection. This is not because there are bad things out there trying to “get” us, but because there is a lot of energy, negative thought forms, and just plain junk floating around that we become more sensitive to as we develop psychically.

Psychic protection is simply an intentional practice of creating energetic boundaries and clearing our energy fields regularly so that we aren’t always processing energies that aren’t ours.

Who Should Practice Psychic Protection?

Anyone can benefit, but the following groups will find a practice of psychic protection especially helpful:

• Healers, psychics, Tarot readers, energy workers

• Empaths

• People who work in physically or emotionally challenging environments; i.e. hospitals, war zones, morgues/mortuaries, rehab centers, bars, etc.

• Teenagers or sensitive children

Psychic protection is simple and easy—children can learn to do it—and it makes a huge difference if you work or spend time in places where there are a lot of people and/or challenging, intense emotions flying around. We absolutely are affected by other peoples’ energy. If you are exposed on a daily basis to the anger of other people, for example, you will begin to feel more anger yourself.

School, especially middle and high school, are places of tremendous emotional stress and flux. If you have a sensitive child or even a child on the autistic spectrum, the ambient energies can just be too much. Psychic protection creates boundaries that help keep outside energies from getting into your child’s field. Because children are so open and receptive, it is easy for them to take in the emotions of others. If they have a practice they can use to stay calm and safe, it empowers them and makes things easier at home!

Methods of Psychic Protection

There are probably as many methods of psychic protection as there are healing and energy modalities. I like to use the following simple ritual and then augment with oils or gems if I’m in a particularly negative or charged environment.

I taught Lee Anne this technique, and she noticed an improvement right away.

At the beginning of your day, take a few moments to calm and center yourself. This can be during or after meditation, in the shower, or simply as you are enjoying a quiet cup of coffee. Focus on your breathing, and take a few deep, slow breaths. Then, place your attention on your third eye, and imagine enclosing yourself and your energy body in an egg of golden light. Speak these words: I enclose myself in a protective sphere of golden light. May this light protect me from any emotions or energies that are not my own, and keep me as safe as my karma will allow. I ask my guardian angel to be with and protect me and my guides present to guide me. Love may enter and leave this sphere, and insight and energy of high vibration work for my highest good. Let it be.

You can modify these words to suit your own beliefs. The point is to consciously intend to create a boundary between yourself and the rest of the world, but not a hermetically sealed bubble. You may want to repeat this a few times a day, either when you feel that you should or if you are in an extreme environment or situation.

At the end of the day, I spend a few moments before drifting off doing the following ritual. I again imagine my aura, and I call in my guides and angels to give me a nice aura brushing. I say: Guides and angels, please clear my aura of any residual negative energies or emotions. Sweep my energy through with golden light, cleansing, purifying, and strengthening my own emotional and energetic boundaries. Thank you, thank you, thank you. It takes just a few moments, and I can sometimes literally feel the guides combing through my aura, making it light and “new.”

If you do need extra levels of protection, you can make an essential oil blend that includes frankincense, ylang-ylang, and sandalwood (always dilute in a carrier oil!). Lee Anne likes to just wear frankincense diluted in coconut oil at her chakra points. Helpful stones are black tourmaline, obsidian, or smoky quartz.

It’s important to remember that entities or beings can’t attach to you without your permission, and we attract negative thought forms through like vibrations. If you feel that it’s “too late” for psychic protection, you can contact a psychic or healer to help you clear your field and restore it to a healthful place.

 

 

Published on Keen.com

Let’s Talk Witch – WHAT IS PSYCHIC ATTACK?

AnkH

Let’s Talk Witch – WHAT IS PSYCHIC ATTACK?

In essence, it’s when you’re being adversely affected and harmed by psychic or subtle energy. This energy could be in spirit or thought form, a hex or curse, someone’s ill-intentions that are targeted against you.

It can also happen when you’re being exposed to intense or violent emotional energy that has a lower or harmful nature (like road rage, or someone’s unintentional outburst), or when someone is psychically bullying you.

Psychic attack is not always intentional. Sometimes the person who is guilty of psychically attacking you isn’t aware that their thoughts, feelings, or desires are actually affecting you. Unfortunately, as awareness of this phenomenon grows, I’m seeing more and more people perpetuating this behavior intentionally, which is sad and at times downright creepy.

 

SYMPTOMS OF A PSYCHIC ATTACK:
Nightmares, night terrors
Irrational moods/feelings/fears/worries
The feeling of a “dark cloud” following you around
A heaviness on your heart or soul
Not feeling like yourself
Intense fatigue or depression that had a quick onset for no apparent reason
An eerie or creepy feeling that you’re being watched or not alone
Experiencing frequent hardships/mishaps/accidents/setbacks

 

HERE’S WHAT TO AVOID IF YOU SUSPECT YOU’RE BEING HIT WITH A PSYCHIC ATTACK:
Avoid going into fear
Blaming other people
Thinking that you’re cursed, a victim, or powerless, or a bad person
Judging the other person or spirit is as bad, or fearing that they’re omnipotent, omnipresent or someone/thing that you have to hide from, counter-attack, or destroy.
Why? Because then you’re lending it your own energy, focus, and power, which only serves to make it work against you.

 

TIPS ON HOW TO EFFECTIVELY HANDLE IT SO IT STOPS BY FINDING IT’S “IN”:
Look at your shadow. Years ago when I was learning spirit extraction and release, as well as clearing energy, reversing curses, etc. (yes I still do clearings, no I no longer deal in curses), a shaman I worked with shared that entities and attachments find their way into our energy fields through our shadows (meaning our shadow selves). Our shadow selves are the darker aspects of our whole selves. Our fears, shames, limiting beliefs, judgments, hatred, harmful desires, lusts, deviancies, etc. are all a part of our shadows.

Now your shadow is an integral part of being human, there’s no getting away from it, but what gives psychic attack it’s “in” is when it triggers an insecurity. Plenty of psychic attack or malevolent energy can bounce right off you, but if it hits you in a weak spot, so to speak, that’s when it scores a hit.

Identify your insecurity or weak spot – otherwise referred to as its “in” or back door. This is where your personal power comes into play: Rather than engaging with it, take a look at it, ferret out the insecurity and its underlying fear, and then take steps to resolve it. Depending on what the insecurity/fear is, it could take time to heal, resolve, or release it, but the good news is that once the insecurity has come into your awareness, you’ve found the attacker’s “in”. This puts you in the position of deciding what to do about it, rather than letting it run freely under your radar.

Refuse permission. When you realize that you’re being psychically attacked, and you’ve become aware of it’s “in”, then you have two choices: either react fearfully, or respond with authority. Take a deep breath, ground yourself, and then take the latter choice.

Consciously (either out loud or internally, but keep it private) acknowledge the attack. Acknowledge the insecurity that it’s triggered with compassion, and express gratitude to the attacker for bringing the insecurity to your attention, because now you can heal/resolve/release it. Affirm that the attacker has now served their higher purpose, they no longer have permission to enter, the back door is firmly closed and locked, and the energy can now be dissolved and resolved into Divine light. You’ve got this.

Work with crystal allies. Work with sodalite (self-awareness, self-knowledge, attunement) and mangano calcite (acceptance, nurturing love, gentle healing) while identifying and working through your insecurity.
You can also wear what I refer to a “psychic shield” in my book: black tourmaline (shields the aura), fluorite (cloaks the aura), labradorite (shields the heart chakra), blue kyanite (repels harmful thoughts/intentions), and either black obsidian (repels intentional harmful energy, like curses, ill-wishing, etc.) or jet (for empaths who feel particularly vulnerable, it absorbs energy in your stead).
On a final note, please, please, PLEASE, don’t judge or blame your insecurity or your shadow for making you vulnerable to harm! They’re vital parts of your human essence, and as their function is to catalyze your growth, they’re a beautiful and worthwhile part of who you are and of your life experience. Everything in creation has a higher purpose, even psychic attack, if we choose to see it that way.

A psychic attacker might be trying to do you harm, but if you exercise your authority over the matter, they’re actually doing you a favor. You don’t have to send them a box of chocolates, but the good news is that you don’t have to suffer their intentions, either.

 

Reference
Author: Krista Mitchell
Website: Krista Mitchell

Ms. Mitchell also offers a four hour course on “Psychic Shield: Energy Protection for Healers & Empaths” if you are interested the addy is https://www.krista-mitchell.com/psychic-shield

The Various Paths of Witchcraft: Celtic Witchcraft

Celtic Witchcraft

 

The History of Celtic Magic

Celtic witchcraft has as its basis a strong sense of spirituality and a love of the earth. Central to this love are the Goddesses and Gids, who play a strong role in Celtic worship. The Celtric religion recognises two main deities; the Earth Mother Goddess and the Horned God. But Celtic Wiccans also worship many othre minor deities who each represent specific qualities important to Celtic individuals. Celtic worshippers celebrate the same Sabbaths, perform rituals and magic, and have a strong faith in their spirituality, just like any member of the Craft. The main differences between Celtic witchcraft and other forms of the Craft is that with Celts, magic is everywhere. Magic is woven into their jewellery, their tattoos and all their artwork and everyday items such asclothing and cutlery.

The Druids are the religious leaders of the Celtic people,the wise and magical priestd and priestesses whose special blend of wisdom and magic provided a powerful role model for all the Celtic people. The Druidic priesthood was orginally all-female, which male initiates only becoming accepted after many years.

According to Laurie Cabot, Druidesses were divided into three levels, or classes: the highest class were celibate and lived in convents, and were eventually assimilated into Christianity as nuns. The other two levels could be married and lived either with their husbands, or in the temples. With the onset of Christianity these wise women were called witches.

Spirituality is of primary import to Celtis, and their devotion to the earth, their goddesses and gods and the effeort which they put into their worship is proof of their highly spiritual nature. Although the names of the deities worshipped and the titles of the SAbbats may be different to other Pagan practices, despite the regional dialects which occur in the Celtic rituals, there are strong similarities between Celtic witchcraft and Wicca practiced elsewhere on the globe.

Faerie Magic

Despite the interest in the Celts, there is a great deal of confusion as to who the Celtic people actually were, and where they came from. DJ Conway in her book Celtic Magic explains that the Celts were not only inhabitants of Wales Ireland and Scotland, as is commonly thought, but resided in much of Western Europe. They were a strongly spiritual, artistic and creative people, with a distinctive artwork, orginal alphabet (the Ogham) and a deep respect for faeries, elves, pixies and gnomes.

One need not be of Celtic heritage to practice Celtic magic. Each person who is interested in Paganism will follow a basic set of guidelines, but will adapt the rituals and spells to suit her/himself. One aspect which sets Celtic magic apart from others is their respect for the “little people”: faeries, elves and gnomes, whom the Celts called “Good Neighbours” and treated with honour. Much of the Celtic magic calls for the assistance of their Good Neighbours, with those who were familiar often using the little folks’ fairy circles of mushrooms found in fields, rather than casting their own magic circle. However the Celts realised that it is very important to use another’s circle with respect, and with permission, they are aware that you should never encroach upon another’s magic.

The Warrior Goddess

The Celts were unique in the level of power they attributed to their female Gods. Warrior Goddesses were relatively common, and it was not unusual for Celtic women to fight alongside the male warriors during wartime. Subsequently, women were highly regarded in the Celtic community, with children taking their mother’s name, and daughters inheriting the mother’s property upon her death.

Celtic magic is rooted strongly in the four natural elements: earth, air,fire and water, with many spells and rituals corresponding to at least one of these elements. As in all Wiccan magic, each of the elements is associated with a colour, and with certain powers. For the Celts the colours were North, black; South, white; East, red and West, grey. The Celts also placed a great deal of faith in stones and plants and in their ability to heal. Therefore any practitioner of Celtic magic would be well versed in plants and herbal medicine.

Ritualsinterwined the use of colours, stones, incense and elements representing the natural elements, which are all extremely powerful tools in Celtic magic.

Magical Lives

With the Celts, magic was a common part of everyday life, completely accepted and never questioned. In order to practice Celtic magic one needs to suspend disbelief, turn around the conventional ideas and accept magic into your life. Magic becomes s natural as breathing, sleeping and smiling : a completely normal part of life. As one becomes more familiar with magic, the more accepting one becomes, until there’s not even a second thought about the magic in one’s life.

The White Moon Goddess and the Honrned God are the two deities which personify nature for the Celts, and while the Celts, like Wiccans, believe that all Gods and Goddesses are one God united, is is these two which are the most prominent. Celts worship the triple Goddess: the deity recognised as the maiden, mother, crone. The maiden is Anu, the mother Badb and the crone Ceridwen: each representing woman at three important phases of her llife cycle.

Just as the lunar calendar is important to all witches, it plays a strong role in the Celtic lifestyle. The thirteen lunar months in the Celtic calendar are all named after certain plants and trees. The new year for the Celts starts the day after Samhain (on November 1, its origins being in the Northern hemisphere). Nights were counted, not days, and feasts, rituals and celebrations were always based around the moon. The Celtic day began at midnight.

The Celts were an extremely spiritual people, so when Christian leaders looked down upon their magical tradition, the Celts moved underground: or more specifically to the nearest forest. The Celts were not a sexually repressed people, sexuality was encouraged, and women with children were paid a higher dowery than virgins to become wives – so much was fertility prized. Beltane was considered a most auspicious festivals were often held during this time.

Celtic Rituals

In Celtic witchcraft, rituals honour the essential elements of earth, air, fire and water, and the deities that personify them. Rituals are held in honour of the seasons, the Sabbats and to celebrate auspicious moments in pagan history. Numbers are extremely important to the Celts, with three, five, seven, nine and thirteen holding special significance. Therefore it is auspicious to repeat rituals or affirmations a specific number of times.

Ritual is vital for Celtic magic. The wearing of ceremonial robes, the burning of incense and candles, and the tools on the ceremonial altar – all play an important role in setting the scene for magic. Magic is an oft overused term, but those in the Craft know that it works. With spellcraft one can practice and see the results of magic, constantly gaining strength with each day that passes.

Candle magic was greatly favoured by the Celts, although they preferred tallow lamps and bonfires using specific woods to modern candles we use today. Candle rituals are specific to the individual, but there are a few simple rules to follow unless the ritual specifies otherwise. To perform a spell to increase or obtain, burn during a waxing moon (the period leading up to the full moon). To decrease or remove, burn during a waning moon (the period after the full moon).

Use candles of a specific colour relevant to your spell. Anoint the candle with incense or oil, working from bottom to top for a spell to increase or from top to bottom for a spell to remove. You may also wish to etch words, such s your desires or the name of the deity to whom you are appealing, along the side of the candle to strengthen the purpose of the spell. When performing a ritual with a candle, unless otherwise stipulated, allow the candle to burn out to the end.

 

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Celtic Witchcraft – A Distinct Tradition

In the last decade or so, people have been obsessed with anything that is Celtic, from myth to music.

While witchcraft based on the Celtic tradition has been increasing in popularity, there are many followers who are still not very sure about how this kind of witchcraft is different from the other types of Pagan worship.

This is the kind of witchcraft that loves the earth and it also believes strongly in theology. As such, Gods and Goddesses are important to the followers of this form of Wicca.

The Celtic witchcraft identifies two chief deities. These are the Horned God and the Mother Goddess. Celtic Wiccans do worship other deities as well apart from these two deities, but these are by far the most prominent figures in this tradition.

The Celtic Wiccans are of the opinion that all goddesses and gods are one – but that the Horned God and the Earth Mother Goddess possess real authority. Another deity who is worshipped to a similar degree the Triple Goddess who is identified as the maiden, the mother and the crone. This underlines the female aspect to Celtic Mythology.

The followers of this religion carry out the same magic/rituals as other Wiccans. They tend to celebrate the same holidays or sabbats and they are also very dedicated to spirituality – just like any other Craft member.

Perhaps the main difference between the Celtic followers and other Wiccans is that when it comes to the Celtic tradition, their brand of Magick pervades everything, and it has a very ancient sense of history. Celtic-themed tattoos, jewelry, everyday items and artworks have the presence of magic and they hark back to an ancient but much cherished past.

The religious leaders of the Celts were the druids, a profession that now has a strong modern follower. Those were intelligent priestesses and priests that possessed the perfect blend of magic and wisdom. Only the most respected members of Celtic society rose to the level of becoming a druid. There was a time when the priesthood of the druids included only the females. However, this changed later on and the druidic orders started to accept males too. Again, this points to the very strong female basis that underpins the Celtic outlook on life.

Druidesses were said to be of three classes or categories.

DruidsThe first class was the celibate class and the priestesses of this class lived in convents. The other two levels of Druidesses had the freedom to marry and live with their husbands. They could also live in the temples.

The Celtic Wiccans of today are extremely spiritual people and you will be able to see this when you see how much work they put in to their worship. They are also very dedicated to earth as well as their gods and goddesses. While at first glance there seems to be very little difference between the Celtic followers and other Wiccans from all over the world, they have an outlook and a world view that is quite unique.

However, the fact remains that the Celtic Wiccans have a lot in common with non-Celtic Wiccans worldwide. The philosophy and ‘world view’ which emphasizes the power of nature remains central amongst all Wiccans.

When it comes to Magick, the Celts have woven it into each and every aspect of their lives. This outlook often has complete acceptance amongst all followers. If a person wishes to become a Celtic Wiccan then he or she will have to completely believe in magic and accept it into his or her life. People consider magic as normal as smiling, sleeping and breathing.

The Celts honor the earth’s essential elements like air, water, earth and fire in their rituals and they also pay respect to the deities that represent these elements. Rituals are held by the Celtic Wiccans to pay respect to the Sabbats, the different solstices and the various seasons. Harking back and celebrating the ancient past in a constant in these ceremonies.

The Celts believe that numbers are of vital importance to them and some of the numbers that have special meaning. These include 13, 9, 7, 5 and 3. The Celts are also of the opinion that rituals are of vital importance for their magic.

They pay attention to each and every minute aspect when it comes to creating a setting for Magick, such as using candles and incense, the necessary tools and wearing the correct ceremonial robes.

What you may not know is that the Celts are very religious people. In the ancient Celtic nations, women who had children were given a higher ranking in society than women who were virgins. This was because the Celts prized fertility.

For many, the Celts represent a freedom and an alternative society to the modern day one. The ancient Celts of northern Europe strongly resisted the advance of ‘civilization’, in the form of the Roman Empire, upon their lands.

They were outsiders and connected directly to the land, so the idea of instead aligning themselves with a foreign emperor clashed directly with their beliefs. It is this free-spirited nature that still attracts people to the Celtic ideal.

 

Reference

Cormac O’Dwyer, Librarian and Senior Witch
7 Witches Coven

Different Types of Spellcrafting: Banishing

 Banishing

In many traditions of Paganism, banishing is done to get rid of negative or unwanted energy, or even people who may be causing problems in our lives. While some traditions frown upon banishing as manipulative magic, on the theory that it impacts the free will of another, if your tradition has no prohibitions against such things, then there’s no reason you can’t do a banishing spell.

 

There are a number of different methods to accomplishing a successful banishing. Which one you choose will vary, depending on how comfortable you are with the different techniques, and what you’re trying to achieve.

 

Disclaimer: The spells contained here are collected from years of personal experience, folk magic traditions, and various occult sources as noted. They are posted with the intention of being helpful to those who are looking for spell resources, and may need to be adjusted to fit your individual need. Please bear in mind that if your particular belief system prohibits you from casting certain types of spells, you should probably not do so—however, it’s important to recognize that not all magical traditions follow the same set of guidelines when it comes to spellwork.

 

If you’re here, chances are good you’ve already read about the basics of banishing and getting unwanted metaphysical entities out of your life. However, sometimes, we have actual people in our lives that cause problems, and this is where a banishing spell comes in handy. There are a number of different methods you can try – just make sure that the one you use doesn’t violate any of your own personal moral or ethical guidelines.

 

If you’re trying to get rid of an unwanted spirit, one of the most effective methods is to simply give it its marching orders. Be firm and blunt, and say something along the lines of, “This is not the place for you, and it’s time for you to leave.” You may wish to offer a blessing or well-wishes if it makes you feel better about things, and say, “It is time for you to move on, and we wish you the best in your new place.” Frequently, this will do the trick and eliminate whatever problems you may have been having.

 

Elemental Banishing
A popular method of banishing is the use of the various elements, such as fire or water. Fire can be used as a method of purification and cleansing, by way of destruction. Water is used in a number of religions for a variety of purposes, including banishing. You can make your own consecrated water for use in rituals.

 

Salt is also a great tool for banishing. In some magical traditions, it represents earth, and has been used for centuries to get rid of negative energy. In some folk magic traditions, black salt – a blend of sea salt and another item such as charcoal – is used as a protective barrier.

 

Use fire to burn a symbol of whatever it is you wish to be rid of, or earth to bury it.

 

Ritual and Spellwork
In some circumstances, banishing may involve more than simply sprinkling some salt and telling someone (or something) to go away. If you have a person, for instance, who is harassing you, it may be time to do a full fledged banishing ritual. A banishing ritual usually includes a combination of the following:

 

The name of the person you wish to banish from your life
A specific and active description of what you intend to happen. For instance, “Make Susan a better person” is rather vague and passive – instead, try “Susan will stop harassing me at work.”
A magical link, or taglock, connected to the person you wish to banish
A great deal of magic relies on symbolism, so use this to your advantage in a banishing. You can freeze someone’s behavior by magically binding them, or even reflect the negative behavior back at them. A couple of simple methods include:

 

A basic binding which metaphysically ties the hands of the individual. Try the tongue-binding spell if you’re dealing with someone who is spreading nasty rumors about you.

Use a box with mirrors inside it to reflect negativity back to the individual who is harassing you.

You can create a banishing spell using the basic Spell Creation Template, and perform it as necessary. Feel free to make your banishing ritual or spell as over-the-top and extreme as you wish – getting rid of someone who is causing you pain or heartache is a pretty significant thing, so unleash as much magical mojo as you feel you need!

 

Banishing Folklore
To Make Someone Leave You Alone

 

This one comes in handy when you’ve got someone in your life that you can’t avoid—a co-worker or classmate—but you’re tired of being harassed by them. They’ll still be around, but they’ll stop bothering you.

 

Write the individual’s name on a piece of paper. Burn the paper around the edges using a black candle (black is associated with banishing magic), and as you do so, let them know that you are burning away whatever feelings (animosity, lust, jealousy, whatever) they may have towards you. Burn as much of the paper as you can, until all that’s left is their name.

 

Take the last bit of paper to the place where you normally see them— work or school or wherever—and dig a hole and bury it. You can also tear the paper into tiny pieces, and blow it away or scatter it to the winds.

 

Another option? Use the Chill Out spell, to get the person to chill out and move on.

 

How about some balloon banishing? Write the person’s name on a small piece of paper, and insert it into a balloon. Fill the balloon with helium, and then take it far away and release it into the sky.

 

The Get Out of My Life Poppet
This is a good one to use when you not only want to be left alone, you want the person completely out of your life. Light two black candles (black for banishment!), one on each side of your workspace.

 

Create a poppet out of whatever material you prefer to use (cloth, clay, wax, etc). As you assemble the poppet, make sure you tell the poppet how much you dislike it, and how your life would be a heck of a lot better if it would get out. Make sure you use a magical link so the poppet knows who it represents.

 

If you’re in a hurry to get the person out of your life, you can “light a fire under their butt” with the candles (important safety tip here, make sure you only SINGE the bottom of the poppet rather than actually lighting it on fire). Take it to the edge of your town, and bury it outside the city limits… if you make it out of clay you can smash it instead of burying it. Allow the candles to burn down until they are gone.

 

Four Thieves Banishing Spell
In some Hoodoo and folk magic tradition, an item known as Four Thieves vinegar is used. You’ll need to brew up a batch before you get started. Use the recipe here: Four Thieves Vinegar

 

Use this spell to keep someone bothersome away from you.

 

Write your target’s name on a piece of paper—some traditions recommend you use brown paper, or parchment. Soak the paper in Four Thieves Vinegar. Fold the piece of paper up as small as you can, and bury in the dirt somewhere. One school of thought is that you should bury it in a pot, preferably under a plant like a cactus, so no one will ever disturb it.

 

Banishing Spellcrafting

 

Banishing spells are spells designed to send something or someone away or to prevent their return.

 

To banish something means to send it away or drive it away from a location. In the mundane world banishment implies that whoever is banished can never return or is no longer welcome, but magical banishment is a little different.

 

Banishing Rituals
A banishing ritual is often performed at the beginning of a ceremony in order to rid the ritual area of negative or unwanted energy or entities that may interfere with magick or unbalance energies that will be raised or summoned during the ceremony. Most magical paths prescribe a banishing ritual of this type prior to any spellwork or magick of any sort.

 

A banishing may also be performed at the end of a ritual to banish any entities that were evoked or invoked during the procedure or to clear the energy that has been raised from the ritual area to allow it to return to mundane use. For example, you would banish the energy from the love spell that you performed in your living room so that it can return to normal living room use and not affect everyone who comes in there innocently trying to watch the evening news.

 

A banishing may be performed on the ritual space or on the magic-user(s) or both, however, when you perform a banishing ritual on an area, you do internalize it somewhat automatically. The Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram is a basic banishing ritual that is a primary requirement of initiates into the Golden Dawn. It is used to prepare a ritual area and also to prepare the magic-user by focusing their mind and energy on the task at hand, creating a magical atmosphere and an altered state of consciousness.

 

One may banish summoned energies and entities as well once their presence is no longer required. Although the word “releasing” is most often used, the Watchtowers that are evoked at the four corners of the Circle in many rituals are, in fact, banished at the ritual’s end.

 

Introduction to Banishing Rites by Phil Hines

Banishing Spells
Banishing spells are designed to drive away anything the magic-user feels is a threat or a nuisance; a person, an obstacle, a debt, a disease, an addiction, a bad habit, etc.

 

A banishing may be performed on a home, to drive away unwanted energies, discord, stress, etc. undesirable entities, such as ghosts and troublesome faeries and other spirits.

 

A banishing spell may be performed on a person to banish an addiction, an affliction or an influence another person has over them.

 

Banishing spells are also performed on objects to rid them of connections to prior owners or any energies picked up during their use, often in preparation for programming or charging them for a a new purpose.

 

The term cleansing refers to a banishing done to remove unwanted energies from an person, location or object. The term exorcism is used to describe a banishing for an unwanted entity, especially an uncooperative, unfriendly one.

 

Performing a Banishing Spell
While banishing spells can be performed at any time, they are most effective if performed during the waning phase of the moon while the moon is in the sign of Capricorn or Scorpio. Saturday is a good day for general banishing spells. (See also Spell Timing as there are better times for the banishing of specific things.) The best time is at the dark of the moon, but before the new moon appears.

 

Some say that your movements should be widdershins when performing a banishing spell, but some believe that it’s bad luck to move in any direction other than sunwise while performing a spell.

 

For many banishing spells, an object is chosen to represent the person, idea, thing or energy to be banished. This item is then charged or programed to represent the target using various means and then symbolically sent away. Running water, such as a river, a sewer drain or even a flushing toilet is often utilized in this way. It is important that the item be of safely biodegradable nature so that your spell work does not bring harm to the environment or clog up the pipes.

 

Banishing of energy or entities may take the form of a more complicated ritual involving fumigating or asperging an area, person or object. If you are banishing energy from your person, a ritual bath may be in order.

 

These Herbs are Useful for Banishing Spells
• Angelica
• Anise
• Bay Laurel
• Black Cohosh
• Cyclamen
• Devil’s Claw
• Garlic
• Heliotrope
• Hellebore
• Holly
• Mistletoe
• Nettle
• Pine
• Pokeweed
• Rosemary
• Rue
• Solomon’s Seal
• Stinging Nettle
• Thyme
• Vervain

These Minerals are Useful for Banishing Spells
• Black Salt
• Bloodstone
• Jet
• Smoky Quartz
• Tourmaline
These Incense are Useful for Banishing
• Dragon’s Blood
• Pine Incense and Oil

Reference

Patti Wigington, Published on ThoughtCo
Witchipedia

 

Various Paths of Witchcraft/Wicca: Seax-Wica

 

Seax-Wica

 

Seax-Wica

 

Seax-Wica (also known as Saxon Witchcraft) is a tradition of modern Pagan Witchcraft which is largely inspired by the iconography of historical Anglo-Saxon Paganism. The tradition also draws inspiration from Anglo-Saxon Witchcraft in England between the 5th and 11th centuries CE, during the Early Middle Ages. However, unlike Asatru or Theodism, Saxon Witchcraft is not a reconstruction of the early medieval religion itself.

 

The tradition was founded in 1973 by Raymond Buckland, an English-born High Priest of Gardnerian Wicca who moved to the United States in the 1970s. Buckland had been dissatisfied with the corruption, abusive behavior, and ego trips he saw in some covens and developed Seax-Wica to answer those concerns. His book, “The Tree”, was one of the first books to explore modern Pagan Witchcraft from a solitary perspective. He offered serious seekers both an introductory text on Saxon Witchcraft, a tradition of modern Witchcraft that could be practiced alone, as well as with a coven.

 

The tradition primarily honours Germanic deities such as Woden and Freya, the typical 8 Sabbats of modern Pagan Witchcraft, and uses a minimal set of the usual ceremonial tools and a spear. Runes are significant and regularly discussed.

 

Seax-Wica

The Tree (1974) was the founding text of the Seax tradition.
Seax-Wica is a tradition, or denomination, of the neopagan religion of Wicca which is largely inspired by the iconography of the historical Anglo-Saxon paganism, though, unlike Theodism, it is not a reconstruction of the early mediaeval religion itself.

 

The tradition was founded in 1973 by Raymond Buckland, an English-born high priest of Gardnerian Wicca who moved to the United States in the 1970s. His book, The Tree, was written with the intent for it to be a definitive guide to Seax-Wica, and was published in 1974 by Samuel Weiser, and subsequently republished in 2005 as Buckland’s Book of Saxon Witchcraft.

 

The tradition primarily honours four principal deities: Woden, Thunor, Frig or Freya and Tiw. These are seen as representations of the Wiccan deities of the Horned God and the Mother Goddess. The tradition uses a minimal set of ceremonial tools, including a spear. Runes are also significant.

 

Openness
Seax-Wica does not employ any secrecy oath. Buckland’s Book of Saxon Witchcraft was written in mind that the reader would already be well versed in the various techniques of Witchcraft and Wiccan ritual. However, Buckland has pointed out that his Complete Book of Witchcraft gives instructions on how to proceed when no tools are available. These instructions are enough to allow one to begin, self-initiate, and consecrate one’s first tools.

 

Organisation
Seax-Wica allows self-dedication as entry into its tradition. In the Seax tradition, covens work by a form of democracy, electing, un-electing, and re-electing coven officers, the high priest and priestess. Within ritual settings, there are the thegn, a type of sergeant-at-arms/guard/watchman, who can also be responsible for the covenstead (the meeting place of the coven), or guarding a ceremony being performed; there is also a scribe/secretary, who keeps most, if not all, of the coven’s records. The word “Thegn”, or “Thane” is an Anglo-Saxon title (Anglo-Saxon: þeg(e)n meaning “a servant, one who does service for another.”)

 

Buckland was not the head of the tradition, but is respected as its founder, and continued to practice and contribute to it, until his death on September 27, 2017.

 

The first elected steward of Seax Wica is Wulfeage (Sean Percival) on 2006,[citation needed] who was elected by covens worldwide and is still steward to this day

 


Seax-Wica

The History of Seax-Wica is a short and interesting one. There are no long myths of the origins of the tradition, no claims to antiquity, and very few conflicting versions of how the tradition came to be.

 

Mostly Seax-Wica came from the vision of one man, Raymond Buckland. While he was in America teaching the tradition he learned from Gardner to us willing Americans, he found his own ideas developing along lines that differed in important ways from Gardner’s. So, he kept true to his oaths of silence and split with Gardner. He spent many years researching Pagan traditions, and he sat down and wrote, from start to finish, Seax-Wica.

 

Seax-Wica has a basis of Saxon belief. From what Buckland has said and what I have read, there is a mish-mash of traditions and celebrations intermixed into this tradition, mainly because the Saxon culture itself was made up of many different traditions as well. Many scholars have tried to separate out “pure” Saxon from the rest, and it can’t be done.

 

Because of this, you have a Norse influence in the Gods’ names. Instead of something completely different, the God is Woden and the Goddess is Freya. If you didn’t know that the Saxons were heavily influenced by the Norse, you could get more than a bit confused by this seeming deity displacement.

 

Along with the deity influence, probably the best known feature of Seax-Wica is the rune script. In the research I have done on the Internet to see what everyone else thinks of Seax-Wica, I have found 30 different pages with just the rune script on it, and no other information on Seax-Wica. I find this interesting since this rune script is very close to that used by the Norse and their famous FUThARK script. Why use a copy when you can use the original?

 

One thing that was a novelty in 1974 when Buckland started Seax-Wica was that none of the ceremonies or rites were secret. There was no oath of secrecy binding members of the groups together, nor was there an iron-clad rule that stated everything learned must be passed down without any changes. Individual Priests and Priestesses were encouraged to do research and add to the tradition if it suited them, and to share that knowledge with everyone that was interested.

 

Regardless of any of that, Raymond Buckland developed Seax-Wica in 1973 and wrote The Tree which was published in December of 1974. This book encouraged the seeker to look beyond what he wrote and to add it to the tradition if they wanted to.

 

The rituals are on a solar cycle, although Moon rites are encouraged. However, unlike many traditions, it is not only the God that is celebrated during the Sabbats, but both deities, and the same holds true for the Moon Esbats as well. Both God and Goddess are honored at each rite or ritual held in their honor. There is no ritual sacrifice of the God, no supremacy of the Goddess and the Priestess.

 

There is also a transition time from the Lord to the Lady and vice-versa. In the Seax-Wica tradition, Samhain is the time of the start of the new year, and it is also the time when the Lord is more influential than the Lady. The Lord is supposed to lead the Wiccans through the night of winter into the spring. At Beltane the Lady takes over from the Lord and leads the Wiccans through the summer and fall, when the Earth is alive and growing. Note that one is not supreme to the other, but rather it is a division of who has more guidance over the world during their times. Like every good parent, if necessary the Lady will respond if called upon during the winter and the Lord will act if called upon during the Summer.

 

There are no power plays because the Covens are truly autonomous and democratic. Each year a vote is taken by the Coven, and a new Priest or Priestess may be elected at this time to lead the Coven for the coming year. Some Covens elect both at the same time each year, others elect the Priest in the Summer, and the Priestess in the Winter. But it is plain that it is almost impossible to have a “Coven Cronies” syndrome without some extraordinary circumstances occurring. There are no degree systems, no initiations, other than the one that makes one a Wiccan. After that, the new initiate has the same right and authority to speak and be heard as the Priestess of the Coven. From the moment of initiation, the new Wiccan is considered a Priest/ess of the Gods.

 

The actual rituals that are written down in The Tree are short and to the point. There is little that is confusing about the rite itself, other than some unclarity about just what some of the tools are used for. In a few cases, a tool is called for in a ritual that is never used again. For instance, the wand is called upon as necessary for the Ostara celebration, but in actual practice it is not used in the rite at all.

 

One of the more prominent differences between Seax-Wica and other traditional practices is the Athame (called a Seax in Seax-Wica). In this tradition it can be single or double edged. The Seax is also used in a variety of everyday uses that many traditional practitioners would be shocked to find a ritual knife being used for, from cutting herbs in the garden to cutting the roast for the dinner table that night. The rationale for this is that the more you use a ritual knife, in whatever purpose, the more of yourself you put into the blade and the better able it is to mesh with your energies during a ritual.

 

This is the reason that many of the standard tools are missing from Seax-Wican practice. For example, the White Handled Knife, normally used for making inscriptions, is replaced by the Seax. The same for the Boline or herb knife. The Cords, used in many traditional Covens, are absent from most of the Seax-Wican tradition except during initiation and cord magick, in which any cord can be used. There is also no Scourge and no ritual flagellation in the Seax-Wican practice. A spear is added to the ritual implements for one of the officers to use in the execution of his duties.

 

Seax-Wica is focused more on the religion of Wicca than the Witchcraft and spellcraft aspects. In The Tree there is some information on spell casting, herbs and divination, but a practitioner of Seax-Wica would be well-rewarded to get some supplemental works and books on magick and divination to round out their education. This is intentional. The Tree assumes that the person going into Seax-Wica is either already well read in Witchcraft or they are willing to become so.

 

Another change is the absence of the Maiden and the Crone coven positions. There are four officers in a Seax-Wican coven, but to replace them, the Thegn (pronounced Thain) and the Scribe were made. The thegn position combines many duties but mostly they act as the coven Sergeant-at-Arms. They are responsible for summoning the Coven for the ritual, drawing the physical boundaries of the Circle and acting as the Stage Manager during the ritual. The holder of this position uses the Spear.

 

The Scribe is the Coven secretary. This person is responsible for keeping all of the coven records, from membership rolls to monies received from donations, to agreements for hand partings. If the coven chooses to become a legal church, this would be the person that handles all the paperwork involved in this undertaking.

 

One other major difference is that Seax-Wica, unlike most traditional groups, recognizes self initiation. The rationale for this stance can be summed up in one phrase, “who initiated the first Witch?” As such, the declaration of Self Dedication is seen as just as valid as a coven initiation and little to no emphasis is placed upon “So and so, initiated by whom, initiated by this person…” or the lineage of a witch.

 

While this can and does cause some conflict with other traditions, it also encourages those who have little to no contact with other like minded people to acknowledge their deities and their choice of religion.

 

With all the advantages listed above, there are some problems with the practice however.

 

The encouragement to add to the tradition can lead to eclecticism run rampant. Researching the roots of Paganism and Witchcraft can lead to a mixing of cultures that can be confusing to a new practitioner of Seax-Wica. However, many good covens try to break out what has been added to the tradition from Buckland’s teachings and truly try to not confuse cultures and practices.

 

Another drawback is because Seax-Wica recognized self dedication, it can promote the “one book and I’m a Witch” mind set that has been so prevalent in recent years. With a book like The Tree this is especially dangerous. The Tree, the main Book of Shadows for this tradition, is spare in the rituals and explanations of those rituals. As stated before, it assumes you are already well read in Wicca. If a new practitioner started with The Tree as their primary reference, it could lead into the new person leaping into Wicca full bore without much of the information that is needed and without consideration of what they are about to do or how it will affect the rest of their life. But this problem is more prevalent if one uses The Complete Book of Witchcraft as the sole source of information rather than The Tree.

 

It also can lead to the “Insta-Priest/ess” syndrome where this practitioner is considered a Priest/ess of Seax-Wica and they have little to no study in many of the areas that are important to the Priests and Priestesses out there. However, to those with a true vocation, who are willing to put in the time and effort to research Wicca and Paganism and Witchcraft, this can be a tremendous advantage. There are those who were not able to find a coven to join or a group who was practicing to initiate them who were able to be with the Gods and participate in an environment that is, to all intents and purposes, free of politics.

 

This, unfortunately, leads to many various levels of knowledge in the Seax-Wica community as a whole. One good thing that comes out of the sparsity of information is that if you do have a call upon your heart, the finding of information is a joy, and all the others who don’t have a similar call will probably leave Wicca and Seax-Wica after a while and it’s popularity has faded. But this is also a problem in the Wiccan community as a whole, rather than unique to Seax-Wica.

 

The rituals as written by Buckland and his wife, Tara, are somewhat perfunctory. This “minimalistic ritual” can be good in that there is little to read or memorize for a specific ritual and it leaves a lot of room for elaboration. But this can also be bad in that there is little feel for the ritual because you are not given time to become involved with the rite before the celebration is over. However, some judicious elaboration and rewriting of the rituals can take care of that problem, and some of the rituals, like the hand fasting, are exceedingly powerful if done properly.

 

The final disadvantage that I can think of is that the way Buckland writes the tradition, it seems shallow. Not that the practitioners are shallow, but the practices, rites and way of doing things feels like it has no depth to it.

 

I must state this this last point is my personal opinion, and it stems mostly from how I got to Seax-Wica in the first place. I came to Seax-Wica from Mormonism, where rituals and a close connection with God are encouraged, but conformity in the Church is even more encouraged. So it is possible in the framework of Mormonism to have absolutely no testimony of the Church, the Bible, God or anything else they believe in and still be a member. Just so long as you know what to do and when to do it. I had no sense of the Religion, and was looking for something to fill that void. Seax-Wica was the instrument I chose to fill that gap, and over time it did. I have a sense of the Gods now, but I did not when I first started out. All of this sense of the Gods came from independent study of outside materials.

 

This can be overcome with study and a true sense of the Gods, but it could turn some off. I think in some ways, this was intentional, but I don’t know. It may simply be that there are no illusions about Seax-Wica being the continuation of something from the mists of time, so it will take time for a deep respect for Seax-Wica to be developed.

 

As you can see from this introduction to Seax-Wica, there are many strengths to it and the disadvantages can be overcome with study and perseverance. This tradition of Wicca is one that has a great deal going for it, but it is also a tradition that has mostly been dismissed by more traditional groups because of it’s lack of antiquity. However, if one accepts that all religious paths are ultimately made by humanity for humanity, then this lack of roots becomes a small matter.

 

It can even become the basis for an in-depth study of many Pagan paths, as well as a starting point for a lifelong seeking of knowledge.

 

I, myself, started with Seax-Wica. I jumped into the Wiccan Religion and into Seax-Wica completely from the beginning. That starting point led me to Celtic Religions, Druidry, and eventually into Witchcraft. It taught me a sense of who I am, and Seax-Wica showed me what I did and didn’t want in a religion that I followed. For a time, I thought, like many, that Buckland was a God and that everything he said was the TRUTH and completely infallible. But I also believed that the picture of Covens he painted was the truth, where all the members got along, and cooperated with each other and that the members loved each other with everything they had. I believed that Wiccans were a group of people who had identified what was dark and negative inside themselves and that they had taken steps to eradicate it in their lives. I believed it so strongly that I desperately wanted to be part of that group.

 

Well, time passed and I am wiser than I was. But because of how Seax-Wica was presented to me, and how Wicca was presented through Seax-Wica, I still wish to be part of this group

 

Seax-Wica is not for everyone. If you decide to follow this tradition there will be much asked for by the Gods. Study, practice, reading and research, internalizing lessons and evolutions of yourself will all become necessary. You will be asked to present the Best of what a Wiccan Priest/ess can be at all times, to your fellow Wiccans, and to others who will never understand what Wicca is about.

 

But despite all that, or because of it, your relationship with the Gods will truly become personal and internal. This is an excellent starting point, so long as you are willing to work and do your share.

 

And, ultimately, isn’t that what a religion is supposed to do?

 

Reference:

Wikipedia

Erin’s Journal

The Tree by Raymond Buckland Publisher: Samuel Weiser Publication date: December 1974 ISBN: 0877282587
Buckland’s Complete Book of Witchcraft by Raymond Buckland Publisher: Llewellyn Publication date: December 1986 ISBN: 0875420508

The Various Paths of Witchcraft: Kitchen Witchcraft

Kitchen Witchcraft

Kitchen witchcraft is witchcraft based in the kitchen, often incorporating much in the way of cooking and herb work. There are large overlaps with hearth witchcraft. Kitchen witches are, if anything, more come-as-you-are and tend to use kitchen items as tools when required.

There’s a growing movement within modern Paganism known as kitchen witchery. The kitchen is, after all, the heart and hearth of many modern households. When you have a gathering in your home, where do most of your guests hang out? Why, the kitchen, of course! Also, thanks to a declining economy, many more people are making meals from scratch and the kitchen has once again become a place where people spend hours, rather than minutes.

So it’s no surprise that kitchen witchery has seen a rise in popularity.

Meal Prep as Magic
When you take the time to put meals together from the basic ingredients, you have a magical opportunity at hand. You can infuse every dish with intent and will. A meal can stop being something you dump out of a can, and start being a ritual in and of itself. When you take the time to prepare something with your own hands, it lends sacredness to the meal, and will make you want to spend time savoring it with your family rather than just snarfing it down on your way out the door to soccer practice. By changing the way you view food, its preparation, and its consumption, you can craft some practical magic at its simplest level.

How To Bring Magic Into the Kitchen
As you become more aware of what it’s like to live magically, and more in tune with your own actions and activities, you may at some point realize that your own kitchen is a magical one.

There are a number of things you can do to enhance the magical atmosphere in your kitchen. Try some or all of these to get started.

First of all, consider having a kitchen altar. The stovetop is today’s equivalent of the hearth fires of old, and it’s where most food preparation is done. Create a small altar with items that can be moved as needed—add a statue of a home or hearth goddess, a cauldron, or a candle.

If you like, paint a trivet with symbols of your tradition.

Make sure your herbs are readily accessible in your kitchen. If you cook with them, display them in decorative jars. Make sure that they’re not sitting in direct sunlight, though, or they’ll lose their potency. If possible, have live plants in pots to use during the year. Keep fresh vegetables on hand as well.

Read up on practices like Feng Shui so you can optimize your work space for maximum efficiency, both spiritual and practical.

Keep the space clean. Much like any other sacred space, physical cleanliness maintains spiritual cleanliness. It’s hard to find balance in a place that is cluttered and chaotic. Make sure countertops are wiped down after each meal, keep the sink free of dirty dishes, and organize cupboards and shelves so they are easy to use.

Want to feel joyful every time you walk into your kitchen? Paint the walls in colors that are comforting and happy! If your house still has the 1970’s metallic flecked wallpaper in the kitchen, it’s time to get it out of there. Choose a color that makes you and your family feel good — earth tones are soothing, yellows are happy and bright, and greens bring prosperity and abundance.

Keep cookbooks and recipes organized where you can find them. You might even want to have a special book of magical recipes that you keep separate from your regular Book of Shadows.

You can also incorporate magical practices into your cooking. When you’re stirring a recipe, consider stirring in a deosil or widdershins direction, depending on the goal you wish to achieve. If you’re making a sandwich, spread condiments like mustard in a sigil for your purpose. When you bake bread, add herbs or spices that correspond to your magical needs.

Get your kitchen clean and organized, and you’ll be well on your way to a successful path as a kitchen witch!

 

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Kitchen Witchcraft

As with all the diverse paths of witchcraft there is no one single definition of what it is to be a kitchen witch. There are practises many kitchen witches have in common but any individual will make the path of the kitchen witch her own. That said there are some common traits that help make up the definition of those practising kitchen witchery.

The kitchen and specifically the hearth or the kitchen fire is traditionally seen as being the heart of the home and the family. For the kitchen witch the kitchen and the hearth are the central focus of her path. The hearth itself – or for those witches who have homes without a hearth – the kitchen fire or stove will play an intrinsic part in the magic she works. Kitchen witches are likely to undertake a lot of workings with fire, be it fire to create (cooking) or fire to destroy (burning to banish).

The kitchen witch may choose to keep an altar in the kitchen – devoted to deity, ancestors, elements or spirits depending on the personal nature of her beliefs. This may be incorporated into the magic she works, it may have a protective function (items for protection may not necessarily be in the form of a formal altar, a kitchen witch may prefer to hang charms about her work space) or it may simply be a focal point for worship. Some kitchen witches choose to honour the Gods/Goddesses associated with the home – perhaps most popularly Hestia the Greek Goddess of the hearth.

A kitchen witch’s path is often about improvisation and the use of ordinary common place objects to work magic. Unlike some (usually Wiccan) witches a kitchen witch may choose not to differentiate between ceremonial and everyday tools. Kitchen witches may use the same knife for sacrifice or ritual as they do for chopping the vegetables. The usefulness of items is emphasised above their sanctity and it is the view of some witches that it is the utility of the object that lends it the power.

A kitchen witch is likely to be interested in every stage of food production and this begins with growing her own herbs and vegetables and raising her own livestock. Of course this is not practical for every kitchen witch but it is likely there will be a nod to the food production process in the home of every kitchen witch. This may vary from running a full size farm to growing a pot of basil on the windowsill but the idea is the same – the witch is working with ingredients she has grown herself.

There is sometimes a misconception that the path of the kitchen witch focuses exclusively around food and the preparation of meals. This is not true although cooking does play a big part in this particular craft. Stirring intent into meals, cooking with specially selected magical herb and using organic and homegrown produce are solid trademarks of kitchen witchery. The crafting and creating however is not limited to the production of food and many kitchen witches will incorporate more diverse crafting such as soap making, weaving, knitting, using natural ingredients to create home made medicines and other traditional crafts into their practise. Magic can be as effectively achieved by sewing intent into a shirt as it can be by stirring intent into the dinner and it is important not to pigeon hole the kitchen witch as working in a single limited capacity. If anything the focus on improvisation and use of everyday tools for workings make the kitchen witch an unusually diverse practitioner. Those who think she is just good for baking cakes underestimate her greatly.

Kitchen Witchery – although a relatively modern term – is perhaps one of the most traditional paths a witch can walk. The kitchen witch looks for meaning in the mundane and usefulness in the easily accessible. She hides in plain sight better than most and incorporates her mundane routine with her magical life in a harmonious manner. There is perhaps no modern witch treading a more similar path to her ancestors than the kitchen witch who works her magic in the heart of her home and her family.

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Reference

Patti Wigington, Published on ThoughtCo.com

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