Black

Another colour of Saturn and also the kings of the Underworld - the Roman Pluto, the bestower of the hidden wealth that lay within the Earth, and the Greek Hades, who abducted Persephone (Proserpine), thus causing winter. Black is the colour not only of death, but also of regeneration. This belief goes back to Ancient Egypt when the annual flooding of the Nile carried with it black silt, which brought new life to the land each year. In magick, black is the colour of endings that carry within...

Persephone

Persephone is the Greek maiden goddess of transformation, daughter of Demeter and goddess of spring and flowers. She was abducted by Hades, God of the Underworld, and became Queen of the Underworld for the winter months, returning to the Earth as the light-bringer in spring and so representing the cycle of death and rebirth. She is especially powerful in rituals by or for young women, especially those who have suffered loss or abuse, and also for mother-daughter relationships. She is sometimes...

Beltain The Festival Of Fire

This Celtic festival of summer is also called Bel-fire, the festival of Belenus, Celtic god of light. Time Sunset 30 April-sunset 2 May (31 October-2 November in the southern hemisphere) Focus The fertility of the Earth, creatures, crops, people and animals the instinctive energies that can be manifest as passion whether in sexual terms or for any cause the interconnectedness of all existence and the mutual dependency of one life form on another. Beltain, which has survived as our modern May...

Charging Your Crystals With Positive Power

All crystals contain power as well as protective qualities and cleansing is itself empowering. However, if you are being subjected to stress or harassment of any kind, you might like to charge your crystal, so that when you touch or look at it, you will be enclosed in its radiance and stimulate your own innate self-protective power. Your charged crystal acts as an amplifier for your own inner radiance and self-confidence and will repel any hostility. My own favourite method is to wrap the...

Ritual For Consecrating Water

If you are carrying out a special healing or protective ritual, you might wish to use this slightly more complex method of creating sacred water. It is possible to buy or obtain water from holy wells, usually in return for a donation towards the upkeep of the well, and some commercially bottled spring water comes from sacred wells. For example, the healing water from Prime's Well, in the Malvern Hills, where the hero in Langland's poem The Vision of Piers the Plowman received his vision, is now...

Water

Because water is vital for life, it has become associated with rebirth and healing through the washing away of sins and disease, and so with protection from ills of all kinds. Water for rituals must first be consecrated. You can use either pure spring water or tap water left for 24 hours in a crystal or clear glass container. Cover the water with mesh in the waxing or full moon and then leave out of doors to absorb the light of the Moon and the Sun for a full 24 hours. The full moon rises...

Ostara The Spring Equinox

Time From sunset on or about 20 March for three days (from sunset on or about 21 September in the southern hemisphere) Focus The triumph of light over darkness, resurrection, new beginnings and opportunities spring cleaning and casting out what is no longer of worth fertility and conception, the winds of change. At the spring equinox, the Sun rises precisely in the East and sets precisely in the West, giving exactly 12 hours of daylight and so heralds the longer days and shorter nights. As is...

The Focus

This defines the purpose of the ritual or spell and is generally represented either by a symbol or a declaration of intent. These could take the form of a candle etched with the name or zodiacal glyph of a desired lover, a little silver key charm or an actual key in a spell to find a new home, a picture of an In a sense, this part of the spell begins before the actual rite and involves verbalising the purpose. As you define it in a few words or a symbol, you may realise that what you are really...

Using The Seasons In Magick

You can add extra depth and significance to your rituals by carrying them out using the associated candles, crystals, herbs and incenses when the particular seasonal energies are at their height. Such seasonal empowerments will bring the related qualities into your life, to be stored for times when you need their strengths in your everyday world, perhaps at a time of change or crisis. After a year or so of tuning into the seasonal cycle, you will build up a repository of energies for every...

Ritual For Harmony

This ritual can be used when, for example, a colleague, family member or friend is intruding in your life, but you do not want to hurt their feelings. It can be very successful if you have received one too many phone calls or visits at inconvenient moments from a friend or neighbour. It may help to ward off constant interference in your projects by your boss or a colleague at work, or possessiveness that is not malicious but comes from loneliness in a close relative, a child or even your...

Spells Done With Turquoise

Turquoise is for tranquillity, empathy, altruism and wisdom. Turquoise strengthens the immune system, soothes inflammation and calms the nerves. It helps to relieve asthmatic and general respiratory difficulties and skin complaints such as eczema, swellings and thyroid problems. Turquoise crystals include aquamarine, malachite, opal and turquoise. Blue Blue is for ideals, the expansion both of perspective and physical horizons and authority, and for allowing what is not of value to be gradually...

Waxing Moon Fertility Spell

I get asked for fertility spells perhaps more than any other kind, as the modern world with everything running 24 hours a day, including lighting and heating, throws our bodies out of sync. Certainly, people no longer make love in tune with the rising energies of the Earth. While physiological problems need medical input, fertility spells practised over a few months are good for women who come off the Pill and feel anxious if they do not become pregnant in the first two or three months. They...

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...

Sage

Sage is a popular culinary herb with many medical applications and healing powers according to tradition, it prolongs life and health. In medieval times it was said 'Why should a man who has sage in his garden ever die '. Sage was called herba sacra ('the holy herb') by the Romans and was used by the Ancient Egyptians to cure male infertility and by the Chinese to stimulate both yang and yin energies. It is especially good for strengthening the lungs and it boosts the immune system, helping to...

Ritual To Wash Away Negativity

Infusions can be made, using lemon, peppermint, pine or tea tree oil, to wash away negative feelings. Use 12 drops of essential oil to a bucket of hot water. Alternatively, add two peppermint tea bags to a cup of boiling water and leave to infuse for five minutes. Use your essential oil infusion to scrub or mop floors, yards, balconies, doorsteps or patios. * Work in circles widdershins, saying One for joy, two for gladness, Three and four to banish sadness, Five and six flee useless anger,...

Preparing For Ritual

Despite this, even magick has to conform to the needs and customs of the modern world, and so witches today often do not fast for 24 hours or abstain from sex for the same period. But you should try to slow your activities down in the hours before a formal ceremony, eat only a light meal and turn off all phones, faxes and computers if you are working from home. Make sure you have all the basic tools and ingredients for the ceremony and that the room is...

Making Poppets

Poppets are a little more complicated to make. Take a piece of white cloth, preferably silk or cotton, and draw the outlines of two doll figures as shown opposite. They should be about 15 cm (6 in) high -any smaller and they become difficult to fill with herbs. Cut out the two shapes and sew them together using thread of a colour appropriate to the purpose of the spell. Leave a gap at the top of the head so that you can fill the poppet. If the poppet is being used in a group ritual, you may...

My Own Witchery

People started calling me a witch long before I adopted the title, which I did as a result of a book I wrote in 1996 called Every Woman a Witch (though it must be said that men as well as women can harness what are entirely natural powers). When the book was published, some people in the media joked about my childhood in England's industrial Midlands - not considered a place where magick or spirituality can flourish. It seemed that they could not accept the fact that my spells focused on the...

Thoth

Thoth was the Ancient Egyptian god of the Moon, wisdom and learning. He was also god of time, languages, law and mathematical calculations, who invented the calendar and hieroglyphic writing. He is often depicted with the head of an ibis although he was worshipped as a baboon in Hermopolis. Appeal to him for all matters of magical wisdom, learning, intellectual pursuits, examinations and better time management.

Witchcraft Isis

The Egyptian goddess Isis is the most powerful and frequently invoked goddess in formal magick. She is mother, healer and the faithful wife who annually restored her consort Osiris to life, thus magically causing the Nile to flood and fertility to return to the land. She is the patroness of magick and spell-casting, having tricked Ra the Sun God into giving her his secrets. Some accounts say she was taught by Thoth, god of wisdom and learning. Her cult spread throughout the Roman Empire and she...

Sun Magick Ritual For Energy

Because it can be dangerous to look directly at the Sun, catch your sunlight close to noon in a large crystal or in water in a brass dish. * As before, 'inhale' the sunlight via the crystal or water with your eyes open. Hold the Sun breath, counting 'One and two and three', then close your eyes and exhale the darkness of your doubt, anger or lack of confidence. With practice, this will become a single movement. * Continue until you are filled with light and energy, then exhale a Sun breath,...

Casting A Circle

All spells and rituals, however formal or informal, are based on a magical circle. This may be large enough for an entire group of practitioners to stand in, or it may be small enough to fit on your personal altar. I have known practitioners who have only a small area create a circle on a table-top and sit facing North, physically outside it but spiritually within, manipulating the symbols within it. I have also known modern witches who will create an instant circle on paper or even on a...

History Of Green Magic Wicca

Green is for Earth and the North, midnight and winter. A green candle is placed at what would be the 12 o'clock position on a clock, aligned with magnetic or a symbolic North. Earth is the element of order, both in nature and institutions such as the law, politics, finance, health and education. It also represents yin, the female, nurturing goddess aspect, Mother Earth, the home and family, as well as money and security, and is a good element to invoke when you have matters of property or money...

The Cauldron

The cauldron is the one ritual tool that is positively charged by being the centre of domestic life and can replace the altar as a focus for less formal magick spells. If you can obtain a flameproof cauldron with a tripod, you can, on special occasions such as Hallowe'en, light a fire out of doors and heat up a brew of herbs and spices in the cauldron. When not in use, you can keep your cauldron filled with flowers or pot pourri. If your circle is large enough, you can place your cauldron in...

The Waning Moon

This is for banishing magick and for removing pain, sickness and obstacles to success and happiness. It will lessen negative influences, addictions, compulsions, negative thoughts, grief, guilt, anxiety, the envy and malice of others and destructive anger that is best let go. It can also be used for gently ending relationships and stages where there are regrets but still goodwill. A gradual binding spell to divert a person from a place or person can be effective, though binding spells are often...

Banishing Ritual

The ebb tide is very good for carrying away what is no longer wanted, but if you do not live near the sea, you can use any downward-flowing water, even a drain. * Take either a dying flower or a long frond of seaweed to represent whatever it is you wish to banish. * Draw a square around it, in the sand or in the earth or using chalk on a paved area. Say These are the limits of your power, these are the limits of your sway, thus you lose your thrall, away, See, even this your power is gone,...

Planets and Angels

Different days of the week and hours of the day and night are associated with specific energies and each particular time is ruled by a planet and an archangel. Though these were primarily centred on ceremonial magick, they can also be used to give focus and potency to informal spells. The planetary and angelic hours can also be applied to the everyday sphere, for example by choosing the appropriate day and even hour for beginning a money-making scheme or a first meeting with a potential...

Tools And Treasures

You will need to collect some basic tools for your spells and rituals. If you are working in a group, these can be kept either by different members or in a safe place and brought out at meetings. They need not be at all expensive. Magick was traditionally carried out with the equipment of the home the broom for sweeping the magical circle was the besom used for sweeping dirt (and negativity) out of the door and was stored with its bristles upwards to protect the home. The cauldron was the iron...

Revitalising Rainwater For Use In Rituals

Before the days of acid rain, practitioners of magick would use rainwater collected in a container before it touched the ground as sacred water. Nowadays, you may find it necessary to revitalise the rainwater you use with a few drops of flower essence. There are many brands available Agrimony from Dr Bach's Flower Essences Goatbeard from the Pacific Flower Essence Remedies Coconut Palm from the African and Amazonian Essences Alaskan soap berry Deva Fig Tree or Morning Glory and Findhorn rowan,...

Spell To Repel Spite Gossip Or Psychic Attack

Traditionally, witch bottles filled with rusty nails, sour red wine (or even urine) and sprigs of rosemary were buried under the doorstep of a house as an age-old method of keeping away spite. * Take a dark bottle with a cork and into it pour sour milk, old red wine and some dried rosemary, saying Viciousness and venom, malevolence and malice, feelings turned sour, envy and spiked tongues, * Close the bottle with a cork and shake it over a sink, saying Curdle and coil, serpents of spite, hiss...

Purple

Purple is the colour of Jupiter in his role of wise teacher and keeper of hidden knowledge, and of Osiris, the Ancient Egyptian Father God and Lord of the Underworld, who died each year and was resurrected by his wife Isis. It represents unconscious wisdom and is used for all things of a psychic and spiritual nature and for divination. Purple provides a link with higher dimensions and can bring happiness for all who yearn for something beyond the material plane. Purple candles aid meditation,...

Mabon The Autumn Equinox

Time For three days from sunset on or around 21 September (21 March in the southern hemisphere) Focus A time of abundance, reaping the bounty of the Earth and of celebration for life and its gifts welcoming the waning, darker part of the year, the god in the Underworld or within the womb of the Earth Mother for letting go and if necessary grieving for what is not fulfilled The autumn equinox, or time of gathering, was traditionally celebrated as the wild or green harvest, a time of celebration...

Grey Magic Spells

Grey is ruled by Saturn and by Mercury, some say, when he becomes invisible in the sky. Grey is used primarily for neutralising or erasing negative energies or feelings. It is the shade of compromise and adaptability, of lowering one's profile in times of danger, and offers protection against both physical and psychic attack. It is a colour for keeping secrets and for smoothing down potential conflict and keeping one's counsel when to do otherwise would be unwise. Grey candles are best used on...

Empowering Herbs

In addition to their natural properties, you can further empower the herbs, defining their purpose, and adding to the strength they display spontaneously. Empowering herbs can be done in one of two ways. The first method is to use an empowerment ritual, such as the one described on page 109 this is good for herbs to be used in poppets and healing herbal sachets (see below). Alternatively, you can use the method described on page 172 for charging colour-infused water. This is particularly...

Yellow

Yellow is for Air and the East, dawn and spring. A yellow candle is placed at the three o'clock position. Air represents life itself, logic, the mind, communication, health, new beginnings, travel, learning, yang and the male god in the form of Sky deities. It is a good element to invoke if you are seeking change or when communication is proving difficult with either an individual or an organisation, and to clear stagnation of thoughts. It is also a focus for spells against air pollution,...

Reaching Gods And Goddesses In Trance

Modern Wiccans call into themselves the energies of the Goddess to amplify their own innate divine spark and at times may work in a deep trance, uttering words of prophecy or profound teaching. This is said to increase the power entering the body, like turning up the current from a power source. But until you have practised magick for many years, I would advocate working only in light trance and then only in the controlled situation of a very spiritual group. You can think of this as opening a...

Candle Ritual To Heal The Polluted Seas And Other Bodies Of Water

This is a ritual to be carried out after dusk. It also has the effect of clearing old hurts and regrets that can hold us back from experiencing joy. A wonderful selection of garden torches and candles are now available, that can be placed in the ground for working out of doors. As you are taking away pollution, work at the time of the waning moon. Blue is the elemental colour of water. * Place four blue candles at the four main compass points in a room or any outdoor area. The four blue compass...

Fire

Fire represents noon, summer and the quarter and direction of the South. Fire is the realm of light, the Sun and lightning, and so forms the focus of magick for fertility, power, joy, ambition, illumination, inspiration, achievement, all creative and artistic ventures, poetry, art, sculpture, writing, music, dance, religion and spirituality, psychic powers and mystical experiences, passion and sexuality. It can be invoked by those who work in the arts and those who seek or are required to be...

Agates

These bring stability, security, emotional and physical balance and acceptance of self and others as they are. Agates are said to be good in all colours for reducing effects of harmful rays, pollution and all forms of psychic, psychological and physical attack. Black agate absorbs negativity, repels psychic attack, irrational thoughts and words, and promotes acceptance and tolerance of differences in others. Blue lace agate is a natural peace-bringer and protects against harsh words spoken by...

Michael

Archangel of the Sun and Light, Michael is the warrior angel. He appeared to Moses as the fire in the burning bush and saved Daniel from the lions' den. As commander of the heavenly hosts, Michael, with his flaming sword, drove Satan and his fallen angels out of the celestial realms as Angel of Judgement, he also carries a scale for weighing the souls of the dead. According to the Koran, the cherubim were created from Michael's tears. He offers power to overcome any obstacles and challenges,...

Sea Ritual For The Return Of What Is Lost

This is based on a very old custom wives of sailors would keep a bottle of sea water and then tip it back into the waves just before their husbands were due home. If you cannot go to the shore, use any pond, lake, river or stream. The spell can be used for finding lost or stolen objects, pets, or even straying partners, though with the latter you may decide not to bother. * Go to the seashore just before high tide and, in a bottle, collect some sea water, saying Lady Ocean, Mother Sea, I take...

The Wand

The wand is a symbol of Fire and should be placed in the South of the altar. The wand is sometimes represented by a spear. Both the wand and spear, like the athame and sword, are male symbols. The spear, another Fire symbol, is not used in magick, except occasionally in the form of a sharpened stick in sacred sex rites, when it is plunged into the cauldron or the chalice as a symbol of the sacred union of Earth and Sky, Water and Fire. The wand is traditionally a thin piece of wood about 50...

Contagious Magick

This involves transferring and absorbing power directly from a creature or an object, such as an animal, a bird, a crystal, a metal, the wax of an empowered candle or even the Earth itself. This principle is central to the potency of talismans and amulets for example, traditionally, hunters might wear the pelt of a lion to bring them the beast's courage and ferocity. So, by the same token, if you wished to become pregnant, you might make love in a newly ripening cornfield (near the edge so as...

Tigers eye

A brown or red translucent stone (the green and blue versions are cat's, falcon or hawk's eyes), tiger's eye combines the powers of the Earth with the deep instinctive ability to survive life's challenges. Throughout the ages, tiger's eye has been a talisman against the evil eye. Roman soldiers would wear engraved stones as protection from death and wounding. Tiger's eye is also associated with practical aspects of life and enhances the five senses. Thus it can alert us to physical danger as...

Litha The Summer Solstice

Summer Solstice Spell Freeones

Time Three days beginning from sunset around 20 June (20 December in the southern hemisphere) Focus Full potency, illumination, mysteries revealed healing, the height of joy, fulfilment, the need to seize the moment. The summer solstice has been celebrated in cultures as far apart as Russia and North America, where Sun dances were an assertion of power and courage and in a new form still bring healing to the nations and the Earth. The height of the festival is the first light falling on the...

Black And White Candle Ritual

This is a ritual for a new beginning after sorrow or loss. You can carry out this ritual for yourself or someone you know who is grieving or unhappy after a betrayal. It is especially healing if you are feeling angry over unjust or cruel treatment, because it can stop any guilt, blame or pain turning inwards and slowing the healing process. You may need to repeat the experience many times. This is an essentially private ritual, but if you are doing it on behalf of someone else, then you might...

Pentagrams

The pentagram, as I have already mentioned, is one of the most sacred geometric forms in magick. Some witches wear a gold pentacle, a pentagram in a circle (see page 189), on a chain as a sign of their craft. Each of the five points of the pentagram represents one of the five elemental powers, so that the uppermost single point is symbolic of Spirit, or Akasha or Ether. It is dedicated to the Goddess in her triple aspects. It is the realm of spirituality and the divine spark within all life....

The Substances Of Magick

The substances of magick for formal rituals are the same as those used in informal magick. I have already described their magical associations in informal spells and in ritual magick the correspondences in colour and fragrance are exactly the same. Each is set in its own quarter of the circle and used to charge the focus of the ritual with power. They can also be used for empowering and cleansing your ritual tools. If you make your own candles or incense for your rituals, you can endow energies...

Hephaestus

Hephaestus, Greek god of fire and metal-work, was thrown from Mount Olympus by his father Zeus because he took the part of his mother Hera in a quarrel as a result of the fall, he became lame. He created armour, weapons and jewels for the gods in his workshop beneath the volcanic Mount Etna, in Sicily, and as a reward was given Aphrodite as his unwilling bride. He was among the least charismatic of the gods, but his Roman counterpart, Vulcan, fashioned Jupiter's thunderbolts. Hephaestus is...

Deities Of The Male Principle

These deities are for the hunt, instincts, willing sacrifice and ecstasy. Cernunnos Cernunnos, meaning 'horned one', was a generic term for the various Horned Gods of the Celtic tradition. The god dates back to the shamanic figures portrayed on cave walls. Cernunnos was lord of winter, the hunt, animals, death, male fertility and the Underworld, and was sometime portrayed as a triple or trefoil god, an image later assimilated by St Patrick with his emblematic shamrock. Other forms of the Horned...

Casting A Triple Circle

Three is a sacred number in magick and for special ceremonies you can create a triple circle of both power and protection. The number three represents the three aspects of the god figure in many religions the Holy Trinity, the Triple Goddess, the three aspects of the Moon -maiden, mother and wise woman or crone - the trefoil or triple god of the Celts, and the even older Egyptian trinity of Isis, Osiris and Horus, the young Sky God. This triplicity is still celebrated when we turn our money...

Spring Equinox Cleaning Ritual

Use this ritual to welcome the winds of positive change. You can perform it on any of the three days of the rising equinox energies that precede the equinox. Alternatively, it can be adapted for cleansing away negativity and sorrows at any time. I give an alternative version in my book Psychic Protection Lifts the Spirit. You can join with family or friends in a communal spring cleaning of a collective living area or workspace. Alternatively, you can use it alone to help you to clear out not...

Leave the altar candles to burn down Preparing Your Mind For Magick

As well as preparing the physical area for magick, you also need to prepare your mental state. It is universally agreed that we have two hemispheres of the brain -the left, logical, and the right, intuitive, side - and that generally in the everyday world the left brain predominates. This may be no bad thing after all, buying golden sunflowers and oils pressed from fragrant herbs may lift the spirits, but they will do little for us if we are so disorganised that we fail to remember the cereal...

Symbols Of Magick

Although you can carry out rituals using absolutely anything, you may like to create a special set of symbols for a variety of rituals. These you can keep in a separate box within your main store of magick artefacts so they do not get scattered or broken. You may include a thimble to symbolise domestic affairs, a tiny padlock for security at home, a wooden toy boat for travel, a silver locket for fidelity, a key charm for a house, tiny painted wooden eggs for fertility in any venture - just to...

Raphael

Raphael is the archangel of the planet Mercury. Raphael's day is Wednesday. Raphael, the Harmoniser, offers healing of all kinds, protects children, bringing guidance and sustenance to all who are lost whether physically, emotionally or spiritually. He can be invoked in all health matters, for spiritual knowledge and insight and for alleviating the worries of daily lives that keeps us bound to the Earth. Most importantly he shows us how to teach others our spiritual insights. He heals...

Mid Winter Ritual To Celebrate The Rebirth Of The

This ritual should be performed on the solstice eve. To prepare, decorate a bough of evergreen with red and gold baubles and bows of ribbon and surround it with a circle of five long-burning, pure white candles or a single candle with five wicks. The first candle will need to burn for 24 hours, the second for about 18 hours, the third about 12 hours, the fourth and fifth for shorter periods, although you can always replace a candle by lighting another. We are keeping to the Celtic time and so...

Spell For Increasing Self Confidence

Sometimes people around us - perhaps a critical relative, a spiteful ex-lover or a thoughtless colleague - can damage our self-esteem. We look at media ideals of loveliness and feel we are far from the image of perfection created by a society that worships youth. But if we can only believe in ourselves and love ourselves, hey presto, we radiate our own unique beauty and others are drawn to us, because of this powerful but indefinable personal magnetism. This spell is designed to boost that...

Incense Magick

Incenser Draw

Incense has formed a central part of religious and magical ceremonies for thousands of years in lands as far apart as India and North America. It has been used for purification purposes, to invoke angels and to bind or repel demons by medieval magicians. It is said to release specific energies contained in its fragrance and to carry prayers and petitions to the god or goddess figure being invoked. Since the 1960s, incense sticks, cones and burners have increased in popularity for home use, to...

Oils and Incenses in Magick

To avoid repetition, I have only given a brief reference for those oils whose properties I described in the previous chapter, for the qualities of a substance are the same in any form. Benzoin Benzoin reduces tension, stress, and melts away tension, anger, resentment, emotional pain and frustrations. Positively, benzoin increases self-confidence and attracts prosperity, both material and spiritual. It mixes well with rose, pine and lavender. Bergamot Bergamot soothes irritability and lifts...

Samhain Ritual To Move Beyond The Constraints Of Linear Time

Unusually, this is a solitary ritual, so that you can make connection with your personal ancestors, though you may wish to share it with close family members. Perform it on Hallowe'en Eve, as it gets dark. * Cut the top off a pumpkin or large turnip, to make a lid, and scrape out the inside and place the flesh in a bowl in front of the candle. * When the skin is quite empty, do not draw a scary face with grinning teeth, but instead make eight large, regular, round holes in it to let in the...

The Charge of the Goddess

The Charge of the Goddess is a powerful way of focusing on cosmic energies. The Goddess is considered to be both 'transcendent', or above and beyond the created universe (like the traditional idea of God on a cloud, looking down and judging creation ), and also 'immanent', or manifest within every natural object, be it flower, stone, animal or person. The two concepts are complementary rather than contradictory. Some practitioners feel that charges are an attempt to formalise energies that are...

Witchcraft Within Covens

A coven is a group of members of a unit of witchcraft and, in fact, can number anything from two to 13, or even more. The number 13 is traditionally designated by the 13 moon cycles that make up one year, and 13 is the number of the Goddess (hence it became unlucky under Christian influence). Gardenerian covens generally number 13. Some covens are affiliated formally or informally to specific traditions, but they increasingly unite for organisational as well as legal and political strength,...

Mercury

Wednesday, the day of Mercury, is good for spells to assist money-making ventures, for clear communication, persuasion, adaptability and versatility, for improving memory and sharpening logic, for learning, examinations and tests, for mastering new technology, for short-distance or brief breaks, and for conventional methods of healing, especially surgery. It is also potent for business negotiations, overcoming debts, repelling envy, malice and spite and those who would deceive. For this reason,...

Personal Magick

As I have already said, it is quite permissible to use magick to empower your personal needs, though this does not bring lottery wins or the object of your romantic fantasies delivered gift-wrapped to your door. Magick has traditionally encompassed material needs, and spirituality is very difficult to achieve at a time when there is a crisis of physical need or emotional shortfall in your life. For example, in days when having sufficient food and heating was an ongoing concern, abundance for...

Summer Solstice Stone Ritual

This ritual can be used to absorb the courage, power and joy of the season. You can carry out this ritual at any time during the three-day period. You might like to perform it at dusk on the eve of the solstice or at one of the other traditional times, such as midnight, the dawn of the solstice day or noon. Alternatively, you may prefer to watch the actual solstice sunrise from a hill or an open place or even close to one of the sacred sites at dawn. * Take eight large, long, rounded stones,...

Ritual With Seven Angels

This would be a suitable ritual for welcoming a new baby or child into a family whether in birth, by adoption or through the joining of two existing families. It may also be used for sending a teenager out into the world. You can also adapt the ritual to welcome adults into a family or help them to move on to a new phase or place. You might like to use a seven-branched candlestick, like the Jewish menorah, and light a candle on seven consecutive hours throughout the day. You could carry it out...

Rainy Day Spell To Banish Sorrow Or A Bad Habit

* On a large piece of dark paper, with either white chalk or washable paint, write or draw what it is you wish to lose. * Draw a square round the word or image to mark the limitations of its power, followed by a diagonal cross through the words or image. * Put the paper on paving stones as it begins to rain and standing in the rain watch the words or image blur and disappear. * When the paper has disintegrated, say It is gone, it is done. Nought left of pain, I thank the rain. * Scoop up the...

Binding Magick

Binding magick has two functions, one to bind a person in love or fidelity and the other to bind another from doing harm. This may be done in various ways, using knots in a symbolic thread, or by creating an image of the object or person and wrapping it tightly. But all binding can be problematic in terms of white magick, for whatever method you use, you are very definitely interfering with the However, it is tempting to think that if someone is hurting animals, children, the sick or elderly,...

Planetary Magical Days Of The Week

Though I have written primarily about the significance of the different days, I have also listed the effects of the planetary hours. The planets have had a special place in both ritual magick and astrology, since the Ancient Babylonians and Chaldeans first observed them wandering across the sky (the word 'planet' derives from the Greek planetes, meaning 'wanderer') against the fixed constellations of the zodiac. The ancients knew of only five planets - Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn....

Turquoise

Turquoise is the colour of Hathor, Egyptian goddess of wisdom, music and dance, whose magical mirror reflected back the true person of all who looked in it (scary stuff if you were just checking your hair). Turquoise rituals are for integration of heart and mind, feelings and thoughts and the synthesis of wisdom and experience. Turquoise is used for successfully combining different aspects of life or two different career strands for compassion and altruism for increasing healing abilities for...

Magick In The Southern Hemisphere

In magick, time and direction have an important place and it is necessary to understand that there may be differences according to which hemisphere of the globe you are working in. In the northern hemisphere, magical circles are cast clockwise, or 'deosil', which means 'in the direction of the Sun'. In the southern hemisphere, however, practitioners casting their circles deosil should normally cast them anti-clockwise, because that is the direction of the Sun in that hemisphere. For this...

Folk Magick And Ritual Magick

Modern Magick

Whether you are casting a simple spell, using items from your kitchen cupboard, or performing a complicated group ceremony, the source of the power behind it is the same. Every spell or ritual involves channelling the life force that runs through all forms of existence and transforming it into higher spiritual energies. These spiritual powers include our own evolved self, which some say is formed through many lifetimes, and the higher divine cosmic energies, such as a supreme god or goddess,...

The Athame

An athame is, quite simply, a ceremonial knife. It is one of the ritual tools that entered the tradition through the influence of magicians and witches who set out the wisdom, mainly at the beginning of the twentieth century and in the upsurge of covens during the 1950s. Gerald Gardener, one of the founding fathers of Wicca, considered ritual knives and swords of prime importance in modern formal witchcraft. You can obtain an athame from a specialist magical shop, but as I said before, any...

Joining A Coven

Before joining a coven, consider what you are looking for. Some covens emphasise set ritual and ceremony and a learning path that can take years rather than months, along which you progress in an orderly fashion, gradually building up a great store of wisdom and experience and allowing your psychic powers to unfold slowly - is that what you want It is important also to establish what you may be able to give to the coven. Can you devote the necessary evenings for the coven, or do you have a...

Magick And Responsibility

True magick is not like a cake in which everybody must vie for a slice or be left with none it is more akin to a never-emptying pot. Like the legendary Cauldron of Undry in Celtic myth, the more goodness that is put in, the more the mixture increases in richness and quantity. The Cauldron of Undry, one of the four main Celtic treasures, provided an endless supply of nourishment, had great healing powers and could restore the dead to life, in either their former existence or a new life form....

Herbal Poppets And Sachets

Herbal Magic Spells

Traditionally, empowered herbs were used to fill either sachets or featureless dolls called poppets. They were made for love, protection, prosperity, fertility, healing and success and could contain either a single herb or a mixture, depending on the purpose. Poppets, which are used mainly in love or healing or occasionally in protective magick, are generally kept in a safe place, such as a drawer, rather than carried around. So, for a love spell, two poppets would be tied together and placed...

Protective Ritual With Empowered Salt

* Place the salt in a small ceramic dish on your altar and light a pure beeswax candle at the four main compass points around the edges of the altar. Beeswax has a long tradition in magick it was sacred to the Mother Goddess and later the Virgin Mary. Demeter, goddess of the grain, was called Queen Bee and Aphrodite's symbol at her hive-shaped shrine in Eryx was a gold honeycomb. Her high priestess was always called Melissa, Latin for bee. * Beginning at the North of your circle, light your...

Children And Wicca

Witchcraft Magazine

Many people are suspicious of witches and all the more so if the practitioner has young children. They seem to fear that witches will exert some kind of evil influence on innocent minds. In my experience, nothing could be further from the truth. Children of Wiccans are almost invariably kind to animals and aware of environmental issues. Some groups have family celebrations and no responsible parent would introduce their children to any experiences before they were ready, least of all Wiccans to...

Ritual Using Light And Cosmic Power

Head Work Magick

The following ritual can be carried out anywhere at all, as direction is not important. It is most powerful when performed standing beneath a tree that perhaps has stood for hundreds of years. If sunlight is filtering through the leaves, so much the better. You can work alone, with a group of friends, or in a more formal coven. You may want to decide in advance on a focus for the power, for example healing a particular place or a person you know. Alternatively, you can let the energies find...

Ceres

Ceres is the Roman goddess of the grain and all food plants. Her daughter Proserpina was taken into the Underworld for three months of the year by Pluto, causing Ceres to mourn and the crops to die. This was the origin of winter. Through this, she is seen as goddess of fertility and abundance, as well as a deity of the natural cycles of the year. She represents loss and is a focus for rites concerning grief and mourning, with the hope of new joy ahead for women and especially for mothers. Her...

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...

Witchcraft In Modern Times

By the late twentieth century in the USA, witchcraft had been recognised as a valid religion by the American Supreme Court and accepted by the American army, but other countries, including the UK, are not so tolerant. What is more, in many lands, especially among smaller communities, misunderstanding and prejudice still persist. In the UK, for example, Wiccans who practise openly and have children are sometimes regarded with suspicion by some health professionals. My dear friend Lilian, a white...

Healing Ritual For An Absent Person

This simple healing ritual is for someone who has a virus or other debilitating condition. The virus may be affecting the whole body and not responding to treatment. The ritual incorporates the four main stages of a spell described on page 40 and can work equally well for a solitary practitioner or a group of witches. As the ritual is intended to stimulate the body's immune system, it is best done on the gentle early waxing moon energies (see page 235 for the best hours and day of the week)....

Salt

Salt rituals are among the oldest forms of magick and salt can form the focus of magick for health and prosperity ceremonies as well as for psychic protection. The kind used is most usually sea salt and represents the Earth element. It should be kept covered and separate from domestic salt and it must be empowered before use. The salt should be placed on the altar to the left of your Earth ritual tools, in a small ceramic dish with a silver spoon. Use new salt for each ritual and tip any...

Rosemary elf leaf

Rosemary relieves headaches, depression, liver and gall-bladder problems, sciatica and muscular pain. It aids digestion, improves circulation, helps with hair and scalp disorders, improves memory, focuses thoughts and increases energy levels. Put a small handful, chopped, in a muslin bag and add to a bath -this is a medieval prescription for energy and clarity of thought. A herb of protection, rosemary can drive away bad dreams. Use in love sachets to attract lovers and bring healing to...

Solitary Witchcraft

There are many reasons for performing witchcraft alone your personal circumstances or the location of your home may mean that you cannot travel to a group, or you may live in an area where there are few others who share your interests. Many witches like myself choose to practise alone, drawing in my family and close friends to celebrate with me on the festival days. Most solitary witches initiate themselves, though some traditions, such as the Saxon Seat Wicca founded by Raymond Buckland in the...

Coral Use In Magick And Spells And Witchcraft

Coral is an organic gem, usually pink, red or orange, and is known as the protector of children. Coral has been a children's stone from the time of the Ancient Greeks when Plato wrote that it should be hung around children's necks to prevent them falling and to cure colic, and rubbed on the gums to help painless teething. It is good for all children's fears and against threat to their person or self-esteem. It is also protective for adolescent girls, pregnant women and new mothers, and invokes...

Beryl

A crystal of the Sun, beryl drives away inner fears and repels external threats and malevolence, increasing confidence and a sense of wellbeing. In its golden form it is excellent for creating a shield of golden sparks around you in difficult situations where there are too many factors or conflicting demands to assimilate and you feel overwhelmed. Deep blue beryl is used for crystal balls. It offers inner peace and the courage to stand against bullies and autocrats, but allows you to be...

Drawing A Pentagram

Pentagrams are remarkably easy to draw. They are created in one continuous line, moving from point to point, and ending where you began. In ritual magick, pentagrams are drawn in the air at each of the four compass directions of the circle, either with an athame, a wand or the index finger of your power hand. It is best to draw really big, strong pentagrams. Pentagrams can be drawn either to attract the elemental guardians invoking, or attracting pentagrams or to close their energies banishing...

The Goddess And The Horned God In Wicca

Neither evocation nor invocation is part of modern witchcraft, however, and white witches do not recognise any demonic figures in their religion. When we refer to the Goddess and her son-consort, the Horned God of Wicca, we are referring to the archetype or source energies of the feminine and masculine aspects of ultimate power. They are the creative female and male principles, acting not in opposition to each other but as complementary and necessary parts of a whole. All the named goddesses...

Lapis lazuli

Known as the eye of wisdom and the stone of the gods, lapis lazuli jewellery is mentioned in an Ancient Egyptian papyrus dating from over 3,000 years ago as having healing powers. The Sumerians believed it contained the souls of their gods and goddesses and as such would endow them with magical powers, and the goddess Ishtar was famed for her beautiful necklaces of this crystal. In Egypt, lapis lazuli was first used in a powdered form for eye make-up as protection against the evil Lapis lazuli...

Spells For Shiva

Shiva, or Siva, is the Hindu god of both creation and destruction, good and evil, fertility and abstinence. With Vishnu and Brahma, he forms the trinity of the modern Hindu gods. He is the Lord of the Dance who, it is said, will one day bring about the destruction of the world. His symbol is the phallus, representing creative power, and many Hindus regard his benevolent, creative aspect as predominant. Shiva has three eyes, represented by the Sun, the Moon and Fire. His third eye allows him to...

The Four Elements

I have mentioned the use of the elements in rituals. In magick, there are four elements - Earth, Air, Fire and Water. They all contain symbolic qualities and powers that together form the energies used in rituals. Each element controls a quadrant in the magical circle. Earth, in the North, represents the stability, security and strength of old stone circles, mighty castle walls, tall craggy rocks and mountain peaks. It is also associated with the time of midnight and winter. Salt is often used...

Anointing Candles With

You can anoint, or dress, candles with scented oil or use candles that have fragrance already added. When you anoint candles with oils, they become more flammable, so you need to be extra cautious about sparks. For safety, stand your candlesticks on a fireproof tray. Generally, the anointing is performed in silence. You can use virgin olive oil for dressing candles for any need. Some people add a pinch of salt for purification and life-giving properties. Before beginning, pour a small quantity...

The Four Quarters Of The Circle

Every magical circle is divided into four quarters that are in ceremonial magick called the Watchtowers. The higher essences who protect the quarters are invoked as the Guardians, who control and direct the elemental powers. Sometimes they are called Kings, sometimes Devas, or they may be pictured as the four main archangels, Michael, Gabriel, Raphael and Uriel. How you perceive your guardians in the ritual circle is up to you. As with all magick, there are disagreements about which archangel...

Triple Goddesses

The Triple Goddesses are for lunar magic and moving from one stage to another in the life cycle. Brighid Brighid, the Celtic Triple Goddess, is patroness of smiths, poets and healers and has the longest enduring cult in Ireland, which merged into that of the Christian St Bridget of Kildare. Her name means 'high one' and she is sometimes seen as three sisters, daughters of the god Dagda, the Divine Father, or as the triple-aspected maiden, mother and crone. She is invoked in fertility and...

The Persecution Of Witches

Witchcraft Magazine

But in medieval times, two largely political issues brought about the persecution of witches, especially women. The religious emphasis on the sin of Eve and the belief in the inferiority of women had existed since the time of St Paul, but with the rise of an organised male medical profession, women healers who had acted as herbalists and midwives became a threat. This was not least because their skills ensured less painful childbirth, which was considered contrary to the curse of God that the...

The Bell

The bell stands in the North of the circle and is an Earth symbol. It is an optional tool and can be made from either crystal or protective brass. Best for magick is the kind that you strike. The bell is traditionally rung nine times at the beginning and close of each ritual the person ringing the bell should stand in the South of the circle, facing North. Nine is the magical number of completion and perfection. It is also rung to invoke the protection of angels or the power of a deity and in...

St Johns wort hypericum

St John's wort relieves depression, anxiety, neuralgia, headaches and irritability during the menopause. It is good for relief from pain, helping with fibrositis, sciatica and rheumatism. It is an anti-inflammatory, and so speeds the healing of burns and wounds. St John's wort is the golden herb of midsummer and symbol of the longest day, the summer solstice and the full power of the Sun. It offers fertility and powers to attract love, especially if picked on the Eve of St John, 23 June, at...

The Full Moon

If you look in your Moon diary, you will see the exact time the full moon rises in your area. That is the most powerful moment of all and if you can time the climax of a spell for that time you will touch the stars. The time between rising and setting is also very potent and can do wonders for lovemaking that has become routine. Full moon magick is good for any immediate need, for a sudden boost of power or courage, for a change of career, location or for travel, psychic protection, healing...