This article is part of a sporadic series on Building Competency in Witchcraft that aims to bridge the gap between beginner and intermediate information to better prepare you to do advanced witchcraft. The aim of this series is to also encourage you to consider why you do the things you do, and why you do them the way you do them, in order to develop clarity of thought and action -all of this to help you be as effective with your witchcraft as possible. The first post in this series, Creating Your Spiritual Calendar, discussed the need for consistent practice and the benefit it provides in enabling one to be able to do advanced witchcraft in the first place. The second post, Mastering the Basics of Witchcraft, focused on foundational skills of witchcraft -regardless of whether you are a religious or secular witch- because you cannot effectively do the advanced work if you haven’t mastered the basics. This, the third post, focuses on some of the basic mechanics of magick -and the science that supports this results-focused approach- so you can more effectively create lasting change within your life.
The power of intention has become a rampant buzz topic within the magickal community. In setting an intention, the idea is to formulate a word or statement, much like an affirmation, that represents a change that you want to make in your life. Perhaps you want to view yourself more positively and be less self-critical, or perhaps you want to finally conquer that spending problem and foster greater financial prosperity and wealth in your life. This intention is then held firm in the mind, activated by filling it with “positive energy”* which then causes your intention to attract that which you desire toward you because like attracts like.**
However, there is a lot about this entire process that is fundamentally at odds with the way that magick operates, as well as aspects of the world view that becomes common amongst witches regardless of religious prescription (or lack thereof.) Setting an intention, lighting a million glitter-crusted candles, and thinking happy thoughts throughout your waking hours is all well and good*** but when it comes to witchcraft and working magick, setting an intention alone just doesn’t work. It’s only part of the equation. Effective magick is a process.
This post is part of a sporadic series on Building Competency in Witchcraft. The search for advanced witchcraft and advanced magick is common throughout the witchcraft community. Yet, much of what qualifies as advanced work is only possible after the cultivation and mastery of basic witchcraft skills -the advanced work comes about as a culmination of skills and the experience gained through cultivating and honing those foundational skills. The previous post in this series, Creating Your Spiritual Calendar, discussed the need for consistent practice and the benefit it provides in enabling one to be able to do advanced witchcraft in the first place. This post focuses on the foundational skills of witchcraft because it is not until you have the basics mastered that you can consider yourself an adept and learn the advanced skills -you cannot effectively do the advanced work if you haven’t mastered foundational skills.
Divination is a means of analyzing a situation in order to gain clarity and insight through random variables. With some forms of divination, such as using cards, throwing bones, or scattering herbs upon water, those random variables come together to present a sort of snapshot of the currents of energy surrounding the focus of the reading. But with all divination methods, those random variables serve as a means for us to engage our psychic senses, either by intuiting the messages and insights based upon the subconscious triggers or by applying a systematic approach to analyze the random variables, using intuition to decipher which of many set meanings (per that system) is correct.
Regardless of the specific method used, divination is a means for us to tap into and make sense of the currents of energy at work in our lives, to better understand our internal motivation and reluctance, and to identify external factors that influence our choices. The information that we gain is used to provide us with a broader and more objective view of a situation, issue, or even person so that we can make better-informed decisions that enable us to more effectively reach our goals.
The last week has been one filled with spirits. While that’s generally to be expected at this time of year, as our minds naturally fall toward thoughts of death and the beyond, so many of these spirits that filled my days were the beloved dead of others. Here, a collection of photos documenting this week.
Screencatch of The Tarot Witch from 9/23/10. This was mine & my husband's 1st website & my 1st venture into writing publically about witchcraft & Paganism. Pic is linked to the way back machine so you can see what the site was & was trying to be. It was later dissolved & all articles were moved here, such as the articles on "Candle Spells" & "Autumn: the Time of the Fall," as caught in this archive photo.
Itâs hard to believe this blog has been existence for seven years now! Throughout this time, my life has gone through rather extreme changes, however, this blog has stayed fairly well focused during it all. These past seven years has seen my family grow by three more children, weâve been homeless, bought a house, sold everything and moved to wilderness to live off grid, reluctantly returned to civilization and now travel about the West biding our time till we return to the wilderness.
Thanks to my beautiful backers on patreon, my first book is now available for purchase!
For as much as warding is a fundamental part of witchcraft, it really isn't given much discussion. Even the ambiguously worded and highly generic topic of protection magick is rarely discussed in enough detail to be of actual effective use. With an emphasis on warding your home, this books aims to correct that and to provide you with practical information you can immediately put to use.
The book begins by taking an in-depth look at what warding is, identifying the three things that are generally warded against, how those things effect you and why you would want to ward against them, as well as taking a look at what you cannot ward against.
The second half of the book focuses on putting that theory into practice, diving head first into practical means of warding your home, with a detailed look at construction, charging your wards, and where to place your wards within your home.
Throughout this book, you'll find the no-bullshit and no-excuses approach to witchcraft that dominates both my writing and my own practice as a witch. This book emphasizes results, a willingness to do the work, and stresses the need for common sense.
You can purchase a copy here. It's available in a wide variety of formats and so is compatible with virtually all ereader apps and devices.
Originally intended for a Dark Moon release date, an error in communication with my distributor has caused the book to be released today. Ah, so much for that deliberate magickal timing.
Throwing the bones is a very old form of divination that can be found in numerous cultures throughout the world. There are many different approaches, techniques, and even pieces used in bone divination. It is not a divination method that belongs to any one particular culture nor religion.
The ability to achieve an altered state of consciousness is a fundamental skill in witchcraft. It facilitates the use of psychic abilities as well as the application of magick. It is also a critical component of awareness and paying attention -the most important skill one can develop as a witch. However, the term altered states is frequently discussed in a manner that makes it seem as if achieving an altered state of consciousness is difficult to accomplish or that it requires the use of hallucinogenic or toxic plant material. In reality, however, this simply isn’t the case.
We stepped lightly, feet sinking into the soft sand that lay beside the creek. The air was heavy with the recent storm, the desert air saturated with wetness, and the undeniable feeling of Other. The babyman demanded we walk, pointing to the creek and providing the sweetest little grunts as encouragement. This he did, again, now, pointing at the birds that lay just ahead on the trail.
The oldest two girls followed closely, listening, feeling. This was to be an awareness walk, an exercise in extending the witch sight, in developing awareness of one’s surroundings and of the Unseen. Lessons in functionality begin early in our family, with emphasis placed not on the idea of having skills but in the development and use of those skills. This was a perfect opportunity to stretch awareness and cultivate that skill.
Throwing the Bones
Whether you're struggling with something spiritually or in everyday life, bone divination can highlight areas where focus is needed and identify alternative ways forward.