This article is part of an ongoing series on Building Competency in Witchcraft. This series aims to prepare you to do advanced witchcraft by filling the beginner-become-adept void of information. The first post was Crafting Your Spiritual Calendar, which focused on the importance of consistent practice and provided examples and guidance in creating a regular spiritual practice. The second post was Mastering the Basics of Witchcraft, which provided a working definition of witchcraft and identified the basic skills that are foundational to all witchcraft practices -regardless of whether you’ve been practicing for 2 years or 2 decades. The third post was Intention is NOT Enough and it took an in-depth look at why intention alone is useless and does not provide the transformational power that bullshit new age “spirituality” would have you believe, with science- and magickal-based evidence to support this denouncing. The focus of this, the fourth post, is to boost your functionality as a witch by teaching you how to determine the magickal use of any object. This will allow you to use any object, any item, and plant for your magick and free you from reliance on store-bought witchcraft supplies -making you a truly functional witch.
Within witchcraft, we are able to use virtually any object as a means of creating powerful change within our lives. While the shiny tools with their hefty price tags may carry with them the illusion of Authenticity™, the witches of old and practitioners of folk magic didn’t have the convenience of Amazon or a local metaphysical shop to spend money they didn’t have on supplies they didn’t need for their magick. Rather, they used items they already had access to, items from around their homes or that the land right outside their doors provided. They worked with local items that were easily obtained, placing emphasis on doing the magick and not on “doing things the right way.” If there was a need for magick to be done, then magick was done. No excuses.
Although we live in very different times, we are able to recapture that perspective of practicality and pragmatism. In looking to our own ingenuity and to the land -from where witchcraft springs forth- we can become not just more competent witches but more powerful. We build competency in our magickal skills and the ability to work magick regardless of the circumstances. This is the true sign of a powerful witch. It’s not adhering to the absurd witchcraft aesthetic that is so painfully prevalent right now but being able to do the magick when the magick needs to be done, without any excuses.
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.
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.