A Creative Ritual for Abundance Using Tarot

Many of the common tools used in Modern witchcraft and neo-paganism can also be found as symbols within most tarot decks and can be employed as an alternative. Since it’s not so much about the tool as it is about the symbolism that triggers our minds when in a ritual state.

All that is truly needed for this ritual is a tarot deck that has traditional type images of the suits of pentacle, cup, wand, and sword, however, any other items such as candles, incense, stones, etc. can be added.

Preparation: Locate and pull out these cards in order, placing the cards in this order from top to bottom.

Ace of Swords (will be used as an athame)

Ace of Pentacles (North, Earth, Abundance)

The Sun (East, Beginnings, Joy)

Ace of wands (South, Fire, Energy)

Death (West, Change, emotion)

The Emperor (Male, God, Leader)

The Empress (Female, Goddess, Mother)

The World (The All, the Collective)

Ace of Cups (Bounty, Abundance)

Tarot Ritual of Abundance

Starting in the north where abundance is an attribute. With cards in hand turn over the first card (Ace of Swords), slowly walk clockwise around your space visualizing protective and loving energy creating a circle and then expanding into a sphere around your space.

As you walk say or something similar:

“I cast this circle with love and protection,

As it grows so does the Earth,

Together as one in joy and abundance.”

When you return to the North place the card on the altar,

Saying: “So mote it be”.

Starting again in the North, Place the Ace of Pentacles down on the ground or on the altar in its direction saying or something similar:

“I call upon the spirit of the North and of Earth,

I welcome you to this circle.

You bring me the bounty and stability in my

Ever-changing world.”

Moving to the East, place The Sun card and say or something Similar:

“I call upon the spirit of the East and of Air,

And welcome you to this circle.

You bring me victory and new beginnings in my

Ever-changing world.”

Continuing to the South, placing the Ace of Wands saying or something similar:

“I call upon the spirit of the South and of Fire,

I welcome you to this circle.

You bring me the spark and motivation in my

Ever-changing world.”

Lastly, place the Death card in the West saying or something Similar:

“I call upon the spirit of the West and of Water,

And welcome you to this circle.

You provide change and empathy in my

Ever-changing world.”

Returning back to the North, Place The Emperor card on the right side of the altar saying or something similar:

“I call to the Father God, leader of the ever-changing world, who without will see no abundance.”

Next place The Empress card on the left side saying or something similar:

“I call to the Goddess, Mother of all, who without will not grow.”

Place The World card in the top center saying or something similar:

“Hail and Welcome to All that is represented here and in my ever-changing world”

Once you feel comfortable and connected, place the Ace of Cups in the center of the altar with a focus of abundance in your life and say or something similar:

“In this ever-changing world I live, I am connected to its ebb and flow, it’s ups and downs. Its shortcomings and richness’s. Today I am in need of abundance, so that tomorrow I may give in return. As the Earth replenishes its lows, let my cup spill over so that I may do the same.”

“As above, so below let abundance flow. So, Mote it Be!”

At this time, you may want to add any aspect of ritual that your tradition calls for.

When you are ready, Thank the God and Goddess and return the cards to the deck in reverse. Staring in the west, moving counter clockwise, say or something similar:

“Farewell spirit of the West

I thank you for your presence

May you continue to nourish my heart”

Return the Death card to the deck. Move on to the South saying or something similar:

“Farewell to the spirit of the South and of Fire,

I thank you for providing the passion for my spirit to move forward”

Return the Ace of Wands to the deck, continue to the East and say or something similar:

“Farewell spirit of the East

I thank you for your attendance and

Bringing me victory to start anew.”

Return The Sun card and move on to the North,

“Farewell spirit of the North

I thank you for your presence

May you always provide me with abundance.”

Take up the Ace of Swords, walking counter-clockwise and release the circle saying or something Similar:

“I release this circle of joy and abundance,

Out into the universe,

In celebration of the ever-changing world.

So, Mote it be!”

Return the card to the Deck and Ground.

Familiars vs. Magickal Pets

Most people in the community tend to use the word “familiar” for any household animal and pet. This is not to say that some of these animals couldn’t be considered a familiar. It seems that the whole idea has gotten misrepresented and/or misinformed over the years. There is so many meanings to the use of the title of “familiar” that it was hard to track down information. Especially in terms of what has become accepted and adapted within the pagan and Witch community verses the traditional ideas on the subject. There is so much information that relates to the christian theories of the middle ages and the days of the Witch trials. Whereas, “familiars” were “demons” or “Evil” spirits said to be given to Witches by the devil. These spirits took on various animal shapes (in some cases they were described just as non-human forms) that could be sent out to do a Witch’s bidding both magickally and mundanely.

The History in Witchcraft

Familiars, from the Latin “familiaris”, meaning a household servant, were mentioned even in the Bible, depending on which version you read. Remembering that most of the bible known today was rewritten out of its original meaning and /or to end certain practices of its time. In the book of Leviticus (20:27) there are references to the familiar and guardian spirits associated with various spiritual and magickal practitioners: “A man also or woman that hath a familiar spirit, or that is a wizard, shall surely be put to death: they shall stone them with stones: their blood shall be upon them”. We could get into where this came from and why, but that is a discussion that could not be covered in a post. Either way this statement has had a large impact on Witchcraft hysteria.

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During the Witch hysteria of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, the fascination with a Witch and familiars was mostly found in England and Scotland. Being mentioned in several trial records, especially those related to “The Witch-Finder General” Matthew Hopkins. The Witchcraft Act of 1604 made it a felony to “consult, convene with, entertain, employ, feed, or reward any evil and wicked spirit to or for any intent or purpose.” The Malleus Maleficarum, the main Witch inquisitor’s handbook of the time offered no instructions concerning familiars in the interrogation and trial of Witches. The book does acknowledge that an animal familiar “always works with the Witch in everything.” In the confession of Elizabeth Demdike during the Pendle Witch Trials of 1612 , it was said that her familiar’s name was Tibb. Tibb was a spirit who could take the shape of almost any animal he pleased, and in one piece of her confession he had taken the shape of a black cat. This familiar spirit wanted to aid Elizabeth in the cursing of three local individuals, but when she opposed, he knocked her into a ditch.

In the Salem Trials in 1692, accused John Bradsheet was charged for “inciting a dog to afflict.” The dog was tried and hanged as a Witch. Although there were not as many mentions of familiars in the American Witch trails we can see that over the centuries familiars have taken many forms depending on what was seen as “evil” at the time. These were the cat, mouse/rat, ferret, hare, bat, snake, frog/toad, dog or bird. As time went on and we stepped into the more modern views of the familiar we find that the well-known “King of the Witches”, Alexander Sanders, was reported to boast of the creation of a “spiritual baby”, who became one of his familiars.

Modern Views

In contemporary witchcraft, wicca, and other pagan traditions the “familiar” is viewed in an altogether different light. Whereas, a familiar can be any animal with which the individual feels an affinity toward. While these animals are no longer considered demons or even spirits anymore, they are treated in the same respect. Sadly, the consensus seems to also show they have even lost being a partner in one’s practice of magick. Many have adapted the term to mean an actual, living animal companion that they consider a “familiar”. Professing they have an emotional and psychic bond with a particular cat, dog, or whatever pet that have taken into their home. This is all well and good but denotes the traditional concept of the familiar and its potential and might be better suited to be called magickal or spiritual pets.

Another common thought along the “familiar” thread is that they are connected to the indigenous practice of animal spirits, known to many modern practitioners as the cringe-worthy use of the term Totem. Although, there are similarities in these concepts, they are completely different. The concept behind “Totem” animals is that they are an animal spirit that has chosen to guard a specific tribe or family and “usually” do not do any type of spiritual bidding for any particular human. Then there is the idea of animal spirit guides that have been chosen or given through ceremony. They can also come to you in a dream or in real life with a message or to teach you a valuable lesson. Shamans and medicine men of various tribal traditions have long honored the spirits of animals for their wisdom and assistance in spiritual and magickal workings and the mundane as well. Whereas with the Witch’s familiar, the animal is just the vessel for a spirit and will stay with the Witch for a certain time in order to help him or her magickally, to do his/her bidding, and then they may or may not leave. They can also be called upon or summoned into a Witch’s life as a “helper” for various things and workings.

Finding and Working with Familiars

One of the “better” books on the subject is Raven Grimassi’s “The Witch’s Familiar”. Where he discusses the history and methods on obtaining and working with familiars in a more traditional fashion. Although a modern approach, he utilizes the concepts of meditation, journeying, and ritual to achieve this goal. He explores the ideas of three different types of familiars: physical, astral, and spiritual in a way that no matter what your take is on the subject, he covers it in a modern practical way.

Whether or not you follow the ways Grimassi points out or your own, the bottom line is that familiars are magick users’ helpers who exist in both the spirit and the mundane. Depending on the Witch’s work, familiars can serve as gatekeeper, messenger and guide. There are many ways for a familiar and a Witch to work together. A Witch may send a familiar to complete a task or serve as guard during magickal work to protect and alert to the presence of spirits that may be harmful. The ways of employment are almost endless. Note that there can be a “price” in this, which is why there is a huge difference between a pet and familiar.

Also know that not everyone has, needs, or even wants a familiar. If you have an animal companion that you consider a “familiar” but doesn’t fit the traditional ideas of the familiar consider working on strengthening your psychic connection and making it a magickal pet. If an animal has appeared in your life unexpectedly, such as a stray cat that sticks around, it may have been drawn to you psychically and not a familiar. As with anything always be sure to rule out mundane reasons the animal has arrived. Do you leave food for them to eat? Is it that time of year? Remembering that many animals tend to scavenge during the spring and fall.

If you are still interested in the traditional concept of a familiar, the best way to is through summoning one into your life. Also note that this is completely different from summoning and binding spirits for workings that can be found in many other traditions. Familiars are about connecting with animals that are used and employed as vessels by spirits that are connected to you by other means. Those means are only privy between Witch and familiar.

A Witch at Home: Outdoor Altars and Shrines

We thought this would be a perfect time of the year to write a post about outside altars and shrines.

Before we discuss a few ways to set up outdoor sacred spaces, lets take a look at the basics of what they are.

There is a slight deference in what an altar is and what a shrine is. A shrine is a sacred place, which can be dedicated to a specific deity, ancestor, or similar figure of respect, where they are venerated or worshiped. Shrines often contain statues, relics, or other special objects associated with whom the shrine is for. Shrines are found in many of the world’s religions, including Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and the Pagan traditions. They can be found in almost every setting, such as churches, temples, cemeteries, or in and outside of the home. It is a sacred place that is dedicated to its resident. Prayers, blessings, and respect are the main focus for shrines, no other work is usually done at a shrine. If offerings are made or any other type of spiritual work is done, then it would be considered an altar.

An altar is any structure upon which offerings are made, ceremonies are held and is usually consecrated for spiritual purposes. Just like shrines they can contain statues, relics, or anything related to its specific workings.

Building a Permanent Outdoor Altar/Shrine

When first building your outside altar or shrine, be sure to ask its resident(s) where they would like to be placed. Begin by quieting your mind, relax open yourself up to the specific energies or call out to whom you are trying to connect with. Next turn slowly, notice if there is one particular direction that pulls or speaks to you. Walk in this direction, slow and deliberate. Pay close attention to shifts in energies and whether you are drawn one way or another.  Look and listen for signs or messages. Always ask for a confirmation.

Remember when constructing an outdoor altar or shrine keep in mind that the conditions around the area that has been chosen. Your altar’s area may become wet, flood, or have strong cross winds. If possible take consideration to these conditions. You also want to be able to safely access the altar, if the location is not safe, ask the resident for another location because it is unsafe or un accessible.

If you’re lucky to live in a wooded area and want to make a stone altar, but there are no rocks in to be found you will have to carry your rocks. As with any altar, you will want to try to use objects that are native to the area. You also want to make sure that your materials won’t harm the wild and plant life around. If you also plan to leave offerings, be mindful not to leave something that could be harmful.

Once the area is set, it should be dedicated in however your tradition calls for or how and what you feel is necessary.

How to Write Your Own Guided Meditation

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Writing guided meditations is not as hard as you might think, in fact, if you have been self-meditating you have already been creating your own meditations. All you need to do is put them down on paper.

Writing Your Own Guided Meditation

Before you begin have a clear intent or goal for your guided meditation. Get into the right frame of mind, I like to take a few moments to focus and relax as if I am actually going to meditate. This makes it much easier for you to visualize what you are writing about. You may want to plan out your script, starting with a bullet point list of events you wish to describe in the meditation. Another method is to get into a state of deep relaxation, and then allow the entire meditation script to flow. Personally, I allow my guided meditation scripts to gradually form in my mind as I write. Allowing my mind to create what is happening, like watching a movie unfold and then putting it down on paper. Everyone is different, so the approach you take is entirely up to you. You may want to add music or environmental sounds to your meditation. Music can make or break a guided meditation it not only adds beauty but it also helps to relax and depth to the overall mood of the journey. As you write your meditation, you may want to add in symbolic images. In a deeper state, symbolic guided imagery can be very powerful. Consider the specific purpose of your guided meditation, and then introduce symbols that represent that purpose and give deeper meaning to the journey. Be wary of sentence length. Allowing a moment for visualizations to occur. Then move on to the next sentence.

General Structure of a Guided Meditation

  1. Getting comfortable

Give the listener a little time to prepare for the meditation and to get comfortable.

  1. Start with a general relaxation

Spend five to ten minutes relaxing the body and the mind with visualizations and/or breathing exercises. You may want to use a countdown technique during or just after relaxation.

  1. Begin the Journey

Start by describing the environment that you will experience. Include all five senses by describing what can be seen, smelled or heard and touched. The more one can connect their senses to the environment, the more deeply they will become immersed. Be careful not to let the description drag on. Don’t spend too much time describing specifics; your imagination will automatically fill in any blanks.

  1. The Return

During the meditation you will become very relaxed and will have entered into a deep state of relaxation. Coming back to normal waking consciousness should be done gently and gradually. One common way is to guide listeners back to the starting point of the meditation. Once you have returned to the starting point, slowly bring your awareness back into the world around them. Becoming aware of their physical body and of their surroundings.

Guided Meditation: The Astral Travel Test

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In simple terms all astral traveling is, is a spiritual journey within the material world. This means that through an altered state our spirit travels through our world to a location where we can retrieve information and so much more. However, this cannot happen overnight, through practice the information you will receive will be clearer more detailed. Guided meditation is a great way to lay the foundation of astral travel. This guided meditation we will visit a chosen area using our astral self to test your accuracy of.

Before beginning this guided meditation, choose an indoor location that is close to your home that you have never been before. Have a glass of water and some type of food high in carbohydrates near the area you are working.

Astral Travel Guided Meditation

This is best lying down at your regular altar or somewhere that is comfortable and where you can relax.

Close your eyes, make yourself comfortable and relax. Next begin to prepare for the meditation by breathing in deeply through your nose, filling your belly, hold for a count of three and exhale through your mouth. Do this three times, or until you feel relaxed, centered and open. With closed eyes keeping them at a centered gaze. Count yourself slowly down from ten to one breathing slowly and regularly.

Begin to feel your energy throughout your body.

Visualize with intention your energy releasing from your body and taking form of yourself.

With eyes closed, look around the room take a mental note of items of interest. This will help you return.

Now thinking of the location, you wish to visit, count down from five; visualize your outer self-leaving the room.

This may be done any way you choose. Allow your intuition to direct you into the correct direction.

When you arrive at your location, look around taking note of items of interest, colors, sounds, building layout, and anything that you might need to remember. Collect as much information as you can.

Begin to return in the direction you arrived from. Slowly begin to feel yourself back in your room. Allowing your energy self to meld back into your physical body.

Recalling from the mental notes taken before become aware of what is around you.

When ready open your eyes. Ground as needed. Drink and eat to help ground.

While eating write down all that you sensed and seen in a journal. Remembering as much as you can, draw the layout of the building and items you saw on your journey. Do not worry about filling in what you have not seen or cannot remember. When possible, but not too long of a wait, travel physically to the location and compare notes. Keep in mind you will not receive a hundred percent on this “test”, but with practice you will get closer each time.

Guided Meditation: Visiting the Gods of Egypt

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This guided meditation takes you to Ancient Egypt, where you meet with the Gods and Goddess of your mind. Pay close attention to who they are, there is a reason why your mind has chosen these particular deities. You will also experience a moment of seeing parts of your higher and shadow self. The information you receive may also be valuable.

Visiting the Gods of Egypt Guided Meditation

Begin by lighting a candle and some incense. Turn off the lights. Close your eyes, make yourself comfortable and relax. Next begin to prepare for the meditation by breathing in deeply through your nose, filling your belly, hold for a count of three and exhale through your mouth. Do this three times, or until you feel relaxed, centered and open.

Feel the room around you, acknowledge the glow of the candle and scent of incense.
As you breath in, begin to visualize the smoke of the incense circling you, surrounding you.
It begins to lift you off the ground.
Now floating with every breath, allow your energy to form a bubble around your floating body.
Visualize yourself and the bubble rising higher and higher. As you climb higher you can see the earth below. Take a moment and look at the earth moving below you.
Looking closer you notice that it is turning counter clockwise, and that it seems to be spinning faster and faster, and faster.
In an instant it suddenly stops and reverses to its normal clockwise spin.

You and the bubble begin to slowly sink back to the earth. From the darkness of space to a sunlit sky.
As you pass through the clouds like a feather, the bubble begins to fog up so that you can no longer see.
After a few seconds, you can feel that your bubble has stopped falling and gradually, the fog dissipates.
As the fog clears, a scene is revealed before you of a desert landscape of reddish sand. Nearby, you can see the mighty walls of four temples standing face to face, creating a square courtyard between them.
Your bubble begins to disappear, allowing you to Stand and walk freely.
Begin to head towards the courtyard.
You can feel the heat of the sand beneath your feet, and the hot sun on your body.
Looking down, you notice you are wearing a white linen robe, that blows in the occasional warm breeze.
As you reach the center of the courtyard you can see that there is an obelisk. It is made of your favorite stone, take a few moments to examine it.
Rearing above you, you see that it is covered with hieroglyphs, some seem familiar to you and others are strange and foreign. However, take note of them because they may hold a message for you.

Take a deep breath through your nose and smell the air. There is a light sent a musky wood burning.
Looking for its source, you notice that there is smoke drifting out of one of the temples.
Walking toward the temple; its heady aroma fills your nose. It is the same smell as the one you were burning when you started your journey.

As you approach the entrance of the temple, you can hear the faint humming of what seems like monks praying from inside.

Slowly you enter the temple, the floor beneath you is smooth and polished.
Out of the hot sun you find yourself in a vast chamber with stone columns.
It is quite dark, but along the walls there is bowls of burning oil that emits a flickering light. Here, the air is cool and refreshing, and the smell of incense is complemented by a strong fragrance of flowers.
Spend a few moments exploring the temple chamber.
As you look round, you can see at the far end of the chamber someone kneeling, as if in prayer.

You decide to walk across the hall of columns toward the kneeling person.
Upon approaching the person, you find you have entered a small shrine. Against the back wall is a large statue with its head covered with a black cloth. The statue seems to have a masculine body. Bowls of incense smolder before it and it is flanked by flickering flames.
As if feeling your presence, the kneeling person stands and turns toward you with one hand raised as if to say welcome.
This person appears to be a priest of some sort and you return the gesture out of respect.
He steps forward and says “welcome to the temple of the God”, you look up at the statue and notice that the black cloth is no longer there revealing one of the gods of ancient Egypt.
He has chosen to reveal himself to you.
Take a moment and think about why this particular God has come to you.

Just as you are about to turn and talk to the priest, he vanishes and you are left alone before the statue.
Return your gaze to the God before you.

Looking upon its stone face, it seems as though it is a living entity.
As if its eyes were becoming living eyes.
Gradually, the statue seems to come alive. Slowly, the stone turns to flesh.
Standing in awe, the statue of the god begins to descend toward you, his eyes now full of calmness and peace.

This is now a time to have your questions answered.
Spend some time speaking with the god. He may show you things, give you a symbolic gift or simply offer affection. He may have words of advice for your work to come, or ask you to do something for him in the real world. Let your mind wander freely….

When he has finished, thank him for this time in a way you see fit.
As you are about to say farewell, he touches your shoulder and you find yourself back outside in the courtyard. Now facing one of the other temples.
A slight breeze blows from inside, on the wind you hear your name, as if beckoning you to come inside.

As you approach the threshold of the temple, you can hear faint music coming from deep within.
Upon entering the corridor ahead, you can hear the ringing of strings and the low beat of drums in the air.
Unlike the last temple the wall here is painted and again, it is quite dark, but you can see where you are going by the dim lamplight glimmering on the floor. The entering corridor opens out into a vast room, lined by columns. Ahead of you, at the other end of the chamber, you see a flight of golden steps that lead up to a life-size golden statue of a female.
With anticipation you walk toward the staircase, noticing again that the statue’s face covered with a cloth. She wears a long sheath dress and you can make out the hint of a necklace around her neck, but her feet are bare. Just next to the statue you can see a small group of priestesses playing various instruments. The music is soft, but lively music. Another priestess begins to dance sensuously to the music around the base of the statue. The floor is covered in petals and she dances, they release their rich fragrance.
As you approach the foot of the stairs, you are overcome by the music and begin to dance.
As you dance, cast your inner eye back to your room where your candle stands, imagine that the light of this candle shines onto the statue. Through the light of this candle, you can feel your inner self become one with the statue.
Through the eyes of the statue, you can see yourself dancing through the cloth that covers your head. Reach up to remove it, as you pull it off, you find yourself back in your body looking up at a Goddess.
Seeing now, who this Goddess is, you open yourself up to her energy.
She is a friend to you. Let your mind wander to connect with her. You may have words or questions for her. Take a few moments and spend some time with this Goddess…

After a few minutes, thank her for this audience, and say farewell.

Now, walk back through the temple, bidding farewell to the priestesses. Go out into the courtyard.
This time you are not alone, there is a shrouded figured dressed in black standing before the obelisk. The figure beckons you closer. Feeling a little unsure, but not afraid, you begin to walk toward him. He reaches out holding a papyrus scroll in each hand. His hands are old and writhed with time. Knowing you need to make a choice between the two scrolls, you reach for one.
As you touch the scroll of your choice, the other bursts into blue flames, and the figure disappears. Holding the scroll, you begin to unroll it. Slowly it reveals a painted image of a boat with its bow facing the same direction of the hand you choose. Be it left or right. You know that is the direction of the next temple you are to go to.

In excitement to see what happens next, you walk closer to the directed temple. Upon approach you notice that there are stairs leading down.
A cool breeze rushes up the stone stairs as you begin to descend. The further you go the darker it gets. At the moment you think that it is just to dark too go on, you see a faint light ahead of you and push on. The air is musty and damp.
As you reach the source of light, the stairway opens to a fire light room. Walking through the entrance you can see, you are not alone. Before you, are five figures and they all turn and face you as if they have been waiting for you. They walk toward you and without a word take hold of you and guide you into an adjacent room. Entering the room you can see another figure standing on a platform before an over sized golden scale. You recognize the figure to be as Anubis, the lord of the underworld. Although, you know he is usually associated with death you feel at peace. His dark jackal face is just slightly lit by two tall candles. The five ushers leave you standing before the platform. You recall this scene from before. It is the judgment of your soul, the weighing of your heart.

Anubis turns toward you and you can see his ruby red eyes glow like fire. He steps off the platform, places his hand on your heart and instantly everything turns white.
As if playing on a movie screen you begin to see pictures of your life, he is showing you all the good you have done thus far.

Just as a feeling of pride washes over you, everything turns black and you begin to hear your heart beating slow and steady. Again, images begin to appear this time in the darkness, you are now being shown all that you hide and the bad you have done.

After a few moments the images and the darkness fades back into the room with the scales and you are alone once more.

Looking around in confusion, you can see a white feather floating down as you reach for the feather, a flash of light returns you to the courtyard.
The sun now is setting and you can feel that the temperature has dropped. Knowing now you are to visit all four temples, you proceed to the last.
As you reach the doorway the entrance fills with a thick fog.
With confidence you begin to walk into the fog. Gradually the fog turns into a black void.
After a moment, the darkness begins to clear and once more and you are back in your own reality. Open your eyes when you are ready.

Egyptian Kyphi

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“Take me! I am of great power”, The Illusive Hag Stone

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One interesting item we are often asked for is Hag Stones, so we thought would might put the topic to rest or at least provide the reasons we do not sell hag stones. There seems to be a lot of people posting their collections on social media, making them seem common and easy to find, not true if you are going by tradition.

A Hag Stone is a stone with a NATURAL hole through it and are believed to be magickal. These stones are believed to ward against spirits, bad luck, “Witchcraft”, sickness, and nightmares. They are also known to be windows or doorways to see “otherworlds”, such as the fairy realm. These magickal stones have as many names as they do powers and seem to have originated by their folk-lore and use in their particular region. Sometimes referred to as hex stones, serpent’s eggs, snake’s eggs, and Druids’ glass. However, the more common names other than hag stones are Witch stones, (holy) holey stones, and adder stones.

Two origin stories of adder stones say that the stones are the hardened saliva of many serpents together in one area and the hole is caused by their tongues. The second claims that an adder stone is made by the sting of an adder. Some sources say that these stories hail from the Druids of Ancient Wales and Britain, while others say they are European. As these are just folk stories and superstitions, so then lets look to their numerous uses in cultures and traditions.

It seems that in certain parts of Europe, this stone kept the “hag” spirit away in order to prevent her from stealing horses and children. While in others It was also used as a talisman to dispel the evil eye and many people still hang this stone in bedrooms. In the UK, both fishermen and farmers also adopted this holey stone as protective charm against unwanted forces and storms and still use it today.

Another concept right here in American and not commonly associated with “magick” but should be mentioned is of the Blackfoot custom of the “Buffalo Stone”. Although, these stones do not usually have a hole, some of the “magickal” ideals behind them are the same.

The Buffalo Stone, or Iniskim, is a sacred medicine stone, typically a fossil of some sort, that can be in the shape of an animal, mainly that of a buffalo. Although, they can be any stone that seems to be out-of-place of its surroundings or contain natural anomalies, such as a hole. Similar to some of the hag stone’s uses, Iniskim medicine helps have a successful life and grants luck and prosperity to its owner. However, the origin behind them is of a completely different nature.

A summarized popular version of this legend is that long ago, the buffalo suddenly disappeared and the people began to starve. Among them was a woman, who one day while gathering wood for the fire, she thought she heard someone singing a song. The song seemed quite close, but when she looked around, she saw no one. Following the sound and looking closely, she found a small rock that was singing, “Take me! I am of great power. Take me! I am of great power.” When the woman picked up the rock, it told her what to do and taught her a special song. She told her husband her experience and then said, “Call all the men together and ask them to sing this song that will call the buffalo back. Ever since then, the people took good care of a buffalo stone and prayed to it, for they knew that it had much power.

Whether you call them hag stones, adder stones or buffalo stones, they all hold a story behind the magick of what they can do or how they are found. Going to your local river or beach in hopes of finding one or six and doing so does not equate to finding a true Witch stone. You just found a stone with a hole in it, nothing more. However, the magick is in knowing that these illusive stones find you, rather than you finding them making them even more special and this is why we do not sell them.

Witch Cords: By Knot and Feather or Whatever

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Other than our spell candles, Witch cords are our favorite type of sympathetic magick to create. Cord magick also known as knot magick, or a Witch’s ladder is a very old form of folk magick. Traditionally the ladder is made from knotted cord or hair, natural items and charms are knotted or braided with a specific magickal intention in mind. The number of knots and types of woven items can vary as well as the color and number of cords.

ladder
Witch’s ladder found in England in 1878

The first recorded evidence of a witch ladder was found in an old house in Somerset, England in 1878. A “rope” with feathers and other items woven into it was found in the attic space. However, this is not the only account of such cords used for magickal intentions. The Gospel of The Witches Author, Charles Godfrey Leland discovered that the Witches in Italy used a similar form of the Witch’s ladder, called a “Witches garland”; Which was made of a cord, and contained black hen feathers. It was said that a spell was uttered as each knot was tied and that the cord was placed under the victim’s bed, to cause the ill fortune. Another was mentioned in an article found In Reverend Sabine Baring-Gould’s “Curgenven”; published in 1893. In his account the ladder was made of wool, and white and brown thread, and at every two inches was tied cock’s feathers. It’s maker then would weave into it; ill intentions intended for the victim. The ladder was then thrown to the bottom of a pond.

This type of folk-magick can also be found in its simplest form, also known as “knot magick”. Knot magick was traditionally been used by sailors to bind winds and then untying the knot to stir up a wind. The “Old-wives tale” of using a square knot on a bandage would make a wound heal faster.

Despite it being overlooked by modern Witches, cord magick is very effective and can be done anywhere, at any time, and with any items you have on hand. We often recommend it for those who live and work in non-accepting places. They can be simple or lavish in design, all depends on the Witch. The cords that we sell tend to be more traditional in style, but still feel like attractive decorations. Whether or “knot” you choose to cast a more traditional one or a modern one, it’s all about the intention weaved within.

Typically, the more modern “traditional” knot spells use nine knots. While constructing the cord; concentrate and focus your energy on your intent and repeated for each knot that you tie. Thus, your magick will continue to work as long as the knots are tied. Once your goal has manifested or is no longer needed, depending on the intent you should untie, cut and/or dispose of the cord. Tied with in the knots can vary depending on your intent, as would the color of the cords. Some Witches like to use three different colors, one or two for intent (i. e.: money and success), one to represent the knotter (or two in cases of love), and a third to bind (usually red) and nine items that are similar in correspondence.

We carry and can create Witch cords for any intention. Visit the store or us online at www.seawitchstore.com

What does it mean to live a magickal life?

(c) The New Art Gallery Walsall; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

Living a magickal life means being constantly in tune with the spiritual world around you, it’s about listening and being open to your intuition and to the messages from your spiritual guides. It happens twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, three hundred sixty-five days a year. Does this mean you need to run around shouting “Love and Light to all” of course not, that’s crazy.

The image most people have of those living a magical life is often of a robed priest or priestess, dancing around a bonfire, under the full moon, or mixing exotic herbs in a mortar and pestle. While this can seem very exciting and theatrical, alas we are not Laurie Cabot.

Actually, most of the time life can seem pretty daunting and un-magickal, between caring for our families, going to work, going to school, cleaning the house, running around stubbing our toe on that box we have meaning to put away since December. However, all it takes is a shift in perspective to see how the mundane can become magickal. Magick can be incorporated into your daily life simply just by being mindful and putting a little extra effort into your everyday life. You don’t have to perform an elaborate ritual every day to be connected. It’s about being aware of the simple things around you. That is not to say that there is work involved. It does not come easy, as the internet would have your think. You can not find it on tik tok or youtube. It takes work and dedication.

One way is by paying attention to the natural world, the seasons, the phases of the moon and how the world around you affect the way you feel or how it may correspond to aspects of your life. By doing this you are actually tuning in to the energies of the universe, which can give insight to how life will be during those times.

Secondly, Take the time to get in touch with nature and the land you live on. Even if you live in a big city, there is nature all around you. Just take a second and connect with that weed growing in a crack of the sidewalk. He may feel just as lonely as you do or he may have advice on how to deal with that loneliness.

Another way is to listen to your gut, your intuition. This takes a little practice but once you understand the feelings, life changes for the better. In most cases your intuition is your first thought or feeling, the first thing that pops into your mind and trust me it’s usually not the most logical of thoughts.

Lastly, when you are doing something mundane, think about how you can use it in a magickal application. For example, when you’re baking cookies, consider what sort of magickal working you can incorporate into the recipe. There is nothing wrong with adding a little passion magick to a meal you make for a lover.

Another way I is to keep a sort of magickal schedule and routine. It’s about dedicating yourself to doing one magickal act every day of the week. Of course, as with anything, this schedule can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it and not only will it keep you connected but can open the doors to learning about your path and yourself as well.

There are also a few other practices that you can incorporate into your daily magickal life, such as regularly openly communicating with your deities and spiritual guides. Through daily meditation and devotions with your deities and guides you keep the lines of communication open. This is by far is more complex of the methods of spiritual guidance there is. It doesn’t happen overnight.

One practice that is rewarding is working with your ancestors. By building a relationship with your ancestors you can inherit valuable information about almost anything. Who better to get advice from then someone who has lived through it. There are many ways we can reconnect with our ancestors, some of which you probably already do.

Some of the most common ways to connect with them is with use of:

Relics: these are personal belongings of the deceased, photos, written items by that person, even the cremated remains of loved ones.

Altars and shrines: Altars are a place to hold your collection of relics and to give offerings and whereas shrines are usually dedicated to one person and temporary at the time of death until they are moved to your altar. However, both are a place to honor and communicate with them.

Offerings: are how we feed the dead, we are not physically feeding them, we are feeding the link between us and the physical world and the spirit world.

Communication: conversations are a form of offering. At first this may seem a little strange, but once you do it after a few times it becomes easier. When starting out openly speaking to the dead it is recommend you do this just before bed. You may find that you may receive answers to your conversations in your dreams

By connecting or reconnecting with our ancestors we bring the past and present together and bridge the gap between generations. They are and will become a foundation to your magickal life.

Another practice is with working with animal spirits. Of course, this could be an entire blog post on its on as there is so much information. One rule of thumb is, if it shows up three times consecutively it has something to say and not every encounter with an animal is an omen.

Then how do you know if it’s a message or if it’s your imagination? There is two ways to answer this question.

1. Ask for validation. It’s ok to ask the spirits to validate your thoughts and questionings.

2. Be aware of possible causes. If you are constantly seeing a deer on your way home from work, is it because it’s in the evening when they come down out of the mountains to graze, or maybe it is hunting season when deer seem to be running amok?

Here’s a little story:

Someone that swore up and down, backwards and sideways that their spirit animal was the red tail hawk and that they follow them everywhere and even circled their home. Ok, yes, this person lives off a mountain where red tails frequent, however, they do not regularly circle, especially in multiples. Although, It is obvious what these birds were, everyone left it alone. Until, one day at an event, and said person pointed out “their” hawks. We looked up and what do you think we saw circling above…. Yep, turkey vultures! Nope not a sign, just normal animal behavior.

Whether you are working with deities, the dead or animal spirits, the simplest way to connect to them is sending out your intentions to make contact.

And although, these practices can take a little more work than the previous, they can be very helpful in making your life magickal. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t try. If you open yourself up to the endless possibilities, the possibilities for yourself could be endless.

Living a magickal life really is an art, it’s about being able to balance the mundane and the magickal. it’s living consciously and subconsciously, in harmony with the worlds around us and to the best of your ability. It’s about acquiring knowledge, not only about magickal practices, but about yourself and your own life.

A Witch at Home: Floor Washes

Many people have asked us what to do upon moving into a new home for cleansing and purification, other than using sage and the typical “smudging” products.

The use of floor washes is what we would call the tried and true traditional way of cleansing your home. They are a common part of spiritual cleansing and are usually found in many old-world magick and Conjure traditions. Spiritual floor washes are especially found within the Hispanic and Latin American spiritual cultures, and in Hoodoo/Rootwork and folk magick of the Afro-American cultures. Whereas, the practice of washing an area with a specially prepared herbal mixture will bring out the magickal properties of the herbs and add to the desired intention. They are often used for such things as to attract love, luck, and money but can also be used for banishing and protection.

How are washes used?

There are more ways to use floor washes then there are the traditions that use them. Typically, they are used after all mundane cleaning has been done. Floor washes are not just used on the floors of your home. They can be and should be used to wash windows, walls, and doors. The direction or start of the wash depends on the intention of the floor wash. In the case of cleansing and banishing, one would start at the back and top of the home and end at the front door. Many traditional practitioners feel the front door should also be washed from top to bottom and in some cases the porch and sidewalk. Cleaning everything along the way in a counter-clockwise direction. Some traditions ask that certain candles, oils, and prayers be used after the work is done. After everything has been cleaned the left-over water is disposed of toward the east or at specific places, such as a four-way crossroads.

How are washes made?

Most Traditional or original floor washes were made with only three ingredients. Due to modern homes having multiple types of surfaces more ingredients and have been added. Others have been added over the years due to personal choice and tradition. The earliest floor washes were made by mixing salt with some form of cleaning agent such as ammonia or lye, and a variety of herbs. Some older recipes required the mixing in of urine. These items were/are all added in a magickal fashion to a bucket of water.

Note: Floor Washes can also be used as sprays if you have carpet. Your floors should be physically cleaned before being spiritually cleansed.

Our Floor washes

Our floor washes are based on traditional recipes and adapted to also be used safely as a bath. We can also make custom intention floor washes and baths.

Floor Washes & Baths

$12.00

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