Are You Witchy Enough?

I see many new people to The Craft that are getting bogged down in the performance of “being a Witch” and not understanding what it means to Be a Witch. I’ve listened while they stress about which ritual to follow and how to memorize lines and what kind of tools to use…it’s enough to make me drink!

So, for any of you who find yourself on either side of this teeter-totter (yep, I know, they don’t make those anymore thanks to insurance actuaries), let me help with some advice.

As Witches, we walk between the worlds. Our main goal is to maintain a balance between those worlds. It doesn’t matter what ritual or tools we choose to strike that balance. What does matter is our awareness of our own wisdom and strength to do proper magick. If we doubt our abilities or fear outcomes, then our magick will be blocked or corrupted.

We also need to stay aware of our vibrational state. If we drop to lower vibrational levels, then we attract those icky things that dwell in the lower vibrational levels.

If things are not going well for you, change the way you think. By listening to your inner voice, you may be surprised to hear some really negative things like: “I’m worried I won’t have enough to pay my bills.” or “What if I don’t get that job promotion?” These are thoughtforms that are soaked in fear and they will only produce negative results.

Change your inner voice to something positive and change your environment. Have you been spending too much time indoors? Then get outside! Maybe you’ve been hanging out with some real downers…find some positive people to spend time with. Whenever you feel yourself going negative whether it is in your day-to-day life or dealing with magick (“I hope my spell works” or “What if my spell doesn’t work”), change your state of mind. Over time, positive thoughtforms will become natural for you; and thanks to those positive thoughtforms, you won’t have to worry about which ritual to pick or what kind of tools to use. You will be your magic, not your “show.”

I think next, I will talk a little about hiding your Witch side. You know what I’m talking about. Everyone has someone (or ones) in their life that they feel they need to hide from. What is this doing to your magick?

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Bottle of Confusion

Today’s bit of advice is for all of you living in difficult neighborhoods. I’m not sure what your situation is but my house is on a half-acre lot in the middle of the block. All of the houses on my street were built between 1925 and 1950. There are rent houses on either side of me and through the years some pretty scary people have resided in those houses.

As you all know, neighborly relations can go south real fast if they aren’t handled well. As I own my house, it isn’t easy to just pull up tent stakes and move when things get bumpy. I have handled these situations in different ways through the years. For the past two years, our street has become quieter and more peaceful….it’s not perfect but much better than it was. Many years ago, I went about placing 13 charged crystals around the boundary of my yard and in my house. I had these crystals charged at a special place on my cousin’s farm that is a particularly strong energy vortex. After laying those crystals, the negativity came down several notches.

Later, I had some very negative and aggressive people living next door that kept trying to push my buttons. Finally, I did a special ritual that I will share at another time, but it did the trick and they quickly moved out of the house a week later.

Currently, the people living in the two houses to the south of me have been very quiet and are actually planting flowers in the flower beds and sprucing the place up. The rent house to the north of me has been vacant for well over a year as the owner has been slowly fixing it up in his spare time.

The two main spells that I use on a constant basis to lay protection inside my house are: the bottle of confusion and outward facing mirrors. Let me explain:

The Bottle of Confusion –

I have a glass bottle with a long skinny neck and a cork top in which I place my thread trimmings that are a product of my sewing. Once I had this bottle mostly full, I raised energy and charged the bottle with a protection spell. The threads (none are longer than a couple of inches) in all different colors serve to trip and tangle any visitors with ill wishes. I keep it in a south window of my home since that is the direction from which most of the negativity creeps on my street. Note: If you are preparing your own bottle of confusion, you can’t take a short cut and cut up a spool of thread and fill the bottle in a day. The magic won’t be there. You will just be left with a bottle full of thread. You must use threads that have been cut from projects you have been working on over time and the threads must be short (a couple of inches long). You also must do your homework when preparing to raise the energy to charge the bottle. If you are doing so while thinking about how much you hate or fear your neighbor, that energy will boomerang back at you with equal force.

Outward facing mirrors –

This is an old practice of taking a small mirror or piece of mirror and placing it in the corner of your window, facing outward. This mirror will deflect any negative energy directed toward your house. As you are placing the mirror, (assuming you have already raised the energy and your personal protection) you will need to prepare words of magic to direct your intention into the ritual. My words of magic were something like this:

Heed this warning,
Leave me be.
I wish not to be disturbed,
So away with thee you go!
So mote it be!

Spell Work

According to Murry Hope: Practical Magic is the transformation of the neutral Universal energies into practical frequencies that can be molded according to the practitioner’s intentions.

In most studies of spell work and practical magic, it is made clear that there are four main ingredients to any successful spell. Think of them as table legs: need, intention, visualization, and desire.

Many people who are new to spell work mistakenly think that the ritual of the words and the symbolism are the vehicles that bring the magic to our world. Nothing could be further from the truth. A person could have all the right tools and words to perform a spell on just the right day at the right time but if the four pillars mentioned above aren’t present, no magic will occur. Also, spells don’t work immediately. Often, it takes weeks or months to see a spell come to fruition.

Before you begin serious spell work, it is important to do some soul searching first. Those who have a weak emotional or mental state experience great difficulty when it comes to practicing the Craft. It is best to do some meditative therapy first to gain an understanding of your shadow side before beginning spell work otherwise you run the risk of seeing your fears and weaknesses brought into the material world.

Another important factor in spell work is correct timing. When considering the energetic atmosphere in which a spell is to be performed, you must look at the solar time of the year and the lunar time of the year. Also, the day of the week should be considered. Doing an increase spell during times of decrease is like trying to swim against a very strong current with an undertow. When you want to do a spell of attraction in times of releasing energy then take time to rethink your approach.

For example: A popular type of spell is one for prosperity.

First, you must look at your need. Are you behind on your bills and about to lose your vehicle? Or, are you just tired of scraping out a living?

Once you have pinpointed the severity of your need, then you can move on to your intention. This will be something like, “bring a new opportunity for a well paying job that is enjoyable” or “send some financial relief.” With all intention and all magic performed, the most important intention is “with harm to none.” Otherwise, if you work a spell for financial relief now, you may find that a beloved family member will pass on and leave you an inheritance. This shouldn’t be what you are intending.

The next two steps really go hand-in-hand. Visualization and desire are a lot like a covalent bond in chemistry where two atoms share electrons and form an extremely strong bond. (Yes, there goes my scientific mind.) Picturing in your mind’s eye what you want along with how it feels, smells, tastes, etc…. That creates strong magic. You will need to learn to see future events as if they are happening in the present.

Now, for the timing… If you need to do a prosperity spell immediately and you are on the back side of vernal equinox and in a waning moon (both are times of decrease and release)…try a spell which will release poverty or fear of lack instead. Often, we create our own poverty through our fear of lack. Like energies attract, so if you are sending a message to your mind’s eye and the Universe that you fear poverty, you will attract more poverty to you. Instead, if you feel you must worry about something, choose to worry about where you will keep all of the money you will soon be making. Again, make sure that all of your intentions include the affirmation: “with harm to none.”

How Does Magic Work: The Ether

Are you ready for a wild ride? I would like to share a little of my understanding of The Ether that permeates our world and makes our magic possible. First, I have something for you to ponder…

–> How is it that the creation of Israel that happened in 1948 which was also the 5708th year of the Hebrew calendar, matched up with the 5708th verse of the Torah that mentions the time when they would be brought back to the land of their forefathers?
–> Or- that debates still linger to this day over the many prophesies of Nostradamus or even Isaac Newton, for that matter.

Some will say that you can find patterns in anything or if you look hard enough for evidence, your mind will create it for you.

The Fifth Element to some and The Hallow to others.

I believe there is this Ether that is all around us. The Fifth Element to some and The Hallow to others. It is very similar to the electric field that exists in a circuit. Oddly enough, our scientists understand how electricity works but they still don’t have a firm understanding of what it is completely. Every time our scientists say they have unlocked the mysteries of the universe, another puzzle pops open.When I was a kid, they were just beginning to understand that the atom was not the smallest thing in the universe. The world of subatomic particles was new and now we are still doing experiments with quarks, and the like, so that we can better understand what they are and how they work. Scientists are also beginning to see that there may be a connection between electricity, gravity, time and space. They may all be the same thing. Ether…

The Electric Field is a Mystery

Let me give you an example of how an electric field works in a circuit. When you turn on the circuit (the on button on a flashlight) to your perception, the light comes on immediately. We are all taught in school about the speed of light (I hope they still teach that). But what is going on inside that circuit is that electrons are slowly traveling away from the negative side of the battery through the circuit in order to get to the positive side of the battery (protons in an atom are positive and attract electrons which are negative). Once all of the negative electrons have migrated to the positive end of the battery, then the battery is drained and the flashlight no longer works. It is a good thing for us that the electrons travel much slower through the circuit than the electric field so that we can have a battery that will last longer than a few seconds. The electric field, on the other hand, is almost instantaneous in its travels through the circuit. Here is an example of the comparision of electric field and movement of electrons: In a room, a person turns on a light switch (electric field) and turns over an hourglass (movement of electrons) at the same time. The light comes on immediately while the hour glass should take an hour for all of the sand to run from one end of the glass to the other. The scientists still do not fully understand what the electric field is and how it can instantly be everywhere at once.

So I’ve warned you that I am a geeky hippy witch who grew up in a family where we believe that there was once a time when nature, science, philosophy, art, religion, and medicine all existed as one. However, as a civilization we have not lived that way in a very long time. The powers that came to be a long time ago saw the power that that reality gave to people. They wanted better control over the people so they found ways to sever the ties of these six understandings and keep them at odds with one another. Much like an engine that is broken down into parts won’t run; a person living with a belief that the six understandings are separate (and they may even turn their back on some of the understandings) will not be able to harness the power that is their inheritance.

The Ether or Hallow is a lot like the Holodeck on Star Trek. Inside the Holodeck, it is just four walls with great potential but when given spoken commands, whole worlds can be created complete with form (not see-through or projection). On Star Trek they even have different levels of safety protocols like not being able to be harmed by a hologram. However, many people don’t understand The Ether or Hallow enough to put safety protocols in place. So when a person living in a place of fear or shadow begins to practice magic, the dark side of their existence (which is usually strong for them) jumps out and takes control of what the Ether shows them.

When people rely heavily on the material world, they tend to believe that magic or the key to magic lies in the mechanics of ritual, or the right tools or setting. However, the magick lies in the practitioner’s ability to tap into the Ether or Hallow. This is why I am so adamant about practitioners getting in touch with their shadow side and coming to terms with old energies that no longer serve them. When you begin to work with magick, you must be very grounded and work from a place of light and love at all times.

Clearing Old Energies

Before working magick you must clear your psyche of old energies that no longer serve you. You also must investigate any detrimental beliefs that you have carried from former lifetimes. Until you complete these steps, you won’t be able to find balance in your magick.

1. Simplify your life.

*Stop hoarding
*Stop procrastinating
*Get your material house in order
*Clean your desk and email
*Get organized
*Clean out any old herbs or oils that you know have lost their power – No need in holding on to them now….you are just coveting….”my precious”

2. Begin a regular meditation schedule.

You need quiet time to block the monkey mind. Send everything away during this time. It is not a time to “work” on anything; just let everything go and only focus on happy. Try to feel what happy truly means and feels like without being attached to anything (ie. “if I only had some money, I’d be happy”).

Float in the cosmos like a lazy river. If this scares you then bring it in closer like a cozy bed. Learn to breathe. Don’t worry about how or how many….just breathe and pay attention to how it feels. Breathing is very calming if done slowly and consciously. This is why we sigh so much when we are distressed.

3. Address your shadow.

This next part may be difficult for some. If you need professional help with it please seek it out.

Some of you are dealing with sibling rivalry stuff while others are dealing with much more dark and difficult energies. Find time to sit quietly and ask Universe to show you your chronic difficulties. You may want to journal while doing this. If there is something that is a constant trouble that pops up in your life (ie. falling for the wrong man/woman or not being able to manage your money well), this is where these shadows will appear.

In the case of falling for the wrong man/woman or having a string of broken relationships, you may find that you are holding on to old energies of a failed relationship in a previous life that you are having a hard time letting go of. If you are having a hard time managing your money, then you may be unconsciously telling yourself that money is the root of all evil or that you are just meant to be poor or that having money makes you feel guilty when others around you have very little.

Once you have a bearing on the shadows that are causing you distress, next you will need to address them. See them for what they are. Is there anything about these shadows that can help you or do they no longer serve you? For example: Do you have a hard time keeping jobs because you are constantly at odds with your boss? If so, then work to find the root of your agitation and imagine that you are bottling it for later use when that stubborn spirit can serve you better.

Sometimes your shadow helps you so you don’t always want to get rid of it – just tame it. Of course, that is separate from negative energies that you have buried deep inside like a festering wound.

Don’t Allow Negativity to Materialize in Your Magick

These are things that must be done before working with magic. You also need to do a constant accounting of the energies you are carrying around with you. Many of us are empaths and we pick up the gunk that others throw all over us each day. If you don’t keep yourself grounded and do a good job of cleansing your aura at the end of each day, you will get a build-up of negativity. Any bad Juju that you are carrying around with you whether your conscious being recognizes it, or not, will jump out in your magic when you least expect it. This is when the evil eye or demons get blamed for things we have actually brought about ourselves. Demons are actually a religious idea and not a quality of nature.

Let Go of Attachments

The first lesson to master before we delve into the forgotten history of magic is this:

We must identify and release the attachments in our lives.

We all have them and they often blind us without our knowing. Attachments are never healthy whether they be to another person, a thing, an idea… attachments are toxic and we need to learn to free ourselves of them. I’m not saying that you should necessarily ban the object of your attachment but cut the tether that binds you to it. Once the object of attachment is free from you, it can either move out of the way or transform completely. Once the attachment is out of your direct line of site, you can find the gold that is waiting for you on the other side.

Attachments Can Cause Illness

For many, attachments have a way of morphing themselves into health issues. Either the person’s higher self recognizes the danger of the attachment and begins to fight it while your ego fights even harder to hold onto the attachment or the attachment becomes an illness that makes you think you need the attachment even more in order to deal with the illness.

Find time to search inside and see what is no longer working for you. Are you wanting to start a new occupation but you have convinced yourself that it isn’t possible? Look around you, do you have negative people in your life who are constantly complaining that they can’t do something or are warning you against change because it is dangerous? Then that may be the attachment that you need to release.

Transformation and Attachments

Sometimes when we go through a catastrophic loss like losing a loved one or losing a house in a fire… we don’t realize that we may have had an unhealthy attachment that finally transformed itself (nothing is ever destroyed or dies, only transformed) in order to leave our focus of attention.

When you find an attachment that you need to release, start slowly and cut the tether with love. No need to burn bridges here, just walk away in a different direction. Soon, paths which were hidden behind the attachment will open up for you.

Clearing the old energies…..next.

Granny’s Kitchen Table

Practical magic is in everything we do. It should be in all the mundane details of life. You will find that you are in a constant state of magic once you have centered yourself and changed your view of life around you. You will find yourself cooking with intention and giving thanks to the food you are preparing. You will experience a calm like never before because you will realize that you are the only one in control of your life. If you don’t like the way things are, find a new perspective and develop your new goal. Drink in every detail of this new goal; how it will feel, what it will look like, etc. Begin to build a ritual with symbols, tools, and words – this will be your workbench upon which you will bring this new goal into the world of form.

My Granny, Grandmother & Granddad, & Mamaw & Papaw all traveled through life practicing practical magic daily. To the non-adepts around them, it just looked like they were practicing some old superstitious act or had some kind of quirky way of handling things. In actuality, they were practicing what their parents and grandparents had taught them. Such as: buying away warts with pennies; cleansing the thresholds and sealing them; keeping bottles of cut thread near a window; Papaw and Granddad kept the brooms in their garages sitting on their handles near the door; keeping small pieces of mirror in the windows; keeping a bowl of salt out in the middle of the kitchen and using pinches of it to toss before and after cooking…. I can go on and on.

Since not everyone had family members who were raised in the ways of the Ancient Arts, I thought it would be nice to have a place like I had when I was young. I would spend countless hours at Granny’s kitchen table or sitting with her weaving clothes hangers or sitting with Grandmother weaving wisteria wreaths and learning about the Craft. Sometimes there would be stories and other times there would be practical magic advice. Always there was love and light.

Passing on the “Knowing”

Some of my posts will cover the basics of the Old Magick. This is my way of sharing my time spent at Granny’s Kitchen Table and it will be where I go to sit with everyone and share what I have knocking around in my brain. I feel this is important so that I can pass on the “knowing” that I have to others who may pass it on as well. I want to make sure that the Ancient Arts will continue. As I add new posts, you can check the category to the right titled “Granny’s Kitchen Table” for more.

Commitment to the Ancient Arts

Many people flock to magic because it is fashionable. This is dangerous. On one of my previous blogs, I mentioned that you need to be clear of old energies and emotions and you have to be committed and practical in your practices. For example: a 40 year old, non-athletic woman is not going to become a prima ballerina. However, with commitment, she can train herself in such a way to privately practice ballet in a form that matches her physical ability.

Practical magic is a way to influence the energies and create change. Practical Magic doesn’t work like the TV show Bewitched. We can’t wiggle our noses and make our nosy neighbor turn into a donkey. However, we can put intention toward something like good health but we also have to be solid in our belief that our health is improving every day. We also have to do our homework on the treatments that are needed for our ailments.

Basically, this is a lifestyle that we live every day. It isn’t a hobby that is only brought out of the cabinet when we are feeling mysterious or the season is right or when we need something. Unfortunately many religions have taught people that if they need something, they just need to go to a deity and ask for it. This is not so, no matter what your religious background is. The Universe cannot be treated like a vending machine.

Divinity is in nature so if you can align yourself with nature, you can better influence the energies around you.

Think of a sculptor with a lump of clay. The sculptor shapes the clay into what they choose. Some people trap themselves in perfectionism and find fault with any defects and quickly abandon their work. However, something that is pointed out as a defect on a work of art is actually something to be celebrated…it makes the work unique. We must not try to micro-manage our art.

When you are working with practical magic you have to be open to the flow. For example:

1. You go into a light working session with an intention (for example: protection from a person who has abused a friendship).
2. You must keep only goodness and light in your heart, mind and solar plexus (gut). You should not be attempting to control the person involved, you should be trying to shed light and love on the situation and placing a shield of protection around you.
3. Ask for the greatest outcome with harm to none.

Practical magic doesn’t look like the movie Practical Magic. If we could banish difficult people from our lives like they do in the movie, this would be a messy world, although, there would be lots of robust rose bushes.

The path of the Ancient Arts or Practical Magic requires commitment, a pure heart, a quiet mind, and a grounded solar plexus. Without these things, the outcome of any session could lead to unexpected or unwanted results.

Remember, the Universe should not be used as a vending machine.