Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Green

It is my intention to discuss the Green elements of modern Witchcraft and neo-pagan practices as well as relate those elements to my own Craft practice and the bits and pieces of Iberian-Celtic tradition handed down to me from my mother and her mother. My approach is both historical and personal; my interests lie in history, and I would be untrue to myself if I discarded history (which is so great a part of my perspective on life) in any presentation of Craft practices. My associations with the Craft did not come through formal training or through recognized tradition, but by observation, activities, and written guidance. Much of Craft practice has been softly muffled through its passage over the generations. It has only been in recent decades, with the formalization of Witchcraft traditions, that practices have been created to preserve oral traditions that otherwise might have faded. I am very grateful for the Gardners and the Bucklands and all the other writers of the Craft who have worked so diligently to preserve an ancient religion. My purpose here is to show the underlying thread that appears to run through most traditions and relate it to the ancient historical past, while also presenting insights as to how this thread weaves its way through my personal practice. This does not mean that I know all there is to know about any one tradition, I don't. I am a solitary practitioner who is learning along the way. My information on traditions comes from reading about them and keeping current with the Craft through conversation and online communities. I correspond with a number of Wiccans, some with coven traditions and some who are solitaries, and I have found that some issues are repeatedly addressed, which I will bring out in this book.
I have found that there are terms and there are terms, which means that words like "tradition" can lose their generic, mundane inference and be seen as representing a formal school of the Craft. I shall avoid using this particular word except in its accepted Wiccan form whenever possible. The generic version will be substituted with words like "custom" or "practice."
Another word that sometimes carries negative inferences is "Aryan." From the historian's point of view, the Aryans were a people from the Central Asian areas that extended as far west as the Ukraine who were absorbed some three thousand years ago into the cultures they conquered. Any connection of Aryans with twentieth-century Nazis or modern racial, ethnic, and religious bigotry does not figure into this writing. The Aryans as a separate people simply don't exist anymore, although their heritage, like that of the Dravidic people of the Indian subcontinent, can be found throughout the modern world.
My own practices involve elements that appeal to me, but do not reflect an endorsement of any one tradition or practice. To be fair, many pagan usages recognized as belonging to a particular group are really older, common practices formalized by that group. To use a circle is not to be a Ceremonialist any more than to call upon Brigid is to be a Roman Catholic. Circles are a custom that pre-date Medieval Ceremonialism by many thousands of years, and Brigid was a Goddess long before she became a Christian saint. Just as old Pagan temples and holy sites are recognized today as Christian ones-from Lourdes to Notre Dame-the ancient beliefs underlying the modern ones cannot be claimed as a possession of the modern with any sort of historical validity. The four directions, the elementals, the center of the spirit, the five-pointed star, the star in the circle all these are primal images that go back ten to twenty thousand years with no formalized Wiccan or Ceremonial tradition. Yet it is due to the Ceremonialist and modern Wiccan traditions that these ancient symbols and usages have not lost their meaningfulness.
Most of the images of the Craft and Ceremonialism can be found lurking in the dark recesses of modern mainstream religions like Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, but it took the neo-pagan movement to pull these out of the shadows and back into a primary focal point. I tend towards a pragmatic approach to the Craft and all religion in general, which does little for "faith" but a lot for connection with the universal powers of which we all are a part. The idea of an eminent dual-deity will make faith unnecessary and contact an easier proposition. This is all part of being in tune with the energies flowing around us and recognizing ourselves and the energies are one. The communication is ongoing and does not have an "off" switch. It is my impression that human unity with the life force was the normal state of affairs prior to the great Aryan expansion of 2100 B.C.E. It was with the need for leaders and followers in a warlike culture that the newer religions came about and created a need for deities to enforce a ruling class and a warrior class, with a priesthood to stand between the masses and the elite. The power of the priesthood was not in arms but in spirit, and over time, this drew the spiritual connection of the common folk away from their oneness with the universe and into the priestly caste. This spiritual power has been at constant war with the temporal (political) power ever since. This is the source of friction between prophets and kings, popes and kings, preachers and government officials who really rules the people: the political, legal rulers or the spiritual guides who communicate with God? With the resurgence of Pagan practices in modern times, the clergy class has come under the threat of a significant loss of power.
Secular humanism and neo-paganism go hand in hand, and these are targets of religious propaganda and hysteria in the modern world, the Salem mentality of our times. Political aspirants have and will continue to ally themselves with leaders of the clergy in order to gain power and dominion. One faction feeds upon the other: clerical ministers become powerful through media exposure to large numbers of ordinary people by supporting a political personage, who gains power through media exposure to large numbers of ordinary people by soliciting the support of the clergy. Thus we see Nixon and Billy Graham, Kennedy and Cardinal O'Connell, Bush and Pat Robertson, and so on, united in purpose to control the governance of Americans. Independent thinkers are generally ignored or vilified without such political pairings.

My basic goal is to reunite the individual with the energies of the universe through the various exercises of Wiccan traditions and Ceremonial magic. My personal approach is not one that can be pinned down to any one tradition; I have borrowed what I wanted and discarded as I saw fit (and still do). Although I am not a member of a specific tradition, I use a variety of practices found in different traditions because they aid in my union with the Divine. I use a few elements that are not generally (or at all) recognized in formal traditions, yet I have traced these to what were once common concepts still identifiable in myths and stories. It is not my intention to offend or discredit any tradition, but I cannot ignore customs with which I have found a connection or those that I feel have become a concern to many people in the Craft.

These matters will be explained as I progress so that the practical side is weighed with that of belief. I consider it important for individuals to have information made available to them so they can make informed decisions. People sit on a jury during a trial, hear all the evidence, and then are required to make a decision. Just as people are trusted to decide on legal matters, people should be making rational decisions on matters of the spirit. We have minds; we may as well put them to work in conjunction with our spirits in order to be a whole, functioning being. Just as the Lady and the Lord are One, my perspective is that we should be united within ourselves. Our minds can work with our spirits to give us a connection with the energies of the universe and with each other.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Candle magic

Candle Correspondence Table

Written and Compiled by George Knowles

Candles have long been used in association with magick and witchcraft, as indeed they have been adopted and used by many other religions for spiritual communication.  

Candle magick is probably the oldest and simplest form of ritual magick still performed today.  Ever since fire was discovered, the naked flame has been regarded as sacred.  In ancient times they used to light touches to invoke the Goddess and Gods.  

Today we symbolize those acts by utilizing candles.  The naked flame remains the finest and easiest means of focusing in on power and energy.

The use of differently coloured candles symbolizes the nature of intent and ultimately the outcome of a particular spell.  Coloured candles are therefore used to pinpoint our focus on a particular deity or planetary association.  We need to understand the colour properties and other associations of candles to make magick work.

Below is a list of candles and their associations. 

Black – Are used for Banishing evil or negativity as in uncrossing rituals, Crone Magic, Mourning a loss, Meditation, Feminine Divinity, Samhain.  Also used in rituals to induce a deep meditational state.  This candle attracts Saturn energy.

Light Blue - Is a spiritual colour and is helpful in devotional or inspirational meditations.  It brings peace and tranquility to the home and radiates Aquarius energy.  Use in situations that need to be synthesized.

Royal Blue - Is the colour of Loyalty and is used to promote Laughter and Joviality.  Use it to promote Jupiter energy and whenever an influence needs to be increased.

Blue – Is symbolic of the spirits of the West, and the elements of Water.  It is used in rituals to obtain Wisdom, Peace, Healing, Tranquility, Truth, Sleep, Prophetic Dreams, Friendship, Physical Protection and Hope. 

Brown – Is symbolic of the spirits of the North, and the elements Earth.  It is used for rituals involving Animal Magic and the Home in regards to Material Increase.  It eliminates Indecisiveness and improves the Powers of Concentration, Study and Telepathy.  Use it also for increasing Financial Success and for locating Lost Objects.   

Gold – Fosters understanding and attracts the power of cosmic influences.  Use it in rites intended to bring about fast luck or money.  When communicating with Solar Deities and for honouring the Gods.  This candle generates solar energy.

Grey – Is a neutral colour and is useful when pondering complex issues during meditation.  In magic, this colour often sparks confusion.  It also negates and/or neutralizes a negative influence. 

Emerald Green - This candle is important in Venusian rituals.  It attracts Love, Social Delights and Fertility. 

Dark Green – Are used for Beauty, Employment, Fertility, Healing, Success, Good Luck, Prosperity, Heart Matters, Money and Masculine Divinity.  Being the colour of Ambition, Greed and Jealousy, it can be used to counteract these influences in a ritual.

Orange – Are used for Creativity, Attraction, Stimulating Energy, Legal Matters, Success, New Home, Intelligence and Mental Clarity.  It charges and recharges the intellect and combines with any other candles to stimulate their actions.  Use for rituals stipulating Mercury energy, and sometimes-solar energy.  Also used during Samhain. 

Pink – Promotes Romance and Friendship, and is the standard colour used for rituals to draw affections.  It is used for Love, Honour, Friendship and Fidelity.  A colour of femininity, it brings lively conversation to the dinner table. 

Purple – Are used for Psychic Ability, Wisdom, Spirituality, Success, Independence, Spiritual Growth, Power, Healing and the Feminine Divine.  Ideal for rituals to secure Ambitions and Financial Rewards.  Increases Neptune energy.

Red – Is symbolic of the spirits of the South, and the elements of Fire.  It is used for Strength, Courage, Power, Passion, Health, Energy, Vitality, Love and Will Power.  It increases magnetism in rituals and draws on Aries and Scorpio energy.

Silver – Is used to remove Negativity, encourage Stability and helps to develop Psychic abilities.  Use for Protection, Honouring the Goddess, Telepathy and Clairvoyance.  This candle attracts the influence of the Goddess.

White – Is a balance of all Colours and is used for Meditation, Healing, Truth Seeking, Peace, Spiritual Strength and Enlightenment, Rituals involving "Lunar" energy, Purity, Protection, Happiness, Masculine Divinity, and may be substituted for any other colours.  

Yellow – Is symbolic of the spirits of the East, and the elements of Air.  It is used for Charms, Confidence, Attraction, Wisdom, Visions, Psychic Powers, Mental Powers, Activity, Creativity and Unity.  Use it to bring the power of concentration and imagination to the success of a ritual.  Also used in rituals where you need to gain someone's confidence or need to persuade someone.  This candle generates solar energy.

Magenta - Is a combination of Red and Violet that oscillates on a high frequency.  It energizes rituals where immediate action is needed, or high levels of power and spiritual healing are required.

Indigo - Is the colour of inertia.  It is used to stop situations or people’s intentions.  Use it in rituals that require deep meditation and rituals that require Saturn energy. 




Candle Magic  - By Phillip Cooper


Wicca, A guide for the Solitary Practitioner  - By Scott Cunningham


Encyclopedia of Wicca & Witchcraft  - By Raven Grimassi

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Intro to paganism

Straight from the host site. No since in rewriting if it's good the way it is.

There's a lot of information out there for seekers who are interested in Wicca and other forms of Paganism, and it can be a little overwhelming to sort through it all. This 13-step study guide will help you build a basic framework for your studies in the future. Topics include basic concepts, reading recommendations, prayers and deities, the Sabbats and other celebrations, tools of the Craft, and ideas on how to live a magical life every day.

While there's no substitute for hands-on learning, this study guide is designed to give you many of the basic working concepts that you'll need to continue studying in earnest later on. Think of this as the foundation you can build onto in the future. Each lesson will feature four or five topics that you should read and study. Some will be informational, others will be actual rituals and ceremonies to perform. Don't just skim over them -- read them thoroughly, and make notes on the points that jump out at you. Take your time when you're going though them, and if you need to, bookmark them to read later.

If you've ever thought you might like to study modern Paganism but didn't know how to get started, this study guide is designed for you.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Basic Spell Construction

ecause of the very nature of Magick, each working should be highly individualized and personal. Even if following a traditional spell, it should be tailored to your specific needs to be most effective for you. Understanding the basics of Spell Construction will enable you to formulate your own specific, effective spells for any purpose you desire.

Preliminary planning is necessary. The very first step is to decide precisely what your desired end result is to be. Before you can start, you must decide where you are going. You must be very explicit.

It is important, also, that you choose your time carefully. You should take into consideration all Astrological implications, energy currents and Moon phases.

The Moon is the astronomical body closest to us and, therefore, has a profound influence upon us, it is very important to choose a time when the Moon is in an astrological sign which is appropriate for your working. For example: Aries/Action - Enthusiasm, Taurus/Renewal - Sensuality, Gemini/Communication - Curiosity, Cancer/Emotion - Nurturing, Leo/Vitality - Determined, Virgo/ Organizing - Studious, Libra/Balance - Cooperation, Scorpio/Sexual - Philosophical, Capricorn/Authority - Ambitious, Aquarius/Innovation - Social, Pisces/Sensitivity - Idealistic.

Bear in mind that magickal workings for gain, increase or bringing things to you, should be initiated when the Moon is Waxing (from Dark to Full); when the Moon is Waning (from Full to Dark), it is time for magickal workings of decrease or sending away.

The highest energy occurs at the Full Moon and, therefore, this is the most powerful time for magickal workings. The New Moon is the next most powerful time for Magick.

Whenever possible, follow Nature's natural Energy Currents. There is a natural time for starting things (a planting time), for maturing things (a growing time), for reaping things ( a harvest time) and, of course, a time for rest and planning. Flowing with these currents will make your magickal work much easier.

Remember to plan your project for a time of uninterrupted privacy. It is important that you have no distractions. Generally speaking, it is best to work as late at night as possible. A time when there is less frantic energy is most appropriate. You might consider Midnight or later.

In choosing a place to do your magickal working pay particular attention to your needs, for you must be comfortable. Your place should be private, quiet and secure. If at all possible, set aside a special place for this purpose only. An unused room, a special corner of your bedroom, a quiet, secluded spot in your garden. A place that is yours. A place that you can come to whenever need arises and that is as free from intrusion of others as possible.

Prior to the night of your magickal working, gather together the things that you will need. All of the things used are tools. They have no inherent magick. They are to help you create a mood. If correctly made and used, they will trigger primitive responses from deep within you. They should be chosen with care. Consider the purpose of your ritual and choose your tools accordingly. If your magick is to be sexual, your candles, oils, incenses and so forth, should bring forth a sexual response. If the desired result of your Magick is Tranquility, then the tools should make you feel calm, peaceful and serene. Any candles you might use should not have commercially added fragrances as these may not be appropriate for your working.

Prior to your ritual, prepare yourself and your equipment by any means necessary to clean and purify. Historically, people have fasted, followed meticulous and detailed bathing practices, practiced chastity and used many other methods.

Most often a Ritual Bath is the preferred method. A bath frequently utilizing candlelight, fragrant herbs, bath salts or sensuous oils. A sumptuous hot bath, special bathing preparations and appropriate lighting, combined, can create the soothing effect which will help in the very important step of relaxing and clearing the mind completely of all mundane thoughts and experiences of the day. Your ritual Bath should, also, begin to set the specific vibrations conducive to your purpose into motion. You must not only cleanse and purify but must, also, begin to create the type of energy necessary. Once your purification process has been accomplished, you are now ready to begin. Proceed to the special place you have previously chosen in which to perform your magick. If at all possible, you should make use of the primitive responses set into motion by a well chosen piece of music. Your music should start slowly and build to a rousing climax.

 As you use your oils, light your candle or incense (or utilize any other tool you have chosen), you should begin to further intensify the energy that you have set into motion around you. A high degree of intensity is vitally important.

The Altered State of Consciousness that you must reach is not a meditative state. Anything that interferes with your ability to concentrate upon, reach and control the high energy state necessary to perform magick should be avoided. Such as, screaming children, a sink full of dirty dishes, use of alcohol or drugs, etc. Do not scatter your energy by attempting to do more than one magickal working at a time.

Remember that Magick is the manipulation of energy, a thought is a form of energy and a visualization is an even stronger form of energy. Your visualization can be a method used to intensify further and direct your will. Your visualization can be the method by which you control the magickal energy you have produced. You must know what you want. You must see it. You must feel the high energy flow. You must direct it.

One of the most important elements in the practice of any form of Magick is the Universal Law of Cause and Effect. This means that whatever you do (or don't do) you cause something to happen. The most important consideration is the Universal Law of Retribution. This means that no matter what you do, it comes back to you in like kind. It is the nature of things that as you send something out it gains momentum, so that, by the time it comes back to you, it is three times stronger. If you do something nice for someone, someone will do something nicer for you.

"As you weave and spin your spell, Three fold return the tale will tell."

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Let's get started

This blog will simply be a collection of what I learn along the way. I am a learner in the world of Paganism and I am still exploring what I feel is right for me. As I find new and intriguing information I will strive to share it here to pay what I learn forward for the next person seeking to learn.Come back often to see what I learn along the way. I hope to keep the information varied across many aspects of the Pagan world. This is to keep the information here varied and to motivate me to spread out and explore myself.