All About Covens

First of all, what is a Coven?

A coven can be a group of Wiccans or just Witches. If a group of Wiccans, they would gather for every Sabbat and 1-2 times a month for esbats (Sabbats are days we celebrate the sun and esbats are nights we celebrate the moon) to do rituals and magick. If they are solely Witches they would gather likely on full moons and whenever else they deem fit to practice magick together. In this post though I will be talking of Wiccan covens.

Different covens practice different paths of Wicca so if you are going to join a coven it is very important that you find one that meets your beliefs. How you join a coven differs from coven to coven. In some covens you can inquire about joining, in others you have to wait to be invited. In a coven there are usually 1-2 leaders known as the High Priestess or the High Priest. The number of Wiccans in a coven is usually between 3 and 20.

There are pros and cons to working in a coven. Some pros are that you get support and companionship.As a solitary I can vouch in saying working alone can be quite lonely and isolating. Also, when in a coven you have people who you can teach you about the craft. When you are solitary you have to figure out everything for yourself. When you’re in a coven you can study to get higher degrees in the coven and eventually get the status of High Priest(ess). Lastly some people enjoy having a set schedule and a plan for how to learn. It gives them a routine and structure that they work well with.

Despite the pros there are some cons. Although some people love the structure, some people don’t. The coven will make decisions about meeting times and attendance that may not fit your schedule. Certain covens have expectations of it’s members that you may not be comfortable with. For examples how you dress in a meeting (dressed or skyclad). You will also be held accountable for keeping the laws of the tradition of the coven. If said laws are broken the coven can kick you out. If you leave your coven and start a coven of a new tradition you may have to start your training all over again. Lastly, in a coven you will be hanging out with a group of people. If you don’t like a member it’s going to be uncomfortable.

Training in a Coven

Every coven is different but in general this is usually how the process goes. So you’ve told a coven you’re interested, they invite you to attend an open ritual. When you go to the ritual you will get to check out the coven and they get to check you out. If you guys like each other and they decide they want you to join as a dedicant or a witch in training. Then someone will agree to be your teacher. As a dedicant you study the craft for a year and a day before you earn your first degree initiation and acceptance into the coven.

You will get a list of expectations that may include attendance and study requirements, promises to uphold the Wiccan Rede, and an oath to keep the coven a secret.

The coven will have a dedication ritual for you that essentially says you are committing yourself to the Wiccan path. After another year and a days study after your dedication, if the high Priest(ess) deems you ready you will be part of a ritual where you are reborn into the Wiccan path. You then will earn your First Degree Initiation, you gain the title of Priest or Priestess, and you’re officially a member of the coven. Then after another year and a day study from that ritual and the High Priest(ess) deems you ready you will earn your Second Degree Elevation and the title High Priest(ess). You are now qualified to start teaching, writing, and leading ritual. In some traditions you will be able to start your own coven. The last step is at least a year and a day after that ritual if the High Priest(ess) deems you ready you earn your Third Degree Elevation, and the official title of clergy, and the title of Lady or Lord. At this point you can break away from the mother coven, or hive off and form your own coven.

Priests, Priestesses, and Elders

Within a coven there is generally both a High Priestess and a High Priest. The High Priestess is seen as the Goddess incarnate and is the spiritual centre of the coven. The High Priest assists the High Priestess and is seen as the God incarnate. Elders are people who have all their degrees but have chosen not to be a High Priest(ess). They are the mediators and spiritual resources of the coven. They also don’t have to be old but rather just experienced in Wicca and magick.

Divination

So divination…. What is it?

Any action that attempts to
solicit information directly from the Divine,
through the use of interpretive tools.
-Erin Dragonsong

There seems to be a common misconception of Divination is that it is the work of the devil but the root word of divination is divine. So in other words even if we did believe in the devil we would still be working with positivity… the divine.

How divination works varies in opinion like most things in Wicca and Paganism as a whole. Some believe that the ability to do divination comes directly from themselves, others believe that it comes solely from the divine (whether that be gods, goddesses, the energy source, or all of the above), and others (like myself) believe that it comes from the divine and yourself working together.

Divination comes in many different forms. Through cards, stones, pendulums, crystal balls/water, tea leaves, astrology, palmistry, and much more. In this post I will talk about the types of divination I dabble in.

Types of divination:

Tarot cards-

These are cards which are typically in a set of 78. They are divided by 22 major Arcana cards and 56 minor cards. The minor cards are divided into 4 suits (cups, wands, swords, pentacles). You take the cards and concentrate on a question or a situation you want to know more about while you shuffle. There are many different ways to shuffle and draw cards. I like to shuffle normally then lay them on a table and mess them up so they have a chance to be upside down. Then to draw I pick from the top. Others fan the cards out to pick, etc. The cards can tell the past, present, and future. Different spreads(different card layouts) are used for different subjects Each card means a certain thing and then you use intuition to tell how the cards all relate.

Wicca Series (Part 8): Divination

Oracle cards-

Like tarot cards it’s a deck of cards with meanings. There is no set number of cards per deck, no suits,and they typically are much more literal and less interpretive. Usually people interested in tarot start with oracle cards

Runes-

Runes can be made on any material really like stones or wood. Most commonly they are on crystals. My set of runes are on rose quarts. They are inscriptions from an ancient German alphabet “Elder Futhark”. There are 24 runes in a set. Each rune has a different meaning much like the tarots. There are different ways to cast runes. You can pick them out of the cloth bag or grab a random amount and roll them out like a handful of die.

Pendulums-

Probably my favourite form of divination. These can be as simple as a necklace with a pendent on it or you can get an actual pendulum. Mine has a chain with rose quarts on the end acting as the pendent. What a pendulum does is it allows you to communicate with and work with the energy around you, your spirit guides, deities, spirits (ghosts), etc. It answers yes or no questions. How I like to use a pendulum is I like to ask if a certain energy is there. I typically ask for Gaia. I then say if you’re here can you show me a yes answer and the pendulum will swing north to south. Then I say can you show me a no answer and it will change to swinging east to west. Then I ask tester questions like am I boy, do I have blue eyes to see if it answers properly and then I carry on and have a conversation and ask questions.

Tea Leaves:

Also known as tasseography is when you get a tea cup and saucer and you brew tea with loose tea. The person you are doing the reading for will drink the tea until it is almost empty. You then will flip the cup over onto the saucer. A lot of people who read tea leaves have a sort of ritual they do with the cups before turning it back over. When they do turn it over they look for any shapes/images in the cup starting from the top until they get to the bottom. Different images represent different things.

So these are some ways to do divination. If you have any thoughts or questions I encourage you to leave a comment below! Blessed be and Merry Meet!

More About Spells! (Blue Healing Spell included)

I will be talking about what makes a spell work, types of spells and a few more examples of them.

So a spell is the build up of energy and then the release of said energy. When one creates a spell you are suppose to cast a circle around your space, like you do in a ritual. This circle acts as an invisible barrier to the rest of the world. It allows the energy created to be contained in one spot and build up. You can create more energy by doing a spell with a partner or group. Before you do your spell work you can also ask for gods and goddess to lend you their energy, along with the elements, spirit guides, or any other spirit. Also, different days of the year (like full moons) have more energy in the air already. Depending on the spell there are different ways to release the energy but most typically the energy is released by ending the circle.

In Wicca one of the things we like to do is relate things to colours. Our different types of magick is divided up by colour type. There are 5 main types of magick.

Red Magick:

It includes Love spells, fertility spells, and sexual spells. Red magick is typically meant to further relationships and to attract love. Can be used for both positive and negative magick.

Green Magick:

It includes money spells, luck enhancing spells, and success spells. Green magick typically encourages money into our lives one way or another. If you feel your palm itching it may be a good time for one of these spells. Can be used for both positive and negative magick.

Purple Magick:

This type of magick is for protective spells. It can be used for personal success or controlling others. This type of magick is typically meant for bending peoples will and getting people to do things that benefit you. It is considered to be the poor mans black magick.

Black Magick:

This type of magick is for revenge spells, jinx spells, and curses. Black magick is magick of ill intent and is only used negatively. There can be serious consequences for using this kind of magick.

White Magick:

This type of magick is for protection spells, healing spells, and blessing spells.This type of magick is meant to help yourself and others. This kind of magick is only positive.

Other Types of Magick/Spells:

Candle magick, elemental magick, herbalism, potions, kitchen magick, knot/cord magick, necromancy, jar magick, and sigil magick.

Here are some links to different spells for examples candle magick spellsMoney magick spellsEarth elemental magick spells

Wicca Series (Part 10): More About Spells

Anyone can cast spells. You don’t need any fancy equipment. You don’t have to follow a spell recipe exactly. The successful rate of spells is based more on the intent of the spell, the concentration, and the build up of energy, over exact directions. You can do everything the spell recipe says to do but it can be unsuccessful. Concentration, a clear mind, the right emotions, realistic desires, etc will make a spell successful.

Something to keep in mind, although I did list all of these types of magic, this does not mean all of these types are types that Wiccan’s use. I am going to be a little biased, maybe, here and state a possible opinion, as fact, but Wiccan’s firmly believe in harming none so no proper Wiccan to me would ever partake in any form of magick that would hurt others or manipulate other’s will.

Check out my first post about witchcraft here Witchcraft and Magickal Workings

I’d like to hear your thoughts (especially on the last thing I said about proper Wiccans) and any questions you may have. As always, Merry Meet and Blessed Be!

Witchcraft and Magickal Workings (Wealth knot spell included)

Wiccans can be a witch and witches can be Wiccans but they are not the same thing. Wicca is a religion whereas witchcraft is a practice. It is most common that Wicca’s practice witchcraft but it is not necessary just as it is not necessary for a Christian to go to church. So it is important that you don’t mix up the two.

Most people think that when we say magick we are referring to the supernatural magic that you see in fantasy novels and movies but it is actually not at all. The idea of magick is manipulating your energy, the energy of anyone doing magick with you, the energy of the elements earth, fire, air, and water, and any energy from deities and spirit guides. We then use other things such as herbs, crystals, phrases, candles, etc. And when using these things we can have very effective results.

So the first step that most people partake in is making a sacred circle around your workspace (your alter). One can do this in several ways. You can envision a white light coming out of your finger, wand, athame, or whatever it is you use and trace a circle around your workspace, you can also take your bosom (broom) and sweep around in a circle, you can outline the circle with crystals, candles, salt, or put a representation of each element in the 4 quarters, and the last example I can think of is to smudge your circle with sage. You can also do a combination of these things. The point of making a circle around your space is to get rid of negative energy from your space and to keep them out for the whole process.

This middle part is extremely diverse. Some people will meditate first, this is the time where they call upon the elements, deities, good energy, etc. Then the magick workings take place. The reasons for doing magick varies. You can do it for yourself, to help others, to improve an environment/situation, or anything in between.

Wealth Spell (Knot Magick)

Components:

  1. String, piece of yarn, rope, whatever, of a color that corresponds with the subject of your spell so green for money.
  2. Cauldron (or fire proof container)
  3. Lighter/matches

Procedure:

  1. After you mediate and ground create your sacred circle and invite those you want to join you
  2. Tie a knot for each thing you want to happen. ex)let’s say you have 3 things you want to happen… a permanent job, money for rent, and money for groceries. So you tie a knot for each thing you want to happen.
  3. Release the energy from within the knots (There are different ways to release the energy to start the spell. It varies from person to person. What I like to do it burn the yarn which starts the magick.)
  4. To end, thank all the elements, deities, etc that loaned their energy and then break the circle.

Often you will find that the rent money won’t just fall in your lap but you’ll be provided a way to get it.

It sounds very easy to do magick but it honestly takes a lot of concentration and focus.

Thank you for reading! Feel free to leave any comments or questions! Merry Meet and Blessed Be.

Wiccan Rituals (Beltane ritual included)

Rituals are very misunderstood as a whole. A lot of people associate rituals with sacrifices and stuff like that. Every religion has rituals though and, unless you’re in some horrible cult, has nothing to do with sacrifices. Some religious rituals are things such as weddings, funerals, baptism, communion, bar mitzvah, circumcision, baby showers, and stuff like that.

If a Wiccan practices in a coven (a group of wiccans/witches) they tend to have specific rituals they do throughout the year that are tradition. Some bigger ones like initiation which is like a baptism (it is your dedication to the gods/goddesses) and handfasting (which is a pagan marriage and typically not legally binding).

But there are a lot of Wiccans who practice on their own and like I’ve said before we don’t have a church equivalent to go to so we typically worship on our own at our altars. One of our favourite ways to worship is to do a ritual. We tend to do rituals for different esbats (phases of the moon) and sabbats(holidays) but you can do them whenever you want. Rituals can be as simplistic or as complex as you want. I personally like simple rituals so I will write up an example of my favourite ritual I have done.

Wish Box Beltane Ritual:

Firstly you need a small wooden box, some paper, a pen, and anything you want to use to decorate your wooden box. If you have a cauldron use that but I don’t so I used a metal bucket with a small t-light candle in it. You also need herbs that correspond with what results you want.

I did this in my bathtub but you can do this at your altar or anywhere really. So to start you can by casting a circle if you’d like. You can mediate or do anything to prepare but once you are ready and your candles are lit you can call for your gods and goddesses. Because this was for Beltane I do this ritual for Pan and Demeter. You can also call any elements or other spirits now too. An example of calling them is to say something like “May Demeter, Pan, fire and earth elements assist me in this ritual”.

Next I put herbs in the fire (which is in your cauldron or bucket) and spoke while doing so.

Basilmay my life always be balanced

Cinnamonmay my business blossom and money come my way

Peppermintmay positive changes and restful sleep become part of my life

Thymemay renewed energy and health come into my life

Savorymay creativity flow through me

Cuminmay peace and harmony be welcome in my life

Saltmay my soul, mind, and body be cleansed.

Then I took my wishes that I wanted to happen fast and wrote them on paper and burned them. As they were burning I said “with harm to none may these wishes come quickly to those who write them. By power of three, so mote it be” I then took my wishes I wanted to be long lasting and put it in the box I decorated and I put a sprig of babies breath in it and before I closed it said

“May the words contained come to pass, and celestial bodies lend their hand. By moon, stars, and sun as well, may wish be granted as spelled. Unless removed, the wish shall hold, and with harm to none, my request is done”.

thanked the gods for what they do and for helping my ritual. For example

” I give thanks to Demeter for the earth, agriculture, and fertility. I give thanks to Pan for agriculture and spring fertility. I thank you both and earth and fire for assisting me in this ritual. May any spirits that assisted be released”

Lastly I put out the fire with some bath water and this is when you can end the sacred circle.

You can find rituals online or you can make them up yourself. One of the great things I’ve learned about rituals is no matter how badly you screw it up (I set the smoke detector off once) the gods and goddesses still appreciate the work you put into it.

So that’s a little bit about rituals. As always I encourage you to comment with any thoughts or questions you may have. Merry Meet and Blessed Be!

Wheel of the Year: Imbolc

I promise skipping Saturday’s isn’t going to become a trend. I was in the states this weekend doing a photoshoot dance troupe.

The second holiday of the year is Imbolc which is February 2nd, Groundhog day. This is about the goddess as the crone changing to the maiden. It is the Goddess’ season for growth and renewal. Now is also the time where the God begins to mature into a man.

We are now celebrating the first signs of spring. It is customary to go for a walk to see the first signs of spring (the first sprouting of leaves, depending on where you live maybe some flowers). Another tradition is to light every lamp in the house, even if only for a few minutes. Another option is to light a candle. This is to celebrate the rebirth of the god. Now is also the time for spring cleaning. Since everything is coming out of hibernation to start new beginnings it is good for us to do this too by getting rid of the things we no longer need. Also you can take the time to bless the seeds you are going to plant later in the year. You can also start an indoor magical herb garden. 

Goddesses that are typically celebrated this sabbat: Brigid (celtic), Venus (roman), Aphrodite (greek), Hestia (greek), Vesta (roman), Bast (egyptian),  Inanna (sumerian), Gaia (greek), Athena (greek), Artemis (greek).

When it comes to Gods Pan (greek) would be a pretty standard one to worship this time of year.

Like with every sabbat it is customary to do a ritual to worship the gods and goddesses. Now is also a good time to do divination to see what your year has in store along with any magick you’d like to do especially for new beginnings.

Please leave in the comments how you plan to celebrate Imbolc this year! Merry Meet and Blessed Be!

What Happens When We Die

Sorry about skipping Saturdays post! I was crazy busy and totally didn’t think of it but lets start with this post.

So, like all aspects of Wicca not everyone believes the exact same thing when it comes to what happens after we die.

One thing that is pretty uniform about our beliefs on death is that we all tend to believe in reincarnation. What differs is what happens between death and reincarnation. I think the common belief is that when we die we go to summerland. What people think happen in summerland varies but it is generally thought to be a place where the soul goes to reflect on their previous lives and prepare for the next. Some believe that they walk summerland with the god and goddess and reflect with them where other’s believe they are just in this tranquil state and reflect on their own.

Also what Wiccan’s believe they reincarnate into varies. I believe it is most commonly thought that you reincarnate into a random new person. Other’s believe it has to do with Karma and based on how good of a person you were in your past life. Other’s are more inclined to believe in that you are reincarnated into whatever the earth needs at the time, so a person, animal, tree, etc

Another thing about Wicca is some Wiccan’s (to my understanding a majority but I’m not positive) believe in different realms. So a lot of Wiccan’s believe in fairies, in gnomes, and other magical creatures. A lot also believe that we are not the only planet to have living beings like humans. So some Wiccan’s also believe we can reincarnate from and into those other species.

I will tell you what I believe now. I believe that when we die instead of going to a place such as summerland our souls just return back to the earth until we are ready to become reincarnated again. I believe all of our souls have a mission that originated with their creation and that our soul gets reincarnated into whatever at that time will be the best fit for our goal. For example I believe my soul is a Starseed which essentially means it originates from a different planet. My soul’s mission was to come to earth and try and better the earth through children. I came to this conclusion because I went to see a Shaman and she told me this without knowing anything about me and it just so happens I am studying to be an early childhood educator and all the details she gave fit my life perfectly. Also a lot of characteristics that starseeds possess I also possess. As for whether I believe in fairies, gnomes, unicorns, and the like is something I haven’t decided yet.

Please leave any comments or questions! Thanks for reading. Merry Meet and Blessed Be

Breaking Down the Wiccan Rede

Wiccan’s do not have a book of rules and beliefs like many other religions do. Something we do have though is the Wiccan Rede, which is a few guidelines, that in general, all Wiccan’s follow. So today I will go over the Wiccan Rede (line by line) and break down what it means. Warning this is gonna be a long one boys and girls.

The Full Wiccan Rede:

Bide the Wiccan laws ye must , in perfect love and perfect trust. (So this is pretty self explanatory… It just says to follow the rules in the Wiccan rede)

Live and let live, fairly take and fairly give (What you take you must give back. For example if you cut a flower, leave a seed)

Cast the circle thrice about, to keep all evil spirits out. (When casting spells, or doing a ritual cast a circle. It is traditional to do it once with the athame or wand, once with incense, and once with water or salt but this is not always done in the modern age)

To bind the spell every time, let the spell be spoke in rhyme. (When this was wrote it was traditional to make spells rhyme, you are welcome to do that but it is no longer thought of as necessary)

Soft of eye and light of touch, speak ye little, listen much. ( The first part is about the “evil eye” so don’t stare at people, it’s rude. The second half is sound advice. We learn so much more from listening)

Deosil go by the waxing moon, sing and dance the Wiccan Rune. (Deosil means clockwise. The waxing moon is the period between new moon and full moon. It is a time to cast spells to increase things in your life, like money or love)

Widdershins go when the moon doth wane, and werewolf howls by the dread wolfbane. (Widdershins means counter clockwise. Waning moon means the phase of the moon between full moon and new moon. Now is the time for casting banishing spells, getting rid of bad habits, ect)

When the Lady’s moon is new, kiss the hand to her times two. (When there is a new moon it used to be tradition to send the moon 2 kisses. Back during the witch hunts it was dangerous to do as people knew it was the sign of a witch)

When the moon rides her peak, then your hearts desire seek. (The best time to do magick is at the full moon when the energy of the moon is the strongest)

Heed the North Winds mighty gale, lock the door and drop the sail. (This represents the winter season. Keep warm inside and avoid the storms. The sabbat Imbolc represents this)

When the wind comes from the South, love will kiss thee on the mouth. (Represents the spring season. it brings romance, and love. The sabbat Beltane represents this)

When the wind blows from the East expect the new and set the feast. (Represents the summer season. Brings change and unexpected visitors. The sabbat Lughnasadh represents this)

When the west wind blows o’er thee, departed spirits restless be. (Represents the autumn season. Brings departed souls to the Summerland. The sabbat Samhain represents this)

Nine woods heath the cauldron go, burn them quick and burn them slow. (9 different woods are put in a traditional Beltane fire)

Birch – represents the Goddess.

Oak – represents the God.

Rowan – represents the Tree of Life

Willow – known as Hecate’s tree, represents our journey to the Summerland

Hawthorn – represents the Fairy folk and purity

Hazel – represents wisdom and learning.

Apple – represents love and fertility.

Vine – represents joy and its juice is said to cause heightened awareness.

Fir – represents immortality and well suited to Beltane

Elder be ye Lady’s tree, burn it not or cursed ye’ll be. (The elder tree is the goddesses tree and should never be burned)

When the wheel begins to turn, let the Beltane fires burn. (On Beltane it is customary to have a bonfire)

When the wheel turned to Yule, light the log and let Pan rule. (On Yule it is customary to burn the yule log)

Heed ye flower, bush, and tree, by the lady blessed be. (Respect nature and take care of it)

Where the rippling waters go, cast a stone and truth ye’ll know. (This refers to water divination specifically but includes all divination)

When ye are in dire need, hearken not to others’ greed. (You should only cast magick when you or someone you know is in need)

With the fool no season spend, or be counted as his friend. (Choose your friends wisely)

Merry meet and merry part, bright the cheeks and warm the heart. (Express your happiness to see others. Don’t be afraid to let people know you care for them)

Mind the Threefold Law you should, Three times bad and Three times good. (whatever you put in the world, good or bad, will come back to you three times as powerful)

When misfortune is enow, wear the blue star on thy brow. (the star is the pentacle. When we are in trouble we should open our third eye and listen the the goddess and spirit guides for help)

True in lover ever be, unless thy lovers false to thee. (If you make a vow to your lover be true to it but if your lover breaks their vow your vow is annulled)

Eight words the Wiccan rede fulfill, an ye harm none, do what ye will. (Harm yourself and no one else. As long as no harm comes to anyone you can do as you will)

So that there is the Wiccan rede which I strive to live by. I hope you guys enjoyed! Please feel free to leave any comments! Merry Meet and Blessed Be!

Who/What Wiccans Worship

In general Wiccans are polytheists meaning they worship more that one god. Usually a Wiccan has a certain pantheon they follow (greek, roman, egyptian, norse, celtic, ect). That being said although some Wiccans believe in the actual dieties like christians believe there is a physical god, most don’t. I don’t. Some believe in just the god and goddess, and other’s believe in a whole bunch of gods and goddesses So I am going to use a little analogy to explain what I mean.

What I, and many other Wiccans believe in is the source energy. This source energy is in everything in the universe including you and me, making us all a little bit of a god/goddess. It’s really hard though to picture energy and worship it. So what many Wiccans do is they personify this source energy. To further explain this, picture a tree. This tree represents the source energy. Now divide this tree in half vertically. Half is masculine, half is feminine which means half is god and half is goddess. Now there are branches on this tree. They represent the different aspects of the world (war, sun, moon, agriculture, marriage, fertility, ocean, sky, ect) The leaves on the branches are the gods and goddess that correspond to the different aspects. My pantheon is greek so all my examples will be greek. So war is Ares, fertility and marriage is Hera, sky is Zeus, moon is Artemis, etc. All these gods and goddesses are just personified pieces of the source energy that help me visualize what/who I am worshipping.

Like I said some people would actually believe that the gods and goddesses live in Olympus, just not most.

As for the source energy, it is in everything which is why Wicca is a nature based religion. We revere the source energy and the source energy is scattered all through out nature.

Please leave any comments you have! Merry Meet and Blessed Be.