Monday, September 30, 2019

Magic in the Workplace

Magic in the Workplace

When it comes to magic, it can be used everywhere and anywhere, including in the workplace. Now I know some of you think that you can't live a magical life or represent your magical life where you work, but I assure you there are many ways you can, whether you have a desk or not. As many of you know, I am a teacher. If I can manage to bring a little magic into my classroom, you can bring a little magic to your cubicle, job site, cash register, or wherever else you work. All it takes is a little intention and some creative thinking.

First of all, why should you add magic to your workspace? For me, it brings some sense of calm and comfort. Knowing that I have a sigil in the top drawer of my desk, an amethyst geode on my shelf, the sound of running water, and some enchanted wax melts to make my room smell incredible helps relieve a lot of the stress I would otherwise feel at work. Furthermore, it allows me to continue my magical practice through simple daily rituals. Hopefully, it will help you feel the same way, and for those risky jobs, it should bring you some protection while for those looking for more clients and to stay gainfully employed, it should help you overcome those issues as well.

Some of these suggestions require a desk, while many others do not. Obviously, those working out in the field or in retail don't have the option of a desk, but there are other ways you can use magic. Not all of these ideas will work for everyone, so pick and choose which ones are best for your intended space.

1. Crystals 

Crystals are an inconspicuous way to add some magic to your workplace. Which crystal you choose to display or hide if you must, is dependent on what you wish to accomplish in the workplace. Below is a list of different crystals and their uses in the workplace.
Stress relief and calm- Amethyst
Protection- Black tourmaline, Jet (especially for empaths), or Obsidian
Reduce gossip- Labradorite
Increase communication- Blue Calcite or Amazonite
Boost sales and bring in clients- Peridot, Citrine, Topaz, Tiger's Eye
Creativity- Sodalite
Concentration- Hematite
Improve leadership skills- Green Aventurine
Promotion- Citrine
Boost memory- Azurite
Increase learning- Green Tourmaline
Be decisive- Amber
These crystals can be worn, placed on or in a desk/shelf, kept in your car/truck, or tucked into a pocket, bag, toolbox, or anything else being carried to a job site. Begin by cleansing the crystal then charging it with your intent. Depending on how much you are using the crystal, especially those for protection will determine how often you need to recharge them. If a crystal breaks, you need to replace it. This is a sign that the crystal has done its job and cannot handle anymore. Be sure to thank it and bury it.

2. Sigils

Like crystals, these are a great inconspicuous way to add some magic at work. They can easily be written on a sticky note or piece of paper and safely tucked away out of sight. If you have a cubicle, you could display your sigil as a daily reminder to keep you on task and focused. Also like crystals, you can create sigils for just about everything, from increasing communication to protection to boosting memory to encouraging a promotion. Sigils are great for those who need some magic on the go, like construction workers and retail workers without a desk. Sigils can be drawn in the inside of hardhats, on tools, inside of clothing, on your skin, or on a cash register. You don't have to draw them permanently either for them to work. Using your finger to "draw" the sigil onto an item is just as powerful as a written one or you can use essential oils for an extra punch

3. Sounds

If you can play music or have abient noise, sounds are a great way to increase vibrations in a workspace. I have a fish tank in my classroom, and the running water raises the natural vibration of my room. No matter how I or the students come into my room feeling, they immediately calm down and reach a state of balance...all because of the sound of running water. If you are in a place where you can have a fountain or fish tank, get one. If you can't, try playing really low sounds of running water, whale noises, or Celtic music in the background on your phone, computer, or radio. Just listening to calming sounds on the way to and from work will increase your vibration.

Sound can also be used to cleanse a space of negative energy. If you are able to, ring a bell around your workspace prior to beginning work that day. It will help remove stagnant energy and any negativity that may have settled since your left. Most people can't have candles or incense at work for various health and safety concerns, so sound is a great alternative.

4. Wax melts

If you work somewhere that allows scented items, but not flame or smoke, wax melts are a great alternative. I work in such an environment and not only does it bring some magic to my room, it covers up the smell of high schoolers. Yeah...I always purchase "mild" seasonal scents, avoiding things that smell too fake. Before I melt the wax, I like to carve a sigil or mantra into the wax melt that corresponds with what I'd like to bring to my classroom or manifest in my life that day. This adds an extra layer of witchiness to the act.

5. Plants

There are so many benefits to having plants around your workplace, whether they are on your desk or just around the office. They help purify the air and raise the natural vibration of the space. Furthermore, they help with mental health in general. Snake plants, spider plants, and succulents are great plants for workspaces as they often do well in artificial light. You can even hide some crystals in their soil. I have an aloe plant named Jeffery in my classroom. My students absolutely love him. If you work somewhere where you can't keep plants, take note of the natural plants around where you work, whether they be outside your building or near your worksite. Simply taking stock of nature will help ground and center you.

6. Enchanted Objects

Enchanting your everyday objects with protection, grounding, increased communication, or whatever else you need in the workplace can be used by everyone, no matter where they work. Enchant your keys to get you to work safely; your keyboard, pencil, or pen to communicate effectively; your tools to get the job done efficiently; your safety gear for protection. There are endless possibilities when it comes to enchanting objects. Just be clear in your intent and visualize the magic and you're done!

7. Prayer

I know prayer seems like a totally Christian thing to do, but I assure you that it is a very witchy thing to do. Prayer is just a verbal spell and highly effective. Even if you don't believe in any deities, you can still pray to the Universe, Mother Earth, or the All for protection, inspiration, and peace of mind while at work. I encourage you to say a brief prayer before entering work, even if it is just asking for the strength to deal with people! It'll help focus your mind on your intention and raise your personal vibration prior to starting work.

No matter how you decided to add some magic to your workplace, its a great way to live a magical life every day. I encourage you to do what works best for you. How do you incorporate magic into the workplace? Is there something you do that I haven't listed? Please leave a comment below! You never know who may benefit from your suggestion.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Bone Magic Series: Feeding Your Bones

Bone Magic Series: Feeding Your Bones

Once you start working with the spirits of animal remains, it's important to properly care for them. Routinely "feeding" your bones is one such as to do this. Essentially, when you feed your bones, you are providing the animal spirit within an offering. And it's not just bones you can do this with. If you have an animal spirit attached to any remains, such as fur or shells, feed those spirits as well. How often you "feed" your bones is completely dependent upon the terms and agreements you have with the animal spirit per your contract, how often you work with the spirit, and if its a holiday/full moon/etc.

When you first begin working with the spirits of animal remains, you should have a contract in place that outlines what you both agree to do. Often times this agreement includes a list of preferred offerings, if the spirit wants offerings at all. I've mentioned Coyote a couple of times and you guys have seen his wonderful skull grace my altar and some of my rituals as well. Coyote has never asked for food. Instead, per our agreement, my offering to him is a prominent place in my home with natural light near a window. He was buried on the side of a road for a long time before I found him and all he wanted was to see light again, so I have him placed in my library overlooking the main entrance to my home and a window that lets in lots of natural light. When I ask for his assistance in rituals and spells, he has never once asked for any other form of payment, although I would be more than happy to oblige. He's one of the most loving and easy to work with animal spirits I have ever met, and he is currently the only animal spirit I have residing in the animal remains in my home. The others have since moved on or were never in the remains to begin with.

Other times you will want to feed your bones is when you use them in spell work. The animal spirit is aiding in your spell, ritual, or other magical workings and should be fairly compensated for their work. Just as you don't work for free, you shouldn't expect the spirits you work with to do so either. You may also wish to honor the animal spirits on different sabbats, especially Beltane, Mabon, and Samhain, or every Full or New Moon. Getting in the routine of caring for the spirits you work with will ensure they continue to help and that your magic is all the more powerful. Again, how often you feed your bones is completely dependent on the animal spirit contained within the remains.

But what should you offer? Again, this is dependent on the animal spirit, but some common offerings include milk, honey, wine, beer, bread, fresh fruits and vegetables, and even coins, crystals, and other baubles. Offering them some of your own meal on a holiday is a great way to say thank you as well, especially on Mabon. However, be mindful of the spirit you are working with. You don't want to offer chicken to a chicken spirit. That's a slap in the face and downright rude! Generally, if the organism was an herbivore in life, stick to plant-based offerings. If the animal was a carnivore, offering meat is acceptable. Some animals, like birds and raccoons, love shiny objects, so offering coins, crystals, and other metallic/shiny objects make great offerings for them. Depending on the offering you give will determine what you do with the offering when the spirit is done with it. Coins, crystals, and other baubles should stay near the animal remains until the spirit asks them to be removed. Food, however, cannot stay indefinitely and should be properly disposed of. The best way to do this is to bury it in your yard after use. This returns the nutrients to the Earth and is a great way to honor the animal spirit you are working with. As mentioned in my posts on sabbat spirit work, the food will look like it has been untouched, but energetically the food has been drained. You should not eat it or feed it to a pet. This, again, is rude.

Offerings, however, are just one way to care for the animal spirits you are working with. Taking good care of their remains is extremely important, often more important than feeding them. Be sure the remains are kept in safe places where they will not be easily knocked onto the floor or otherwise damaged. If placed in a prominent location, dust them and their surroundings often. If they are not out in the open, but instead stored away, wrap them in silk cloths and place them in a padded container. Remember to check on them routinely and allow them to "breathe" once in a while. No one likes to be kept in a stuffy box forever. Some remains can even be gently, ritually washed once in a while. To do this, use warm water with some herbs, such as rosemary, lavender, and thyme, and gently wipe the remains with a damp cloth that has been soaked in this mixture. Pelts should also be routinely cleaned and can even be washed. However, be sure to research cleaning methods prior to cleaning and NEVER place the pelt in a washing machine or in hot water. By caring for the remains properly, you are showing respect to the spirit you are working with. In some cases, this may be enough for the animal spirit you are working with. Again, it is completely dependant on the spirit and the contract you have with them.

Overall, you should actively work to care for the spirits and their remains as you work with them. Even if a spirit moves on, you should continue to respect the remains and care for them properly. Spirits do not want to work with witches that are known for being rude, cruel, needy, selfish, or thoughtless. You only receive as much as you are willing to give and spirits generally keep score. How do you care for the remains of the spirits you work with?

Interest in the rest of the series? Here's what's to come!

Bone Magic Series

Monday, September 23, 2019

Mabon Altar 2019

Mabon Altar 2019

Mabon, also known as the Pagan Thanksgiving, is a time to thank the Earth and Sun for a bountiful harvest and feast with friends and family. Being the second of the harvest festivals, most crops are being harvested at this time and pantries and stores are being stocked for the upcoming winter months. This is a time of celebration, abundance, and gratitude, and this sabbat's altar is meant to show that symbolism.

Mabon Altar 2019

1. Harvest Candle Holder Centerpiece- Adorning the center of this altar is a harvest centerpiece and candle holder. Within the centerpiece are fruits and leaves, representative of this sabbat and the harvests taking place. In the center is a green candle to represent abundance as a form of sympathetic magic that the harvest will yield enough to get us though the winter. While many of us no longer harvest our own crops, the green candle is designed to attract overall wealth and abundance so that our pantries do not run dry in the cold winter months. Winter is always a tough time financially for most families, including my own, so attracting abundance is a must. Furthermore, the green represents Mother Earth, from which our crops are being harvested, and the flame the Sun, who provided the energy needed for the plants to grow strong and hearty. (Where did I get it: Goodwill; Cost: $3 for the centerpiece; Subscription Box; Cost $1 for green candle)

Mabon Altar 2019

2. Apples- Apples are a key fruit of Mabon, symbolizing health, fertility, and wisdom. They are commonly harvested around this time, and easily stored away for months at a time. With winter, disease often followed. Apples contain natural healing and fever-reducing properties, making them a favorite for warding off winter illnesses. As such, the apples are placed on the altar as an offering, as well as to attract continued health, continued crop fertility, and the wisdom needed to survive through the winter. There are two apples on either side of the altar to ensure balance, as Mabon is an equinox after all.  (Where did I get it: Grocery Store; Cost: $1)

Mabon Altar 2019

3. Corn Dolly- The corn dolly/maiden represents the harvest. While traditionally placed on a Lammas altar, I put her on my Mabon altar to represent Mother Earth and the spirit of the Harvest. Usually, the effigy is sacrificed the following Spring to ensure a bountiful harvest the following year, but I keep mine year to year to bring abundance into my life. (Where did I get it: House of Rituals Box 2018; Cost: ~$5)

Mabon Altar 2019

4. Malachite, Pyrite, Lapis Lazuli, and Carnelian- Front and center are a set of crystals. If you haven't noticed yet, I always include crystals on my altar. I absolutely love them! Malachite, being green, is symbolic of abundance and fertility, both associated with Mabon. Furthermore, the malachite represents our Mother Earth, who, again, is providing us with a bountiful harvest. Pyrite also symbolizes abundance, as the gold symbolizes wealth and prosperity, thus encouraging abundance in the upcoming months. Lapis Lazuli represents balance and purpose. It encourages one to make a plan, such as how much food should be stored away to ensure there is enough to make it through the winter. Being a crystal of balance, it's also the perfect crystal to represent the balance of the equinox. And finally, the carnelian chips represent the Sun, who is now waning in strength, but still strong enough to help the plants produce the last of the crops. (Where did I get it: Metaphysical Store and Subscription Boxes; Cost: ~$5)

Mabon Altar 2019

5. Leaf Candle Holders and Tealights- Flanking each side of my altar, again to represent balance, are two leaf candle holders with tealights. The leaves represent the coming changing of the season, while the tealights represent the Sun. (Where did I get it: Dollar Tree 2017; Cost: $2.20, $1/candle holder; tealights $0.10)

TOTAL COST: ~$17.20

Like my other altars, most of the items I use are found or purchased for around $1, although if the items must be purchased by you, then the cost will be higher. I hope you find this sort of break down helpful, especially those of you looking to create Instagram perfect altars on a budget!

How did you celebrate Mabon this year? I celebrated by resting. I am currently fighting off an ongoing infection, and being a time for balance, I spent Saturday eating nutrient-dense foods and resting to achieve inner balance.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Spirit Work for Mabon

Spirit Work for Mabon

Mabon, also called the Autumn Equinox, is often referred to as the pagan Thanksgiving. The crops are being harvested in full force and stored away for the winter months. Celebrations and feasts abound, along with corn mazes, apple picking, and bonfires! I am so ready for cool evenings, warm apple cider, and pumpkin carving. I already have fall decor up and fall candles burning around the clock. Yum! Like every sabbat, Mabon is no different in that there is spirit work to be done! My personal favorite is apple divination, but there are a couple other activities you and yours will enjoy doing this holiday!

1. Practice apple divination.

I love apple divination, probably because I love apples. Going out and picking fresh apples from an orchard is one of the best fall activities, hands down. If you've never done it, I strongly encourage you to find a local orchard and take the whole family. When you come back with your apples, there are several different divination activities you can do before you cook them up into a Dutch Apple Pie!

One of the most famous forms of apple divination uses the peel. Peel the apple in one long piece. When the peel comes off, drop it on the floor or throw it over your shoulder. The letter it forms is the first initial of your true love! If you break the peel before it is completely removed from the apple, you have to start over. Sometimes this is seen as an omen of death prior to meeting your true love. This form of divination is famously portrayed in Alias Grace by Margret Atwood. I adored this book as a teen. The pagan imagery in the book is fascinating. In fact, in tenth grade, I wrote a paper discussing the use of pagan imagery in the book. But I digress.

Another form of apple divination involves cutting the apple into nine pieces at midnight. Once cut, place the pieces in a dark room with a mirror. Begin eating the pieces of the apple while looking into the mirror. When you get to the ninth piece throw it over your shoulder and the face of your lover will appear in the mirror.

And finally, if you have multiple lovers, place an apple seed on your cheek for each person. The last one to remain stuck to your face represents the suitor who is your true love. A lot of future lover magic here! You can read more about the properties of apples here.

2. Thank your household spirits by putting out an offering.

At Imbolc I suggested you introduce yourself to your house spirits and get to know them. Hopefully, you've been attempting to work with them or have at least acknowledged them since your initial meeting. Either way, the spirits of your home keep you and yours safe all while ensuring that you never run out of food. Mabon is a time for giving thanks, and its a great time to thank the spirits of your home for all that they do. If you throw a Mabon Thanksgiving feast, be sure to set out a plate on your stove or hearth for your house spirits to enjoy. You can also offer them milk, honey, beer, ale, wine, apples, nuts, bread, or other traditional fruits and vegetables of the season. Leave the offering out as long as you can; overnight is best. In the morning, bury the offering in your yard. While the food likely looks untouched, unless your cats decided it belonged to them to like mine are often apt to do, the house spirits have absorbed and fed off the energy of the offering, leaving it energetically depleted. It's good to thank your house spirits often, but you certainly should on Mabon.

3. Create a Thankful Tree.

I know this doesn't seem like spirit work on the surface, but it most certainly is. When we express gratitude, we let the Universe and the spirits around us know we are thankful for all they have done, whether we know they have helped or not. It also changes your brain chemistry. Several studies have shown that people who express gratitude often are generally happier and more satisfied with their lives. Happy, satisfied people make better witches. It will change your entire magical practice and help you become more intuned with the world around you. When you feel good, you are often more open to receiving messages so start being grateful!

To create a Thankful Tree, find a fallen branch to turn into a "tree" in your home. Be sure to thank the tree for gifting you with the branch. This is a thankful tree after all. You can't go around stealing branches without thanking the plant it came from. That's a good way for this to backfire! Place some floral foam into the bottom of a decorative pot and place the branch into the foam. Cover the foam with some greenery or craft moss. Now you're ready to start decorating the tree with what you are thankful for. Write what you are thankful for on small strips of paper, fallen leaves, or cutouts of leaves. Using a hole punch, punch a hole into each note and thread a piece of yarn through it to create a hook. Hang your paper or leaves on your tree, I've also seen people do this on a wall by creating a paper tree and taping it to a door, wall, or window and slowly adding leaves over several days to fill in the tree with what they are thankful for. Rhythms of Play and HGTV have some great ideas on making your own Thankful Tree. However you set up your tree, it is sure to bring you happiness. Plus, the whole family can get involved, especially those little witchlings!

And there you have it! Three fun ways to do some spirit work this Mabon. How do you work with the spirits this time of year?

Monday, September 16, 2019

Magical and Medicinal Uses of Frankincense

Magical and Medicinal Uses of Frankincense

Gender: Masculine
Planet: Sun
Element: Fire
Powers: Exorcism, Protection, Spirituality
Magical Uses and History: Frankincense is probably one of the most famous "herbs" out there, simply because it is mentioned as one of the gifts given to Jesus on the day of his birth by one of the Three Kings. Unlike other herbs, frankincense is a resin, dried tree sap that is harvested from an adult tree and later burned. Frankincense has been widely traded for about 5,000 years and therefore permeated into cultures around the world. The Babylonians, Assyrians, and ancient Greek and Romans were known to burn frankincense during religious and spiritual rituals, while the Ancient Egyptians burned it at sunrise to honor the sun god Ra. It was even ground up and used as an eyeliner, embalming "fluid," and to treat a large variety of different ailments, including halitosis, hemlock poisoning, wounds, and to repel insects. The Ebers Papyrus mentions frankincense among its over 1,500 entries, citing specific medicinal uses of the resin.

Because the resin was difficult to obtain and highly sought after, it was seen as a symbol of wealth and therefore was prominently displayed by royalty. This explains why it was gifted to Jesus, the son of God, and why the entire temple of Queen Hatshepsut is adorned with sacks of frankincense. However, once Christianity took hold, frankincense was ultimately forbidden for its association with pagan worship. Later the resin was picked up by the Catholic church who incorporated its use into specific rites.

Historically, frankincense has been used for a variety of magical rites, including honoring different Sun deities, creating sacred space, space clearing, and general protection. Frankincense is often burned as an offering to the Sun at Yule, as he is reborn at the Winter Solstice and will continue to grow in strength as the year progresses.

Frankincense has strong space clearing and purifying tendencies, making it more potent than sage for clearing space. It's so strong, in fact, that is can be used during an exorcism to remove unwanted spirits from a person, place, or thing. Simply burn the resin and use the smoke the same way you would use sage. Frankincense essential oil can be used in a similar fashion. For protection, dilute frankincense essential oil in a carrier oil and anoint your self or draw protection symbols above or on windows and doors. It can also be placed in protection sachets or used in protection spells.

Frankincense resin can also be burned during hedge riding and other forms of astral travel to help reach an altered state of consciousness, focus the mind, and open spiritual doors by increases psychic awareness. Essential oils can also be used to anoint your Third Eye. Because of its long history as an offering, frankincense is the perfect gift for spirits or for use during spirit work. In some traditions, such as Hoodoo and rootwork, frankincense is used to anoint petitions.

Frankincense can be used in a number of spells including:
    Spirit Removal
    Ritual Cleansings
    Protection Spells
    Psychic Development

Medicinal Uses: There are several varieties of frankincense and the one commonly used for medicinal purposes is commonly known as Boswellia or Indian Frankincense. This highly prized medicinal plant has been used to treat arthritis, asthma, bronchitis, dysentery, and fever because of it's anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic, and antiseptic properties. In aromatherapy, frankincense is commonly used as an expectorant and to treat anxiety. The volatile chemicals found in the oil help to clear the nasal passageways and lungs of mucus, while several studies have shown reduced anxiety when the oil is vaporized or the resin is burned.

Preparation and Dosage: Frankincense is most commonly taken in capsule form, which can be purchased at most herbal shops. To make a poultice, combine frankincense resin with oregano and warm water and apply to the cut or bruise up to three times a day. To create a paste, grind resin into a powder and combine with aloe to form a thick paste. Apply to cut, bruise, or insect bite (or joints to treat arthritis) up to three times a day. Small pieces of resin can be chewed on to treat mouth infections and stimulate the digestive system. In essential oil form, it can be heated in an oil warmed and breathed in to help clear the lungs. Frankincense is known to thin the blood and should not be used by people who are pregnant, nursing, or on blood thinners. Furthermore, frankincense oil is known to cause skin irritations in many people, so use caution when handling the oil and always dilute it before applying to the skin. (This is a very limited list of uses.)

Want to print a copy of this for your Book of Shadows? Click below for your free copy!
Magical and Medicinal Uses of Frankincense

Friday, September 13, 2019

Just Say No Candle Spell

Just Say No Candle Spell

Telling people no is one of the things I struggle with, and I know I'm not the only one. Part of it comes from being a people-pleaser, as many Libras are. I enjoy making others happy, and I'm also extremely competitive, so when I see an opportunity to get ahead, I often jump on it, even if it isn't something I can actually manage at the time. This simple spell is designed to help you find your voice and say no when you need to. No in and of itself is some pretty powerful magic and knowing when to say no is freeing. You are not obligated, at any point, to say yes to anyone, especially if you are already hesitant to do so.

What You'll Need

  • Blue candle
  • Black candle
  • Sodalite
  • Black Tourmaline
  • Two strips of paper
  • Pen
  • Firesafe dish

Just Say No Candle Spell

What to Do

This spell can be performed on the Full or New Moon.

As always, feel free to cleanse your items and charge them if you feel inclined. You may also cast a circle, call quarters, and ask for any divine assistance before beginning this spell. I didn't do any of these for this particular spell, except cleansing the items before use.

When you are ready, sit the blue candle on the left and the black candle on the right. Light both candles at the same time. While the candles are burning, hold the sodalite in your hand and begin charging it with your intent: to increase truthful communication. Once you see it filling with blue light or it feels warm in your hand, place it in front of the blue candle. Next charge the black tourmaline with your intent: to banish your inability to say no when you need to. Note that I didn't say banish your ability to say no all the time. Saying you want to banish all unwillingness to say no all the time is potentially dangerous. Instead, you want to only say no when you need and should to keep you safe and well. When you see it filling with black light or it feels warm in your hand, place it in front of the black candle.

Just Say No Candle Spell

Next, on one strip of paper write what you want to do: Increase communication. Phrase your intent in a positive light such as "I will communicate my true feelings" or "I will openly communicate with others and say no when needed." On the next strip of paper, write what you are wishing to get rid of: you inability to say no when you need to. Again, phrase this in a positive light. "I banish my inability to say no when I should" or "I banish my inability to communicate truthfully when needed."

Just Say No Candle Spell

Finally, burn the first strip of paper about open communication in the blue candle flame and the banishment strip of paper in the black candle. As they burn, see yourself standing tall and telling others no when they ask too much of you or you are unable to fulfill the task they wish you to complete. Say aloud,
"I will openly communicate with others and banish my inability to speak truthfully and say no when needed. This is true until I ask for it to be undone. And so it is."
And that's it! You can allow the candles to burn down the strengthen the spell or snuff them out if you are short on time. Dispose of the ashes by strewing them into the wind and leave your crystals sitting out on your altar for a week or two to help remind you of your intent.

Just Say No Candle Spell

Why You Did It

Candles can be used in some of the most powerful spells, and are pretty cheap to acquire. For this spell, I went with blue and black because the spell is about communication and banishment. Blue is the color of communication as in the wind that brings messages. I'm sure you have heard the whispers carried on the first cool breeze of Fall or the first warm breeze of Spring, celebrating the changing seasons. Black is the color of banishment as it is the absence of all light. It is the ultimate remover.

Our crystals correspond with the candle color. Sodalite, being blue, is a crystal of communication. It also promotes truth and harmony, both aspects we need if we wish to openly communicate our feelings with others and say no when we need to. Black tourmaline is grounding and protective, as well as a great stone for banishment. It helps remove roadblocks that keep you from your best interest, and therefore a great crystal to use in this particular spell.

Just Say No Candle Spell

The intentions were written and burned to help release our intentions into the universe through smoke, which is representative of the element Air, and then the ashes disposed of using the wind (also element Air) to further communicate our message. Air is the element of communication and by burning and throwing your ashes into the wind, it will help carry it to the spirits that will be helping you on your journey

To break this spell, light a single white candle and say,
"I no longer wish to communicate openly with others. I ask that the spell be removed. And so it is."
And, as always, remember to record your spell in your Book of Shadows or use my spell/ritual worksheet to keep track of the spell.

What do you do to help you say no? Any nonmagical tips and tricks? Please comment below!

Monday, September 9, 2019

September Full Moon Worksheet

September Full Moon Worksheet

This month's full moon is in Pisces in the early morning of September 14th, meaning you can totally celebrate it on Friday the 13th! Spooky! Emotions may run high, as Pisces is a water sign, but this month's Full Moon should bring about the culmination of all your hard work over the past 6 months. This moon is considered the Harvest Moon, the moon closest to Mabon. The moon is known for illuminating the harvest and as such will illuminate all your hard work and the fruits of that labor. Be aware that people may be slightly more sensitive over the next two weeks, and approach situations with gentleness, kindness, and patience. This month's worksheet contains a five-card tarot spread to illuminate how things are changing for you and what effects that will have on everyone. As always there are also sections for what you want to release and charge, and any intuitive thoughts you receive during the Full Moon.

September Full Moon Worksheet


Looking for more free worksheets? Why not get your free copy of my spell/ritual worksheet to write your best spells and rituals yet?

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Reader Request: Womanhood Initiation Ritual

Womanhood Initiation Ritual

Earlier this week I asked my readers what they wanted me to write about. I have some of my usual posts lined up for later in the month, but wanted to know what you witches really wanted from me. I got answers and ideas across the board, and promise I will cover as many of them as I possibly can. Some may take a little longer to answer, like the person waiting since January for me to post about office magic, but I promise, I am getting there. Haha!

So the first post I want to cover because it seems the most time-sensitive comes from a reader via Facebook: "Humm.. what am I about to pick up I need help with... initiation rituals. I need something for a serious, not tv stupid menarche party for my Tinkerbutton. I've got her fabric pads. I've got her a tree of life necklace, we've had loads of talks! Now I'm just waiting for aunt flow to show! Lol"

What a wonderful suggestion! After doing a bit of research, and I mean deep digging research, there isn't a whole lot available for women regarding initiation rituals. The whole "Period Party" is as close to modern initiation into womanhood as we currently get, and it's pretty exclusionary as not all women have periods! Because of this, I wanted to write an initiation ritual that all women could use, whether it be when they start their period, when they turn 16, have their first baby, or transition. I didn't want to leave anyone out. Simone de Beauvoir said in best in The Second Sex, "One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman."

This particular ritual is best performed on the Full Moon when the Divine Feminine is strongest, but any important day will work as your Divine Feminine is strongest within yourself. So if your period begins in the middle of the Waxing Moon, go with it. Your official transition date is the New Moon? Do it! Pick a day that works best for you.

What You'll Need

  • white veil or shroud
  • table to sit objects on
  • red candle
  • lighter/matches
  • a bowl of purified water with a pinch of salt
  • red apple
  • knife/athame
  • a chalice of red wine or juice

What to Do

This ritual is best completed with at least 2 people but can be modified to do alone, on the Full Moon or any other special occasion. Begin by cleansing, charging, and/or blessing your items. Whatever method you chose is up to you. Personally, my go-to is always sage, because I have a ton of it. I also really enjoy blowing on an object and imagining all the residual energy blowing away with it. Prior to the ritual whoever is being initiated should take a purifying bath or shower. Once cleansed, they should either dress in all white or wear at least a white veil or shroud for the beginning of the ritual.

Womanhood Initiation Ritual

When ready, lay out the objects on the table with the candle at the top center, the bowl of water to the left, the chalice of red wine/juice to the right, and the apple in front of the candle. Then create sacred space in whatever way you wish. Feel free to cast a circle and call quarters, but do not invoke any deities at this stage. Skip that step for now. Once sacred space has been established light the red candle and invoke the goddess Artemis by saying,

"With this red candle, I ask Artemis, Goddess of Sovereignty and Young Women, to join our ritual to bless this young woman as she transitions into womanhood of her own volition. May you watch over us all and bring strength and courage as we march forward into the future."

This can be said by the initiator if working with more than one person or by the initiate if alone. Next, bless the water. The initiator should hold their hands over the bowl and say,

"I bless this water in the name of Artemis, Divine Huntress and Protector of Young Women. May it be cleansed and purified in Her name."

Dip 2 fingers into the blessed water and place your fingers on the initiate's forehead. The veil or shroud should still be covering their face at this time. Say,

"With this water, I cleanse and purify [insert name here] before me. May she be blessed by Artemis as she transitions from a child into womanhood."

Next, have the initiate pick up the knife and apple. Then the initiator says,

"The blade symbolizes the last roadblock between [insert name] and womanhood. The apple represents the Divine Feminine, the Forbidden Fruit, the life-giving gift of women. By cutting through the apple, [insert name] will make the final transition into womanhood."

The initiate should then cut the apple in half while saying,

"I break the chains of childhood and recognize that now I am a woman. I accept my Divine Feminine and vow to honor her daily. I will allow no one, including myself, to devalue me. I will stand tall as I walk this path and ask that Artemis continue to bless me in the future."

Womanhood Initiation Ritual

Lift the veil and allow the initiate to take a bite from one half of the apple. The other half should be given to Artemis as an offering. Next, the initiator should dip 2 fingers into the red wine and place them on the initiates forehead, now uncovered, and say,

"With this red wine, I anoint [insert name] with the life-giving gift of women. May it spark creativity, strength, and perseverance."

Finally, snuff out the candle and say,

"We thank you, Artemis, for your grace and protection during this initiation ritual for [insert name]."

Remove the sacred space and go party! This is a time to celebrate!

Why You Did It

For this spell, I drew heavily on mythological representations of women from the red candle to the red apple to the chalice of red wine/juice. Let's begin with the veil. Veils are commonly used to represent a transition from one life to another. During a wedding ceremony, the white veil represents purity prior to the transition into marriage. In the case of this ritual, it means the same thing, but not in a patriarchal sense. Children, by definition, are pure beings. The veil represents that purity, not that it suddenly goes away when one becomes a woman, but instead, it changes form, which is represented by the lifting of the veil. The lifting symbolizes the transition from childhood to womanhood.

Next, we have the red candle. Candles, in general, attract spirits and deities which is why there is a candle in the first place. It's red to symbolize blood or menstruation. I mentioned in the introduction, however, that just because a woman doesn't menstruate, it doesn't mean she is less of a woman. The candle allows us to symbolically represent blood and menstruation, the life-giver of all animals, even if the soon-to-be-woman is not menstruating or cannot menstruate.

If you have been following my blog for any period of time, you know that I don't believe in any deities, but I felt compelled to include Artemis into this ritual based on her mythology alone. One of the most famous initiation rituals for young women involved the Cult of Artemis at Bruaron. Furthermore, Artemis is said to rule over all biological transitions of women, from before puberty to the first childbirth, which makes her the perfect goddess to invoke when we are talking about initiation into womanhood.

Next, we have the blessed water, later followed by the red wine/juice. The blessed water acts as a final purifier before the transition into womanhood. At the same time, it blesses the soon-to-be-woman with the blessing of Artemis. The now woman is finally touched with the red wine/juice, which also symbolizes menstruation and the life-giving properties of blood. This is the finally blessing of Artemis and is meant to infuse the now woman with a "woman's life force." Women, by nature, have the ability to bring forth life, but that doesn't always mean bringing about a child. It also means creating artwork, poetry, businesses, and the like. Basically, anything that involves the act of creating. The water and red wine/juice are presented in a bowl and chalice respectively, again symbolizing the "womb" or life-giver, even if you don't physically have one, you still have a location for creation. Both of these were touched to the forehead or third-eye to awake the innate Divine Feminine all women possess.

And finally, we have the red apple, the ultimate symbol of womanhood in my opinion. Again, the red symbolizes blood and the shape of an apple conveys the womb, but it is the Biblical tale of the apple that resonates with me. I don't care what your current beliefs are, the story of Eve plucking an apple from the Tree of Knowledge is known around the world, and still holds sway within the witch community. Eve taking a bite of that apple was the ultimate act of rebellion; it was her initiation into womanhood, despite the Bible framing it as a sinful act that led to the downfall of man. Screw that! It was a woman taking possession of her Divine Feminine. The act of slicing and biting into the apple recreates this act of rebellion, solidifying the transition into womanhood. I knew the moment I was asked to write a womanhood initiation that I had to include the famous apple as the final act. There was no avoiding it.

Unfortunately, this is not a spell you break. However, you can choose to no longer recognize the initiation. Simply light a black candle, thank Artemis for her grace, and let her know you no longer wish to recognize the initiation. Make sure you leave Artemis an offering when finished. And, as always, remember to record your spell in your Book of Shadows or use my spell/ritual worksheet to keep track of the spell.

Have you been initiated into something before? How about womanhood? Share your stories in the comments below, and if you tried this ritual yourself, I would love to hear how it went!

Monday, September 2, 2019

Apothecary: Yarrow Salve

Apothecary: Yarrow Salve

This year, my yarrow has grown and bloomed multiple times. I actually have three different types in my yard: pomegranate, yellow, and white. All of them are beautiful and the white yarrow in the backyard has started growing outside of the planter, which is totally fine with me, although the guy that mows my lawn mows right over it. Oh well!

Yarrow can be used for a variety of medicinal purposes, but today we are going to focus on how to make a yarrow salve. This salve is perfect for cuts, scrapes, bruises, bug bites and stings. Do not use this salve for burns as the oil will trap the heat.

Yarrow Salve

1 1/2 cups olive oil
2 cups yarrow leaves and flowers, roughly chopped
1/4 cup beeswax pellets (more if you want to produce a thicker salve)

Begin by gathering and cleaning your yarrow. Be sure not to confuse yarrow with hemlock, which looks very similar. Here is a great video helping you identify each plant. If you are unsure of what you are picking, order some yarrow online instead. Once the yarrow is dry, remove the stems and flowers and roughly chop. Place the chopped yarrow in an airtight container and cover the yarrow with olive oil. It should take around 1 to 1 1/2 cups to completely cover the yarrow. Seal the container and allow to infuse in a cool, dark place for about four weeks (1 month). This is a great salve to begin on the New or Full Moon.

After the mixture has infused for at least four weeks, strain the leaves and flowers from the oil into a saucepan. Add the beeswax and heat the liquid until the beeswax completely melts. Once completely combined,  pour the oil mixture into a sturdy salve container. I prefer glass as the plastic chemicals are not able to infiltrate the mixture if you use glass. However, if you go with plastic, choose a container with sturdy, thick sides, as the plastic will melt when you had the hot oil to it. Allow to sit, either at room temperature or the fridge, until the mixture as solidified. Use as needed. This should keep for about 6 months to a year, especially if you keep it in the fridge.