Sunday, 7 April 2013

Wicca, witchcraft and me: Casting a circle

(Google image)

A few blogs ago I mentioned my pagan roots, so I felt like I've established enough of myself in these passages to write about my white witch hobby. From a young age my mother brought me up with witchcraft ways, rosemary at the garden gate, salt scattered at the door, that sort of thing. When I turned 12 I began studying into the pagan beliefs and rites and I took it in like another school lesson. Researching and reading into the works of many wiccan folk such as Margot Adler and Arin Murphy-Hiscock.

So here's a basic insight into my own personal wiccan nature. I don't go around calling myself a white witch or even talking about my witch craft very often, it's not a fashion statement, it's a calling. A hunger for the peace of mind that doing a spell can bring, for the gratitude you show with a ritual to bring in each season and a need to have an idea that the path you're on is the right one, to get answers before you've asked the question. I'm very much into the ability to see what hasn't yet occurred, and to be given answers by an almighty force. Wicca is about appreciating and being almost one with nature and it's wonders. It's about love and karma, and freedom, of course there are 'bad' witches lol...there's dark magic but we'll talk about that later. My wicca is basic and primal and simple.

If I cast a circle, I'm generally alone, I have rarely taken anyone into my circle. It's a complex and serious ritual and if you're not going to show respect for it the circle will be broken before it's been drawn. This reason and that I'm very rarely comfortable incorporating someone else into my 'magic' means I'm often alone. I drew a cirlce with the Key Holder once, it was at the beginning of my pagan ways, he wasn't too silly about it in all fairness, although we were 13 and it wasn't in either of our minds that I would become so attached to the Craft. I cast a spell to bind our friendship, (not love, you cannot and should not control such a thing) we waxed each others hands to seal it, I bet he doesn't even remember now. I accidently knocked over the candle, the wax spilt on the wooden floor board, oh that should have been a sign.

My circle when I'm alone is very simple, it's so much easier to cast when you're alone as you don't have to take anything but yourself into account. I often draw a circle when I'm outside, midnight usually. During an inbetween magic is at it's strongest and most vulnerable. I lay out my elements and invoke each, a candle for fire, something as water (usually tea), the air is around us but you can represent it with an incense stick, and then a gemstone or soil for earth. In all truth, in dire circumstances one can easily cast and draw without representing the elements, the elements surround us everywhere, all that is needed is fire. the only element we need to physically make. I set out my circle, sometimes drawn with chalk, or laid out with objects, I purify my circle with salt and all the while I have contained myself within it. My own made cage. It's vital you yourself do not break the circle. The moon pulls at magic like it pulls the tide, various moons suit different spells, thats much more complex. I will have my spell/rite/message already prepared. I do my thing, and call upon whoever I've decided will feature in my rite, then when it's all down I seal the spell. This can be a burial (very morbid) or a burning (more powerful) and the spell is kept upon the window sill, so the sky can see it and be reminded and it lies in an inbetween at it's strongest.

Before breaking the circle to leave I say a quick and simple prayer and blessed be to end the rite, then the circle is opened mentally and spiritually. Any breakage in a circle without such would make anything done within void basically you forfeit your spell. Any door thats opened must be closed properly, and locked for good measure.

There are a few things anyone who wants to practice wicca seriously needs, they are the following:
A pentacle -(a five pointed star within a circle)
A deck of Tarot cards-( used by no other, unless from the same bloodline, or perhaps if they came to you e.g. you found them randomly, very unlikely and if such a thing occurred never part with them!)
A key (this can be car, house, anything, but a key is needed for the 'locking' of a door)
A BOS (book of shadows. I'm not talking about Charmed! This book should be a personal diary in which you document and keep any spells you've done. Optionally but strength will grow in whats written down)
An athame- this is a double edged blade, complex magic. I don't have one yet, but desperately want one.
A wand is not the way to go! Unless you're forging your own from wood, or steel forget it! No man made wand is any good, this is not harry potter.

Now casting circles in groups can be fun, if you're lucky enough to be welcomed in by a coven, you'll find that every witch does things differently. Friends who are willing to take the whole thing seriously can have great fun, especially if you go sky clad (butt starkers naked) beneath the moon, and chant and dance for a large pagan ritual, especially if the water you represent is vodka! Hell yeah! But the circle must still be cast properly and ended properly. Some spells will call upon many people, 13 usually. Women most often, the sister hood bond is very strong, or a spell might call on particular people e.g. a man in his prime/lionhood between 20-30, a child not yet in puberty, a wrinkled woman, a free spirit, and such and such. For an animalistic spell you would need to represent animals with people, a wolf, a rabbit, a kitten, you would look around yourself and see who fit such descriptions. I know that I am a bird.  Instinct is a large part of Wicca. So yeah apart from the fact I'm a little weird, I'm totally into this stuff, and combine it with my faith in God, which most christians would spit blood about, but God knows me, we're totally on good terms, he knows how I feel about things. So that was a basic beginning, I'll expand in other blogs. :-)

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