QUESTION - Oh wise Witch, I feel as if I am banging my head on an invisible wall
I am happy in my life, I have the love of my wonderful hubby who is very understanding about my witchy-ness, we both have health issues that restrict us and hubby is my carer because of my disabilities. We have no garden but I love my potted plants, we have no pets as their not allowed here, and where we might end up is also a no for pets, and sadly we have no children, All of this I have come to terms with.
So why is it, that I try so hard to wish and cast spells ( that seem to fall flat) to try and change it? I would love a garden full of life with plants and birds ect. We would love to have cats and maybe a dog, but all of these require the big 'win' for us to make it possible.
Why is it bugging me? It just seems to creep up on me and 'pow'!
Why is the need so strong to have my own garden full of life and to give so much love to our cats/dog, when at the present it is impossible!
ANSWER -I think it’s really tough that the people who deserve nice things don't always end up with them. You sound like you have a great deal of acceptance as to your circumstances and I can tell your wants spring from the desire to love plants and animals and not from greed. However as you've learned for yourself deserving something and getting it rarely go hand in hand. Much as I do advocate spell work for bringing about changes in circumstances those changes may not be significant enough to get you everything you want. I'd certainly suggest you persist with the magic - you may have well have achieved less without it. Sometimes magic can be about perspective - think not so much why haven't I got what I want but look what negativity I've managed to prevent...
But on a realistic note, there wouldn't be a witch without a million pound mansion if magic was all it took. Sometimes it is more important to direct our magical and our practical efforts into making the changes we can in order to make our lives better. The power of the witch is her ability to improvise. So think, maybe you can't get a garden and a dog. But what can you get? All landlords say you can't have pets so think of a pet you can hide from him. My landlord thinks I have two cats and at the last count I've got 22 animals in a three bed house! Use your magic to get a pet you know you can look after and shield it from view. Same with plants. I wasted a whole growing season one year sulking because I couldn't afford a state of the art greenhouse. The following year I bought a cheap plastic lean to and got on with it. What can you do for plants? Window boxes? Shelving in your sunniest room? You can get little indoor greenhouses. You could even rent a little allotment perhaps? I know one witch who buys packets of wildflower seeds and sows them in quiet public areas because she has no land of her own. Improvising - and they still bring her pleasure even though she doesn't have her own garden.
I share your frustration that you wish you had more and I hope your efforts pay off and one day you do get that dog and that garden. But in the meantime make the most of what you have. With a little imagination and yes a little magic you can turn it into being worth more to you than you currently believe. The transformation of your own perception can be one of the most powerful spells in your armoury if you allow yourself the freedom to use it.
Image http://www.freeimages.com/photo/1344832 (theswedish)
QUESTION - I'm a newby to witchcraft, even though I'm a senior. I was brought up in the Northern Hemisphere, but now live in the Southern Hemisphere where the Sabbats are all back-to-front. I find it difficult and confusing when Christmas (Yule) and Halloween (Samhain) roll around, and I lack the enthusiasm to celebrate them at the different months of the year. Any suggestions?
ANSWER - I often feel that the witches in the Southern Hemisphere get a bit overlooked and both my site and others are guilty of wishing everyone a happy Yule without considering that the witches down under are celebrating Midsummer. However the whole sabbats thing can sometimes feel a bit prescriptive, no matter which hemisphere you happen to live in.
Indeed some witches find the structure of eight sabbats just too prescriptive a framework. It is important to realise that none of these festivals are in any way mandatory or essential to either the practical or the spiritual life of the witch. Following a strict calendar can actually be counterproductive as worship (or celebration for the secular witch) can as a result turn into a duty or an obligation which defies the whole idea of festivity.
Many witches choose not to observe all of the sabbats and many don't observe any of them at all. Observing all eight festivals and the wheel of the year is more associated with Wicca than witchcraft per se. Although Pagan witch paths will usually acknowledge the solstices and the equinoxes there is no imperative for elaborate ritual. The degree to which you choose to mark the occasion is up to you. Whether its a full scale coven meeting or a quiet glass of wine in the bath, if your choice has meaning for you then that's what counts.
I think the calendar has come to mean more than it should to the modern witch. There is too much emphasis on what exact day changes of the year should occur on and to an extent this dismisses the natural instincts of the witch. I would suggest that instead of following a list of dates you acknowledge the changes as you feel them. As a witch said to me this year - It's hard to celebrate Imbolc when there is still snow on the ground... And she's right - this year the birth of the Spring was a lot later than tradition would normally dictate. Why not have some markers of your own as to when you personally want to take the opportunity to mark change. The first crocus perhaps or even that first day when you sense the change of seasons in the air. React to your actual environment, not to what you are told to observe and you may well find you get more out of the sabbats.
Personally speaking I don't observe all the sabbats equally. Same with the moon cycle, at some times the moon has great meaning for me, at other times I'd be hard pressed to tell you when the next full moon is. Some years one sabbat may be celebrated with pomp and ceremony and other years it may pass by virtually unnoticed. I don't feel obligated to celebrate unless there is meaning and reason to do so and I'd advise the same to anyone else.
QUESTION - I believe I have been cursed, by someone I know it feels as if it is a recurring curse as it has been going on for 5 years now for me!!! I always think I'm going to burn up on my birthday each year and in my mind it does. Everything I do always ends in disaster of some kind. It feels like my whole life is recurring most of the time, and people around me don't realise what's happening to me which is the hardest part. I have the same nightmares every year give or take. Am I cursed? What can I do?
Answer - In terms of proper cursing, no, it is unlikely. Cursing is intensive magic and for a witch to use that much effort against you then you'd have a much clearer idea of who and why. Curses also have a much more tangible effect and your symptoms don't pinpoint a specific result. Although nightmares are a common effect of cursing I would expect them to be recurring with much more frequent regularity.
Having said that, I'm not dismissing your experiences. What I think has happened is that you have got into a negative cycle with your birthdays and each birthday has reinforced the problem until you have become convinced there is something more sinister going on. I'm not necessarily saying all this is psychological, its perfectly conceivable that the worry you are projecting is creating a pressure of its own - a personal demon that feeds on your fears. As a part of you, this has no power over you or at the very least only the power you allow it. Take away the fear and it will wither and fade away.
As to what you can do. Well you need to break the cycle on both a psychological and a practical level. Acknowledge that the pattern need not continue and understand that birthdays in the past have no bearing on birthdays to come. Make practical plans for your next birthday to be very different. Celebrate with different people perhaps or even go away. Make every effort to change the environment and the way you normally celebrate. Make it clear that you are making the changes and breaking the cycle.
I'd also suggest you look into your own history as to why your birthdays have become such an issue. Has something negative happened on a birthday to trigger these issues. Try meditating to look inward but do a bit of digging as well. I'd try asking parents, grandparents and siblings if they remember anything that might help you. If you can pinpoint the reason and tackle the issue the annual symptoms may well disappear on their own. I'd also look at the significance that a birthday has - namely ageing. Examine your feelings toward getting older. Sometimes our fears turned inwards can be a powerful way almost to curse ourselves. If you do have fears that you are suppressing in your conscious it is not surprising that they come into your dreams.
On a magical level it may well be worth a good ritual cleansing to rid you of the negativity that has built up. Salt baths, aura cleansing with crystals (quartz or selenite) and bringing plants into your living environment will all help to reduce the negativity in your atmosphere.
Question - Can you grant me three wishes. The first is I wish that my Lava lamp can grant me unlimited wishes instantly after I turn it on. The second is I wish I was the best young actress in America. The last is I wish I had the singer Rihanna's eyes. Please and thanks!!
Answer – You appear to be confusing me with the genie of the lamp… Gratified though I am that you endow me with such powers what you ask is not Witchcraft and is not in my gift to give you.
I’d suggest if you want to be the best young actress in America you get off your backside, stop trying to get witches (genies..) to do the work for you, take acting lessons and work for that success yourself.
Question - Question - Hello. I wanted to ask do orgone generators help you do magic? Because I have tried doing magick but no matter how hard I try I can't do it. Even a legit spellcaster has tried casting spells on me but it didn't work for me but it worked for other people. It's as if I'm immune to magick. Do you know anything I can use or anyone that can help me to be able to do magick or have magical work on me? Like a necklace that can give me the ability to do magic? I really need help because I need to do magick to help people who are in danger. Thank-you.
Answer – The orgone generator (for those who don’t know) is a device intended to collect orgone energy for the health benefits of those choosing to utilise it. Health issues as diverse as cancer, impotence and emotional disturbance were attributed by the creator of the generator to be the result of an orgone deficiency in the body and eased by an influx of orgone into the body. This hypothesised energy has been likened to a life force or “cosmic power.”
Orgone hit the popular conscious with the beat generation (largely because of its sexual overtones) but outside the works of Jack Kerouac and William S. Burroughs I can find little scientific evidence to back up any of the claims made by the inventor of the generator or the devotees of the whole orgone hypothesis.
So in answer to your question – orgone generators certainly don’t help me to do magic and I doubt they have a positive/negative influence on anybody’s magic. Don’t make the mistake of confusing magic with science, or worse, pseudo science.
Do I believe a person can be immune to magic? To an extent yes, I regularly cast spells on other people and have noticed through experience that some people are much easier to manipulate magically than others. I’ve never met anybody entirely impervious to magic but it wouldn’t take a great stretch of imagination to believe such a person could exist. However magic is not always cast “at” a person and a witch could sidestep this problem by manipulating circumstance instead of directly casting at the individual. It wouldn’t cause me a problem, I’d think of a way round it…
If you are struggling to cast magic yourself I wonder if you are jumping in with enthusiasm but a poor basic foundation… What ground work have you put in? Have you built up your spiritual and magical strength? Have you practised working with energy? Have you taken on board a basic knowledge and understanding of how magic works? Have you thought about what tools (if any) to use and why you are using them? Have you interacted with other magical practitioners and sought their advice?
Get the basics in place and instead of seeing magic as a linear process of wand – spell –result – bam! think of it as a subtle manipulation of the energies around you, a slow but deeply rewarding exploration of your own self and the hidden world. I am afraid there is no quick fix I can offer you to bypass the hard work and effort. Magic has a curious way of rejecting people unwilling to show it the respect it demands…
Your motives for “Helping people who are in danger,” are laudable but as a beginner of magic you’re light years away from being able to be truly effective in situations of urgency. I’d suggest that if you really want to learn magic you do as I have said and take slow solid steps forward and that you leave people in danger to the authorities or if the cases do genuinely require magical assistance (which are rarer than you might think) to a witch who know what he/she is doing.
QUESTION - Question - My friend's 5 yr old son has been tormented with dreams of "Hell", having to rescue his father from "Hell" for a couple of years now. He sees child spirits who have been killed by their parents. His Father's Mother was a High Priestess and stopped practising when she became pregnant.(due to the fact she was supposed to sacrifice her son at birth). Now my friend's son will not sleep at all after dark, saying if he does the "witches" will do bad things to him. Is there a spell to protect him, ease his mind and more importantly ease his mother’s mind?
ANSWER - Hmmm. I’d dearly know what the father’s mother was a HP of as the term is most commonly used to refer to those in the Wiccan tradition and let me tell you that no Wiccan has ever been urged to sacrifice any child, let alone their own. In fact I don’t know of any tradition where such a practise is advocated – except possibly some very very fringe “occult” groups claiming to be Satanism but who are in fact, not.
But I digress, let us assume that everything you have told me is correct (though I’d look a bit deeper at this tale if I were you, something does not ring true about that family history at all…) I’ll get to the spell in a moment but first I want to give you some hale and hearty common sense. Children pick up on the fears of their parents. Ghosts and spirits in general do not frighten children, it is the parental reaction that sows the seed of worry. Many children chat away quite happily to spirits, oblivious to the fact that this would cause concern in the adult world. It is certainly possible that this child is interacting with spirits but who is making that frightening – the child or the parents? It may be disconcerting to have a child who talks with spirits but it would be good parenting not to show this fear to the child.
Are the parents reacting to all this with a fear that is contributing to making the child anxious? If the first thing they say to the poor child when he goes to breakfast is “Did you go to Hell and see child spirits last night?” then they are doing this kid no good at all. What they need to be doing is listening with genuine sympathy if the child wants to talk but distracting the child in every possible way the rest of the time. Tell them not to mention it unless he does and even then to be quite robust about it – even a little dismissive. The child is obviously not visiting Hell every night, the child is possibly interacting with spirits and definitely suffering from nightmares. The important thing here is to find out the source of these nightmares. I’d bet my witch’s hat there is nothing demonic at all going on in this situation.
I’m very interested as to where this idea of “Hell” has come from in a five year old child. Somebody is feeding these ideas to the child. If not the parents, perhaps the school? Children are not born with a preconceived idea of Hell – the five year old child has been taught this. Linking that back to the rather vague spiritual history of the grandmother - is she still alive? If she is, is it possible she has said something? Please tell me nobody in the family has been silly enough to speak about the fact that she was told to sacrifice the father at birth? (If they have been daft enough to have had that conversation in front of the kid then there’s your answer…)
Hell incidentally is primarily a Christian construct so I’m unsure these experiences link to the father’s mother who if termed an HP would likely not have been a Christian. (I can be a little bit scathing of Christianity sometimes but I wouldn’t accuse them of promoting child sacrifice). Who is linking the nightmares of a five year old child to the experiences of the grandmother? Again I wonder if the parents are imposing their own fears on the child here?
Assuming that nothing has been said to the child then he may well be picking up the concerns anyway, there is obviously a good deal of uncertainty in the household and it is common for young children to pick up on this and direct the anxiety into their dreams. An overheard word here or there, a lesson on school mentioning Hell and before you know it the kid has it all mapped out as his own personal nightmare landscape. That doesn’t belittle the suffering – we’ve all had nightmares and we know how terrifying they can be - but I do think that what is needed here is a sense of perspective.
Ok, so practical steps to take. The parents need to break this cycle of worry and it is up to them and not the child to take responsibility for this. At the moment they are waiting for the nightmares to stop and for the child to break the cycle. The anxiety is putting pressure on the child will which only exacerbate the nightmares. Calming the situation by making as little reference to the content of the nightmares as possible will help but what you need is a break in the circle. I have two suggestions – my first is that you look to the psychology of magic and the second is you utilise magic itself.
For the psychological aspects it is important that the child feels protected. Get a bracelet (the more unusual and antiquated looking the better but cost not important, get a junk shop bargain) and tell the child it is an amulet of protection and that while the child is wearing the bracelet nothing can harm him. The more the parents can display belief in this item, the more convinced the child will be. And don’t get the parents to ask if it works – tell them to assume it will work (and it will…) Explain to the child that all the nightmares will go away now he is wearing the protected bracelet. Big it up – tell him you’ve got it from a real witch who will offer her protection to keep him safe. Use the power of your imagination to overcome the fears generated by his own.
The magic of course is to do exactly the same but do it for real. Either get the parents to infuse their protective energy into the bracelet or you are very welcome to send it to me and I will bless it and send it back to you with an accompanying letter to the child saying I am a real witch and my spell will protect him (email firstname.lastname@example.org if you need my address). If the parents decide to go it alone then tell them to hold the bracelet together while visualising all their love for the child passing down their arms, through their hands and into the item. Tell them to visualise the child being shielded by the protection of their love while wearing it.
Might also be worth putting some protection on the room. Blessed water at the entrance points or if you haven’t got that, use salt on the doors and windows.
The only other thing I would suggest is that the parents play on their natural authority and demand the spirits leave the boy alone. This will work in two ways – if the spirits are real it spells out that they are not welcome and may encourage them to leave – if the spirits are figments of the child’s imagination, likely a five year old thinks his parents are the last word in authority and a display of confidence may overcome his imaginary fears.
Not an easy one, keep me posted.
I want to take my path as a witch more seriously but I live in a city and I have so little contact with nature that I am finding it very difficult?
I sometimes think the practise of Witchcraft has become a little bit too bound up with the idea of nature worship. That is not to say that nature isn’t important – it is, of course it is -but the fundamental principle of following a craft path is learning to use your environment and the energies around you to work magic in the world. Regardless of what environment you live in there are energies surrounding you. I think it is important to realise that as witches we are not limited by the absence of green fields. A witch is a witch whether she lives in a high rise flat or on a farm.
What you need to do is to look at which aspects of your world you can use to inspire you as a witch. When I do work in the cities. I use the history of the beautiful old buildings to meditate on those who have gone before me and to visualise what life would have been like in those days. I call upon the ancestors of Tudor, Elizabethan and Stuart times to bring different values and perspective to my work.
There is also a real history to many cities – who could not walk the Edinburgh catacombs or the killing streets of Jack the Ripper without absorbing some of the remnants of emotion left lingering in the air. As witches these traces of human sentiment are the lifeblood of what we do. Utilise these energies to invoke power and to direct your magic.*
Cities are often filled with the vibrancy of other cultures and big cities have an “energy” all of their own that you can tap into. Watch the people flocking up and down the escalators in subway/tube stations and think about how you can use it. I did a spell once where I placed a small unobtrusive sticker on the moving handrail of an escalator and I charmed the sticker so that every single person who touched it during the day (thousands) would siphon a tiny bit of their energy through the sticker into me. Kind of like a magnet to draw strength from the crowds. Worked rather well but I doubt I could have pulled off a spell like that if I’d stuck my sticker on a country stile. Learn to adapt the spells you work to the place in which you are working them.
Having talked about the value of working magic without the influence of nature, just because you live in a city it doesn’t mean that there has to be an absence of nature in your life. Pot plants, herb seeds on the window sill, clearing litter from the local parks… You can find nature if you are willing to work for it and look for it. Even something as simple as growing watercress in a used yoghurt pot can bring a touch of the outside world into your life. Nature doesn’t need to be on an abundant scale, sometimes it is the small things that prompt the momentary pause for introspection. When I see the cracks in a building start to weaken with an invasion of the oh so territorial ivy plant I rejoice in the reminder of the power of nature and its ultimate ability to outlast us all. Look for it. Even in the cities you will find nature, I promise you…
* There is a place local to me – Eyam in Derbyshire - where the energies are just too much for me. The place was sealed off during the plague and the locals left to die. I won’t be going back, I’m not generally empathetic but this place really knocked me sideways. For the same reason I don’t believe I will ever visit Auschwitz.
There are many ways, though if you’re hoping to see a fairy you are likely to be disappointed. That isn’t to say they don’t exist - I have every confidence that they do – but they don’t make a habit of showing themselves to humans, even on Beltane. And no, before you ask, I’ve never seen one...
The most common way to interact with the fairies is to offer them a gift. This can be in the form of sweetened “food” - honey is a popular offering or it can be something longer lasting, think pretty ribbons, lace or crystals.
The people I know who do mix with fairies have their own ways of doing it but to throw a few ideas at you – one witch hangs small pieces of sparkly fabric from trees to act as little “hammocks” for the fairies. Another hangs ribbons from the low branches of trees. Another collects little acorn cups and fills them with honey, milk and red wine (I’m not personally sure if the fairies drink our wine, I’ve certainly been advised that we shouldn’t drink theirs!) One witch collects the tiny little gossamer bags that many new age shops sell their tumblestones in and makes the fairies a little gift bag of cobweb and quartz shards. Go with what feels right to you but I’d suggest you avoid anything with a metal component as iron in particular is supposed to be quite harmful to the fey.
The witch bottle is one of the most fundamental protections of the witch. Having said that there are witches who choose not to use one and there are also witches who use one and don't bury it.
The idea of the witch bottle is that it is a non living representation of the witch. The purpose is to deflect magical harm
from the actual witch and draw negative magics toward the bottle. Think of it as trying to confuse the magic as to the target of a working directed at the witch.
A bottle will contain elements that personalise it as the witch. Common inclusions are hair, toenails, urine and menstrual blood. With this in mind you can perhaps understand why it is common practise to bury the bottle. No witch would want their personal taglocks falling into the hands of strangers. The burying (hiding) also helps to confuse the location of the target as the perpetrator of the working doesn't know where the bottle is located.
As well as the personal taglocks of the witch, other items stored in the bottle often include things with properties of protection or magical deflection (agrimony being the herb that springs to mind). For those following a more hoodoo oriented path brick dust and graveyard dirt are commonly used.
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