The ritual knife, or athame, is one of the prime Wicca altar tools.
(It is pronounced AH-tha-may or ah-THAW-may.)
Traditionally black-handled, the athame lives in the East, the direction that represents mind, thought, and choice.
An athame doesn’t have to be metal. You can find ones made out of wood or carved stone, if you prefer. It’s not used as a physical knife, anyway, but a symbolic one.
Athames hold yang [god] energy.
Athames are used to direct energy, typically in casting ritual Circles and recalling them. They may also be used to cut energetic ties.
Ordinarily, an athame is not used to cut anything on the physical plane.
2. The Wand
The wand is like a portable, handy version of a broom. There is a theory that originally one instrument performed all the purposes served by the two today.
A wand can be made of any natural material. Wood is traditional. Since all woods have unique Powers, you may like to choose the wood to suit your particular needs.
Wands can be used for divination and channeling magickal energy. They can be used to cast and recall circles, in place of the athame.
The magickal wand goes in the South, for the power of will, magick, and transformation.
It also represents yang, or god, energy.
3. The Chalice
The Wiccan chalice is one of the most important altar tools. It signifies the Mother Goddess.
As such, it is a “yin” altar tool.
Some people like very fancy bejeweled cups for their altar chalice, but this is not necessary. A cup or wine-type glass of any material will do, or even a bowl. Something that holds water and, ideally, is round or curvy is good.
Silver is always nice for Goddess tools – a silver chalice is a perfect Wiccan chalice.
The altar chalice is placed in the West, the direction of Water and the yinnest of the yin.
The Wiccan chalice is used for ceremonial drink, offering libations to the Divine, or holding the salt-water solution.
4. The Pentacle
The Pentacle is a flat board or circle that is usually inscribed with a pentagram (a five-pointed star), though they may also have many other symbols upon them.
This tool acts like a platform upon which many other acts are often performed –especially consecrations. It is symbolic of the Element of Earth, not only as the general Element, but also as the planet Earth itself and on a larger scale it can even be used as a symbol of the universe.
It is generally placed in the centre of the altar, and magical workings are performed on top of it. It can also be used in meditations. The Pentacle is often used in ceremonial magic as it blocks evil very effectively.
It’s direction is North and it’s energy is Female.
In the upward direction it is used for Protection, Blessing, Consecration, Meditation and Positive energy. In the downward direction it is used for Banishing and Binding.
The five points of the pentacle can be used to represent several things:
Love, Wisdom, Power, Knowledge and Law
Earth, Air, Fire, Water and Spirit
In Tarot, the pentacle symbolises political action and intrigue.
Other popular tools for your altar
Bells are like the Voice of the Goddess. When you ring one, it brings the Divine’s attention to you. And your attention to the Divine!
A bell with a lovely tone will call beautiful, healing energy to you. Bells can also be used to clear energy. At the end of a ritual is a good time for this, but if unwanted energy crops up during a ritual, you can use the bell to disperse it.
Candles – Direction Candles
At minimum, I recommend two large altar candles to look great, provide lighting, and set the mood.
Candles are also used for spells, and for rituals.
For example: One candle for each of the directions, colour-coded, are often used on a Wiccan altar. One would go in each appropriate direction . . .
For North: black, green, or brown
For East: yellow or white
For South: red or orange
For West: blue or aqua
For Centre, where you aren’t using God and Goddess candles: white, silver, or gold.
Candles are used to invoke and hold the Powers of each direction.
Images or representations of any gods and goddesses who are special to you are always welcome on an altar. Though of course we could not respectfully consider them “altar tools.”
They are more than reminders of Divinity. Statues of the gods and goddesses can actually hold the vibrations of the Divine.
So your altar becomes a living temple – a place where the Divine dwells.
A small dish, bowl, or cup can go in the centre, ready to receive offerings for the gods and goddesses. (See below.)
You can also use your altar chalice or cauldron for this purpose.
Later, pour or bury the offerings in the Earth, or into living water (rivers, lakes, etc) to carry them to the Divine.
Traditionally cast iron, a cauldron is like a 3-legged rounded cooking pot. You can get them in sizes from huge to tiny.
Cauldrons are handy items for burning things, like incense and herbs. This is one of the reasons it is one of the most common altar tools.
Put an incense charcoal in the bottom, and sprinkle the herbs and powders onto it for very pagan incense.
(Caution is required when burning anything, of course. Cast iron on legs, if made properly, will keep the heat from the surface it’s standing on, but check to make sure. Also be aware of anything flammable nearby or above the cauldron – particularly sleeves and hair!)
Cauldrons can also be used to hold “witches’ brews,” that is, magickal spells in liquid form. These range from simple salt-water purifications to complex spells.
Book of Shadows
If you have a Book of Shadows it should be kept on your altar, preferably. It is one of your most important altar tools. If your altar is not private enough, or you can’t keep it there for another reason, then keeping it under your altar is best.
If you have other books that you use for reference for spells or rituals, it may be handy to keep nearby. It’s better to remain within the cast circle than to leave it to look up something.
Most of us have had an annoying neighbor at one point or another. From loud noise late at night, to their bad language in front of our kids, we just want them to drive away one morning and not return ever!
So what can we do about the annoying neighbours? Firstly, try the “NICE” options:
NICE options are:
Notice boards – Sites like Neighbors From Hell have message boards where people discuss their issues and help each other. This one’s free to view and is full of common issues and good advice, but registering will cost $50 if you want to ask about a unique problem. If you just want to vent, try sites like AnnoyingNeighbors.com.
Issue documentation – When an issue comes up, start keeping notes – times, dates, and photos if necessary. This can help in three ways. First, it helps you evaluate the seriousness of the problem: Looking at it on paper, you may realize it’s not as big a deal or you might see a solution. Second, you have info to back you up when you explain the situation to your neighbor. And finally, if push comes to shove, good record-keeping can show authorities you’re serious and organized, not emotional and whiny.
Call the Cops – If you’ve acted in good faith with no success, involving the police is the next step. You can explain the situation and show how you’ve tried to work it out and kept notes, but realize they probably can’t do much unless a law or ordinance is being broken. This is for things like excessive noise and illegal activity, not a tree limb hanging into your yard. Nonetheless, a police presence might show your neighbor that you aren’t going to let the problem go.
Entertain – If you are throwing a party at your place, go to all neighbors who might be affected and offer them two things: a verbal invitation to the party and a card with your phone number. If the noise escalates or there is another problem, your neighbor can call you instead of the police.
So if you have read these NICE options and you have either exhausted that list already, or your neighbors are beyond these strategies, let’s look at magic!
Witchcraft Knot Spell
To rid yourself of problems or a troublesome situation, you can use a representation of the problem in a tangled and knotted length of yarn. There are then differing ways of getting rid of the problem.
This spell is best done at the time of the Full Moon and is in two parts.
You will need
• BIODEGRADABLE STRING OR COTTON YARN
• INGREDIENTS FOR A RITUAL BATH
(including candles and a purification oil)
Method – Part One
Your string needs to be biodegradable because it reinforces the idea that your problems will dissolve. The string or yarn can be in the appropriate colour for the problem to be solved (green for money, red for love, etc).
Sit quietly and think of all your fears and problems. Let them pass into the yarn.
Tie this in knots to symbolize how mixed up your problems makes you feel.
One way of dealing with your difficulties is to take the knotted yarn to a high place and let the wind blow it away, along with your negativity.
A second way is to bury the yarn in soft ground, though this method will mean that the resolution of your problems may come slowly.
A third way is to begin to untie the knots and as you do so ask for help in seeing and understanding solutions.
This last method does not have to be done all at once but can be done over time.
Method – Part Two
Whichever method you use make sure you take a ritual bath or shower cleansing after working with the string.
You need a candle to represent yourself, a black candle to signify the negativity and one other in the colour of your choice to suggest your life without problems.
Anoint the candles with a purification or blessing oil.
Anoint the black candle from the end to the wick to remove bad luck.
The others are done from the wick to the end to bring you what you desire.
Have your ritual bath as usual.
Hoodoo Spells to Remove a Neighbor
Light a black candle and dress with castor oil.
Write the neighbor’s name on a piece of paper and the word “goodbye”.
Place the paper under the candle.
Mix powdered mud daubers nest with graveyard dirt and throw it at the neighbor’s front door.
Return to your candle
Recite psalms 74, 101, and 109 three times each and let the candle burn out.
If you have tried a method that works for you, we would love to know!
Learn Traditional Wiccan WItchcraft – The Gardnerian Book of Shadows, by Gerald Gardner
Magus binds Witch as before, but does not blindfold her, and circumambulates with her, proclaims to the four quarters, “Hear, ye Mighty Ones, (name), a duly consecrated Priestess and Witch, is now properly prepared to be made a High Priestess and Witch Queen.” Magus now leads her thrice around the circle with the half-running, half-dancing step, halts south of the altar, has the Witch kneel, and ties her down to the altar as before.
Magus: “To attain this sublime degree, it is necessary to suffer and be purified. Art ready to suffer to Learn?”
Priestess Witch: “I am.”
Magus: “I prepare thee to take the great oath.”
He strikes three knells on the bell, and again gives the series of three, seven, nine, and 21 strokes with the scourge as before.
Magus: “I now give thee a new name: _______. [kiss]
Magus: “Repeat thy new name after me, I, (name), swear upon my mother’s womb and by mine Honor among men and among my brothers and sisters of the Art, that I will never reveal to any at all any of the secrets of the Art, except it be to a worthy person, properly prepared, in the center of a Magic Circle, such as I am now in. This I swear by my hopes of Salvation, my past lives, and my hopes of future ones to come, and I devote myself to utter destruction if I break this my solemn oath.”
Magus kneels, placing left hand under her knees and right hand on her head, thus forming magic link.
Magus: “I hereby will all my power into you.” Wills.
Magus now unties her feet, unties the Cable Tow from the altar, and helps the Witch to her feet.
Magus: “I hereby sign and consecrate you with the great Magic Sign. Remember how it is formed and you will always recognize it.
“I consecrate thee with oil.” (He anoints her with oil on her womb, right breast, left hip, right hip, left breast, and womb again, thus tracing a point-down pentacle.)
“I consecrate thee with wine.” (He anoints her with wine in the same pattern.)
“I consecrate thee with my lips” (he kisses her in the same pattern), “High Priestess and Witch Queen.”
Magus now unbinds Witch’s hands and removes the cord, saying, “Newly made High Priestess and Witch Queen” [kiss] “you will now use the working tools in turn.
First, the Magic Sword; with it you will scribe the Magic Circle [kiss]
“Secondly, the Athame” (Form Circle) [kiss]
“Thirdly, the White Handled Knife” (use) [kiss]
“Fourthly, the Wand” (Wave to 4 Quarters) [kiss]
“Fifthly, the Pentacle” (Show to 4 Quarters) [kiss]
“Sixthly, the Censer of Incense” (Circle, cense) [kiss]
“Seventhly, the cords; bind me as I bound you.” Witch binds Magus and ties him to Altar.
Magus: “Learn, in Witchcraft, thou must ever return triple. As I scourged thee, so thou must scourge me, but triple. So where you received 3, return 9; where you received 7, return 21; where you received 9, return 27; where you received 21, return 63.” Witch scourges Magus as instructed, 120 strokes total.
Magus: “Thou hast obeyed the Law. But mark well, when thou receivest good, so equally art bound to return good threefold.”
Witch now unbinds Magus and helps him to his feet. Magus, taking the new Initiate by the hand and holding the Athame in the other, passes once round the Circle, proclaiming at the Four Quarters, “Hear, Ye Mighty Ones, (name) hath been duly consecrated High Priestess and Witch Queen.” (Note, if ceremony ends here, close circle with “Hail and farewell.” If not go to next degree.)
Cakes and Wine
Magus kneels, fills Cup, offers to Witch [she is seated on the altar, holding her athame; Priest kneels before her, holding up the cup].
Witch, holding Athame between palms, places point in cup.
Magus: “As the Athame is the Male, so the Cup is the female; so, conjoined, they bring blessedness.”
Witch lays aside Athame, takes Cup in both hands, drinks and gives drink. Magus Holds Paten to Witch, who blesses with Athame, then eats and gives to Eat. It is said that in olden days ale or mead was often used instead of wine. It is said that spirits or anything can be used so long as it has life.
As well as making use of herbs as plants, decorations and for healing, witches most important use in magic was – and still is – in incense. Incense symbolizes the Element Air and the spiritual realms and has been part of ritual use by occultists and priests alike for thousands of years. Granular incense, with its basis of resins and gums, sweet-smelling woods and herbs is nowadays usually preferred for magical workings or ritual worship. It has a magic all of its own. For this reason a good incense burner will be one of your most important tools. You should choose this carefully, and not just for its aesthetic sense, because it is vital that the incense is allowed to burn properly
Egypt became especially renowned for its high standard of blending and the use of ritual incense. There was a particular class of incense called Khyphi.
Kyphi is a compound incense that was used in Ancient Egypt for religious and medical purposes.
It required magical techniques and the finest ingredients for its manufacture. Some incense were mind-altering and could produce trance-like states in users.
For short spells, joss-sticks work very well, though they are not to everyone’s taste.
Dhoop, or incense cones as they are known, are another way of using the same material.
By far the best method is to burn the granular type on a charcoal disc which is lit and placed in a fireproof receptacle. The incense is then piled onto the concave surface and allowed to do its work. You should dispose of the discs very carefully, dousing them with water and ensuring they are no longer hot.
Two witches discuss various options for burning incense on a charcoal disc
Blonde Gypsy & BWS catch up in Sydney Australia, and talk about the fun of charcoal burning. Blonde Gypsy talks about a few of her favorite love and divination herbs to use…..right now. We each have our own way of creating spells and magick. I shared this video so you can feel comfortable in knowing every witch, gypsy, or pagan has their own way – and each method is correct!
You might like to bury what remains of the incense as an offering to the Earth.
Many of the herbs we have already encountered are suitable for incense, if you wish to make your own. You should choose your correspondences carefully, according to your spell. You will soon find out through experimentation what works for you.
When blending your own granular incense it is important to use a pestle and mortar to grind and mix all the ingredients together properly.
You may wish to consecrate your pestle and mortar first.
Granular incense usually consists of a base of incense gums to which are added the woods and herbs of choice before the mixture is blended using fragrant oils.
Blending granular incense
•When blending, first grind the gum resins (such as gum Arabic or benzoin) until the granules are like granulated sugar.
• Then add the woods, herbs and spices, all of which should have been finely ground and thoroughly blended together.
• Add the essential oils a drop at a time and mix well. The blending of the incense is an important part of the process, both from the perspective of the synergy of the ingredients and the personal energy you add to the incense.
• At this point you might like to dedicate the incense to the purpose intended,
saying perhaps simply:
I dedicate this incense to be used in [name spell]
•Place the incense mixture in a strong polythene bag (so that it retains its
pungency) then put it into a clean jar with a screw top lid.
• Do not use for at least 24 hours to enable the perfumes and qualities to blend properly.
• Don’t forget to label the jar, noting the ingredients and the date you made
the blend. It is also a good idea to note the intention or purpose for which the incense is made.
• Make your incense in small quantities so that it does not lose its potency.
When making your incense you may like to follow the example of herbalists of old, who gathered their herbs in tune with the cycles of life and planetary correspondences. Even though you may have to use bought herbs, the more you are able to work with the correspondences and think about timing the more effective your spells or rituals will be.
Learn Wicca & Witchcraft in this easy to follow series.
Affordable to everyone, and no need to perform a group initiation ceremony.
Many people, when thinking of spells, think of love spells – ways of making another person find them sexually attractive and desirable.
In theory, love spells should be unconditional and this type should be entirely unselfish and free from self-interest. However, most of the time they obviously cannot be so, unless they are performed by a third party, someone outside the longed-for relationship who is totally dispassionate.
To try to influence someone else directly may well go against the ethics of many practitioners and magicians, though such spells do tend to be the stock- in-trade of many Eastern practitioners.
Anyone who wishes to experiment with love spells needs to be aware that such spells come under the heading of bidding spells and therefore must be used carefully. Love spells are often accompanied by gifts or love philters which are also meant to have an effect on the recipient.
This spell uses herbs, crystals, candle and color. The herb rosemary traditionally signifies long memory, the rose quartz crystal signifies love and the colors signify love and passion. It is designed to concentrate the mind and to attract love to you as opposed to a specific lover.
A Spell to Bring a Lover To You!
This spell is to attract love to you, not a specific lover so don’t use a representation of a particular person. You will need
• A SPRIG OF ROSEMARY (for remembrance)
• A PIECE OF ROSE QUARTZ CRYSTAL
• ROSE OR VANILLA INCENSE
• PINK OR RED VOTIVE CANDLE
• SMALL BOX
• RED MARKER/PEN
Sit in your own most powerful place.
(That might be inside, outside, near your favorite tree or by running water.)
First, write in red on the box ‘Love is mine’.
Light the incense – this clears the atmosphere and puts you in the right mood.
Put the rosemary and the rose quartz in the box.
Put anything else that represents love to you in the box (drawings of hearts, poems, or whatever – be creative).
Be in a very positive state of mind.
Imagine yourself very happy and in love.
Burn the candle and say:
I am love love I will find true love preferably will soon be mine
Love is me Love I seek my true love I will soon meet.
Now sit for a little while and concentrate again on being happy.
Then pinch out the candle and add it to the box.
Let the incense burn out.
Seal the box shut and don’t open it until you have found your true love.
When you have found your lover, take the rose quartz out of the box and keep it as a reminder.
Bury the entire box in the earth.
Because in this spell you reproduce a positive state of mind and you are imagining what it is like to be in love, you set up a current of energy which attracts like feeling. In sealing the box you ‘capture’ the vibration of love and all things become possible.
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White Magic Spell to Find True Love
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