gay-witch

I know a lot of witchcraft is very straight centered, I just want you all to remember that, despite this, you are valid.
You are valid as a witch.
You are valid as a sapphic individual.
Sapphic witches are beautiful and wonderful and pure. Look at us, being gay and a witch! What could be better than that?
👭❤💛💚💙💜

If you seriously think that being gay (or lgbt at all) is “a sin,” unfollow me and get ten million miles away from me because that belief carries the literal blood of my community on it and no matter how you spin it, or how you try to say that it’s religion not bigotry, the reality is that people are dead and they are dying because of that belief

and also I’m a gay pagan witch so you’d probably ESPECIALLY hate me, anyway

Witch Respect

I respect the solitary witches who blaze your own trails, walk your own paths, and listen to your own gods. It can be a lonely, yet rewarding, life. It is not for the faint of heart. From the solitary we can all learn self-reliance and how to listen to our intuition.

I respect the witch who chooses a traditional coven. Whether it is Gardnerian, Alexandrian, reconstructionist, or another group, it requires an intense amount of devotion and time to learn a tradition. You have earned your titles and should be recognized by our community. From the members of groups and covens we can learn patience and determination.

I respect the kitchen witches who fill your homes with magick and tend the hearthfires. With the ancient elements you nourish your family and remind us all of our human history. From the kitchen witch we can all learn how to create magick from the mundane and appreciate the domestic arts.

I respect the hedgewitch who works with the spirits that surround us. It can be exhausting and misunderstood work. You have gifts that can help the living and the dead, and I admire that. From the hedgewitch we can learn how to communicate better and how to see different points of view.

I respect the sea witch who walks along the dunes at night and gathers kelp. The energy of the sea is one of the oldest and most powerful forms of magick, and is recognized in many cultures. From the sea witch we can learn to work in harmony with the elements and listen to the pull of the moon and tides.

I respect the gray witches who do not look at magick in black and white. Within magick, as within life, we are often called upon to use our own judgement in a situation. I do not condemn my fellow witches for not seeing things as I see them. From the gray witch we can learn to examine a situation from many points of view and realize that there are no rules but those we create for ourselves.

I respect witches of all genders and sexual orientation. Each person deserves to feel welcomed and comfortable in our community and does not need any more judgement than they already experience. From these witches we can all learn how to appreciate diversity and to practice tolerance and kindness.

I respect witches who are in tune with their local environment. It is important to learn about the creatures and plants who live near us and you have much knowledge. From these witches we can learn how to look closely at what is around us and how to be aware of the land we live on.

I respect the witches who are new to the craft and starting out. Most are willing to learn from elders and need to be guided by those of us who are older and have more experience. They do not need to be bullied or insulted, for we are all constantly learning. From the new witches we can learn to be teachers instead of judges and should remember the joys and mistakes of our youth.

I respect Christian witches. I support anyone’s personal beliefs. Perhaps we should view these members of the community as bridge builders. With their help we may be able to open doors and cross the divide that has separated the religions. From the Christian witches we can learn that religious tolerance applies to all spiritual paths.

I respect the witches who try to adhere to the paths of your ancestors. It is not easy to do that in the modern era and you are to be treasured. You truly connect the generations and help pass on information that would otherwise be lost. From these witches we can learn to honor our elders and ancestors.

I respect all members of the pagan community who treat others with respect. It is indeed a circle, and each of us is part of the whole.

For all the paths I forgot to mention, I respect them too, and I will probably add to this as the mood strikes me.

Most importantly, respect yourselves.

Being a Witch on a Budget

If you’re like me, you’re a little strapped for cash these days. For whatever reason. And you may not always have the funds to fuel your witch-y adventure in style, the way you want to. I certainly don’t. I’ve got a few helpful tips that have served me well thus far, and I’m hoping they help all of you too: 

  • Repurpose Old Items as Tools: The tools of the craft can be numerous, depending on your tradition -and it can be expensive to go out and buy them all at once. Something that I have taken to doing is to scour secondhand store, thrift shops, and online auctions for tools -as well as repurposing some items I already owned. Let us not forget that in the early days, the tools of the craft were indistinguishable from everyday objects. Many early witches took to hiding their tools in plain sight! The purpose for this was to reduce the amount of things that would have to be hidden, or explained, if a witch-hunter came a-knockin’. In-keeping with that mentality, don’t think that you need to get too fancy if you can’t afford it. A teacup saucer could serve as your offering plate. A ramekin or decorative ash-tray could serve as a censer. A wine glass can serve as a chalice. I’ve even painted rocks with symbols or sigils to represent the elements and the God and Goddess. I view some of this as ‘placeholders’ -until I can afford to replace my tools with higher quality items, a simpler version serves its purpose. After all, it is function, not form that matters here. That being said, many argue that having your tools be a collection of a kind of 'objects d'art’ can improve your craft… well they’re absolutely right. However, there’s nothing wrong with staying within your means when you have to. Whatever you use, just be sure to consecrate it. Also, items that already have a history with you may be more willing to assist you in your magical workings. 
  • Grow Your Herbs: If you haven’t tried growing any, it might be time to try. Starting an herb garden is simple, and many herbs do not require constant attention. Although the cost of the initial planting might be more than you want to spend, consider how much you normally spend on herbs in a year. Now consider that it costs about as much to buy the supplies to plant your own as it does to buy a single packet of herbs. I’m estimating about $5-6 here. I spend $2 per terra-cotta pot, $1-2 for the seeds, and it equals out to be less than $2 per pot for soil. You could also use dirt right out of your own yard. Also, if at all an option, learn to identify herbs out in the wild. I live in New England, and I can’t tell you how many times I come across burdock root, lady slippers, wild rose, hawthorne trees, eye bright, and other magical plants out in the wild. 
  • The Dollar Store is Your Friend: Sometimes, this is where I end up buying my candles. They may not be super high-quality, smokeless, soot-less, fancy-pants soy candles… but I promise they’ll still light, and serve your purpose. Often times, you can also get 2 for $1 which means you can stock up pretty quickly. Dollar stores can also be a great place to pick up various vessels, bottles, incense, censers, glass figurines, mirrors, etc… some of which may have relevance to your practice. Craft stores also usually have a pretty decent supply of things that can be used in witchcraft. I always peruse the clearance aisles in home decor stores, craft stores, and local boutiques to see what I can find. 
  • Create a Monthly 'Witch Budget.’ For me, I put aside about $50 per month, sometimes less, that I allow myself to spend on items for my craft. By putting physical money aside, you’re showing intention -and the power’s that be are apt to reward you. I put my money into a jar, which has some stones and a note at the bottom that are charmed to help to attract more. I put in the cash, and then whatever change I get through the course of the month. Everyone else in my home, without knowing what the money is for, also seems to put change in there for me… so it adds up right quick! But the overall purpose here is two fold: One, by setting a limit to what you can spend, you’re not sacrificing any necessities, and Two, you’re also allowing yourself the opportunity to grow your craft a little more EACH MONTH. Rather than worrying about where you’ll find the money, you’ll know that you have some set aside specifically for this reason. 
  • Engage in Trade, or Barter: Whether it’s with other witches, or with a local tradesman or shopkeeper, engage in trade when you can. Of course, I recommend developing a good relationship first, but you’d be surprised how many folks of various Pagan traditions are willing to trade or barter with other fellow Pagans. The thing here is, you have to have something they want. (Enter herb garden…) So keep this idea in mind, especially if you begin replacing older altar items or tools. 
  • Consider your Skills: This goes along with the last point, and the one below. Look at your strengths within your craft. Are these skill marketable? Are you able to do something for other people that they might not be able to do? Are you an artist? Are you adept at crafting potions? Do you have a talent for divination? Is there an ability that you have that another person might not? Now, I don’t sell my magical talents (not that I claim to be prophetically gifted anyhow), but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t open an Etsy store that sold odd’s and ends and other bobbily-bits of magic. I have an eye for curio pieces, and I fix them up, and sometimes repurpose them into fun magical charms or talismans. Make your strengths work for YOU!
  • Develop a Specialty: You might wonder why this is on my list. The answer is simple: Rather than spend bundles of money buying items or books for various different aspects of your craft, it’s going to be more cost effective to find a specialty, and spend your time and money honing that one special skill. If you’re going a hundred directions at once, it’s going to be very hard to get anywhere… This way you can also direct your resources (Time and Money) into developing each skill to the fullest before moving to the next. How many of us spent an arm and a leg gathering up different books and tools for off-shoots of our craft that are now gathering dust while we work on something else… it’s foolish to try to do too much at once. 
  • Do your Research: Most people’s least favorite part. We live in a world of instant gratification, and unfortunately most Pagan religions promise no such thing. Every witch knows there’s a delay after you cast a spell. Well, I say there should be a delay with purchases and just about anything else involved in your craft. If you’re considering a purchase: think about the authenticity of the item your buying; think about what it’s actually worth to you, versus what the price tag says; think about the credibility of authors as you buy books; and think about the quality of the materials. I know that I said that I buy candles at the dollar store, but let me tell you -you get what you pay for. If it’s a one-time ritual, it might be worth it. If it’s for a ritual that happens every full moon, maybe that’s when you should invest in higher-quality items. KNOW WHEN YOU’RE BEING TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF. I’ve gone shopping for supplies in Salem, MA many times, and I can tell you that some stores there exist because the owners truly believe in Wicca, or Witchcraft and place a high value on their reputation with their Pagan clientele. But there are also a few stores that come to mind that are definitely only there to take advantage of the hype, and to make money. 

Ok, so that was a wee bit longer than I intended, but all of that information is heartfelt, and hopefully helpful! 

This information, and more available on yankeeinblack.com