mine: jinx

Bad Penny

Here’s a fun little jinx I used to cast a lot.

You Need:

~ A penny

Hold the penny in your left hand. Get angry. Whatever makes you angry, think of it now. Make a fist around the penny and hold it up to your mouth. When you’re good and angry, start swearing at the penny, calling it nasty names, telling it ugly things. Go on as long as you like. (This is a great way to vent!)

When you’re done, say, “Pass it on.”

Drop the penny in the house of someone who’s annoyed you, use it to pay at a business that’s done you wrong, give it to someone you want to inconvenience, sow discord in the world for the lulz, go nuts. I used to charge ‘em by the handful and scatter them downtown when I was partially homeless and hated everyone and everything.

Notes:

As some of you may have realized, you can use this as a way to cleanse! If you don’t want to weaponize the penny, say “Hold that for me” when you’re done charging, and dispose of it safely or cleanse the penny.

Do not keep the penny. Just do not. I once cursed a penny, dropped it so it landed in my shoe by accident, and had a stunningly shitty day. It takes ten seconds to cast if you have a penny and you’re already angry. Storing them up just means they go to work on you. So if you want to carry ammo, just keep uncharged pennies on you and charge them as needed.

What is a Hex, really? A History Lesson

Most of the time looking on tumblr you find the answer to the above question being that it is a form of dark magick, with an intensity somewhere between a jinx and a curse. However history tells a different story.

All too often, a hex in magical workings is mistaken for curse. A curse is very specific. It refers to a type of magic that is intended to cause misfortune or harm to another person or situation. The definition of a hex is far broader than this.

The entomology of the word Hex is Germanic in origin, coming from Hexe which was most commonly in use between 1820-1830 and means Witch. To hex, at its most basic, is to perform witchcraft with the intent to bewitch a person or situation, and can be for either good or ill.

One of the earliest uses of the word hex was in relation to Dutch Hex Signs, which could be compared to a form of painted prayer. The Hex sign was often painted onto barns, and used for the purpose of warding the building and its occupants against black witchcraft and evil spirits.

It is clear then that in relation to cursing, with which it is so often compared, Hex is a much broader umbrella term regarding manipulation magic, under which the sub category of cursing may fall if it involves manipulation of a person rather than the usual sending of negative energies to influence a person’s life. But generally a curse is not a type of hex at all.

These negative connotations concerning the word hex would have come about due to the association of the Christian church with witchcraft and the labelling of all magic as evil and witches being aligned with the devil. If a Hexe referred to magic performed by a witch, then the natural progression of that time would have been to label all hexes as evil curses, and so the erroneous link between hexes and curses began.

However to solely concentrate on the mistaken link between curses and hexes would be to do the term a disservice. The oldest use of the word Hexe, comes from 1720 in relation to the word Haegse which referred to a Wise Woman, and in turn originated from the word Hygia which directly translates to the modern equivalent of Wisdom.

So we see this very interesting development of the word we see today which had its origin in the practice of wisdom and nothing to do with manipulation at all. The Haegse (which in a fascinating turn also developed into the English word Hag and also has modern negative connotations) was used for women who were Soothsayers and in both Germanic and Celtic traditions were considered the most revered women in society.

With the later development of Hexe, we see the emergence of the Hexenmeister which translates into Hex Worker or Hex Master. This was a solely healing role.

The Hexenmeister was a practitioner who utilised hands free healing, using earth wisdom to heal physical ailments and those of a more spiritual nature. This was the role of the traditional folk healer, a benevolent force in any Germanic village.

Seeing this rich history of the term Hexe only reinforces the subsequent tragedy of the demonization of people who were connected with the wisdom of the earth and the healing that came from such knowledge.

Hag, Crone, Witch, Hex and many other words carry heavy negative associations because of the spread of fear and ignorance through the Burning Times. As modern practitioners of witchcraft an onus is placed on us to embrace our robust history and shine new light on the misconceptions. Our history is beautiful and the more we learn, the more we can shed light on our variegated past.