An individual approach that picks and chooses from many different traditions and creates a personalised form of witchcraft that meets their individual needs and abilities. Their minds remain open and are receptive to knowledge, ideas, beliefs and methods that others practice. They adapt well to different situations and create their own paths by what they believe to be true and right at that time in their life.
Another 15 Things that you could put in your BOS/Grimoire/whatever you call it.
I decided to write another of these lists…. I really do hope
they help someone.
The chakras – do you use them? Write about it? Research
Your magical ethics – what do you believe you
should and shouldn’t do? It’s all well and good following others rules, why not
come up with your own?
Myths/legends – are there any myths or legends
revolving around deities you work with or even just like? If so how about popping
them in your book.
Folk tales – do you live in an area with a rich
folk tale history? Do you believe in the folk lore? Are you a traditional witch
who works with the lore of the land?
Names of each full moon.
Photos of your altar.
Family traditions – do you have any traditions
with your family? Do you on the first day of spring go for a walk with your
parents every year? Or do you visit a loved one who has passed in the cemetery
on their birthday?
Views on the afterlife – do you have an opinion
on what happens after we die?
Deities to call upon – if you work with deities,
but do not have matron/patron why not write a list of the deities that you can
call upon for different situations.
A table of smudges – I cleanse my home every
month or so (I have spiritual activity here) I have a table that says when I
have/need to cleanse my home again, and notes on what happened.
Herbal growing – if you grow your own fresh?
write about it.
Making your own cleanse/smudge sticks – a how
Nature correspondences – especially things that
are local to your area, that you could potentially use in spell/ritual work.
What is a Witch? A witch can never be truly defined. It is a broad term used to describe a variety of people each of which follow their own paths with no two truly alike.
Types of Witches
Kitchen Witch: (Cottage witch, Hearth witch) Works mainly within the home. Cares for the house and the family inside it. Prepares the meals and adds there own special magick to it. Provides the home with protection and keeps the house clean.
Green Witch: Works with nature. Includes working with plants, nature deities, herbal remedies, earth, crystals, and faeries. Incorporates nature deities in their craft such as Pan, Demeter, Epona, Gaia etc.
Eclectic Witch: Creates their own practice based on information and traditions borrowed from different practices and religions in. In order to create a path that works best for them. (Make sure you are not stealing from closed religions!)
Elemental Witch: A witch that works with the elements (water, earth, fire, air) in their day to day practices.
Hereditary Witch: Awitch that is born into a family of practitioners. They create and continue their families rituals and ceremonies. They commonly have a family grimoire or book of shadows that they pass down through generations.
Sea Witch: A witch that uses the sea and its materials in their practice. Gets their power from the seas energy. Incorporates shells, salt, saltwater, driftwood, etc into their practices. Works with deities such as Poseidon,
Njörðr, Neptune, etc.
Solitary Witch: A witch who prefers to practice on their own.
Faerie Witch: Someone who works in peace and harmony with the Fae. They take great care of their garden, place offerings out for the Faerie, and make them feel welcome and at peace.
Cosmic Witch: One who works with the stars, moon, sun, etc.
Urban Witch: A witch that lives in the city and uses the objects they find for their practice. They come up with creative ways to garden on there small patio and store things in the little space they have.
Pop Culture Witch: A witch who incorporates characters and ideas from movies, TV shows, and books into their practice.
Science witches are basically witches who incorporate the scientific method and ideology into their craft. In my experience no science witch is alike since each individual has their specific idea of how the relationship between science and magic works. A large part of being a science witch seems to be the belief in the placebo effect in relationship between the spellcaster and the spell.
Science witchcraft is kind of a blurred line between the laws of science and the known universe and the realm of magic and the laws we can’t see. We believe in the possibility of a crossover between the two and embrace it and use it to our advantage in our craft. Taking into consideration the effect science has on the magic we are using and sometimes crediting the spell result partially to magic and partially to science - sometimes even considering the same thing. -This definition is from @drinkthemoonlight, Very appreciated, Thank you so much! -
Druidism: A Celtic, nature based religion that works with Mother Earth.
Wiccan: A religion that follows it’s own set of rules and guidelines. Such as the three fold law and “hurt none and do what ye will.”
Pagan: A religion that works closely with nature and it’s deities.
This list barely covers the different types of witches but it is all I can think of for the moment. I will be updating soon.
Highly Responsive to Prayers: Local Shrine gets destroyed. Local Shrine Maiden destroys everyone in her path while attempting to find the culprit.
Story of Eastern Wonderland: Local Shrine Maiden stars in the classic tale of “GET OUT OF MY SHRINE”. A lot of youkai were harmed in the making.
Phantasmagoria of Dim.Dream: Disgraced scientist breaks into Gensokyo and attempts to prove magic’s existence to the outside world via attempted kidnapping. She gets hit with a chair.
Lotus Land Story: In “GET OUT OF MY SHRINE” the sequel, Yuuka Kazami Just Wants To Sleep. She’s not the culprit.
Mystic Square: Demons invade gensokyo, Local Shrine Maiden & Friends travel to Makai to have a word with the Queen of Hell. The culprits just wanted a nice vacation.
Touhou Game Summaries (Windows):
Embodiment of Scarlet Devil: Local Vampire just wants to walk outside during the day and not get burned. This is apparently unacceptable.
Perfect Cherry Blossom: Local Ghost Princess wants to see her giant cherry tree bloom. She steals the entirety of the season of spring to do so. This is apparently a really bad idea, for entirely different reasons.
Immaterial and Missing Power: Local Oni just wants to see her friends again. They never show up.
Imperishable Night: Moon princess creates a never-ending night. This turns out to be for everyone’s benefit, and it comes back to bite them games later.
Phantasmagoria of Flower View: Unexpected Flower Blooming leads to all-out brawls. No-one involved really knew what was going on.
Shoot the Bullet: Nosy Tengu Reporter takes photographs without permission.
Mountain of Faith: Local Mountain Gods from a nearby Outside mountain move in. They recieve the traditional Gensokyo welcome.
Scarlet Weather Rhapsody: Bored celestial wants to be entertained. In the process, the Hakurei Shrine gets destroyed. Again.
Subterranean Animism: Local Hell Raven eats a dead sun god. Decides the best thing to do with her newfound power is to nuke the surface and turn it into a New Hell.
Undefined Fantastic Object: Youkai followers of a Buddhist Monk want to rescue their leader sealed in Makai. Everyone wants to know what’s up with the floating boat.
Touhou Hisoutensoku: Something about dreams and a catfish?
Double Spoiler: Different Tengu Reporter has rivalry with aforementioned Nosy Tengu Reporter. More unauthorized photographs ensue.
Fairy Wars: Literally what it says on the tin.
Ten Desires: Local Taoist resurrects from the grave. Resurrected Taoist turns out to be Prince Shotoku. Prince Shotoku is actually a girl.
Hopeless Masquerade: Upset Noh Mask collection wants her missing mask back. Everyone is confused and just enjoys the flashy fighting.
Double Dealing Character: Inchling unwittingly gets tricked into causing a tsukumogami uprising. Poor girl.
Impossible Spell Card: Culprit from previous game takes Gensokyo on a Grand Theft spree to evade capture.
Urban Legend in Limbo: Lonely Psychic Outsider breaks into Gensokyo, causes absolute chaos.
Legacy of Lunatic Kingdom: Lunarian infighting accidentally spills out into Gensokyo. Gensokyo residents are not amused.
Silent Sinner in Blue: Local Vampire wants to go to the Moon, enlists Local Shrine Maiden & co’s help. Turns out they aren’t welcome there.
Inaba of the Moon and Inaba of the Earth: Daily adventures of Gensokyo’s rabbit population.
Eastern and Little Nature Deity / Strange and Bright Nature Deity / Oriental Sacred Place: Fairies doing Fairy Things.
Visionary Fairies in Shrine: Fairies doing Fairy Things 2.0, featuring AMERICA Clownpiece, the Local Hell Fairy.
Wild and Horned Hermit: Local Hermit makes suspiciously specific denial that she’s not a youkai. She’s a bad liar.
Forbidden Scrollery: Local Human Bookworm gets way in over her head. Repeatedly. On purpose.
Written Stories & Trivia Books:
Curiosity of Lotus Asia: Local Shopkeep recounts his experiences with some of the rather eccentric personalities in Gensokyo.
Cage in Lunatic Runagate: A bunch of characters reflect on the events of Silent Sinner in Blue.
Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red: A collective work of articles from Local Nosy Tengu Reporter.
Perfect Memento in Strict Sense: Book from Local Archiver, recording information on various personalities in Gensokyo, part 1. How truthful the contents are is probably another story.
The Grimoire of Marisa: Local Thieving Witch really wants to steal everyone’s spell cards.
Symposium of Post-Mysticism: Book from Local Archiver, recording information on various personalities in Gensokyo, part 2. Her sources are dubious.
Dolls in Pseudo Paradise: 10 outsiders become the unwitting participants of an Agatha Christie-like murder story.
Ghostly Field Club: Local Outsiders Renko and Merry explore a graveyard in the dead of night.
Changeability of Strange Dream: Local Outsider Merry recounts the dreams she’s had of Gensokyo. Questions reality. And her sanity.
Retrospective of 53 minutes: Local Outsiders Renko and Merry ride a train! And talk about the current state of the world outside gensokyo while doing so.
Magical Astronomy: Local Outsiders Renko and Merry want to take the new space tour of the moon! Turns out they’re too expensive.
Trojan Green Asteroid: Local Outsider Merry dreams herself onto an abandoned space satellite thought to be lost. Partner in crime Renko gets jealous and wants to go with. Turns out it’s not a dream.
Neo-traditionalism of Japan: Merry gets hospitalized due to events in the space satellite. Has visions of what she thinks is hell. Turns out she dreamed herself back in time and witnessed the birth of japan.
Dr. Latency’s Freak Report: Renko and Merry write a book! And discuss the plausibility of youkai existing in reality along the terms of quantum physics.
Dateless Bar “Old Adam”: Renko and Merry investigate a bar full of people spreading conspiracy theories and supernatural rumors. They get very drunk in the process.
Here’s my guess on which Red Robe made each of the Relics:
The Phoenixfire Gauntlet: Lup. Her skeleton was found near it, and Barry believed finding it would lead him to her. (And if Lup is in the Umbra Staff, then that’s a further link because both times it’s acted of its own accord, it’s used fire magic it do so.)
The Oculus: Davenport. This is the only one I’m unsure of; I primarily gave it to him because it was the ‘leftover’ once I’d given everyone else their better-thought-out Relics.
The Gaia Sash: Merle. An obvious choice; Merle’s a cleric of Pan, a nature deity, who can seduce plants. Was there ever any doubt?
The Philosopher’s Stone: Taako. The Philosopher’s Stone can turn anything into anything else, and Taako’s focus as a wizard is transmutation. Also, cooking’s kind of like transmutation, right?
The Temporal Chalice: Magnus. Not a guess, canon flat-out told us this one.
The Animus Bell: Barry. Barry’s a lich, and he might be the only one in the group to be one. It’s possible he used the Bell on himself to separate his soul from his body and become a lich?
“White Oak Staff”: Lucretia. Also not a guess. Annoying that it’s not named yet but I hope it will be.
It’s Ostara, and it’s a time of year in which many Wiccans and Pagans choose celebrate the balance of light and dark that heralds the beginning of spring. It’s a time to celebrate new life and rebirth – not only the physical embodiment of renewal, but the spiritual as well. Try some – or all – of these ideas to ready your altar for Ostara.
Colors: To get an idea of what colors are appropriate for spring, all you really have to do is look outside. Notice the yellows of the forsythia blooming behind your house, the pale purples of lilacs, the green of new leaves appearing in the melting snow. Pastels are often considered spring colors as well, so feel free to add some pinks and blues into the mix if the idea strikes you. Decorate your altar in any of these colors – try a pale green altar cloth with some purples and blues draped across it, and add some yellow or pink candles to carry the color up.
The Balance of the Equinox: Altar décor can reflect the theme of the Sabbat. Ostara is a time of balance between light and dark, so symbols of this polarity can be used. Use a god and goddess statue, a white candle and a black one, a sun and moon, even a yin/yang symbol.
New Life: Ostara is also a time of new growth and life – add potted plants such as new crocuses, daffodils, lilies, and other magical spring flowers. This is the time of year when animals are bringing forth new life too – put a basket of eggs on your altar, or figures of new lambs, rabbits, calves, etc. Add a chalice of milk or honey – milk represents the lactating animals who have just given birth, and honey is long known as a symbol of abundance.
Other Symbols of the Season:
Seeds and bulbs
Caterpillars, ladybugs, bumblebees
Symbols of nature deities – Herne, Flora, Gaia, Attis, etc.
Gemstones and crystals such as aquamarine, rose quartz, and moonstone
I had an experience a couple of weeks ago that I never posted about.
It was a cloudy day threatening rain, possibly even a storm. It was the warmest day of the year yet but still pretty mild out. I opened the sliding door to our balcony and hurried to put anything “relevant” on the table out there (glass bottle of rain water, my crystals on their salt bed, my pendants, etc.). I stood out there in just a long t-shirt, letting the wind swirl around me as it picked up. As usual I was in a state of absorbing and reflecting.
My spirit has grown so much this past year. I’ve always felt things more deeply than people around me for better or for worse, but my path has helped me to finally start taking control over my life in a real way. I’ve learned so much more about myself than I thought was possible- as it turns out, even though I’d been trying so hard to figure out my brain my whole life, there was so much I didn’t know about myself. Things have been getting better for the past couple of years thanks to my love, but all of the truly life-changing growth started once I began this path. Like so many people, I’ve looked back at my childhood until now and realized that this has always been for me. I’ve always felt the things I’m drawing upon and using now. It’s incredible. And so far, my craft and my life have included no deities.
And then I saw the crows. In the very top of one of the still-leafless trees beyond the lake, three crows swooped in and landed. Now, I’ve seen crows here. They land in the tree right in front of the balcony sometimes. But there was something about these crows. They were bunched closely together and seemed pretty excited, talking with each other loudly. And then in the same moment, thunder. First of the year. I gasped and stared at the sky, smiling like a kid who just heard Santa’s sleigh jingling in the distance. The wind picked up. Another crow landed in the distant treetop. I ran to the bedroom and grabbed my jar of storm water, then set it out on the table and resumed my post. And I felt something I haven’t felt before. I was listening.
Now, I wasn’t only listening to nature like I usually do. Wind in the trees, the cawing of crows, low-rumbling thunder, and… Among it all, somehow an absence- a silence. I felt small. So small. I can’t remember what I said but I whispered little questions, asking to know what _______ wanted me to know. As a secular witch/pagan I haven’t researched deities much, and all I could think of was Odin- with the crows and all. Then I thought of Thor (thunder), and I tried to think of a reason that they might be calling to me.
As I stood there, soaking it all in, it became clear why neither of those guesses felt right (other than my probable oversimplification): the energy was feminine. Gender is fake and sex doesn’t determine anything except your body in my opinion, and I really hate assigning “masculine” and “feminine” to energies… So maybe it wasn’t an energy. Maybe it really was a being.
Then, all at once, the rain started. The sky opened up and dropped huge raindrops in wall of water between me and the crows. The wind swirled around me, blowing little sprays of rain under the roof and onto my legs. We live less than a mile from the ocean, and we often get storms that pass over us on their way out to sea, so I’ve seen storms here. And this wasn’t even that big of one. But I decided I’d stop trying to figure out who this was and just absorb what was happening.
I still haven’t adequately put what I felt into words. All I know is that I felt distinctly Not Alone, and that someone was trying to get my attention. Whoever it was blessed me with a truly magical first thunder/rainstorm of the year. I felt such spiritual electricity in my whole body. I felt reborn. But it was more than that. Someone sent me a message, even if it was just, “I’m here.”
I feel a strong need to figure out who it was, but I’m trying not to push it. She will come again.
So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.
For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.
This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!
Gardens as Shrines
Okay, so unless you’re a fan of Doctor Who, it’s unlikely that you get the title. That’s okay. And if you do get the title, you get brownie points! Regardless, the container garden that we’re looking at today is one that I see on rare occasion, but I wish I could see a bit more often: using statues or statuettes as a gardening medium.
In this case, it’s a bit less of what the container is made of and more of what the container depicts. But before I get to that, the garden is simple to create. Simply take a statue that has some sort of surface that can be planted in (the picture above is from a DIY site that featured this same type of project, and they used a faerie holding a cupped leaf as the container part of the statue). Using an appropriate drill bit for the container material, add drainage holes and then plant as usual! Gardens like this can vary depending on how deep the planting surface is, but generally succulents benefit most because the majority of statuettes such as the one above are designed to double as bird baths, and so have a shallow bowl.
A Living Offering
The beautiful part of this type of garden, as I mentioned above, is not the type of material the container is, but what the container depicts. When someone says the word “shrine” it can often bring about mental images of small altars dedicated to a deity, or of the little Shinto altars in Japan, or even of the little altars set up to attract business in some small shops (there’s a nail salon near where I live that has an adorable little Hindu shrine right as you walk in, and in all the time I’ve been here, I’ve never seen them struggle).
But many pagans today follow faiths that bring them very close to nature, and encourage finding a balance. Despite this, it’s not uncommon to see altars that are built or set up somewhat apart from nature. They may be made of natural objects or have natural materials placed on them, or may be built in a natural area, but there’s still often some sort of line between where nature ends and human interaction begins. This type of container garden is a great way to try to bridge that gap!
Depending upon your path, select a statue that can be dedicated and devoted to a particular deity. Then plant foliage and decorations that are linked to that spirit in some way. For instance, a very common garden decoration is the image of the Green Man. A container with the Green Man image can be planted with ferns or other forest-type plants in honor of the Green Man or in honor of Cernunnos (the god I usually associate with the Green Man in my path).
Not only can this be a discreet way of honoring the gods, it is also a very respectful way of doing so, as it provides a continual offering as you tend the plants that are growing in the shrine. Water the plants with waters that have been blessed, and every time you tend to the plants, you can turn it into a sort of meditation on which you interact and commune with that god.
But gods are not the only spirits such gardens can be dedicated to. As in the picture above, you can dedicate a shrine to the Faeries of the area. Consider using plants that are pleasing to their eyes, and care for those plants while also leaving the occasional offering for the small folk!
A very common statuette to find is usually of saints. If you follow a tradition that is linked to the saints in some way, you can do the same project in honor of that saint!
So next time you look at that empty statue bowl sitting just outside your apartment door, consider ways in which you can turn it into a magical shrine that is ever-present, right there at home!
May all your harvests be bountiful! Blessed Be! )O(