I have been circling around some of the many great Witchcraft groups on Facebook the last few days and there have been a few posts telling those new to the craft that they shouldn't just start practicing spells.
They need to learn the basics first, and when you ask what these OP’s consider the basics, it's along the lines of grounding, meditation, circle casting, and intentions. And there seems to be a heavy insistence on intentions, because unless you can focus on what you intend it won't happen!
So let's jump into this!
What are the intentions?
When many Witches speak about Intentions they are talking about the thought of the change that you wish to bring about in physical reality; the new job, car or extra cash flow as examples.
Many Witches will tell you that need to really focus on that intention or you will you not “manifest” it, your spell will go wrong, you will cause harm and destruction- I kid you not, there are Witches who will tell you that unless you have spent at least a year meditating your spells can cause serious harm!
That’s a step too far in my opinion, sure if you are practicing Hex or Curse work straight out the gate you will run into consequences, but most people are living in a challenging situation and just want to create easier times, no drama to be found there!
Meditation, Grounding and Protection
You will often be told that you need to cast a circle, yet this simply isn’t true, this is very Wiccan and it comes from Ceremonial Magick. I add at this point that I am not Wiccan, but a fusion of British Witchcraft, Celtic Witchcraft, Druidism and British Folk Magick, on occasions I do practice Ceremonial Magick. I do not cast circles outside of Ceremonial practices, as for the most part my Craft is very Folk orientated.
Grounding is important in more complex workings, when working with Spirits, or where Witches Flight is involved. The necessity to keep a level head is of most importance, especially if using Flying OIls or Ointments to aid in travel.
Again the more complex the working, Protection is required, but for the average Candle spell, you can call on your Spirit Guides, or draw a Sigil for Protection and place wherever you are working if you feel you need protection.
I do believe that there are times when Shadow Work and Reflection, even divination prior to a Spell is preferable; is the timing right, do I really need this, what is my motivation, especially important when doing Hex or Curse work.
Every action within your working forms part of the intention of that which you wish to birth to in the world. It is not sitting there imaging the end goal throughout, certainly not at the expense of the moment. Taking your candle, thinking of the required goal, and with breath/energy charge your candle with your Intentions. See our posts on Charging magickal tools and smudging here for more information https://www.sacredcircles.co.uk/post/how-to-charge-your-magickal-tools and https://www.sacredcircles.co.uk/post/shamanic-guides-how-to-smudge
Depending on what you are going to do with your candle, whether you are inscribing it with Runes or letters, anointing it with oil and rolling it in herbs- you are still adding to the intention, even if you are not directly thinking about it!
You may have other elements in your spell, such as the burning of Sacred Herbs or Incense, guess what? The fact that you chose those herbs forms a part of your Intentions.
And ofcourse the final piece to your Magick, you may have words, an incantation, whether you use a rhyme, rhythm or both, you are still adding to the intentions of your spell. I like to do mine in verses of 3 so that my spell reverberates through the 3 Realm; The Land, Sea and the Sky.
And don't forget to light said candle too!
You can finalize with some form of command, many Wiccans and Witches like to use “So mote it be”, I like to say “So I have said so it must Be”, with emphasis on the “must be”. You can then offer thanks and gratitude, and once you are done, go find something to distract yourself with!
It really becomes that simple, the more you practice, the more you learn, so go grab a couple spell books along the way and you are all set!
It's easy for others to see Witchcraft as part of their Religion, and infuse it with theological reasoning, but for many of us, it's not a religion but a practice. Druidism is my religion, but Witchcraft is most definitely my practice. Yes I may bring Deities and Spirits into my practice to aid me, but my Craft is still not religious.
When the Theological and the Spiritual are confused with practical, many misnomers and misunderstandings will form, and the craft can be a potent way to practically achieve your desires, dreams and aspirations. And if you so choose to blend the 3, you can, it is after all your path!