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Paganism Basics

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Jade Storm

Paganism Basics For Beginners

Jade Storm 2


Paganism Basics

Copyright Š 2013 Jade Storm All rights reserved. ISBN: 1475237367 ISBN-13: 978-1475237368

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Jade Storm

Much appreciation and thanks goes out to our coven, our sister covens and our generous friends for allowing us to share this information. Thanks to the ShadowWalk Path Tradition, Twilight Tradition (A Warlock's Path), Caller of Spirits (The Vardhlokkr) as well as The Sacred Mysteries Coven, The Silver Grove, ThunderDark Coven and The Midnight Mystic. Lore Wolf, Thunderhowl, Ebony Syn, Not a Dumb Puck, Vixen, Pagan Gipsy, Alli Willoughby, Heartfireshadow, Lady Silverthorne, Summitlord, Speaks with Shadows, Runs with Spirits, Odins Raven, Ankh Hetau, Blustormcrow, Summer Wren, Rana Nightfire, Starlitmystic, Winter Moonshadow, Serrated Serpentine, Wyldheartedcoyote, Fang Gaard, Rayvnhart, Lady Shadowhawke, Lady Arianna, Starlit Mimi, Faery Fox, Blughro1.

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Paganism Basics

Book of Shadows What exactly is a Book of Shadows? Often commonly shortened to BOS, there are many definitions and descriptions out there. However, some of those definitions are inaccurate or down right misleading. One of those that I just shudder when I hear it or see it, is Book of Spells. No, that isn't right, it is off track, as a true Book of Shadows contains so much more than mere spells! A true and genuine Book of Shadows contains your Laws, your Ways, your Beliefs, your Deities, your Rites of Passage, your Spells, your Journal, your Dream Journal, Herbal Lore, Colors' meanings for spell workings, Lore on the Elementals, Prayers, Chants, Rituals, Reverences, Rules and Steps for Rituals and Rites, a Glossary of terms and items you may need to refer to, which correspondences align with which ever 5


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rite, ritual or cantrip you may choose to use, observances of Sabbats and Esbats (holy days and festivals too), waxings and wanings as well as all phases of the moon, Crystal or stone properties as well as your Successes and your Failures in Magic if you practice magics as a part of your life path. And those are just the tip of the iceberg! As you can see, a Book of Shadows is a very personal thing, it is a part of YOU and who you are on your path. Too often I have seen new wiccans and witches badger someone over their BOS. They want to see it, read it, borrow it etcetera. It never seems to cross their minds that they are asking to read your diary of your most intimate thoughts, are asking to see your most private and secretive of writings. It is beyond rude to request such a favor, and only those with unlimited gall attempt to demand it. Your BOS is yours. Not theirs. Bear in mind, that if yours is a handwritten version, there were hours and possibly months or years' worth of work put into that book. And there is only ONE copy. I'm not saying that it is bad to share. Many covens have a common Book of Shadows that they work from. It is a communal item that everyone has added to, and new members are 6


Paganism Basics

typically allowed to copy a version for themselves, usually at the High Priest or High Priestess' home, or where the coven meets. This permission to copy often comes after an initiation into that particular coven, but each coven is different. Some are more casual while others are more strict in what is permitted by initiates. In my particular case, I have about ten different BOS's that I work from. My very first and most dear, then those that I have been gifted with, or that were shared with me. Each one presents a new view of things and enlightenment. Each one is a treasure to me. I also have a BOS that is used for my students and initiates. It is a tamer version, as beginners do not need to tamper with things they have yet to understand. You must learn to crawl before you can walk. At one time, I had a couple of students that wanted to utilize binding spells, among other spells they were not ready for, in an attempt to force people they were miffed at to bend to their will. One wanted to drive her step mother out of her father's home, a home that he shared with his nearly 30 year old daughter. I refused to help Ms. Nearly-30 because it would have been wrong and unethical to help her remove her father's wife from his own home. 7


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The other student wanted me to help her with bindings and magic to get her more sex, yet she had never cast a COP (circle of protection) nor had she learned how to purify or ritually cleanse an area to make it ready to do spell workings in. Both had begged and then demanded to use my BOS. Both were dismissed right afterward when they refused to adhere to the agreement we had made upon starting out as teacher-student. Demands and bullying, abuse of power are not the way of the true witch, warlock or pagan. Your Book of Shadows is a very dear and private thing. Many witches put charms or enchantments on theirs in effort to protect them. Whether you wind up in the position of a teacher or a student, please keep in mind that we are all students and all teachers at some point on our paths. Try to respect those who teach as well as those who are there to learn. Should anyone attempt to part you from your BOS (most often out of nosiness or laziness---putting your own Book of Shadows together is a lot of hard work and many want to fast track past that!) feel free to point them to the internet. There are numerous BOS's online, both the free and the bought kinds. They can read till 8


Paganism Basics

their heart's content, study and learn about what really goes in to a Book of Shadows. Maybe they will even be inspired enough to dedicate the next six months of their lives creating their own Book of Shadows!

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Jade Storm

About the Author Jade Storm has been interested in magic, mysteries and the occult since the age of twelve. Her insatiable hunger for knowledge, led to a life-long pursuit in search of the truth, for the answers that those in charge of spiritual and religious organizations did not hold. Too many times of being told "have faith" or "you are not ready" or "just believe" pushed her to seek out her own answers. This led to advanced studies into the religions and spiritualities of the world, where she eventually found the key that unlocked the mysteries and gave her the answers to her questions. She became a Priestess in the 90's and by 1999 held the title of High Priestess. As a very eclectic pagan she counts amongst her deities Artemis, Anubis, Tyr, Bast, Balder, Lugh, Hathor, Horus, Ares, and Brigid. She currently resides quietly in the countryside with her partner of nearly twenty years, her familiar, several adored felines and a menagerie of spirits in a comfortably haunted house. 10


Paganism Basics for Beginners-excerpt