Body, Mind & Spirit / Wicca & Witchcraft
“Packed with innovative and original spells for a vast variety of situations—many rarely addressed in print—this is an invaluable asset for every Witch’s bookshelf.” —Judika Illes, author of The Encyclopedia of 5,000 Spells
A collection of spells for the magnificently modern Witch Today’s Witch deals with everything from family drama to weight loss to fertility— concerns that go well beyond your average spellbook’s well-worn repertoire. Brimming with practical everyday magick, this is the perfect companion for your multifaceted life. Organized alphabetically, each of the nearly 200 spells has an associated goal to help you manifest your exact intention, plus corresponding candle colors, herbs, gemstones, and oils to help you focus your will more effectively. You’ll also find a helpful primer on spellcasting, tips on crafting your own spells, and Magic the Cat’s mewsings on working with a familiar. Fun and easy to use, this spellbook is filled with unique blessings, charms, and spells.
Get ahead at work • Fulfill obligations • Control appetite Ensure safe childbirth • Repair a damaged friendship • Heal sick pets Strengthen a marriage • Make sex more satisfying • Quit bad habits Author of Everyday Witch A to Z, Deborah Blake is a Wiccan high priestess and leads her own group, Blue Moon Circle. She also manages the Artisans’ Guild, a not-for-profit artists’ cooperative shop. Deborah lives in rural upstate New York in an old farmhouse with five cats who supervise her activities, both magickal and mundane.
www.deborahblakehps.com ISBN 978-0-7387-1970-2
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$17.95 US $20.95 CAN
Praise for Deborah Blake Everyday Witch A to Z Spellbook “Deborah Blake’s newest book of witchy wisdom is a clever alphabetical book of spells … this particular body of work cuts right down to the magick of spellcraft. I’m pleased to have this book in my library; the inspiration began flowing from page one!” —Raven Digitalis, author of Planetary Spells & Rituals and Shadow Magick Compendium “Filled with loads of practical advice and tons of easy-to-work magic, the Everyday Witch A to Z Spellbook provides everything the modern practitioner needs to reinvent life and start living it again. It’s a must-have for every magical library!” —Dorothy Morrison, author of Everyday Magic and Utterly Wicked “[A]n invaluable asset for every Witch’s bookshelf. Deborah’s instructions and spells are written with such clarity that even a newcomer to spellcasting will immediately be able to put them into practice. And who can resist the mewsings and contributions of Deborah’s familiar, Magic the Cat? Recommended!” —Judika Illes, author of The Encyclopedia of 5,000 Spells and The Encyclopedia of Spirits
Everyday Witch A to Z “[A] fun and delightfully illustrated guide for the everyday Witch.” —CIRCLE Magazine
The Goddess is in the Details “Blake dons the mantle of the high priestess with grace, wisdom, and a dose of humility … High praise and recommendations.” —Library Journal “[A] great book for branching out beyond the basics!” —PaganBookReviews.com
“[A]n engaging read with a lot of heart.” —TheMagicalBuffet.com
“Fun to read and chock-full of sensible advice, [this] book should find a place in every pagan’s library.” —Rev. Denise Dumars, M.A., author of Be Blessed: Daily Devotions for Busy Wiccans and Pagans
Circle, Coven and Grove “… if you want some convenient rituals to use throughout the year, this is a great choice.” —FacingNorth.net
Wonderfully Witchy Blessings, Charms & Spells
Photo by John Mazarak
About the Author Deborah Blake is the author of Circle, Coven and Grove: A Year of Magickal Practice (Llewellyn, 2007), Everyday Witch A to Z: An Amusing, Inspiring & Informative Guide to the Wonderful World of Witchcraft (2008), The Goddess is in the Details: Wisdom for the Everyday Witch (2009), and the forthcoming Witchcraft on a Shoestring (2010). She has published numerous articles in Pagan publications, including Llewellyn annuals. Her award-winning short story “Dead and (Mostly) Gone” is included in the Pagan Anthology of Short Fiction: 13 Prize Winning Tales (Llewellyn, 2008). Deborah has been interviewed on television, radio, and podcast, and can be found online at Facebook, Twitter, and www.myspace .com/deborahblakehps. When not writing, Deborah runs the Artisans’ Guild, a cooperative shop she founded with a friend in 1999, and also works as a jewelry maker. She lives in a 100-year-old farmhouse in rural upstate New York with five cats who supervise all her activities, both magickal and mundane.
WITCH A to Z Spellbook
Wonderfully Witchy Blessings, Charms & Spells
Llewellyn Publications Woodbury, Minnesota
Everyday Witch A to Z Spellbook: Wonderfully Witchy Blessings, Charms & Spells © 2010 by Deborah Blake. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever, including Internet usage, without written permission from Llewellyn Publications, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
first edition First Printing, 2010 Book design and editing by Rebecca Zins Cover design by Lisa Novak Cover image © iStockphoto.com/John Rawsterne Cover cat(s) used for illustrative purposes only and may not endorse or represent the book’s subject Llewellyn is a registered trademark of Llewellyn Worldwide Ltd. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Blake, Deborah, 1960– Everyday witch A to Z spellbook: wonderfully witchy blessings, charms & spells / Deborah Blake.—1st ed. p. cm. ISBN 978-0-7387-1970-2 1. Incantations. 2. Wicca. I. Title. BF1558.B93 2010 133.4’4—dc22 2010010392 Llewellyn Worldwide Ltd. does not participate in, endorse, or have any authority or responsibility concerning private business transactions between our authors and the public. All mail addressed to the author is forwarded, but the publisher cannot, unless specifically instructed by the author, give out an address or phone number. Any Internet references contained in this work are current at publication time, but the publisher cannot guarantee that a specific location will continue to be maintained. Please refer to the publisher’s website for links to authors’ websites and other sources. Llewellyn Publications A Division of Llewellyn Worldwide Ltd. 2143 Wooddale Drive Woodbury, MN 55125-2989 www.llewellyn.com Printed in the United States of America
To the wonderful ladies of Blue Moon Circle, who bring magick into my life every day.
Introduction: 1 Crafting the Perfect Spell: 3 Magic the Catâ€™s Guide to Working with Familiars: 10 General Instructions for Spellcasting: 13
A to Z Spells Abstinence: To willingly choose abstinence or deal with enforced abstinence; 18 Acceptance: To encourage acceptance in yourself or others; 18 Addiction: To rid yourself of any unhealthy fixation; 20 Adventure: To bring a spark of adventure into a life that has gotten a little dull; 23 Advertising: To help people find your product/business; 24 â€‰Air: To connect with the power of air; 25 Ambiance: To set the mood for a special occasion; 26 Anxiety: To deal with and lessen anxiety; 28 Appetite: To control appetite in a healthy way; 29 Assistance: To ask for help with a particular problem; 31
Attitude: To change a negative attitude into a positive one; 32 Baby Blessing: To bless a newborn baby; 33 Balance: To bring balance to an off-kilter life or situation; 35 Banishing: To banish negativity or unwanted energy; 36 Beauty: To be seen as beautiful both inside and out; 37 Best Foot Forward: To be at your best in a particular situation; 39 Boundaries: To set reasonable boundaries when needed; 40 Bounty: To bring abundance into your life; 41 Brainstorming: To come up with new ideas; 42 Bravery: To boost courage when needed; 43 Breast Health: To encourage breast health; 45 Childbirth: To encourage safe childbirth for yourself or another; 46 Child Protection: To protect your child when you send her out into the world; 48 Closure: To use when there is no other way to get closure; 49 Comfort: To bring comfort when needed; 50 Communication: To improve communication between people; 51 Companionship: To bring companionship into your life; 52 Conception: To help those trying to conceive; 54 Coven Blessing: To bless and dedicate a new coven; 55 Creativity: To increase creativity; 58 Dawn Greeting: To greet the new day; 59
Debt: To help reduce debt; 60 Depression: To ease and help cope with depression; 62 Detox: To detoxify mentally, physically, or spiritually; 63 Distance Bridge: To help with long-distance relationships; 65 Divination: To bless readings and divination; 66 Divine in Everyone: To connect with the Divine within; 67 Divorce: To help cope with the pain of divorce and move on; 68 Dream Spinner: To bring informative and helpful dreams; 69 Dreams Come True: To help bring dreams to fruition; 70 Dusk Blessing: To close out the day with gratitude; 72 Earth: To connect with the power of earth; 72 Ebb and Flow: To relax and go with the flow of life; 74 Elder Blessing: To use at a croning or celebration of a Pagan elder; 75 Empowerment: To increase power and use it wisely; 77 Endurance: To give you the strength to keep going; 78 Evil: To keep evil away; 80 Faeries: To encourage good relations with the faeries; 81 Faith: To help you find faith when you need it; 82 Familiar Blessing: To welcome or bless a familiar; 83 Familiar Finding: To ask for a familiar; 85 Family: To help you deal with family issues; 87
Feminine Power: To get in touch with your feminine side; 88 Fire: To connect with the power of fire; 90 Flying: To travel safely by plane; 91 Focus: To help you focus when feeling scattered; 92 Furry Companion Blessing: To welcome a new pet to the home or bless an existing animal; 93 Garden Blessing: To bless a magickal or mundane garden; 94 Ghost Blessing: To use if you feel the presence of benign spirits; 95 Goals: To set and attain reasonable goals; 96 Graceful Aging: To aid in aging gracefully; 98 Gratitude: To give thanks; 99 Grieving: To ease the grieving process; 100 Grounding: To ground and center; 101 Growth: To help with personal growth; 103 Handicaps: To cope with and overcome handicaps; 104 Happiness: To invite happiness; 106 Hatred: To banish hatred from the heart; 107
Healing: To promote physical, mental, or spiritual health; 108 Heart Health: To keep the heart working well; 109 Heartache: To soothe a sad heart; 110 Home Blessing: To bless and clear a new or existing home; 111
House Hunting: To aid in finding the perfect house; 113 Illness Prevention: To boost the immune system and defenses; 114 Infidelity: To cope with a loverâ€™s unfaithfulness; 115 Intimacy: To promote healthy and happy intimacy in relationships; 116 Jealousy: To reduce feelings of jealousy; 117 Jerk Avoidance: To protect against annoying people; 119 Job Hunting: To find the perfect job for your circumstances; 120 Job Improving: To make the job you have more satisfying; 121 Justice: To ask for justice to be done; 122 Kindness: To give and receive kindness; 123 Kinky: To attract others with kinks that match your own; 124 Kiss It Goodbye: To let go of baggage; 125 Kitchen Blessing: To consecrate a kitchen for positive use; 126 Knight in Shining Armor: To attract a romantic man; 127 Knowledge: To increase knowledge for a particular purpose; 128 Leaving: To make it easier to leave a place or person; 129 Liberation: To free yourself from things that bind you; 130 Life Lessons: To ensure you learn the lessons the universe is sending you; 130 Lightness of Spirit: To bring lightness into your life; 132 Listening: To become a better listener; 132 Locating Lost Objects: To find something that is lost; 133
Love, Opening To: To open yourself to love in all its forms; 134 Love, to Attract: To attract the person who is right for you but might not find you without help; 135 Luck: To draw in good luck; 137 Maliciousness: To defend against malicious intent; 137 Marriage, Good: To promote a healthy, happy marriage; 139 Marriage, Healing: To use when a marriage is in trouble; 140 Masculine Power: To connect with your masculine side; 141 Mending a Friendship: To mend a damaged friendship; 142 Menopause: To aid in dealing with the symptoms of menopause; 144 Mental Clarity: To clear the mind and aid in focus; 146 Mental Illness: To aid in healing mental illness; 146 Mercury in Retrograde: To deal with Mercury in retrograde; 148 Messages: To clarify a message; 148 Money: To bring in prosperity; 150 Nature: To connect with the natural world; 150 Neighbors, Good: To establish good relationships with neighbors; 152 Nest, Empty: To deal with empty nest syndrome; 152 New Beginnings: To start a new endeavor; 154 Nightmares: To banish nightmares; 155 No: To learn to say no when needed; 156
Nourish the Soul: To draw in those things that will feed the soul; 157 Obsession: To let go of unhealthy obsessions; 158 â€‰Opening to Possibilities: To be open to unseen opportunities; 159 Orientation: To seek clarification about sexual orientation; 160 Overeating: To curb overeating; 160 Overreacting: To reduce a tendency to overreact to situations; 161 Oversensitivity: To become less sensitive; 162 Pain: To lessen or be rid of pain; 163 Panic Attacks: To lessen and prevent panic attacks; 164 Patience: To increase patience; 165 Peace and Quiet: To bring peace and quiet to a hectic life; 166 Pests: To get rid of pests (insects or otherwise); 167 PMS: To help ease PMS issues; 168 Potency: To aid men with impotence; 169 Potty Training: To help potty training go smoothly; 170 Poverty: To give a boost out of poverty; 171 Protection: To protect the self or others; 172 Punctuality: To change chronic lateness into punctuality; 174 Quality of Life: To improve the quality of life; 175 Quarrel: To smooth over a fight; 176 Questions: To seek answers to particular questions; 177
Quiet Mind: To quiet an overactive mind; 178 Quit Smoking: To aid in quitting smoking; 179 Rape: To aid in recovering after a rape; 180 Rebirth: To celebrate a ceremony for the rebirth of self; 182 Recovery: To recover after an accident, illness, or trauma; 183 Regret: To let go of regret and move on with your life; 184 Reincarnation: To help see who you were in a previous life; 185 Relaxation: To allow yourself to relax more; 186 Release: To release negative thoughts or emotions; 187 Return: To ask for the return of a treasured possession; 188 Romance: To bring romance into your life or relationship; 188 Scary Spell: To help children be less afraid; 189 Second Sight: To increase psychic abilities; 191 Self-Confidence: To increase confidence; 192 Self-Discipline: To help stay disciplined and focused; 193 Sex: To make sex better with a willing partner; 194 Shit Happens: To cope with life’s everyday crap; 195 Solitude: To encourage comfort with solitude; 196 Solitary: To bless a solitary Witch; 198
Spirit Guide: To connect with your spirit guide; 199
Tantrums: To help a child stop having tantrums; 201
Teaching: To be the best teacher possible; 202 Technology: To bless the smooth working of computers and technology; 203 Tension: To let go of tension; 204 Tests: To help a test go well; 205 Totem: To connect with your totem or power animal; 205 Transition: To ease difficult transitions; 207 Troubled Times: To help deal with a crisis; 208 Trust Issues: To overcome trust issues; 209 Ugliness: To get rid of ugliness or the perception of ugliness; 210 Understanding: To promote understanding for self or others; 211 Union: To celebrate a union; 212 Unity: To pray for unity; 213 Vacation: To ask for the best vacation possible; 214 Vehicle Blessing: To bless a new or existing vehicle; 215 Vexation: To ease a source of aggravation by finding a positive solution and/or making peace with the issue; 216 Virginity: To bless the loss of virginity; 217 Voice: To help find one’s own voice; 218 Ward Off Danger: To use as protection in a particular situation; 220 Warrior Self: To find your inner warrior self; 221 Water: To connect with the power of water; 222
Witchcraft: To bless magickal work; 223 Wisdom: To ask for wisdom; 224 Work Success: To get ahead at work by emphasizing talents and getting credit for hard work; 226 Worry: To reduce needless worry; 227 Writing Success: To achieve professional and personal success with your writing; 228 The X: To maintain good relations with an ex; 229 Xenophobia: To get over distrust of those who are different; 230 Yearning: To get what you’ve been yearning for; 231 Yesterday: To let go of the past; 232 Young at Heart: To stay young at heart no matter your age; 233 Zest: To have zest for life; 234 Zing: To bring fun back into your life; 235 Zzz’s: To promote restful sleep; 237 Suggested Supplies: 239 Spell Cross-Reference: 241
Introduction Why write another spellbook? After all, aren’t there already enough books out there with spells for love, prosperity, and protection? Well, yes, there probably are. And some of them are even quite good; if you look, you’ll find quite a few on my own bookshelves. But the modern Witch is concerned with a lot more than love and prosperity. Today’s Witch deals with everything from family drama to weight issues to concerns with fertility. You’re not going to find spells for those in your average spellbook—but you will find them here. This is a spellbook for the everyday Witch: the one who lives their Pagan beliefs all day, every day, 24 /7. And as we integrate our spiritual lives as Pagans with our mundane lives as human beings, we may find we need spells that can’t be found in the standard books on Witchcraft. That’s what this book is all about. Although it may be used as a companion for my book Everyday Witch A to Z: An Amusing, Inspiring & Informative Guide to the Wonderful World of Witchcraft, as well as the one that followed it, The Goddess is in the Details: Wisdom for the Everyday Witch, this book can also stand on its own. It is intended as a kind of toolkit for the everyday Witch. Within its pages, you will find a wide variety of spells that can’t be found in other books, as well as new approaches to the old standards. Like a regular toolbox, you are unlikely to need all these magickal tools all the time. But I hope that as you walk your daily path, you will be able to find just the right spells to fit your own special needs. In addition, there is a section at the beginning of the book that talks about what a spell is, why and how we do them, and even gives some suggestions for how you can start to write
your own. After all, a spell is a very powerful tool indeed and should be approached with care, knowledge, and respect. So I strongly suggest that you read the section on crafting spells before going on to the rest of the book. After that, though, you can skip around as much as you like, choosing the spells that work best for your own particular situation and needs. Each spell has associated “optional extras” such as candle colors, herbs, gemstones, or oils. Whether or not you use these items is up to you and will depend, in part, on how you practice your own individual style of magick. The spells will certainly work without them, although many Witches find that the use of these additional items helps them to focus their will more effectively. Each spell also has a specific goal associated with it. By looking at the goals, you can choose the spell that most closely matches your own desires and objectives. At the end of some spells, there are also practical suggestions for actions you can follow up with in the mundane world. After all, as Witches, we know that it is not enough to simply work magick; we have to support our magickal endeavors with concrete actions as well. In addition, there is a section at the back of the book with cross-references that may help you find the spells you need. Spells come in a number of variations, the definitions for which can vary from Witch to Witch. Blessings, charms, and spells are all different types of magickal workings; sometimes there are just words to say, and sometimes the words are accompanied by actions and props. But we use all these assorted kinds of magick for the same purpose: to create positive change in our lives. I hope that the spells contained within these pages will help you in bringing positive change to your life. Blessed be,
Crafting the Perfect Spell Almost all Witches use magick in one form or another. And almost everyone who practices magick will eventually cast a spell. Spells are written or spoken words, often accompanied by actions and equipment of some sort, that are intended to bring about a specific result. You could think of them as tools. Specifically, power tools—but with the energy supplied by our will rather than by electricity. Like regular tools, spells are only as good as the skills of those who wield them, and if used incorrectly, can even backfire and cause unintended harm. And like regular tools, the better the quality of the spell, the better the end result you are likely to achieve.
To Cast or Not to Cast, That Is the Question The first essential element of spellcasting is deciding whether or not to use a spell at all. After all, you don’t always need a power tool; some jobs are just as easily done with a simple screwdriver. So before you get started, you need to decide if a spell is really the right tool to deal with the problem at hand. Take a long, honest look at the situation, and see which one of these categories fits the best. When to cast a spell: •
When you have exhausted all the mundane options but still need to achieve a goal (the spell not only puts your intention out into the universe but is also a way of asking for help).
When the spell will affect only you (such as casting a spell to open yourself to love).
When you know what you want and are willing to do the work required to get it (like putting in applications at appropriate places after asking for the perfect job).
When only good can come from the spell.
When not to cast a spell: •
When there is a simple solution that doesn’t require magick (you need to lose five pounds, haven’t tried a diet yet, and have plenty of time).
When casting a spell would interfere with free will (casting a love spell to get a particular person, for instance).
When you aren’t sure what you really want to achieve (if you are uncertain of the end results you want, it is hard to truly focus enough will to make a spell work).
When there is the possibility of causing harm to yourself or to others (remember, harm none).
If you are certain that the best solution for the situation is casting a spell, then it is time to get down to work and craft yourself the perfect spell to get the job done.
The Ingredients for the Perfect Spell The next essential element of spellcasting is to decide on your magickal goal. It is a good idea to write this down (unless it is very simple) and get as specific as possible. One of the trickiest parts of spellcasting is the balance between being as specific as you can on the one hand (so you are
intensely focused on the purpose of your spell) while leaving an opening for the gods to grant your request in ways that you might not even consider (since in my experience, this is the way things happen, more often than not). So if you are looking for that perfect job, you might want to specify that you want something that allows you to spend more time with your child, but not say “working out of my house,” in case there is an option that would allow you to work elsewhere but still have your child with you. See what I mean? One way to use this book is to write down your goal and then look for the spell that most closely matches it. If there are elements in more than one spell that could be combined to create the perfect spell for your needs, by all means go ahead and take the bits and pieces you think will work the best. It’s all about creating the exact right tool for the job at hand. Once you have your goal set, you can gather a few additional tools to boost the spell. I like Elizabeth Barrette’s explanation of why we use “extras” when casting a spell. She says, “Most spells combine words, actions, and objects to create a kind of ‘handle’ for the will to grasp, rather like using a wrench to tighten or loosen a nut that wouldn’t yield to fingers alone.” In other words, the addition of specific items and actions can help to rev up our magickal engines, giving us even more power for the spell than we would get from using words alone. This is because the addition of each extra element helps us to focus just a little bit more by reinforcing our intention to create a magickal result. So if you look for items that match the goal you have set, you will be adding another layer of intent to the energy you put out into the universe with your words. How you choose the additional items is up to you. Some people look in books for spell correspondences—colors, moon phases, days of the week, herbs, oils, and more—that are often used for a specific task. For instance, when doing prosperity magick, many people use the color Elizabeth Barrette, Composing Magic: How to Create Magical Spells, Rituals, Blessings, Chants, and Prayers (Franklin Lakes: New Page, 2007).
green, work their magick on a Thursday, and use basil or peppermint and maybe a piece of malachite or jade. On the other hand, there are many folks who simply use whatever items feel right to them. It is more a matter of style than anything else, and you can use whichever approach you prefer. For the spells in this book, I have made a number of suggestions for possible items to use for a little added oomph. You can use some, all, or none of them, or substitute anything you think would work better. Working magick is not about following someone else’s instincts, after all; it is about listening to your own. And sometimes you just have to make do with whatever you have on hand. If a spell needs to be done right away and you only have a white candle, by all means use that, and it will be fine. Remember that your will and your intent are what truly matter here.
A Few Words about Writing the Perfect Spell Obviously, you got this book so you could use the spells I wrote. That’s great. Many people aren’t comfortable writing their own spells or worry that they don’t know how to go about doing it the right way. Many Witches never write their own spells, relying instead on books like this one and managing quite well that way. But just in case you can’t find exactly the right spell for your specific situation, or—even better—if using the spells in this book inspire you to try your hand at writing your own, here are a few pointers and suggestions. There are a couple different reasons for writing your own spell. To begin with, no one knows exactly what you are trying to accomplish as well as you do. For instance, a prosperity spell out of a book might work well under most circumstances, but if you are trying to find a new job that will allow you to stay home with your child while still advancing your career, you might need to come up with something much more specific.
In addition, the more of your energy you put into any given part of a spell, the more power you give it. So in the case of the theoretical spell above, if you are using a green candle and some basil, the spell will be more forceful if you grew the herbs and made the candle, then anointed it with homemade prosperity oil. Now, most of us aren’t going to do all those steps every time (although I do recommend growing your own herbs when you can), but we can all write our own spells. Even if you don’t think of yourself as a writer, you can craft your own perfect spell once you learn a few important essentials of spellcasting. When you set out to write a spell, you need to decide a few things first. Are you going to call on a particular god and/or goddess? Are you going to use rhyme or not? Will you write something short that you can memorize or something longer that you will read off a piece of paper? Keep in mind that there is no “right” way to create a spell; it is all simply a matter of what will work best for you. Many people like to call on the god and/or goddess who is most associated with a particular goal, especially if there is one in the pantheon they usually use. A Witch who follows a primarily Celtic path might use Brigid for creativity, where another Witch might call on the Greek Apollo. Or you can just address the spell to “God and Goddess” or “Powers of the Universe.” You don’t have to call on anyone or anything, of course, but I like to personalize most spells a bit. I often say, “Great Goddess, Great God, please hear my plea” at the beginning of a spell— but again, this is a matter of personal taste. My suggestion, especially when you are starting out writing spells, is to stick with whatever you are comfortable with. Which brings us to the issue of rhyming. It is traditional to have spells rhyme; it is said to give them more power. Who said this, and whether or not it is true, I can’t say. That’s tradition for you. But I can tell you that I prefer, most of the time, to have my spells rhyme (sometimes just every other line). Rhyming adds rhythm and a sense of formality to a spell, and that can also help to focus your will.
On the other hand, if rhyming makes you uncomfortable, and you spend most of your time struggling to find something that rhymes with “checkbook,” then by all means, don’t bother. In the end, it is better to be at ease with what you’re saying than it is to follow tradition, don’t you think? As for whether to memorize it or write it down, I don’t believe it makes any difference. I usually write mine down and then read them out loud, because I want to make sure I get the words right, and my memory is lousy. But I have one or two spells I have used so often that I have them memorized, and I do like the freedom of being able to recite them any time, any place, even if I don’t happen to have the original piece of paper with me. The most important aspect of writing a spell is to choose your words carefully. No matter which god you call on or how beautiful your rhyme scheme, if you mean to ask for “the perfect man for me” and actually ask for “a good man”—and end up with some guy literally named Goodman—you’re going to wish you’d spent a little more time picking the right words. This is where the goal you wrote down earlier comes in handy. Look at what you are trying to attain, and make sure that this is what you are actually asking for. Some goals can be tricky. For instance, I’ve known people who asked for abundance—and got an abundance of ants (seriously). So if what you want is enough money to pay your bills without worry, ask for that—don’t just ask for money. And be careful to avoid accidentally interfering with free will or causing harm. If you have any doubts, you can always add a line that includes the words “for the good of all and according to the free will of all” or “in positive ways,” just to be on the safe side.
Casting the Perfect Spell All these ingredients add up to a pretty good spell: deciding on the specifics of your goal, gathering the additional elements needed to cast the spell, choosing who you will call upon for help, and picking out the perfect words to use for that particular occasion. If you want to take it a step further, you can also throw in some actions to reinforce your words, like burning a piece of paper with something you want to be rid of written on it. But don’t forget about the most important aspect of spellcasting: your will. Many Witches do something specific to help them gather focus as they prepare to work magick. Some meditate, drum, chant, or burn incense. For others, the acts involved in creating their ritual, such as the casting of the circle and the lighting of candles, serve to send them on their journey from the mundane world into the more intense and focused magickal one. Whichever path you take, the combination of your carefully chosen words and your strong and focused will can create a power tool of magick that you can use to achieve your heart’s desires. The perfect spell is crafted from your own energy and put out into the universe in the form of words you wrote yourself. Try it, and see what a difference it can make. Note: Parts of this section of the book were previously published in Llewellyn’s 2010 Witches’ Companion.
Magic the Cat’s Guide to
Working with Familiars Hi there. In case you didn’t meet me in the last Everyday Witch A to Z book, I am Deborah’s black cat, Magic. Got any treats? Well, okay then. Down to work. What is a familiar, anyway? A familiar is generally considered by modern Witches to be any animal that aids in magickal workings and is extra sensitive to such things. (We’re not going to talk about how people used to view familiars in the bad old days—it wasn’t very nice, believe me.) Deborah has five cats, but I am the only one who is a familiar. Not that the others aren’t perfectly nice, mind you, but they’re not Magic, are they? I, on the other hand, usually show up at group rituals and walk around the circle (deosil, of course) and help give a boost to Deborah’s solitary workings when needed. What can I say: you need to be careful when naming cats. So how do you know if your pet is a familiar? Well, the easiest way is to ask them. But if you don’t happen to speak cat, dog, snake, or gerbil, then watch their behavior when you are practicing magick. Do they ignore what you’re doing or try to take part? Do they meow or howl when you are reciting a spell? Are they always chewing on the sage smudge stick? (Oh, wait, that’s me.) An animal will usually let you know by their actions if they want to be a part of your magickal practices. If they’re not interested, there is no point in forcing them. A pet either is or isn’t a familiar by nature. There is no training that will change that.
Can you actually seek out and find a familiar if you don’t have one? Yes and no. It isn’t usually obvious before you bring an animal home whether or not they will be suitable for such a role. My advice, as an expert in such matters (cats are experts in pretty much everything, in case you didn’t know), is to never get a pet only because you think it will make a good familiar. If he or she turns out to have no magickal inclinations, you will only be disappointed and resentful. On the other hand, if you are ready to open your home to a new companion anyway, and would like to have one that will share your magickal life, you can always ask the gods to send you a familiar—or do the spell that appears later in this book. Then, when you are looking for the perfect pet to add to your household, you can try to open all your senses and see if you can spot one with that extra something. Just be sure you will be happy to have that animal (even if it is a dog) whether it turns out to be a familiar or not. Familiars tend to come to you when they are ready or feel that you are; it isn’t something that can be forced. If you do end up with a special animal, be certain that you never ask it to do anything dangerous or uncomfortable, and always say thank you at the end of every ritual. And an extra treat or two wouldn’t hurt, either. A number of the spells in this book are especially appropriate to do with the help of a familiar. You will be able to tell which ones they are because they will have my pawprint symbol—
—next to them. These spells don’t have to be done with a familiar, so don’t worry if
you don’t have one, but if you do happen to have one, this might be a good time to ask them to lend a paw. Familiars help out with spellcasting in different ways, depending on the animal and the Witch (and sometimes the spell being used). Most often, the cat/dog/snake/whatever merely sits inside the magickal circle or on the Witch’s lap and lends their energy to the proceedings. I tend to either sit at Deborah’s feet or under the altar itself, or I perch on the couch and supervise from there.
Some animals will participate more actively by moving objects around, making noise, or sitting on the spell while you are trying to read it. (I particularly enjoy that one. Meow!) Either way, it is best to simply allow your familiar to work in whichever way comes naturally to them,
rather than try to force some form of behavior or interaction. After all, your familiar knows best! Familiarly,
Magic the Cat
General Instructions for Spellcasting The spells included in this book can be done either formally or informally, depending on your needs and inclinations. For formal spellcasting, you will want to delineate the circle space in some way (draw a line on the floor, put down a piece of string, or use an athame to mark out the space), call the quarters, and invoke the gods. You may wish to purify the space first with sage or salt and water. However you normally do spellwork will be fine. For informal spellcasting, all you really need to do is ground and center yourself, visualize yourself in sacred space, and begin. Which approach you choose is up to you. I usually suggest that less experienced Witches use a more formal setting, since it can help to focus the will and maintain a higher level of energy. People who have been working magick for years can often focus their will without the aid of props and dispense with the circlecasting and the optional extras. Do whatever feels right and comfortable to you. That being said, I sometimes pull out all the bells and whistles when doing truly important magickal workings. It canâ€™t hurt, after all, and it might help. If you are doing a formal spellcasting and using some or all of the tools suggested for a particular spell, you would generally do the following: â€˘
Cleanse yourself and the space with sage and/or a mixture of salt and water.
Cast the circle by outlining the space with an athame, a piece of chalk or string, or by pointing your finger (visualize a white light surrounding the space and then filling it). 13
Call the quarters—face the east, south, west, and north in turn and ask the powers of air, fire, water, and earth to join you in your circle and keep you safe. If you want to get more involved, you can call on them to bring their particular aspects to the circle to help you with your magickal working. (Air is used for intellectual work, for example.)
Invoke the goddess and/or god. You can call on a specific deity if you wish, or simply say “Goddess” and “God.” If you are invoking the gods, you may want to have a small gift for them on whatever you are using as an altar. Flowers are always appropriate, or some kind of food or incense.
Take a few minutes to ground and center. If it helps, you can envision yourself as a tree stretching up to the sky and down into the ground.
If using a magickal oil, anoint a candle and/or yourself (usually at forehead, lips, heart, and groin, although this can vary and may depend on the spell).
If using incense, light it before saying the spell.
If using a candle, you can light it before or after you say the spell (or follow the specific instructions for each spell, if there are any).
Other tools, such as herbs or gemstones, should have been placed on the altar and can be touched or held while saying the spell or simply left to add to the spell’s energy.
Focus all your attention and will on your goal.
Recite the spell out loud (if necessary, it can be said silently, but the spoken word adds power to the magickal working).
After saying the spell, you should take a few moments to sit in silence. If doing a formal spellcasting, you may wish to partake of “cakes and ale” to ground yourself back in the mundane world.
Dismiss the quarters after thanking them.
Thank the gods and bid them goodbye.
Open your circle; you can envision the walls of your circle dropping or the light fading away as you rejoin the mundane world—if using an outline of yarn or salt, simply make an opening in the circle itself.
Remember the main tenets of spellcasting: To Will: Have a clear idea of what you want to accomplish and the belief that your spell will work. To Know: Apply your knowledge as a Witch and your knowledge of your own personal situation. To Do: Put as much energy and focus as you can into the actual spellcasting. To Keep Silent: Once the spell is cast, don’t talk about it. Follow up with concrete and constructive action in the mundane world, then let what will happen, happen. A couple of brief notes: •
Many of the spells involve calling on both the goddess and the god. If you normally only worship the goddess, it is fine to simply leave off “and the god” or substitute the name of any particular god/dess you prefer to appeal to.
Some of the spells suggest a best time for casting, such as a full or new moon. However, they can all be used when they are most needed, regardless of timing.
The lists of optional extras are just that: optional. You can use some or all of the suggested items, or substitute whatever feels right to you. If the spell says “yellow candle” and all you happen to have on hand is a white candle, that’s fine. (I suggest keeping a supply of candles in various colors on hand, as well as a few commonly used herbs and stones, so you have what you require if there is a sudden need.)
Remember to trust your own instincts. If part of a spell doesn’t seem right for your particular situation, feel free to alter it to suit your needs.
Most spells are written to be said for yourself. If you are going to be saying a spell for someone else (with their permission, of course), you may need to change some of the pronouns from I/me/myself to he/she or his/her.
A to Z Spells
Abstinence Goal: To willingly choose abstinence or deal with enforced abstinence Optional extras: White or blue candle; a calming incense or oil such as chamomile or lavender (anoint the third eye [to symbolize the mind and will], heart, and groin) Note: The best time to cast this spell is at dusk or dark of a new moon
Bless my mind and let it be as calm as the breezeless night Bless my heart and let it know love without encumbrance Bless my spirit and let it be strong of will Bless my body and let it release the need for what it cannot have Let me be without longing or lust Let me be at peace with myself Let me embrace the silence of being alone Let me let go of desire So I will it And so mote it be
Acceptance Goal: To encourage acceptance in yourself or others Optional extras: White, yellow, or light blue candle; mirror or bowl of water Note: Light the candle and place it in front of the mirror or bowl of water. When saying the spell, look at your reflection. Before you speak the words, take a few moments
to look at yourself. Open your heart to the love of the gods and feel their absolute acceptance of you just as you are. Try to say this spell from a place of love and peace rather than anger or frustration, no matter the circumstances.
(take a deep breath) I breathe in love and acceptance (let the breath out) And breathe out love and acceptance (breathe in) For myself in all my glory and imperfection (breathe out) For others in all their glory and imperfection (breathe in) With every breath, I know that the gods love me (breathe out) With every breath, I believe that I am worth loving (breathe in) With every breath, I accept others (breathe out) And pray that the gods will help them to accept me (breathe in) I am divine (breathe out) I am worthy
(breathe in) Let me see that divinity with every breath (breathe out) Let me feel that divinity with every breath (breathe in) Let others see that divinity in me (breathe out) And let me see that divinity in others (breathe in) So mote it be (breathe out) And so it is
Addiction Goal: To rid yourself of any unhealthy fixation Optional extras: Black or white candle; one each of yellow, blue, red, and green candles (it is fine to do the spell without these, if you don’t have them, or substitute all white or all black); sage smudge stick; salt and water Note: You may want to do extra cleansing before saying this spell; take a ritual bath or shower (using a cleansing oil or a soap with cleansing herbs like rosemary, lemon, or orange), sage yourself and the area where you will be doing the spell, sprinkle a mixture of salt and water around your circle and over your chakra points—whatever it takes to make you feel like you are starting out with a clean space and spirit. Take
a moment before reciting the spell to visualize your particular addiction or issue, then see yourself taking control of it. (You can visualize yourself putting it in a box or closing a door with the addiction on the other side, whatever works for you.) If the issue is a really tough one, you may want to say this spell every night for a month, starting with the night after the full moon, if you can.
(light the black candle) I send out into the universe My desire to triumph over addiction My commitment to positive change And my belief in the power of magick (light the yellow candle) I ask the element of air To blow away doubt and uncertainty To waft in new ideas and ways of thinking And to support me lightly as I give up addiction (light the red candle) I ask the element of fire To burn away the weakness that led to this path To forge chains of resolve and fortitude And to support me passionately as I give up addiction
(light the blue candle) I ask the element of water To wash away despair and sorrow To flood me with self-confidence and self-esteem And to support me calmly as I give up addiction (light the green candle) I ask the element of earth To lend me strength of purpose To ground me in my task And to support me solidly as I give up addiction (close your eyes for a moment and visualize yourself free of addiction; then open your eyes and hold out your empty hands in front of you) I send out into the universe My desire to triumph over addiction My commitment to positive change And my belief in the power of magick (blow on your hands, as if to blow away whatever it is that ruled you) I am free. So mote it be. (if it is safe to do so, let the candles burn out until they are gone; otherwise, simply light them each time you do the spell)
After: Whenever you look at the object of your addiction, remember how powerful you felt when you spoke this spell. Know that you are not alone and that you are capable of resisting weakness.
Adventure Goal: To bring a spark of adventure into a life that has gotten a little dull Optional extras: Cut out or draw pictures of a specific kind of activity if you have one in mind (travel, a new hobby or craft, etc.), and place them on the altar if you are using one; red or orange candle; cinnamon oil or a small bowl of powdered cinnamon Note: Be sure to fix your mind and intent on positive adventures. After all, a hurricane might be an adventure, but it probably isnâ€™t one you want to experience! This spell should be done in a spirit of fun and is a good one to do with a group if so desired.
(anoint candle with oil or sprinkle a bit of cinnamon on it, then light it in a fire-safe bowl) Life is good And all is well But now and then I find it dull I wish for fire To add a spark A flash of light Inside the dark
Today's Witch deals with everything from family drama to weight loss to fertility—concerns that go well beyond your average spellbook's well...
Published on Jun 14, 2010
Today's Witch deals with everything from family drama to weight loss to fertility—concerns that go well beyond your average spellbook's well...