Modern Paganism – Witch Next Door

The GBMO Ritual

Why should you do a full ritual for an offering? Is it ever really necessary?

To be all the way honest, yes, I sometimes do a full-on ritual. I do a daily ritual, anyhow – a “daily devotional” – but it’s nothing like the full-on ritual. It doesn’t feel quite as amazing, either, but it still gets results. (That’s a topic for another post, though.)

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The Mother Of Us All

Let me just say: 2017, was definitely a year of the unexpected.

Not that it was a bad year for me, necessarily … just some unexpected things happened.

Now, granted, I have been fairly open about my political leanings. And you’re smart, so you know what I mean by that statement.

But if we get right down to brass tacks, the fact of the matter is: those unexpected things will likely affect you and I very little. If we’re Witches worth our salt, anyhow.

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3 Myths About The Gods Sometimes Told To New Witches

Long, long ago, in a land far, far away, I was trained in a Coven. Most of my readers know that already, right?

The fact is: I love Covens. There’s a special something that working in a Coven – an actual one, that is more fam than your actual blood kin – brings to the table. Call it “extra oomph,” if you want. Or attribute it to being more social and spiritual, than religious. Whatever the case, I like it better than always working as a Solitary.

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The Magic of a Key


The other day (actually, last Tuesday), I was in the mood for a bit of magic. I had a goal to work on, and for the spellcraft I was brainstorming, a key would’ve been perfect. I love the look and feel of old skeleton keys.

So I went on a hunt in the basement – I could’ve sworn I had one back in the early 2000’s that I stashed for safekeeping. (Random tip: if you want to banish something from your life forever, put it in a “safe place” so you’ll never forget. You’re guaranteed to forget. LOL)

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How I Communicate with Deity

How do you deal with spirit communication in general, and especially with gods and goddesses?

I tend not to treat spirits of any kind, most especially goddesses and gods, as figments of imagination, or facets of my own psyche. For me, they are external entities, and they are very real spirit beings.

Since my personal Craft practice is centered a lot around working with Deity, I tend to give communications from them a good amount of credit. Deity communication is important to me.

I operate by receiving blocks of knowledge.

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Hestia’s Fire

After you become a Witch, things start to be a different kind of fun. When you cast those first few spells, or make those first few offerings to a deity or spirit, you wait, and you wonder.

And then, the magic happens. Things manifest.

And it amazes you. Because you never knew before that you had this kind of influence over your reality. There may not be thunderbolts and lightning when you cast a circle, and your results may not even be recognizable except in hindsight.

But once you see it, it’s awe-inspiring. Even after 20+ years, I still have a, “Woh, wtf,” kind of reaction to spell results.

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How To Make Beautiful Magic Together

I mentioned in one of my YouTube videos that, back in the day, one of the earliest books I’d read on Paganism was In The Shadow of the Shaman, by Amber Wolfe. And since I’ve been going back to basics, I picked it up again. And I noticed something that I only cursorily glanced over before.

Throughout the book, Wolfe refers to, “wheels within wheels.”

A quote from the introduction is, “All of the worlds of nature spin like wheels for the shaman … All worlds spin and vibrate for the shaman.” Another is, “Like the shamans of old, we may learn to ride the wheels within wheels, which are all the vibrations of the worlds of Nature.”

And then, in the shower the other day, I had this epiphany: she wasn’t talking about flat, 2D wheels drawn on a piece of paper. We don’t live in a world like that. Our world is a sphere.

In my Tradition – and in many Pagan faiths the world over – the tree is the center of the cosmos. It is the axis mundi, the central pillar that binds all the worlds together. In my view, there are three worlds: Sky Realm, Middle Realm (which my Coven lovingly calls, “Middle Earth”), and Lower Realm (which others might know as the Underworld). The tree binds the three.

The tree also binds the three major Celtic elements: land, sea, and sky. These elements can be taken as synonyms for the Upper, Middle, and Lower Worlds.

Like the three worlds and the three elements, we teach a triplicate human being: Younger/Child Self, Middle/Conscious Self, Higher/God Self.

Another example is ritual work. When you create sacred space, you’re literally creating a microcosm of the macrocosm. You’re creating a sphere within a sphere – or at least, that’s how my tradition views it. You create your own little universe, wherein you are Goddess and God, and through sympathetic magic, affect change in the larger world around you.

These worlds – and the triplicate human being – however, are not wheels. Not like the flat, 2D wheels drawn on paper. They are spheres. Earth is a sphere, the rest of the planets in our solar system are spheres, the Sun (a star) and the Moon (a satellite) are spheres. Everything is a sphere – a 3-dimensional wheel.

And it made me think about the “music of the spheres.”

Linda Goodman wrote quite a bit about the music of the spheres in her book Star Signs. The biggest point that I took away from the chapter on this music is that the planets (even though not audible because they’re in space) make music – they have vibrational frequency, just like everything else in the universe.

The vibrational frequency, bouncing betwixt all the planets, creates harmony – the music of the spheres. Goodman also talks about how the planets affect us as humans on Earth (astrology). And she refers to this influence as music of the spheres, from time to time.

That whole spheres-within-spheres thing got me to thinking about what’s important. And that is:

We, as Pagans, should be real with each other – more vulnerable with each other. We need to bounce our individual vibrations off of each other to create that harmonious “music of the spheres.” We can’t do that unless we’re real and open with one another – unless we talk about the shit parts of life, as well as the fabulous parts.

This, to me, is the importance of group work – of Coven work. Spirituality is certainly personal, but without that connection of group work – without a real Tribe with whom you can be vulnerable, and tearful, and open – our notes don’t bounce off each other, and we don’t create the music of the spheres.

Now that’s not to say you have to find, and be Initiated into, a Coven.

Side note: I advocate strongly for the Coven life because it fulfills the communal needs of many people, and I think spirituality is more effective in it’s purpose if it is at least a little communal. But that’s really another topic.

What I really mean is: you can have an online community with whom you’re vulnerable. We’re all busy and a lot of people don’t have the time for Coven life. (I could argue that if you really wanted the Witch life bad enough, and the communal experience of spirituality as it’s meant to be, you’d fucking make the time, but that’s another post.)

Outside of being taught and trained in a specific Tradition, I think online communities of Pagans are amazing. The Pagan YouTube community is one example. It’s so open and supportive, you’d be remiss if you couldn’t find one or two of us you have something in common with. And there are Facebook groups, which I love, because not only can you type your stuff to share, but you can do live videos, and literally just be vulnerable with people in real-time. Of course, it should be a trusted community of folks, but it’s less difficult to find such a community than it is to actually participate and be vulnerable.

You’re a wheel. I’m a wheel. You’re a grouping of spheres. I’m a grouping of spheres. (And what I mean is, we could view the cells of our bodies as spheres, as well as the triplicate self.) These ever-spinning wheels of life, nature, planets, the Universe – our connection with these, and how we dance the wheel – is how we create harmony. We can’t create the profound, harmonious tones without each other.

If you can find a Tribe – even one of only two or three people, physically thousands of miles away, but whom share an online community with – with whom you can be open and vulnerable, you can create the music of the spheres.