Navigating religious subcultures is a strange experience. Last weekend, on a road trip to Fort Worth, I was asked about my childhood and All That Happened. Memories and pieces of memories tumbled out from my childhood and young adulthood. There were several stories that had to do with the strangeness of participating and working with different forms of Evangelicalism. “I get it,” I kept insisting. “It is my nature to question things and turn over traditions and theology and all those sacred cows in an attempt to get at the root of a belief, but gosh. I’m not the iconoclast they make me out to be.”
More than anything else, my young adulthood is filled with stories about adults who insisted I was going to Hell. My grandmother – who I’m not even sure believed Hell was a real place – continually told me that if I wasn’t good “the Devil is gonna get you.” Teachers, especially from 5th through 9th grade, insisted I was “demonic” and, yes, was going to Hell, for what felt like non-biblical reasons but instead minor offenses.
There was the time a teacher told me I was “going to Hell” because I liked the Power Rangers.* Or the time I went to church as a kid and heard the pastor say “Bugs Bunny is of the devil. Think about it. He’s always dressing up in women’s clothes. That’s the devil right there. Think about it, now.”* In grade school, a teacher “caught” me with (re: heard that I had) a cassette tape of M.C. Hammer. She pulled me out of class to tell this that was “the devil’s music.” When I politely objected that M.C. Hammer was a Christian and even had a song on that cassette (the one she refused to give back to me) about the necessity of prayer in daily life, she retorted “That’s just what the Devil does! He makes you think you’re a Christian! Oh yes, he wants you to pray! That’s how he deceives you.”* Much later, there was the time that I was working with a Pentecostal church and refused money. Eloise and her husband were a sweet grandparent-like couple who felt like “God laid it on our heart” to give someone money every Sunday. When – through process of elimination or divine mandate, I’m still not sure – they approached me and handed me $20, I handed it back and said I didn’t “feel like God has laid it on my heart to accept.” Insulted, they asked the pastor if I was “really a believer.”* Even today, a woman in overalls spat at me that I “needed Jesus” when I wouldn’t take her floppy tract.*
* Yep, those things happened. And I haven’t even mentioned that one time when I was called a “mystic” because I said I thought prayer was “more like a conversation than a deposit slip at a local bank” or the “strange fire” I was accused of stirring when I challenged a room full of Evangelicals, “If you have more allegiance to the flag or the Bible than you do to the people of God, you might want to question your priorities.”
But then there is the big one. “You’re a witch.”
Yeah. I was once accused of being a witch.
This one has always struck me as odd. Okay, so you think I’m a hellchild because I read comicbooks, laugh at Bugs Bunny, and felt like your money should be helping someone homeless, hungry, or sick. I get it. Those are definitely reasons for someone to bullet train down to the lake of fire and damnation. But I am about as far as you can get from a witch. The principles of witchcraft interest me for historical and religious purposes, but I do not practice and – to the best of my knowledge – do not know anyone who does or ever has. While I have to admit that, with the publication of Harry Potter, the fantasy of being approached by a giant and told, “Yer a wizard, Randall” sounds quite enjoyable, the accusation was terribly confusing to me. When it registered what was said to me, I wanted to immediately have a session with my accuser where I could explain the history of witchery, the folk tales of witchcraft, the beliefs and practices of the craft, and detail how I was ineligible for such an accusation. I wanted to explain how truly diverse witchcraft is and how it came to be this way, the role that globalization has played in the spread of the craft, and how many forms of witchery have nothing to do with the devil.
Blessed be, we never had that chance to work out the intent of that insult but the desire to work through what witchcraft is together with the many concepts and practices of the belief systems, plural, provides the stage for what follows.
The Most Common Schools of Witchcraft
- Alexandrian (Wicca) – This tradition was begun in the 1960s by Alex Sanders. Alex Sanders lived in England. He used what are known to be slightly changed Gardnarian traditions and calls himself the “King” of Witches. Covens involve both men and women.
- British Traditional (Wicca)– This is, according to Silver RavenWolf a “mix of Celtic and Gardnarian beliefs.” Covens involve both men and women. One can study a course and receive a degree in British Traditional Witchcraft.
- Celtic Wicca – Celtic Wicca focuses mainly on Celtic and Druidic gods and goddesses (along with a few other Anglo-Saxon pantheon). The rituals are formed after Gardnerian traditions with a stronger emphasis on nature. Celtic Wicca also puts much emphasis on working with elementals and nature spirits such as fairies and gnomes. Gods and Goddesses are usually called “The Ancient Ones.”
- Caledonii – This was once know as the Hecatine Tradition. Traditional Scottish Witchcraft.
- Ceremonial Witchcraft – This tradition is very exacting in its ritual. All rituals are usually followed by the book, to the letter and with much ceremony. Little emphasis is put on nature. This tradition may incorporate some Egyptian magic. Quabbalistic magic is often used in ceremonial witchcraft.
- Dianic – Dianic can incorporate nearly any magical traditions, but emphasis is placed on the Goddess only with little or no mention of the God. Known as the “feminist” types of witchcraft.
- Druidic – Neo-Druids are polytheistic worshipers of Mother Earth. Very little is known today about ancient Druidism and there are many gaps in the writings that have been found. Modern Druids practice their religion in areas where nature has been preserved – usually wooded areas. Druidic ritual often employs sacrifices to the Mother Goddess. These sacrifices often include grain, sometimes meat. These ritual sacrifices are often accompanied by a verse not unlike the following: “Earth Mother, giver of life we return to you a measure of the bounty you have provided may you be enriched and your wild things be preserved.”
- Eclectic (Natural)– An eclectic witch mixes many different traditions together to suit their tastes and will not follow any one particular tradition. Whatever seems to work best for them is what is used, regardless of which magical practice it comes from. This is one of the most popular types of witches found today.
- Gardnerian (Wicca) – Gardnerian witchcraft was begun in England and is Wiccan in nature. It was formed by Gerald Gardner in the 1950s. Gerald Gardner was the first to publicize witchcraft in an effort to preserve the “old ways.”
- Hereditary Witch (Natural or Wiccan) – A hereditary witch is a witch who is born into a witch family and brought up learning about witchcraft. Many witches claim to be hereditary witches when in fact, they are not. You must be brought up in a family of witches to be a hereditary witch.
- Kitchen Witch (Natural) – A kitchen witch is one who practices magic having to deal with the home and practical life. Kitchen witches use many spells involving cooking, herbs, and creating magic through crafts. A kitchen witch is very much like a hedge witch. Kitchen Witches practice by home and hearth, mainly dealing with practical sides of the religion, magick, the elements and the earth.
- Pictish – Pictish witchcraft is nature-based with little emphasis on religion, Gods, or Goddesses. It is much like Celtic witchcraft, only the traditions are Scottish. Pictish witches perform solitary and rarely, if ever work in groups or covens.
- Pow-Wow – Here is a term I rarely hear when referring to witchcraft. This tradition is based on old German magic. Today, it is considered a system of faith healing and can be applied to most any religion.
- Santeria – Santería is a system of beliefs that merges aspects of Yoruba religion brought to the New World by enslaved Yoruba people along with Christianity and the religions of the indigenous peoples of the Americas. The Yoruba people carried with them various religious customs, including a trance and divination system for communicating with their ancestors and deities, animal sacrifice, and sacred drumming and dance. The need to preserve their traditions and belief systems in a hostile cultural environment prompted those enslaved in Cuba, starting from as early as 1515, to merge their customs with aspects of Roman Catholicism where it continues.
- Satanic Witch: Satanism can refer to a number of belief systems, from the worship of the Christian Devil, to occult/ritual magic and the “Left Hand Path” or the modern Satanism belief system of Anton LaVey. It is often associated in the public mind with demonology (the systematic study of, or belief in, demons and other malevolent beings), with black magic (a form of sorcery that draws on malevolent powers, or used for dark purposes or malevolent acts that deliberately cause harm in some way) and with the Black Mass (a parody of the religious service of the Catholic Church, with its ritual profanation of the Host and lurid sexual practices, sometimes used in the past as a symbolic opposition of the Christian, but not used in the current day by Satanists).
- Seax-Wicca – This tradition was begun in 1973 by Raymond Buckland. Buckland and works on Saxon principles of religion and magic.
- Shaman (Natural) – It is arguable as to whether shamanism is or is not witchcraft. I include this here because shamanism is a form of Paganism. Shamanism puts no emphasis on religion or on pantheon. Shamans work completely with nature: rocks, trees, animals, rivers, etc. Shamans know the Earth and their bodies and minds well and train many long years to become adept at astral travel and healing.
- Solitary (Natural or Wiccan) – Solitary witches can be practitioners of nearly any magical system. A solitary works alone and does not join a group or coven. Often, solitaries choose to mix different systems, much like an eclectic witch. Solitaries can also form their own religious beliefs as they are not bound by the rules of a coven.
- Strega – This type of witchcraft is said to have been started by a woman named Aradia in Italy in 1353. Aradia is known in some traditions as the “Goddess of Witches.”
- Teutonic – A Nordic tradition of witchcraft that includes beliefs and practices from many cultures including Swedish, Dutch, and Icelandic.
- Theistic Satanism (or Traditional Satanism) is the belief that Satan is an actual deity or force worthy of reverence or worship. Theistic Satanists may consider their forebears to include figures such as La Voisin and Eliphas Lévi. Some view Satan as a human-like entity, some accept the ancient Roman image of Lucifer, and some imagine him as the image of the Greek god Pan.
- Wicca – Probably the most popular form of witchcraft. Wicca is highly religious in nature and has a good balance between religion/ceremonial magic and nature. Wiccans believe in a God and Goddess who are equal in all things, although some may lean more toward the Dianic form of Wicca, worshipping only the Goddess or lowering the God to an “assistant” status. Wiccans commonly form covens and rarely work alone.
Types of Witches
- Athiest/Laveyan Satanic – Witchcraft worked with the idea that satan is a concept, rather than a real person or entity (loosely put; it’s a very detailed concept). Also known as Satanic witches who fit the secular description.
- Celtic – Magickal practice that is based from the Celtic culture, including its’ mythology, deities, old ways, and (occasionally) language / symbols. May also describe those who only worship Celtic gods
- Christian – Witchcraft that is performed to honor / or is performed in conjunction with the Christian God as the primary and only deity
- Eclectic – An individual’s practice that has bits and pieces pulled from different magickal and/or spiritual practices, respectfully
- Hellenic – A form of non-witchcraft practice in which the practicer follows Greek ideals/culture and honors the Greek pantheon
- Hereditary/Blood – Including oneself in the practice of witchcraft on the grounds of having been born into a family who also practices. Knowledge and practice may also be passed down through generations, and honor old ways of magick
- Science – A form of magick in which both metaphysical ideas and scientific facts/theories are mixed in together by the individual practicer
- Secular – Non-religious / Not connecting with deity(s)
- Solitary – Practicing by ones’ self; not included in a group
- (Theistic) Satanic – Witchcraft that is often centered around honoring and/or working with satan in spellwork and prayer
- Traditional – One who practices witchcraft by honoring and using old and ‘traditional’ ways of magick; this type of witch might be one to practice modern methods of magick, but they might also stick to traditional concepts or techniques
Types of Witchcraft
Keep in mind that each term’s explanation is the basic description of that type of witchcraft/magick; each individual witch might be a certain type but define it differently, as their practice may be different from the next witch
- Animal – (A variant of Green) Magick that is strongly tied to the animal kingdom, which includes a deep appreciation for all animals, and most often: usage of animal materials in spellwork. An animal witch will most likely be one who loves animals, a person who animals are immediently “drawn” to, and those who appreciate the natural world. Some animal witches might also use bones, wings, feathers, fur, skin, scales, (etc). from deceased animals in their magick, if they choose to do so.
- Art/Craft – Witchcraft that can be worked through arts and crafts, simply put! One may embue macgick in creative activities such as painting, drawing, building, cutting, creating, etc.
- Asatru – Literally “Faith in the [Old] Gods” it is a more specific branch of Heathenry that worships the major Nordic pantheon, minus Loki, Fenrir, or other “adversary” gods.
- Astronomy/Space – (A wider variant of lunar) Those who practice magick and correlate their beliefs in conjunction with the planets and stars! These witches may focus their magick with the properties of each planet, regularly read a horoscope or study astrology, and have a love of the stars and the night.
- Bone – Witches who commonly collect, clean, and use animal bones in their magickal practice, and for things like altar decoration or magick-infused charms/jewelry. Materials used by those who identify as Bone witches are usually collected peacefully or after the being has passed on naturally!
- Chaos/Chaotic – A type of magick utilizing new, non-traditional, and unorthodox methods. It is a new and highly individualistic practice, while still drawing from other common forms of magick.
- Cottage / Hearth – (A slight variation from kitchen) Magick that is weaved, worked, or embued into mundane tasks around the house or for loved ones. Cottage/Hearth magick may be worked into daily tasks such as cleaning, cooking, or any hobbies
- Crystal – Magick that is worked commonly with stones and crystals, such as during spellwork or for crystal healing techniques. This may also include chakra balance, crystal meditation… anything that uses crystals, really! A crystal witch may also have an extensive knowledge of stones, including how to identify them and using their properties.
- Death/Necromancy – A practice that may combine Bone, Animal, Spirit work, occasionally also Blood. Using spirits to empower one self, hoarding bones, using graveyards, graves, the spirits of them, as well as the dirt (or even plants) that are found in them. May also honor the dead and/or gods who work with the dead.
- Desert – Using and utilizing the desert environment. Lots of work with hardier plants such as Cacti or Tumbleweeds. Use of the moon, desert earth, fire, rare water (especially rainwater), wind, local plants and herbs, as well as animals/creatures of the desert such as snakes, spiders, scorpions, and so on.
- Draconian – Refers to type of magick for those who call upon or work with dragons and dragon imagery in their practice; whether it be through astral matters or in spells and rituals
- Dream – (A possible variation of Hedge) Mindful and internal magickal practice mainly based from interpreting dreams and/or engaging in lucid dreaming. Those who intensify as this may “de-code” symbols and messages in the dream world similar to how one would use a divination technique.
- Elemental – Magick that is worked by honoring/acknowledging the 4 or all 5 elements: Water, Earth, Air, Fire, and Spirit. Commonly an Elementalist will dedicate different areas of their altars to each element, call upon them during spells and rituals, and use symbols to represent each.
- Earth – Specifically centered on the element of Earth; grounding exercises, rock/soil collecting, strong appreciation of the natural world, creating and using symbols associated with earth
- Air – Specifically centered on the element of Air; working with wind, using air-related tools (such as the wand), creating and using symbols associated with air
- Fire – Specifically centered on the element of Fire; Using anything fire-related (bonfires, candles, burning objects) in most spellwork, creating and using symbols associated with fire
- Water – Specifically centered on the element of Water; water scrying, collecting sea/storm/snow/river/spring water, swimming/bath spells and other water-related actives, creating and using symbols associated with water.
- Embroidery / Sewing / Knit – One who embues magick into household “stitching” or “string” hobbies such as embroidery, sewing, knitting, stringing, and knotting ~ Basically, one who identifies with using knot or chord magick in many different skills
- Energy – Those who prefer to do magick through energy exercises and manipulation rather than with many physical tools or materials; using the enhanced power of the mind and the body’s natural energies to bring about a magickal result or feeling. (Also may include aura work)
- Faery/Fey – Magick for those who communicate and work with the fey during spells and rituals. Usually, those who work with the fey may also leave offerings regularly, as thanks for the assistance of a faery in their spellwork.
- Flora – Much like a Green or Garden witch, those who work majorily with floral materials and flowers in their practice and in their spellwork! Their grimoire may be heavily associated with flowers rather than herbs, and likewise, one might use flower properties in spell or craft work.
- Garden – While having a garden and/or working in any type of garden; magick that is mostly (if not all) herbal and botanical-related! Garden witches take pride and find it calming or invigorating to work the earth, harvest that which they have planted, and are closely related to Green type.
- Gaulish – A practice that involves worshipping Gaulish gods
- Green – Utilizing greenery/plants/herbs/flowers in herbal and natural magick, such as creating blends of different plants or using primarily herbs in spellwork
- Grey – A neutral witch, who practices magick that neither benefits or harms others. Grey magick may also both harm and benefit at the same time, balancing and neutralizing.
- Heathenry – a practice in which the individual follows, works with, and/or worships the Norse deities.
- Lokean – Someone who works with/worships Loki and/or any of his relations (Hel, Jormugandr, Sigyn, Angrboda, etc) ; does not exclude other deities.
- Odinism – A faith that works mostly with Odin, Thor, Freyjr, Freyja, Frigga, and Heimdall.
- Hedge – Also known as an astral title, a type of magick that is oriented around more spiritual work; astral travel/projection, lucid dreaming, spirit-work, healing, and out-of-body experiences are all practices included in this magick
- Kemetic – Worshipping and working with Egyptian deities
- Kitchen – Magick that is worked specifically through “kitchen craft” such as herbal mixtures, brewing, baking, and cooking, and honors many aspects of the natural world: including herbs, crystals, fey, and the elements
- Literary – Those who practice magick through books and literature; a literary witch may do thing such as using book divination, often study witchcraft/magick even after the “beginner” phase of learning, etc. Also a term used to describe witches in stories, books, or movies.
- Lunar – One who works magick with / honors the moon and it’s energy and phases. This type of witch is also one to favor casting magick during the night hours rather than during the day
- Music – Magick that is worked with music, musical chimes, or rhythm! Humming/singing, clapping, singing chants during spells, playing instruments (even simple ones, like the triangle or bells), or even just simply playing music during spellwork, magick, or during energy exercises are a few common things a music witch might fancy
- Paper – Magick that is worked with, essentially, paper! Burning paper written with sigils, chants, symbols or spells, creating magickal offerings, items, or sachels from paper, etc.
- “Poison Path” – Working with plants, herbs, other items that may be poisonous, deadly, cause hallucinogenic effects, or affect the mind or body in some way – aphrodisiacs included.
- Pop Culture – Uses pop culture as a main focus or inspiration for the craft. Using lyrics or movie lines in spells, worshipping and honoring pop culture icons or idols, use of fandom, and more. It is a very wide practice. Examples may include drawing from Harry Potter spells or using invented sigils from shows like Supernatural.
- Sanguine – Meaning “blood” or “blood red color” in Latin, a type of magick that deals with blood or other life giving fluid; life blood can also be represented through things such as water, or nutrients. A term for those who work with blood and life-oriented magick!
- Sea – A type of magick derived from materials and abstract ideas involving the ocean and oceanic world. Sea/Ocean magick can be worked using seashells and bones, sea weed, beach sand, driftwood, ocean water, etc. and a sea witch might draw their energy from that of the sea!
- Seasonal – Witches who utilize and draw energy from the specific times of year for their magick, sort of how a person might have a strong love or connection to a certain time of year! This can also be spread out into Winter, Autumn, Spring and Summer witches
- Sigil – A witchcraft working majorly with sigils, and the intent that can be put into them to active their power
- Spirit Working – A practice in which the person will perform spellwork in conjunction with or with the help of any manner of spirit. This includes Ouija, (sometimes) demon spirits, spiritual contact, etc.
- Storm/Weather – Magick that is worked by combining one’s energy with the energy of the weather, and most commonly rain. Weather witches will do things like collect rain/snow water, absorb the energy of a lightning storm, “whistle up” or manipulate wind, predict the weather, etc.
- Swamp/Bog – Heavy use of water and moisture, rich we soil/mud, sometimes incorporates the use of bones, animals, and insects, especially the local plants of the swamp
- Tea – Those who drink tea, make tea, use tea-leaf divination, or enjoy blending herbal remedies! A variant of Kitchen/Cottage witch
- Tech – Magick that is skillfully worked through technology! A tech witch will most likely have at least a few magickal apps on their phone, digital sigils, or an online/digital BoS and/or Grimoire
- Urban Primative/City – For those who live or prefer the urban/city lifestyle; magick that can be worked without the seemingly “traditional” ways of witchcraft
In case anyone failed to notice it, Harry Potter provides some good insight into witchcraft to anyone who is observant even if it plays it safe and leaves a great deal to creative imagination. Magic comes in the form of wandlore, herbology, potions, futurecasting, a healthy understanding of history, culture, and society, and also through enchantments and “magick.” One of the things I share with my literature classes is that the Salem Witch Trials and the various tales of witchcraft in popular literature were, in part, about women who were critiquing the culture and society around them. These “witches” pointed out hypocrisy and the ills of society, and one cannot shrug that off as women being “uppity.” One of the areas that author J.K. Rowling shies away from is necromancy, or working with the dead (animate bodies or spiritism). While ghosts appear in her stories, there is a distinction. The ghosts, as Rowling presents them, are limited or restricted. They offer no knowledge of the afterlife or current events. Rather, they are bound to a place and particular items (ex: Peeves and the Headless Horseman are bound to Hogwarts, just as the former headmasters of Hogwarts are bound to their portraits). One of the things I note to my classes when we discuss contemporary fantasy literature is that Rowling must have had a reason from not going that far – of making sure there was a distinction between ghosts (which, in parallel, Jesus never dismisses – see Matthew 14) and spiritism, or seeking counsel and direction from the dead (see Isaiah 8:19). While this may seem like a difference in semantics, there remains a clear distinction worth considering.
When it comes to magick, broadly, it is simply the use of energy within us and available in nature. Everyone can produce magick. There are different kinds of magick and some people are better at one type then another. Whatever type you practice, the more you are aware of your psychic energy and the use of energy flows and the more you practice, the better you become and the more effective the magick will be.People can produce magick and never realize it, for example the sayings, “always think positive” or “be careful what you wish for”. What we truly want will always manifest itself into reality. Magick works on the subconscious level and our environment is always changing to match our perceived reality. These changes are subtle, but one who is attuned to their psychic energy will be aware of it and realize why spells they performed worked or did not work or had a completely different reaction. Its because our true will always be expressed, that is why the saying, “always think positive” is actually helpful and the concept of what you give out comes back to you.To influence the subconscious to creating even more powerful magick is through suggestions and visualizations. Visualization is extremely important for effective magick. You have to visualize the reality you want or the desired outcome. This visualization is successful when it is performed at least a week before you perform your magick. Our subconscious mind will censor out what it believes should not be in there because it doesn’t conform to our beliefs. For example, this is why when a person is hypnotized with the suggestion to physically hurt someone else, the person still will not harm another because it is not perceived as ‘right’, it does not conform to the persons beliefs. Even under hypnotism, a person cannot do what they do not believe in. In order to penetrate the subconscious mind you must use repetitions of suggestions until it becomes a part of who you are and your model or belief system. Simple chants like, “I will stop smoking” or “I will lose weight”, etc. are simple, but effective once they penetrate your subconscious, these chants will ‘change’ your ‘model’ or the way you believe about something and bring about positive yet subtle changes. Sigils work the very same way. When sigils are designed by yourself, you are manifesting your energy into the creative symbol and working the concept over and over in your mind until it works by itself on your subconscious level. Since our subconscious is always at work be mindful of your thoughts because your true will and desire will manifest itself and what goes out will come back because any type of magick has a cause and effect.
Basic Types of Magick
Everyone possesses the psychic ability to perform magick. Usually we are better at one kind of magick then another, but with guidance from another we can develop the abilities for another type of magick.
- Imitative Magick – Drawings, paintings on paper, earth, sand, mud, walls (prehistoric hunting drawings?) of symbolic images representing your goal or an actual picture or drawing of what you want to happen. The object is that if you can draw it and see it then you can make it happen. It`s like drawing what you visualize in your mind. This type of magick is mainly used to inhance your magick, to bring better luck and/ or power to achieve your intended goal.
- Contagious Magick – The use of a person`s personal belongings, ex. clothing, hair, nails, a shoe, etc.. This type of magick is used mainly for a variety of love spells to darker forms of magick such as the hexes and curses.
- Sympathetic Magick aka Image Magick – The use of poppets,dolls, sand dolls, earth, mud dolls, corn husk dolls, apple heads, turnip heads, etc.. This type of magick is used mainly for healing believe it or not with the use of herbs stuffed into the doll. Sometimes dolls can be used for love spells where two poppets will be made of the assigned couple. This type of magick is popular amongst African magick, voodoo and hoodoo folk magick practitioners. This kind of magick can be used for healing and love as I said above, but it is popularly known for the use of a black kind of magick where pins and needles are supposed to be stuck in the doll to bring about pain and/or death on another.
- Personal Magick – this magick is directed for the self, to help the self. Often working on the subconscious mind alone with repetitive chants, self-hypnosis and visualization. Many people perform this kind of magick on themselves are not aware of it or deny it as magick
- Active Magick – magick directed out, to bring about a desired event or to affect someone else.
- Passive Magick – magick directed from out. Events that are caused by a nonphysical cause, such as ESP.
Magick forces are neither good nor ‘bad’, but are neutral. The different ways of magick make it good or ‘bad’.
- White Magick (‘good’) – Magick performed for unselfish reasons, such as healing and magick always performed with the others permission.
- Gray Magick (ambiguous and defined by intent) – This is the most common type of magick performed. Magick that is usually for self-interest, it brings about a desired outcome that is beneficial for the one performing magick. Often spells can be performed for another without their permission for a desired beneficial outcome. This may fall in the ‘black magick’ area because the one performing magick does not have the others permission, but because the intent is unselfish it is therefore categorized as ‘gray magick.
- Black Magick (‘bad’) – Magick for selfish reasons, to do harm to another, control another`s will, and for some people, magick performed without another’s permission.
The degrees of magick and definitions of ‘bad’ magick vary with individual beliefs.Just as magick is an ability that exists within all of us, psychic abilities are also an ability we possess. Similarly, while some of us are better at performing one type of magick than another, some of us are better with a certain type of psychic ability. We can all develop and increase our magick and psychic performance. Magick should not be abused. Magick is not to inflate your ego, for recognition or to gain money. It is performed for change and hopefully for the best. Magick is not supernatural, it is natural. Magick is happening all around us. It is working with the energies in nature and the universe. It is drawing down the spiritual to the physical. It is working with your astral body and subconscious to manifest. It is working with nature which we are all a part of whether you believe this or not. As long as someone tells you to blow out your birthday candles and make a wish, magick will be there. When you wish upon a star, that is magick. When you recite a small suggestion or prayer, that is magick. When someone lights a candle for another, that is magick. When you wish upon something so strongly with strong emotion and it comes true, that is magick. In this way, it is easy to see that magick has been performed throughout history and likely always will be.
Elementals or familiars
These are thought forms manifested for your personal use by worked up emotion to enhance the ritual and spell. These thought forms are taken from your subconscious and have aspects of you, but detached from you. It is something you create through visualization and manifest. You can communicate with your elemental or familiar through telepathy or by talking to it. It will do what you want it to do and what you believe it can do. Because you have manifested it, it now exists. Elementals or Familiars are manifested to perform tasks for you such as: 1) As a watcher or observer to tell you what it sees 2) As a psychic guard 3) Used to help in healing.
Calling up a spiritual entity or God or Goddess during a ritual. These entities or Gods and Goddesses are archetypes from your mind and will hold aspects of yourself as well. You will perceive them the way you perceive them in your mind and culturally portrayed or from a deep desire or belief to see them a certain way. If you want to invoke the Green Man you will perceive an entity with a green aura and with leaves and plants all around it because this is the way the Green Man is portrayed. But, we also add to this entity by giving it other aspects we hold in our mind. Everyone will collectively see the Green Man as green, but the subtle differences as to appearance and character will differ from individual to individual. This technique involves drawing from your subconscious just as it does with manifesting familiars and elementals. It is the drawing energy and creative visualization from your subconscious that is attuned to the astral world. Energy flows from the astral world to the physical world. The mind is a powerful thing and you can manifest anything into a reality. There have all been times when we think we saw something. This may all sound like illusions, but our physical world interacts with the other worlds as well and we are all connected. Invocations
To Keep in Mind
- There must be a balance with all things magick. The energies you send out will eventually balance themselves out somehow and someway. For example if you want a lover so badly you call for one and then the next month you meet someone and find out later this person is unhealthy for you, but now you cannot get rid of this person. This is because during the spell and visualization, what is “sought’ or desired is emphasized more then anything else. To counter this try to be as detailed and specific of your goals, intentions and desires. And be realistic! If you want to bring love into your life then be realistic and do not visualize a Brad Pitt identical twin! Otherwise we would all be walking around with Brad Pitt clones.
- Magick does not work instantly as portrayed in movies. There is a waiting period for the energies to work, for cause and effect.
- Expect side-effects from your spells. Something always happens. Because there is a cause and effect, the effect may produce something a little different from what you expected. This can occur because you have not thought out the desired goal properly and in detail or your true will was other than what you were trying to achieve.
- If time for a spell takes too long to work then perhaps it was because you had weak beliefs. In this case you can perform the ritual everyday to strengthen the outcome, such as a witches ladder or more creative visualization.
- If a spell did not work it is probably because of preconceived belief systems, contradictions, or self doubts that interfered.
- Magick is not evil, strange or supernatural. It occurs all the time around us in nature and during our everyday lives. Some of us are more attuned to it then others and some of us make full use of magick through spells and rituals. Magick is natural and helpful for healing and all sorts of good spells, but it should be performed by those that are healthy in body and MIND.
Update March 7, 2018: If you have any questions or comments regarding this post, please let me know! I tried to include as many types as I possibly could, as well as the information that others gave me from my first post, so I do apologize if your type is not here. Drop me a note in the link above, or comment below so that I can do the proper research and include new information. At present, the following areas have been offered for further consideration:
- Knot / Chord
- Energy Manipulation
- Bottle / Jar
- Vocal (Chanting)
- (Physical) Binding
- The Hoodwitch is Changing the Face of Modern Witchcraft, by Linda Yang
- The Strange, Freakish Story of Britain’s Last Convicted Witch, by Katie McCabe
- The Victorian Occultist Accused of... by Dee Cunning
- Casting Curses and Love Spells with Romania’s Most powerful Witches, by Vice and Broadly
- Sex with Demons Was Totally Chill, by Diana Tourjee