here is a tribe in Africa where the birth date of a child is counted not from when they were born, nor from when they are conceived but from the day that the child was a thought in its mother’s mind. And when a woman decides that she will have a child, she goes off and sits under a tree, by herself, and she listens until she can hear the song of the child that wants to come. And after she’s heard the song of this child, she comes back to the man who will be the child’s father, and teaches it to him. And then, when they make love to physically conceive the child, some of that time they sing the song of the child, as a way to invite it.
And then, when the mother is pregnant, the mother teaches that child’s song to the midwives and the old women of the village, so that when the child is born, the old women and the people around her sing the child’s song to welcome it. And then, as the child grows up, the other villagers are taught the child’s song. If the child falls, or hurts its knee, someone picks it up and sings its song to it. Or perhaps the child does something wonderful, or goes through the rites of puberty, then as a way of honoring this person, the people of the village sing his or her song.
In the African tribe there is one other occasion upon which the villagers sing to the child. If at any time during his or her life, the person commits a crime or aberrant social act, the individual is called to the center of the village and the people in the community form a circle around them. Then they sing their song to them.
The tribe recognizes that the correction for antisocial behavior is not punishment; it is love and the remembrance of identity. When you recognize your own song, you have no desire or need to do anything that would hurt another.
And it goes this way through their life. In marriage, the songs are sung, together. And finally, when this child is lying in bed, ready to die, all the villagers know his or her song, and they sing—for the last time—the song to that person.
You may not have grown up in an African tribe that sings your song to you at crucial life transitions, but life is always reminding you when you are in tune with yourself and when you are not. When you feel good, what you are doing matches your song, and when you feel awful, it doesn’t. In the end, we shall all recognize our song and sing it well. You may feel a little warbly at the moment, but so have all the great singers. Just keep singing and you’ll find your way home.
This is lovely!! I’ve heard about this tribe and sitting in a circle when the person does something bad to help them realize who they are, but I had no idea about the song. I wish we did stuff like that here! I want my own song! lol
I just thought this was amazing and decided to share with you all :)
~With bugs, you might want to look at the species to determine some more symbolism. Like on this list, it just says beetle or moth. If you know the species of beetle or moth, you can look at the colors of the bug, and its habits (how it flies, hunts, eats, if it’s nocturnal, etc) and see if…
~~Added a bit more insects! :)
~I know I just posted a bunch of animal and bird correspondences, but ravens and crows are so common (and important in some traditions) in witchcraft, that I decided to elaborate on these 2 animals. Also, since these birds look so much alike, this first couple of paragraphs may help to distinguish the 2 a little bit.
—Crows and ravens are part of the same family (Corvus), but they’re not the same bird. Typically, ravens are quite a bit larger than crows, and they tend to be a bit shaggier looking. The raven actually has more in common with hawks and other predatory birds than the standard, smaller-sized crow.
—Although both birds have an impressive repertoire of calls and noises, the raven’s call is usually a bit deeper and more guttural sounding than that of the crow. Ravens and crows have a close affinity with the supernatural world. They are totem birds of the dark Celtic Goddesses, Badbh and Morrígan.
—In Irish mythology, Badbh - meaning “crow” - was a war goddess who took the form of a crow, and was thus sometimes known as Badbh Catha - “battle crow.” She often caused fear and confusion among soldiers in order to move the tide of battle to her favored side.
—Badbh appeared prior to battles to foreshadow the extent of the carnage to come, or to predict the death of a notable person. She would sometimes do this through wailing cries, leading to comparisons with the bean-sídhe (banshee). With her sisters, Macha and Nemain, Badbh was part of a trio of war goddesses known as the Morrígan.
—In Celtic mythology, the warrior goddess known as Morrígan, often appears in the form of a crow or raven, or is seen accompanied by a group of them. Typically, these birds appear in groups of three, and they are seen as a sign that the Morrígan is watching – or possibly getting ready to pay someone a visit.
~~These birds (mostly the raven) have long been associated with magick and mystery, the gods, and death. Look for my Birds in Witchcraft post for more on these, and other birds. <3
*Taken and edited from Facebook page: The Smart Witch
**Some of the raven info taken from: http://www.mentalfloss.com/article/53295/10-fascinating-facts-about-ravens
^^^Click the link for raven mimicking (really cool!) and playing videos! :)
~Meanings and symbolism of different animals. I took the information from 2 websites. I could have just posted the websites on here instead, but I decided to summarize the commonly used/seen in dreams animals from both websites to make it easier to look up an animal. There are more on the…
—Reblogging because I added a lot more animals :)
~General meanings of birds: Freedom, release, creativity, spirituality, imagination, higher ideals, heightened awareness, thoughts, communication. Sometimes considered messengers of the gods, as they are the animals closest to heaven.
~You’ve seen it everywhere. Stories, movies, Halloween costumes, the Wizard of Oz. Witches have always flown on brooms. But do we know why they are said to fly on brooms? I found this article posted by a page on Facebook that explains it really well. I have been wondering this before, but never really thought about it enough to want to research it. Then I stumble across this post! It’s very interesting and I enjoyed reading it. I’m sure you guys will too. <3
—The broom stick was an important fixture in ancient homes throughout Europe. Most homes were made of wood, straw and dirt floors. The only way to keep a home clean was to sweep out the old.
—This concept is even documented in the Bible:
~One of the earliest forms of the broom is known as the Besom Broom. They were made of twigs tied to a handle. The bristles can be made of various materials such as straw, herbs, or twigs. The shaft is round to represent the branch of a tree. This associates the broom with the Tree of Life which was an important symbol in ancient paganism Europe. Traditionally, a Besom broom is made from hazel wood and the bristles are birch twigs.
—These brooms were often found just inside a dwelling hanging with bristles up to ward off evil spirits, negative energies and to protect the home and all who dwell within it. It could also be found hanging over a door with the bristles facing in the direction of opening of the door.
—They were relatively inefficient as a cleaning implement, and needed constant repair or recreation. Today, Besom Brooms are still crafted and sold at garden centers as an outdoor broom. You can also find decorated and scented versions in craft stores for indoor decorations. (We buy a cinnamon scented one every fall and hang it in the living room. It smells so good!)
—The broom’s relation to sweeping away negative energies and use for protection makes it a wonderful tool for magickal practices and rituals. Consequently, it wasn’t a big leap for European pagans to use the broom as a tool.
~The Witch’s Broom:
—The traditional Witch’s Broom is made of an ash handle and bristles from birch twigs. The twigs are tied onto the handle with thin pieces of willow wood. There have been a few written accounts of early Witches decorating their brooms with flowers of the season tied on with some type of decorative string or colored ribbon, a practice that is continued today by modern Witches.
—Early Celtic pagans associated the broom with Faeries, possibly because of it’s relation to the wood and a common belief in forest sprites. Some stories tell of a Witch entering a forest and asking the Faeries to lead her way to the perfect tree where she can collect a staff for a broom. The idea is to enlist the help of the magickal folk and ensure the enchantment of the broom once it has been fashioned.
—The Witch’s broom is one of the few tools that is seen as a balance of Divine forces. It is both part of masculine energies (the phallic handle) and feminine energies (the bristles). Because of this, the broom was, and still is, commonly used in Handfasting rituals (marriage ceremonies). It is also used as a gate or door before a ritual space. For example, a witch would draw a magickal circle, enter the circle, and then place the broom over the doorway to keep out unwanted energies or people.
—While being used for clearing an area for ritual work was the earliest use for a broom, it became an important tool for Witches during The Burning Times of Europe. During this era, Witches would use a broom to hide one of their most important tools, the wand. It is also a tradition that brooms have been used by some as receptacles to harbor a particular spirit temporarily. This could be done to remove an unwanted spirit from one area and then release it far away in another place. Or it could be used to utilize the energy of a spirit for a specific spell when the broom is used as a wand.
—A few ancient brooms have been discovered to have hidden compartments in the handle. These small hidden places held combinations of herbs, oils, feathers, and a variety of other things thought to be part of a ritualistic spell. The hidden concoctions added to the energy of the intent that the broom was to be used for.
~The Flying Broom: (AKA: The part we’ve been waiting for! :D)
—This early association of broom to tree also associates it with the element of air and therefore, has power over spirits. Thus, it’s common use is a tool for flying. In both historical and modern images, a female witch can be found on a broom silhouetted by the full moon behind her.
—Although most associate being a witch with women, it’s a label that applies to both sexes. The first ‘official’ record that documents the claim of flying on a broom stick was recorded in 1453. The claim was made in a confession by a male witch named Guillaume Edelin. There have been earlier documents recanting stories of Witches flying on a variety of sticks. Such as decorated walking sticks, limbs from a tree complete with its leaves, or just a stick alone. These stories include details of magickal flying ointments being applied to these tools in order to give them flight.
—In both ancient Witchcraft and Shamanistic practices, the use of these ointments was most probably what gave the impression of Witch flight. Ointments and potions for flying were most likely a variety of hallucinogens that assisted a Witch in visualizing a flight upon the broom. This is not uncommon for early spiritual journeys. Using peyote and other hallucinogens is well documented and utilized by Native American cultures for spiritual travels.
—These special 'trips' were controlled methods to quickly reach a state of altered awareness. From there, a Witch could astral project with the image of flying on a broom to anywhere within their known Universe. The use by witches of flying ointments was first described, according to known sources, by Johannes Hartlieb in 1456. It was also described by the Spanish theologist, Alfonso Tostado in Super Genesis Commentaria (Venetia, 1507), whose commentary tended to accredit the thesis of the reality of the Witches’ Sabbath.
—Today, using these types of potions and ointments are not recommended or encouraged. Flying journeys instead are suggested through deep meditation and astral projection. These methods are not just safer, but they also provide the practitioner with more control and the ability to remember more of the journey itself.
- author unknown -
~~Here is an example of a cinnamon scented broom like the ones we buy every fall:
*Taken and edited from Facebook page: Wicca 101
Black Salt for ritual has long been used in European folk & African Diaspora traditions and is also known as Witch’s Salt, Sal Negro, & Drive Away Salt. Not to be confused with black lava salt or kala namak salts used in fine cuisine. Ritual black salt is not for consumption!
There are a variety of ways to craft Black Salt by using black iron pot scrapings, ground charcoal, fire pit ash, black pepper, & dyes. *
I’m reblogging this post because I had a lot less followers when I posted it, and now that I just posted about salt, I should also mention black salt. So here’s this post again if you haven’t seen it, or need to refresh your memory <3
~Salt is very important in witchcraft. I think I may have mentioned it before, but I forgot to elaborate on it until I saw this Facebook post.
~Salt can be used for protection, grounding and cleansing. To ward off any negativity or any unwanted spirits, sprinkle salt around the perimeter of your house or property. Sprinkle a bit of salt around your bed to help keep the energy positive and stop bad dreams and nightmares. Sprinkle it around the perimeter of your circle for added protection when you cast it. You can also keep small bowls of salt water out around your home to help absorb any negative energy and help protect it. Just remember to replace the salt once a week to keep it working and prevent the negative energy building up. Or what I have done a few times, after I clean a room, I sprinkle salt all over the floor and wait about and hour or so, then vacuum it up. I sprinkle more salt whenever I feel the room needs it.
~Getting Himalayan salt crystal lamps or tea light holders for your home is a good idea too. Himalayan salt is one of the purest forms of salt you can buy and when warmed, is great for purifying the air from negative ions caused from electrical products in the home. It also helps cleanse the air in your home from other airborne toxins. I don’t have any personally, but I have been to a few houses that have them and they are really pretty and makes the room feel peaceful and happy. I know you can get them at stores like Wal-mart (I live in North America. If you don’t have a Wal-mart, it’s just a store that has everything, like clothes, household items, furniture, bathroom stuff, sometimes food, etc). You can probably get them online too.
~Salt can be particularly important for Empaths (people who can feel emotions from people around them, or the air or room they are in), and those with other psychic gifts, as it is both naturally grounding and also amazing for cleansing. Have you ever been drawn to the ocean and felt calm and relaxed when you get there? It’s the salt in the water in addition to the movements of the water which does this, as water and salt are both naturally grounding. The energy of salt water combines two of the most powerful elements (salt, water) and can be very powerful. You see it often included in rituals and may want to keep a small bowl of salt water on your altar as its cleansing, grounding and protection properties make it perfect to assist with rituals, spell working and invoking.
~Whenever you need extra help with grounding, you can take a salt bath or mix a little salt with carrier oil such as olive oil and use it as a body scrub when you shower. You can use pretty much any variety, Epsom, Himalayan, Rock, Sea etc although table salt has been filtered and is not quite as effective. An Epsom Salt bath is great for aching muscles as well as helping with any emotional issues you may have and of course being both grounding and cleansing too. You can also add a bit of essential oils to your salt bath for extra cleansing.
~Got a severe headache or migraine? Try drinking a glass of lemonade or fresh lime juice with high concentration of salt. It has been known to cure some severe headache almost instantly. Intake of salt is not usually recommended, but in case of headache and migraine it could be your magic cure! (Do not give salt drinks to babies and children). <— I have no idea why. It was included in this post on Facebook, so I left it there just in case.
~~Note from Belladonna: I like to use salt in my spellwork too. Whenever I make a sachet, or any mixture of herbs (not for eating) then I add some salt to it too, for some cleansing, protection, and extra power in general. Salt has many uses and if you’re a simple witch, with not many tools and herbs, you should at least keep salt in your stash. It is very useful and has been a favorite among witches for a long time.
*Taken and edited from Facebook page: Wild Witch
Why thank you! Blessed be to you too! <3 ^_^
~With bugs, you might want to look at the species to determine some more symbolism. Like on this list, it just says beetle or moth. If you know the species of beetle or moth, you can look at the colors of the bug, and its habits (how it flies, hunts, eats, if it’s nocturnal, etc) and see if there are some hidden meanings in the species. <3
*Taken and edited from Facebook page: The Smart Witch
~Meanings and symbolism of different animals. I took the information from 2 websites. I could have just posted the websites on here instead, but I decided to summarize the commonly used/seen in dreams animals from both websites to make it easier to look up an animal. There are more on the websites too, which I posted at the end.
~These could also be used to summarize the meanings about your spirit animal or medicine animals if you have one. I will expand on this post once I find more animals and meanings. And I will also make posts about birds and insects in magick soon. <3
***Some taken and edited from Facebook page: The Smart Witch
Just thought this was cute. Pan and Selene :3 <3
-I’m not sure who the artist is. I just found it on Google images when looking for pictures for my gods and goddesses posts.
Why thank you darling! :3 People love my page more than I thought they would, and it makes me happy ^_^
~This is a ritual to honor the moon and to feel her energies and be connected with the moon for a few minutes. In this ritual, we will draw down the moon. I have posted the definition of it in the definitions post, and now in this ritual, you will learn how to do it. We found this ritual online, but I don’t remember where. But we edited it a bit to make it more ours. This is the very first ritual I ever did, and the first ritual I did with one of my best friends. We both felt amazing afterwards and light and happy. It was fantastic. Enjoy!
~(If you would like, you can mix up this oil and have it on the altar to charge during your ritual. Or, if you already have some, you can anoint the candles or yourself with it. To anoint yourself, put a drop on your feet, stomach, wrists, heart, and forehead. You can also make moon water and have it charging on the altar (Refer to my post on moon water for more info). If you already have moon water, you could use that for this ritual, instead of just plain water).
~~Cover the altar with the cloth (or you could just use the ground, since you should be outside for this ritual) and put the bowl of water in the center. Put the silver objects in or around the bowl. (We put them around the bowl. It worked better this way for us, and you will see why when you get to the ritual part). Gently pour the soap on the surface of the water so it looks like a full moon! Do not mix it. just let it float. During the ritual, it may mix in with the water by itself, but that’s ok. Just leave it alone.
~~Place two of the candles to the right and left of the altar, to represent the Divine. The mirror goes at the center, with the moon candle behind, or in front of it. (Since our mirror wouldn’t stand up by itself, we layed it in front of the candle. If your mirror can stand up on its own, you can put it behind the candle if you wish).
~~Open the circle any way you like. Refer to my posts on opening can closing circles for ideas. This circle opening came with the ritual, and we decided to use this one. Make sure you make the circle big enough for your altar, and for both of you to stand in. We didn’t have much room to do it, and I almost burned my skirt with the moon candle! :o We did North first, and since we were already outside, I took a handful of dirt and sprinkled that around for earth. Then we did East (you have to go clockwise) and I carried a stick of sage incense and waved it around with a feather for air. For South, I carried a lit candle around for fire. Then for West, I dipped my hand in a bowl of water (not the one used for the ritual) and sprinkled it around for water.
~~Next, is Invocation. This is more of a Wiccan thing, and we did it, but it’s not necessary. It’s just inviting the guardians of the elements to join in your ritual. You stand at each direction in the circle, and say the following (it doesn’t matter where you start, as long as you’re going clockwise):
"Celestial Winds, come dance and sing;
With you, airs of inspiration bring.
Full and rich, to my heart,
All your wisdom pray, impart.”
"Cosmic Fires, come dance and sing;
With you, sparks of cleansing bring.
Full and rich, to my heart,
All your strength pray, impart.”
"Astral Waters, come dance and sing;
With you, waves of insight bring.
Full and rich, to my heart,
All your creativity pray, impart.”
"Stellar Earth, come dance and sing;
With you, soils of flowering bring.
Full and rich, to my heart,
All your rooting pray, impart.”
(Here, I stood in the center next to the altar with my arms up in the air and my head facing the sky).
"Shining Spirit, come dance and sing,
With you, the magic of harmony bring.
Full and rich, to my heart,
All your power pray, impart.”
~~(When I did the invocation, I stood at each direction with my arms out a bit and my palms facing upwards, as like a motion of welcome and invitation. And no, you don’t have to memorize this. We didn’t memorize it. We wrote it down and brought the paper into the circle with us).
~Meditation and Visualization:
—Light the candles and incense.
~Drawing down the moon: Now sit down (or stand with your arms out, or on your heart, it doesn’t matter. We sat cross-legged with our hands on our knees) and breathe deeply. There is no need to rush; now is a time of softness, of quiet knowing. See yourself in your mind’s eye as you sit. Above you is a smiling moon, in full glory. As you look upon the lunar sphere, you see that the light is alive. It dances, and sings a special song. It jumps from the surface like a fire and travels downward to embrace you. The touch is cool, yet warm. It reaches beyond your skin and saturates every pore, every cell—you are the moonlight; you are the shadow of a star. There is no body now to hold you back. Let your spirit fly with the moon wherever it needs to go. Make notes about this experience afterward in your ritual journal. ~~(This was my favorite part. For me, I felt a cool feeling going through my body. Kind of like light winds, but there was no wind blowing. it kind of felt like there were beads of sweat on my body, you know that cool feeling? But I wasn’t sweating either. It felt good though. My friend didn’t feel anything physically. But she felt happier and safe and we both felt lighter. The feeling will be different for everyone)~~
(We said these words together, at the same time. It holds more power that way, and makes the ritual go more smoothly if you have more than one person)
—Hold a lit lighter to the sky and say;
"As she shines fully in the sky,
The Lady shines in my heart, and in my home.”
—Light the candles (left, right, center) and say;
"Mother Moon, welcome!
Mother Moon, come!
Your tides of power bring fulfillment,
And your beams bear the realization of change.”
—After this, look to the surface of the water. Take a deep, cleansing breath and say;
"Tides that sway and tides that flow;
As above, so below.
The moon once small, now fully seen
In this bowl, my future bring.”
~~See what movements, shapes, or images appear in the light that dances on the water. (This is why we put the silver objects around the bowl. So we could see the movement without getting distracted. The wind started blowing a little bit at this point and the shampoo started to swirl. plus, a bit of sand got in the bowl, so we watched how the sand moved lol) **Clockwise movement portends good things to come in the next month. **Counter-clockwise swirling represents the need for caution (not exactly danger, or anything bad, but that maybe some things won’t go as planned or you need to change something this next month). Take mental note of any shapes and images that strike you with additional insight. For example, clockwise movement forming a heart, would indicate a love interest making itself known before the next full moon. You can edit the last chant and ask a question instead, and the movements in the water will answer your question.
~~Feast and close the circle. Feasting isn’t necessary, but a lot of people do after rituals to regain any energy lost. Me and my friend closed the circle first, then we went inside and had a snack.
—Close the circle in any way you like, as long as you got counter-clockwise. And if you invited the guardians of the elements in the circle with you, make sure you thank them for joining. You can do it before or after closing the circle. It doesn’t matter. Refer to my posts on opening and closing circles for ideas on how to do it. I don’t think it matters if you release the guardians clockwise or counter-clockwise. But we did it clockwise.
—To release the guardians from the circle, stand at each of the directions and say:
"Thank you Guardians of the (direction), spirits of the (element).
I release thee, my ritual is done.
Go if you must,
stay if you like,
Hail and Farewell.”
—Then move to the center, tap the ground with your fist or wand and say:
"This circle is open,
but never broken.
Merry meet, Merry part,
and Merry meet again.
So mote it be.”
~P.S: I’m sure you could do this ritual for the sun too. Just do it on a nice clear, sunny day and draw down the sun. But instead of it feeling cool like the moon, it’ll probably feel warm. Replace all of the moon objects and colors with sun objects and colors (red, orange, yellow, gold, pyrite (fool’s gold) citrine, sunstone, garnet, red jasper, etc). Replace the word ‘goddess’ with ‘god’ and the word ‘moon’ with ‘sun’. You may want to edit the chant too, to fit with the sun. And do a fire divination with a candle flame or burning branches, instead of water (just be careful with those burning branches!) The circle opening/closing and inviting the elements will stay the same. Have fun in your ritual and Blessed be! <3
~Just like my post about witchcraft traditions, I copied this from my friend, who copied it from some book that I don’t know the name of. This is just a (rather long, but shorter than the goddess) list of some gods from different pantheons. The ones marked with hearts (<3) are my favorites (just in case you wondering). Again, copied all from my bos. It took longer than you’d think. Show your love! <3
~P.S: As with the goddesses, there are a lot of similar Greek and Roman gods. And for every Greek, there is a Roman equivalent. I will expand on this list as I find more Gods and information.
*Taken from my bos. Extra info taken from Wikipedia.