The Contemporary New England Witch

The Contemporary New England Witch
Ms Faith

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Spell Casting - Understanding it's principles



Good Afternoon My Witchy Readers,

Today we are talking about spell casting. I'm going to come out and say spell casting is one of my most well developed skills.  I teach, study and am constantly researching our history, as it is of great personal interest of mine, but when it comes to the practical aspects, spell casting and divination are my specialties.

We each of us have our strengths and specialties. I teach and touch on many, many different topics found within the witch world, but what I will say, if I may be so bold, is my spell casting is one of my strongest talents. That is not because I am a better witch than any other, no, not at all. It is because of a couple of things. One, I have been practicing for over 30 years, and secondly, I have a keen eye for detail.

Perhaps it is the Virgo in me, maybe it is the latent scientist in me, but for whatever reason, I look at my spells as scientific experiments, which in truth they are. Witchcraft is a science.

Whoa .  .  .  wait .  .  .  what?!  I can hear some of you, quite loudly! Haha Yes, Wicca is the "Religion of the Witches" as it was declared by Gerald Gardner when he developed it in the early 1950's in Great Britain. Yet, witchcraft and Wicca are not necessarily one and the same. Witchcraft is by it's very nature a science.

Now, I have myself, run into Academics who have poo pooed that statement. Huff Puff, getting all scholarly and hiding behind very esteemed, gold edged, fancy framed diplomas from very important scholarly places "Well, you do know .  .  .  witchcraft is not reeeeeallllly a science. Not a reeeeal science."

I simply smile when I encounter this type of person because it does nothing for me to pop the bubble of their understanding of the world as they know it. Now, if they took my course, well then .  .  .  they would be introduced to a horse of a different color. Because witchcraft in the area of spell casting absolutely falls into the very essence of what we know as a science. Except in it's infancy it was at times disguised as a practice called "Alchemy". Ah, now that sounds familiar doesn't it? Or, does it?

Ask someone "what is alchemy?" Most likely you will be answered with the concept of someone trying to turn lead or other metals or rocks into gold. That would be wrong. But it was a clever ruse that worked as it was intended for centuries. The early Alchemists, were magickal practitioners, they might have called themselves at the time wizards, or magicians, or even sorcerers but they were the true scientists. An alchemists true focus is to try to understand and get back to the beginning of all time, the big bang if you will. The spark of creation. One of the premiere goals of the Alchemist was to try to create immortality. During their experiments, and each person who was involved in this endeavor had their own theories and concepts and followed their own path, created experiments and tried many different ways to do all sorts of 'magickal' things. Like to create the Philosopher's stone.

To create the Philosopher's stone, one could theoretically achieve immortality, heavenly bliss and total enlightenment.
This Alchemical symbol represents the Philosopher's stone and is a representations of all four elements of matter. A 16th century Swiss alchemist Paracelsus believed in alkahest which he felt was an undiscovered element of which the other four known elements of earth, air, fire and water all derived from and he felt this 'mother' element was in fact the philosopher's stone.

But the reason I bring all of this up, is in reality, while women were being burned, hung, tortured and being put to death for being witches, in reality midwives and herbalists, these men, the alchemists were being left alone. Yes, their work was as magickal, if not more so than the witches of the day, but their clever story of how they were working on turning base metals into gold, well that would have any king or nobleman leaving them alone to do their work in relative peace, as long as any gold or discovery of this sort would benefit the kingdom.

Yes, clever indeed. So much so, that the myth of the alchemist exists to this day. The science of magick, witchcraft, alchemy whatever you wish to call it also exists. Yet what we do is not wiggling of fingers and noses and expecting things to materialize out of the clear blue sky. No, our work now falls in the newer more modern arena of the sciences known as physics. You may call them metaphysics, though the area of quantum mechanics/physics is also a part of what we do.

The witch knows that what she is going to manifest already exists in this world. We are not creating something that doesn't already exist. We are simply bringing it to ourselves, in one fashion or another.

We work with all of nature's gifts. The elements, the stones and crystals, herbs, essential oils, even colors as in the candles we use, and by combining them along with using words, as words contain power, using our inner energy, mixing it with universal and divine energy, we come up with a magickal mixture called a spell. Then we cast it forth, in any number of ways and then we wait for it to return back to us.

I initially started this discussion by saying I am good at spell casting because I have an eye for fine detail and this is very important for effective, accurate, repeatable spell casting. It's all fine and good to cast a spell, but for it to manifest, as the 'witch' wants it to, as close or  exactly as desired, and then to be able to repeat this feat again and again, is the trait of an expert spell caster.

There is a few 'tips' or techniques which need to be followed and an eye for fine, tiny detail is necessary. To cast a spell first one must follow a basic anatomy of a spell. There are a number of variations but they all break down into a five step recipe. The first step is knowing what your magickal goal is. What is it you want to have happen.

We will talk about the other steps in the next few discussions, but to conclude this discussion I will discuss the first step. Step 1 of Anatomy of a Spell:  Magickal Goal.  Please lose the mamby pamby intentions everyone is always throwing around. One of the reasons your spells are vague and watered down is you have an intention. Think about it, one does not study their butt off throughout  high school, striving to get the best grades, working hard to get scholarships and accepted at the best colleges because you have an intention of going to college, maybe. No, one has a solid, clear cut goal to go to college. And then one strives towards it. One keeps working towards this goal until they achieve this goal. It is worked for and shot at again and again until it is achieved.

This is how effective spell casting is achieved. A solid, clear cut magickal goal. Let's say your business is your magickal goal, the financial success of your business. Some might say, well just burn a green candle on a Thursday, but is that correct? Let's look carefully, at the tiny details. Is it actual money your business needs as in a retail establishment, then a green candle would work on a Thursday. But say your business is more geared towards communication with people as in V bloggers who put out videos on social media and want lots of followers and in turn advertisers, then a blue candle on a Wednesday would be more effective, as blue is the color for communication and Wednesday is a strong day for Mercury the messenger who will deliver your verbal words to lots of ears and eyes.

Well, say instead you wish to 'communicate' with a lot of people but your words are written, because you are an author. You may still do your magick on a Wednesday but change up the candle color to yellow as that is the color for the intellect and the higher level of understanding and reasoning in the mind, hence the color yellow which is also good for studying for tests and researching and learning, so reading falls under this area. Even though you are 'communicating' your thoughts to the people who read your book they are receiving your information differently than you speaking it to them.

Sounds a bit particular, well, yes it does. And that is why some witches are better at spell casting than others. Some know enough to go through the motions but have not been taught to focus and visualize specifically and to be specific in their visualization and choice of magickal supplies.

So look at your business, sticking with our example, and decide exactly what you really need to have the end result, which would be financial success. Do you need more employees, skilled employees, perhaps a larger fleet of delivery trucks. Maybe your business deals with animals such as a groomers or you maybe an animal sitter or a dog walker, then burning brown candles for animal magick is appropriate and it should be burned on Monday.

It takes the most time to sit down and write out the end results and then the path which to get there. What your magickal goal is, and then how you think you may get there. Yes, in beginning stages, to do a money spell we simply do simple spells and we do not tie down the avenue which the money may come to you, but that is for finding lose change and dollar bills in your old coat pockets. But sustainable regular increased income you must look at possible avenues and how to direct the money to increase along those avenues.

You have to look at the entire situation carefully and then make the decision on what area you want to work on. Spell casting can be mad effective, very precise and can indeed manifest your true desire, you simply need to put in the effort, and use the magickal world to aid you in manifesting your desires.

If unsure, seek out competent magickal advice and follow it carefully, and the more effort you can out into your spell yourself the more effective it will be.

Live, Laugh and Always Love, Ms. Faith







© 2010-2017 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to receive the link to the most current weekly blog post send me an e mail with your email address. You will receive a new blog post weekly. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Going On A Magickal/Spiritual Journey or Quest



Good Afternoon My Witchy Readers,

I never know where I am going to get my inspiration for my next discussion I wish to have with you, but I wait, patiently and it always comes. This time it was from a person who, within the space of a mere year and a day has become a dear friend and mentor in a special way and now he is leaving on a journey, a quest if you will, an adventure much like Bilbo Baggins in the Lord of the Rings.

I started thinking about his journey and then expanded my thoughts to encompass how so many people go on quests or journeys, magickal or spiritual in nature in their lives, sometimes once, sometimes more than once, and some people even make their entire lives a journey of discovery.

I put above the tarot card "The Fool" as an example for this discussion, but not that one taking a journey of discovery is foolish in any way, not at all, the opposite it true. It often is the wisest amongst us that seeks to find themselves by taking a journey whether it be physical and covering geographical distance, or internal and on a spiritual path only. But this tarot card, "the fool", shows a person, the subject of the tarot reading going on a journey, a quest and I see stages in the person's life depicted. First when they are young and capable of getting into grave danger and needing a mother or another's care to keep them safe, but then the time comes when they are able to pack up and travel away and explore and seek new adventures all on their own.

This card shows the subject "the fool" not as a stupid or foolish person, but in the mid 1800's the fool was considered one who passed time idly, such as going on a journey without being in a rush, taking time as it came, learning lessons as they were given. Not trying to control the world around you, or commanding the energies to obey your will, but simply traveling and learning and experiencing what the world has to teach you and being content in that. There is a lesson to be learned in allowing the journey to be your teacher.

Whether your journey is an actual one and you find yourself moving from one place to another, or more metaphoric as you move within and explore the experiences and changes that come your way, it is the path you travel that is the teacher, never the destination. For remember Bilbo Baggins in the Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien and then a supporting character in the Lord of the Rings story his final destination brought him back to the Shire.  It was never his destination that was the goal, but the adventures and the quest of experience he reluctantly endured for those in his rag tag troupe, all for a greater good.

Eventually his adventures were recorded for his future generations in a book that could be read and passed down to his descendants, so like a Book of Shadows, which is the magickal practitioners record of her/his magickal practice/experience as well as spiritual path working. This record can be written, recorded, many today videotape their experiences, but there should be some order and chronology to this path of experience. Whether a diary, a book of poetry, a collection of lyrics and sheet music, perhaps a collection of paintings reminiscent of the great masters such as Monet and the impressionists who lived the south of France, or any medium you choose to record your path that you take and where the path leads you.

This also holds true for those who never leave home but choose to go on a spiritual quest by using other means of traveling a path. Some may choose short meditations everyday, but if you do this, be sure to have a specific goal a purpose for your meditation. Too many people try to meditate just to relax, but realize you do this every night when you sleep. Meditation should have a purpose, it should enhance your life in some way and make your life more beneficial for you. Or perhaps you will choose a course of study, or meeting new people, exploring places around where you live and seeing what they have to offer you. Perhaps your quest is to watch documentaries on a certain interest of yours and allow your mind to expand to allow additional ideas and concepts to be considered.

One of the most interesting, even fascinating things about going on a spiritual quest or journey is, remember when I said initially that the destination is not the goal, but traveling the path is? The start of the journey. Yes, it is an even more significant part of your journey to decide how, what, where, when, that journey will take shape. You already know the who, you, and the why, why not? Or because you feel compelled to do this, is what most people will say if asked.

It is the same with everyone who has ever attempted to climb Mt. Everest. When asked why? You never hear, "well, I promised my girlfriend I would do it for her.", or "I did it on a dare." it is always, how they felt compelled, how there was an almost inexorably pull for them to do this thing that kept calling to them, until they felt they had finished their quest. Most, when they have completed their quest, whether a physical one or only spiritual, which by no means implies it is less than significant,  find themselves changed in some significant ways.



For each person the change is personal, some can talk about it,, some choose not to. Some make life altering changes that forever change and adjust their lives and some merely enhance the lives they were already living. Some leave all and everyone they knew behind to start afresh somewhere else, and some choose to embrace the old life and families and friends along with the new people and loved ones and meld them into a diverse melting pot of loved ones they always want to have around.

One of the most important things I can tell you about this topic, should starting a new path, exploring an interest or going on an actual quest be crossing your mind, is this. Do it. So many, too many people tell me, almost weekly at my shop, that they have always been interested in the magickal world, for instance, and they just didn't start, didn't know where to start, wasn't sure how to, or what to do, so they did nothing. For weeks or months and sadly for many years. No, no, no!! Doing nothing, is just that! Nothing!! Do something for goodness sake! Start, pick up a book, speak to someone, take a trip, take a class, just do something. The great thing is, if it is not exactly right, well then you can cross that off of your list and go to the next thing!

But to sit there and wish and wonder, wanting and desiring and never reaching out and trying to grab at what you really want and desire, leaves you with nothing. Well, that is where you are right now, so it hurts nothing to try, and you have nothing to lose. And everything to gain! Never have the regret of wondering, .  .  .  "what if I had only  .  .  .  ?" Start, by getting up and doing something and then the rest will come easier than you will realize.  Just start.

Ah, if you thought I would give you the tips and tricks, and check list of your spiritual/magickal journey here, you are mistaken, as you are the one to write it, what it will be and it will record upon your soul who you will become.

All I can tell you with great certainty, if you decide to embark on a spiritual/magickal journey is two things. One .  .  .  You will start.  And Two .  .  .  one day you will finish.  The rest you will need to fill in.





Live, Laugh and Always Love, Ms. Faith




This discussion is dedicated to my friend Jack Riley - "May The Winds Be With You"  Gaelic Blessing To The Traveler 








© 2010-2017 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. 

 If you or they would like to receive the link to the most current weekly blog post send me an e mail with your email address. You will receive a new blog post weekly. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Ancient Magickal Techniques - Using Candles


Greetings My Magickal Reader,

We have covered many ancient magickal techniques over this past month from using hair, stones, music and todays discussion will cover the ancient magickal technique of using candles. When I use the term 'magickal technique' it covers the tools, supplies and the actual usage of such tools and supplies.

Before candles were developed, candles as we know them to be fashioned with a wick in the center, rush lights were used and were made from sheaves of reeds dipped in animal fat and set on fire. Yet before candles in some areas of the world, around approximately 4,500 B.C.E. years ago the first oil lamps were created in countries that used oils such as olive oil. Then approximately 3,000 years B.C.E. candles were credited to the Egyptians who took scrolls of papyrus and rolled them tightly and dipped them repeatedly in animal fat, inserted a wick in the center and burned them, resembling closely the candles we have today.

The concept of magick surrounds the candle / oil lamp because before this time, the darkness was a handicap to deal with for everyone in the nighttime. Many times one would have a fire or even more than one but when one went to bed or even moved a few yards away from the fire, the darkness surrounded them. The idea of being able to hold a light and carry it with you was magickal and would quickly have come to represent keeping the spirits and harmful things that hid in the dark away, thus bringing a sense of protection to surround the one carrying the light.

Originally the first candles were made from animal fat, primarily beef tallow, but that made for a smoky, smelly darker light and the candles dripped and often when blown out flaming globules of fat were a danger of catching the surrounding area on fire. I have often wondered if this may have been the origin of our now common practice of never blowing out spell candles but always snuffing them out? Perhaps a habit of safety that hearkens back to a time in the long distant past?

At a later time the Egyptians had started using beeswax for their candles, at least the Royals did, as it was much more costly to obtain, and prepare, but burned cleaner, made for a brighter flame and smelled sweeter. The poor were still subject to using the tallow candles if they could afford to make any at all.

It is very hard to find early written evidence of the use of many magickal techniques, as so many written works, if they were written down at all, were usually destroyed by the invading forces of a civilization which overtook another such as the Roman Empire, or eventually the Catholic church which tried to eliminate that which did not adhere to their desired version of historical events.

I find many of the earliest magickal, or call them spiritual or religious techniques are readily preserved in the bible, most especially in the Old Testament, again most especially the versions of the Old Testament that are the first 5 books of the Torah called the 5 books of Moses, that have not been adulterated and revised as in some Christian bibles. They present not just religious teachings but historical information of legend that can tell us so much about a time when magick and miracles were considered one and the same.



Many do not realize that in Jesus's time it was a common practice for 'religious men' be they called Priests or Wise Men who would go door to door knocking and asking the inhabitants if they had need for any magick to be done on their behalf? During this time it was common to cast healing spells, curses upon those who had caused you harm, protection spells, most especially legal spells, and many others.

Magickal practice was as common then as going to a physician is today. It was not frowned upon or considered evil or bad. It was considered something that was part of regular society and people lived in a world that understood that magickal forces were around them everywhere.

It only makes sense that candles would also be used for magickal purposes. Many old candles have been unearthed by archaeologists that have been found with pins stuck through them for some unknown ancient purposes. Candles have been found in cess pits, in tombs, and in unearthed foundations of abandoned ruins of ancient churches.

I have found early Catholic church dictates that made it forbidden, that colored candles never be used in church or by Catholics, but only white candles, as colored candles donated Pagan practice, which tells us a lot by this simple rule of the new Church. So it is apparent that Pagans were using colored candles before the Catholic church took hold and that was approximately 600 C.E. when Pope Gregory unified the Catholic church in Europe. Now the church did exist a bit before this time, but it was truly empowered and came into full strength in the 7th century, along with most of it's new rules, regulations and newly enacted sins.

Today this most ancient of magickal practices, using candles for our magickal spell casting, to use in ritual, to honor Divinity, actually Pagans and witches use candles in just about any and all opportunities, allows us to touch a deep, ancient magickal place within ourselves.

One of our most ancient of all candle spells, which just about everyone has practiced and does so every year, whether they feel they are magickal or not, is the birthday candle spell. Yes, if you have ever blown out the candles on your birthday cake, you have cast a candle spell that goes back appx 5,000 years ago, this time to ancient Greece. You see ancient Greece was very close to ancient Egypt right along the Mediterranean and as such they shared and often came up with similar innovations at about the same time. Well, this candle spell can be attributed to the ancient Greek temple of Artemis.

It is reputed that people would go to the temple on a night when the moon was full, as the temple had an open space in the roof so one could see the moon shining down. They would bring small, crescent moon shaped cakes and tiny candles. They would lay out the cakes on tables and put candles all around. Then each person would light a candle, ask Artemis for a wish, blow out the candle and take a tiny cake and eat it, thus assuring the wish would come true. In a sense like an offering you would take into your body similar to our cakes and ale ceremony or the Catholics Holy Communion.

There is no doubt, just with this simple candle and moon shaped cake spell that candle magick has been around for millenia. Even today, it is not just Pagans or magickally minded folks who believe in candle magick. There are many Christians who burn candles to Saints, or for loved ones who are sick or needing prayers.  Even those who do not think of themselves as spiritual, religious or magickal are  known to burn some candles on the table when serving a special dinner for lovers, for Valentines day or an anniversary or other special occasion.

Candle magick has a long, varied history and today can be as simple or as complex as one wishes. There are entire books written on candle magick, but the best advice I can give you, is if you have candles in your possession, .  .  .  burn them.  Hanging onto them, will do you no good, unless you release their energy, by burning them.

I have an altar where I burn a candle every night. A love candle, to send love out into my world, every single night. I will also burn a candle if someone I know is sick and has given me permission to burn a healing candle for them, or for some other special reason. What you send out will return to you on one level or another. This is one way to do that. A most ancient of ways.




Live, Laugh and Always Love, Ms. Faith






© 2010-2017 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to receive the link to the most current weekly blog post send me an e mail with your email address. You will receive a new blog post weekly. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Ancient Magickal Techniques - Using Music

The Divje Babe Flute - 67, 000 years old

Good Afternoon My Witchy Readers,

 When we practice magick today, conduct rituals, celebrate Sabbats, web-weave with other like minded magickal people we often have 'new age' or 'witchy' music as an accompaniment or background to our festivities.

It is almost impossible to go through a day in our world, in our society without musical accompaniment. From listening to the radio in our cars, to television commercials, to the musical score that flows through each and every movie we watch, to the background of every video game and phone app game you play.  Every television show, whether it is a news show, a sports show, or a sit-com, they all have a musical theme song that starts and ends each show.

That is not even mentioning the nightclubs, bars, churches, restaurants, and of course concerts and casinos, malls and supermarkets we frequent. Actually music is around us all of the time, so subtle so many times we are not even away of it. We take for granted that music will be there, and when we find ourselves somewhere without the music and chatter of humans the silence can be "deafening."

This discussion started as I was contemplating the origins of music created by humans and when it would have started being used ritually/spiritually in our world. I find we must go far back into the mists of time back to prehistory, back to the dawn of paleolithic times, where archaeologists and music-archaeologists have come to some very interesting conclusions where they have found prehistoric cave paintings in caves, in areas of caves where the resonance was optimal and 'pitch perfect' if you will, than in other areas of the cave.

This has been proven to be the case in not one, but in several caves and in any areas where cave paintings were found, and some of these paintings were in very unusual places, very difficult for humans to access and seemed to make little sense as to why they would be placed there, but when the resonance was determined to be musically superior in these locations it seemed to make more sense as to why these remote locations may have been chosen

Ancient flutes, carved by human hands from bones made from bear bones, bird bones and other animal bones have been found, one being as old as 67,000 years old found in Slovenia. Understanding how humans lived back then, spending every waking moment in the employment of staying alive. Hunting and gathering food and animals to be made into food, clothing and other items for purposes of sustaining life. Crafting shelter and tools, and doing all that needed to be done to ensure life and survival for oneself and ones tribe or village. The Divje Babe Flute, 67,000 years old is believed by some experts to be the only musical instrument associated with the Neanderthal culture, whereas other experts feel that the use of musical instruments by the Homo Sapiens and not the Neanderthal is one reason the Neanderthals became extinct and the Homo Sapiens flourished, but we will never know for sure. We can only speculate.

It seems activities such as making music would be more directed towards ritual practice, which was to thank the Creator, rather than making music for festive entertainment and fun.  We have much evidence by unearthed early Goddess figurines that early man felt it was a Great Mother figure, who was the Creator of all of life. I have written earlier about the Achuellian Goddess who has been carbon dated to between 800,000 and 1 million years B.C.E. (Before Common Era) and is the oldest human crafted artifact ever unearthed, to this date.

Some of the oldest musical instruments to have survived to this day, including the above pictured flute The Divje Babe Flute, and this flute dated to 35,000 years old
were all created during the time of an era where artistic culture began to develop and became very significant among human tribes that interacted among each other on the earth. This time was between 70,000 and 30,000 approximately years ago.  This is when most of the early cave art paintings were first developed, the regular practice of crafting and wearing of jewelry was undertaken, Many more Goddess figurines were being crafted, such as the Willendorf Goddess  (crafted between 28,000 - 25,000 B.C.E.) which again falls into the window of the artistic cultural era. It makes perfect sense that this level of human creative development would include the development of musical understanding.

In the earliest books of the Bible, the Old Testament, there is many references to music and musical practice in relation to honoring God and celebration of the Spirit. Many have heard of King David and his use of music in religious ritual and historians ascribe the 150 psalms of the Book of Psalms from The Old Testament, attributed to King David,  as the poetry most often set to music in Western civilization than any other. We have heard of the trumpets that brought down the walls of Jericho, which were really rams horns called shofars, and whereas their melody may be questionable they were absolutely music played for divine, religious spiritual purposes.

There are some music-archaeologists who feel the first concept of music struck early prehistoric man when he felt his own heartbeat. as the oldest musical instruments made by mankind to be found date to 165,000 years ago and are percussion instruments.
Percussion stones  165,000 years old

Now, many believe the very first musical instrument was the human voice, but after that, the banging and rhythmic beats kept by banging and striking objects against other objects, making a rhythm or a beat in a manner to resemble the heartbeat may have been one of the first musical making instruments made by prehistoric mankind.

Whereas these percussion stones were used to strike and bang and to make noise of a sort, the oldest skin drum ever found, so far, is an elephant skin drum found in the Antarctica dated to 37,000 years old. Here is a portion of this ancient drum pictured here:
It was preserved during the ice age.

Pan Pipes are at least 30,000 years old and date back to the ancient Greek Culture:

The bull roarer also known as a rhombus or a turndun is an ancient ritual instrument and with the loud sound it makes was also used as a way to communicate over long distances. It was used in ancient Greece in rituals and dates back to at least 17,000 B.C.E.



Aside from musical instruments you might be interested in the earliest known written musical notes and those are found here in this cuneiform tablet from Iraq, and dated to 2,000 B.C.E. with these notes specific to strings on the Lyre. This tablet represents one of the earliest melodies ever found.



During later cultures we have well documented ritualistic musical practice where some ritual groups would go into musical frenzied dance to create an element of magickal power and to raise their energy. Some use music to aid in meditation, to go into ritual trance, to tap into the magickal energy to aid in our rituals and our spell casting.

Music still today is used in churches to raise spirits, to touch the energy of the Divine, used in rituals of Pagans as well as every spiritual and religious group typically found in this country and around the world. What is today called religious is also known and was in ancient times known as magickal.

There are times when singing a song I can feel the energy of the Divine overtaking my spirit and overtaking my entire being and I am filled with an energy and a power greater than myself. This is what the ancients felt and what we so often feel today. The best thing about music is you do not have to be in a sacred space to create this phenomenon, because music works by its very vibrations on the airwaves and by doing so, it creates sacred space simply by the notes being played, wherever you may be.

Something as simple as ringing a bell to start a ritual, three small notes, can start an amazing magickal energy that builds and accumulates until we release the cone of power to be sent off to manifest in the change we wish to make.

Humans have known the power of music for thousands of years, hundreds of thousands of years and the magick of music is with us still.


Live, Laugh and Always Love,  Ms. Faith








© 2010-2017 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to receive the link to the most current weekly blog post send me an e mail with your email address. You will receive a new blog post weekly. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Ancient Magickal Techniques - Using Stones



 Rose Quartz


                                                                                                                    
Good Afternoon My Magickal Reader,

Many people these days use or have heard of the use of stones, crystals and minerals for magickal, ritual, or spiritual even healing properties. Yet most people are not aware that the human use of stones go back thousands of years, even more than a million of years.

We know that the first humanoid species used stones to create tools, such as some stones struck against others creating sharp edges which could be used as cutting edges, and the creation of other tools, thus the human creative era called the stone age. But, these stone tools were made and used in practical, necessary, functional manners.

One of the earliest ritual or magickal uses of stone I can find in my research is the use of red ochre, which is a form of hematite and was found to have been used by Paleolithic man (Old Stone Age) when preparing the bodies of their dead before burial.  They did bury their dead or entomb them deep in caves, but before doing so, they pulverized the red ochre into a powder and when mixed with water, created a paint which resembled blood and they painted the bodies before placing them back into the body of the Great Mother earth.

We see the creation of Stonehenge in Western Great Britain which dates from the Neolithic period, (New Stone Age) as another example of a ritualistic, magickal or spiritual use of stones. There are thousands of stone circles still in existence all over Europe to this day as well as cairns. Cairns are piles or mounds of stones which seem to have their origin in ancient Scotland, and cairn is an old Gaelic term which means  heap or mound of stones.  They first originated as a grave marker for people who had been buried,  as a common way to keep wild animals from digging up the corpse to attempt to consume it.



Crystal Quartz


Cairns were later used as border markers for properties but rather than simple stone walls which would have sufficed, the mounds, or cairns, were placed at compass points or intersecting spots along the property lines.  Some legends hold that people would place protective items under the stone cairns like an item of silver, a shoe, a witch bottle, or something from a local specialized tradition or legend and lore which was supposed to bring protection or to prevent some harm like lightening or a tree from falling on the property and causing disaster.

Another very ancient magickal, ritualistic use of stones is the Jewish tradition of placing stones on the gravestone of a deceased loved one. My research turned up an ancient legend which interestingly shows that the actual origin of the gravestone or headstone we see today in a cemetery was started by this tradition.

Malachite


As the legend goes, a Jewish man broke the Sabbath by trying to solve a crime where he placed a note. Later, he felt guilty for breaking the Sabbath, though it was necessary, and decided his punishment should be his grave should be 'stoned' after his death. So, the tradition of placing stones on a grave became popular.



Thus the tradition of Jewish people placing stones at the head of a grave in honor and remembrance of their loved one became a tradition. After a time, the pile or mound of stones at the head of a grave was eventually morphed into the headstone or gravestone we are familiar with today. And Jews today still will place small stones on top of the headstone in this tradition.  This dates to Biblical times or even before and of course is a legend and as such is difficult to prove and must be looked at as myth as much of the earliest legends.  I present it as yet another ritual way of how stones were used by a culture thousands of years ago and are still used in a similar way today.



There are other legends surrounding stones and graves where legend says that people would place heavy stones over the graves to prevent the spirits of the dead from rising and walking in spirit form among the living.

It is a legend that ancient Roman soldiers would carry Tiger's Eye stone, some carved with certain symbols, into battle with them to provide protection for them.

In ancient times, the stone we know today as Peridot along with other stones were known  as Topaz. These stones were kept in the home to prevent fire and accidents from happening in the home.

Any stone you find that has a hole in it, not man made but caused by natural means is called a Hag stone and is considered extremely lucky and magickal to have in your possession. Hag stones like many magickal, superstitious items from the distant past have a dual legendary purpose to both keep witches away and to ward against witchcraft as well as to be used by witches and aid a witch with her work.
Bloodstone


It simply depends on the viewpoint of the person using it and their beliefs.  Hag stones could have been used to look through into other worlds, as a divination device, a portal into the faerie world. It was reputed to prevent nightmares, ward off curses, sickness, the evil eye and to allow the possessor to really "see" another person without magickal glamour surrounding them.

Also throughout history we have heard the legends of the sorceresses using their natural crystal balls, within which they were able to see the future for their client most notably a King or Queen, and semi precious stones have been treasured and considered as valuable as money, if not more so, than gold in just about all ancient cultures from the ancient Egyptians  to the Incas to the Asians, from all corners of the world.

Some cultures would powder the semi precious stones and use them as cosmetics, some would ingest them, some would use them in magickal potions, on ritual altars, on ritual tools and religious artifacts and relics. Everything from sarcophagi to tombs to temples to inner chambers of the Pyramids would be encrusted with stones, crystals and minerals mined from the inner earth.


Rhodochrosite


We have decorated crowns and diadems of royalty, to tipping scepters to weighing down necklaces, bracelets, torques, and rings of ancient rulers and people of power and importance. Emperors, Kings, Popes, and the very wealthy have always had stones of some significance, some of special importance, some of superstition, some of supposed curses or good luck.

Silver and Gold representing for millennium, the Goddess and God, to Amethysts, Malachite, Carnelian, Hematite, Jade, Quartz Crystal, Citrine, Blood stone, Tiger's Eye, Rose Quartz, Lapis Lazuli, Pyrite, Jaspers and hundreds of other stones found all around the world. Some were easily picked up off of the ground to some being mined from deep within the earth. Some were cracked open within geodes, to those being found growing inside of caves, have always enchanted and awestruck humans with their beauty and seemingly mystical, magickal and possible potential to make magickal change for the person who held the precious stone within their grasp.


Lapis Lazuli

Where we have the Blarney Stone in Ireland where people need to hang upside down to try to kiss it to attain a semblance of good luck, and hundreds do so every year willingly,  we can also see the magnificent Hope diamond that has been owned by the richest and most famous of celebrities and has brought nothing but death, sadness and tragedy, but hundreds flock to view it in a museum yearly to dream and wonder.

Stones have been held in special regard by the earliest humans. Perhaps because by their very nature, stones are permanent and never die, never waste away, never biodegrade. You can pick up a simple stone and be holding a piece of earth that is a million of years old. I believe some people take comfort in the stability and longevity that they find and feel in holding a stone.  I feel humans have felt this way for millenia. Perhaps we always will. For even after we have passed away and have turned to dust, stones will remain. Steadfast and shining in their beauty.



Live, Laugh and always Love, Ms. Faith











© 2010-2017 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to receive the link to the most current weekly blog post send me an e mail with your email address. You will receive a new blog post weekly. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Ancient Magickal Techniques - Using Hair


Good Evening My Witchy Readers,

This month I am going to present to you a short series of discussions which will focus on some ancient and unusual magickal techniques and or objects or materials not normally considered magickal. Like tonight's material, hair. Actually hair has had many magickal attributes attributed to it since the earliest biblical times, and is mentioned magickally numerous times in the Old Testament as well as the New Testament.

We all remember the famous story of Samson and Delilah and how she robbed him of his strength by cutting his hair and that way he was able to be overtaken by the Philistines.  And in the New Testament when Mary anoints Jesus at Bethany (John 12:3) 'Mary therefore took an expensive pound of ointment, made from spikenard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair.' After anointing his feet with the special ointment, the only reason to wipe his feet with her hair was magickal in its totality. It was known, and still is, that the hair holds an electrical charge and it can be released into what it is rubbed against to enchant or charge or 'bless' if you will.

Yet most of the stories throughout history focus on taking the woman's or the witches magick and power from her by cutting her hair, In many very old cultures, from Greece, to Rome, other European cultures, coastal Mediterranean cultures the most magickal hair on a woman's body was the underarm hair. In various legends any hair from pubic to head hair even body hair was considered powerful, as those accused of witchcraft in ancient times often had their entire bodies shaved before trial and subsequent execution.  If the hair was not considered powerful and magickally dangerous it seems that such a laborious step would not be taken and the accused would simply be tried and put to death.

It is interesting that one of the first 'spells' was considered to be braided into women's long hair. It is the only 'hair style' considered unacceptable' in the Bible for a woman, and it is mentioned because of the adornment but hair had been adorned in much more elaborate ways even before then, but the braided hair being considered a witches spell was known back then and was forbidden. The reason is because it was a common fashion for Pagan women.

The braided hair containing spells were common among Pagan women who used magick in their day to day lives. We see the braided design used again and again in the Celtic designs in their elaborate knot work, as seen in their jewelry, their clothing patterns, and in later times in stone carvings in their cemeteries and in sacred texts. Their knot work itself was magickal by its very nature and it is braided by design, so it is not hard to see a strong coloration to a woman's hair braid, which ancient Celtic queens and royal women were often depicted on coins, that have lasted through the centuries.

During the Victorian Era 1837-1901, mourning hair jewelry became very popular, especially as funeral pieces. Loved ones that had passed on, some of their hair would be harvested by a family member as the body was prepared for the funeral service, which was typically held in the family home, and different jewelry varieties, all unique, would be made from the hair of their loved one. These pieces would be kept as a keep sake or a talisman as a way to keep the loved one close and protected.


I do not think, in this day and age that hair jewelry would be a big thing anymore, but there are magickal ways we can continue to use our own hair to create magick and to cast spells to make needed change manifest.

You can use the ancient Celtic concept of braiding a love spell into your hair as long as you think of yourself and the happiness and love that will come your way. Only think of another person if you have asked that person and have received their permission.

You can use some of your hair from a hair brush of yours to help bind something of yours to you and to keep it in your possession. If you have a pet, that has a collar with a pocket for a tag, you can tuck a bit of your hair inside to help keep your pet from wandering too far away from home.

If you find a car at a dealers or an apartment for rent you really want, you can leave a small bit of hair behind to make circumstances better for you to be able to come back and take possession of your car or apartment.. Now, that is, if you are supposed to actually move into that space or buy that car. If there are other energies working, most likely energies you may have already put into the universe  that have determined you are meant to go in another direction then that will happen. But your hair can help keep your 'item'' waiting for you until the time is right.

You might just need a couple of weeks to get the last of a security deposit or to get approval from a bank or something like that, so the placement of the hair just keeps things waiting for you, while others are not kept from buying a car or apartment, they simply find themselves attracted to other choices.  It is much better that you do not know of any others who are interested just to be sure you are not manipulating any others. If your dealer or realtor starts to tell you of other interested parties stop them immediately and tell them you do not want to hear of any others.  Besides, they only do that to pressure you anyway, there is no real reason you need to know of others interest.

Of course, some of my readers who may be more mature or nostalgic may remember when it was a more common thing to wear lockets, and at times one would put a lock of hair from a loved one within the locket to wear close to your heart. Actually, being one of the only body parts (if you will) that one can carry that would not be considered creepy or just downright weird, it still will do as it has always intended to do, carrying hair in a locket would keep your loved one close to you in spirit and energy. It does not matter if they are alive or passed on, their energy would be just as strong, carried this way.

Ancient women in most ancient cultures were considered young and innocent when they had short hair and when their hair was long and luxurious, it indicated a power and wisdom, experience and knowledge. Women back then were respected and revered.  When the witch hunters came, the witch or woman accused of witchcraft was always stripped naked, her entire body was shaved of all hair including her head  and in this fashion, completely naked and shaved, in front of hundreds of jeering, gaping, scornful, accusing people, she would be brought before a bank of 3 to 10 or more judges and tried. Many times in a language she did not understand.

Many of the 'witches' were country women, from small villages,  who had little to no formal education and worked on their small farms who were accused and brought into the larger towns.  Not knowing the formal language of the day, be it Latin, or formal French, or courtly English, only knowing the dialect of the countryside she resided in, she was unable to defend herself and was not allowed any legal defender, no witnesses in her defense and no defense of any kind except the opportunity to confess. Most did so, hoping for the forgiveness afforded the sinner that confessed her sins, but that was normally given over her body after it had been hung, burned or stoned to death.

All of this spoke of a great and deep abiding fear of the woman, even a simple country, village herb woman and the believed power she held. A power so great that she needed to be stripped of everything but her very skin to try to take as much of her power away before her life was taken.  This happened again and again, hundreds of thousands of times, for well over a thousand years before the grip of fear of the witch finally loosened. It has only loosened because of the advent of modern, rational, reasonable laws preventing these actions from happening again.

Yet, the fear of the witch and the woman still, insidiously exists in our society to this day and we can see it, if we look very closely.  We also see it in older women being told by the media and fashion magazines and men!! that shorter hair as they get older looks better on them. I myself have heard men say, older women look better with shorter hair. Hmmmm, really? I wonder why? Maybe because an older woman with wisdom and longer hair is just too much for a typical man to handle?


I will be discussing other ancient techniques over the next three discussions over the next week or two.


Live, Laugh and Always Love,  Ms. Faith







© 2010-2017 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to receive the link to the most current weekly blog post send me an e mail with your email address. You will receive a new blog post weekly. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Some Real Truths About Blessing Objects, You Do Not Need Me To Do It!




Good Evening My Witchy Reader,

Tonight's discussion will be brief but hopefully informative. As many of my discussions involve, it covers topics that people come into Enchantments to see me about. This is about those who come into the store to ask about items they might already have, or that they purchase and they wish to have blessed.  We use the term charge, or enchant, but it is all the same. To infuse with blessed, special energy and to give it a special enchantment that it did not have before.

For those who know me or know my writing, you will find my next comments familiar. I do not typically bless items for people. Not jewelry, or crystals or candles or any items such as that. Now I do enchant spell candles that we make especially for a certain purpose, to bring in financial energies, or love energies, or tranquility, or protection along those lines. Yet it is still important that you put your own energies into those candles when you bring them home, before you light them.

Yes, you, in effect do the blessing yourself. And, it is just as effective and just as powerful as anyone else blessing your object, dare I say it? yes, I will, even the Pope, himself! I actually saw him recently bless the first lady's rosary beads on the Presidential trip to Rome and it made me think of this topic.  The first lady asked the Pope to bless her rosary beads, he said of course, she handed them to him, he cupped them in his hands for a brief moment, closed his eyes, and then handed them back.

I honestly do not mean any disrespect to any Catholic, that truly believes that the Pope has some special one on one direct line to God, but he does not, or shall I say he does, just as we all do. You can also bless your spiritual jewelry, your altar tools, your supplies, your special tools that you use in your life whether you are an artist or a musician or a gardener or a writer, no matter what you do. The tools, or instruments you use to perform your hobby, your work, your passion can all be blessed by you and the divine.

It is very much as the Pope demonstrated. Hold the item, close your eyes, but take a bit longer than a brief moment. Imagine bright white light energy flowing from the heavens into your crown chakra, on top of your head, flowing through your body, through your arms, into your hands, into the object you are holding.  See this exchange of bright white light energy flowing through you, as the tool connecting the universe with your object for just a few moments, it does not have to be for a long time. Then open your eyes and place your tool where it belongs. Use it as you normally do.

Also the more you use your tools and objects the more charged and enchanted they will become, bonding themselves to your energy. Simply wearing an item of jewelry for 28 days, a lunar month, without taking it off, will enchant it and bind it to you and it becomes part of your energy.

In this same way, it takes some time for us to affect an items energy, so do not have any fear of items in a store being affected by others having picked them up and touching them, then putting them down, before you buy them.  We need to work with an item, or have it in our possession for a time before our energy starts to affect that items energy field. Some people get all uptight about the energy of items, but unless they are at a flea market or especially antique stores or estate sales, which I never attend, I wouldn't worry.

Items at those places can very well have very old and intense energy and you should hold an object, walk with it for a while before deciding if it feels good enough to bring home. And, no, you cannot clean off an object that has 'bad' energy, simply because it may have built up over decades. It may not be 'bad' energy, simply energy that does not sync up with yours and will make you anxious, uncomfortable and unhappy to be around. Leave it behind. Simply smudging or cleaning may not rid it of the energy, because you do not know what 'stained' it of the energy to begin with.

Back to blessing objects. A bit of history, and forgive me but this goes waaaay back. A thousand, 1500 years or more. To the beginning of the Catholic religion, which started in Rome after Constantine, most notably under Pope Gregory who was credited with unifying the Catholic church and the religion in Europe. He was instrumental with building Cathedrals, churches and instituting rules and regulations, for example i.e.,  such as everyone, regardless of desire must attend church. Everyone must pay tithes, everyone had to ask the priests if they had a prayer, as in the early church it was forbidden to pray to God on your own, and if the priests felt it was a worthy prayer and payment was made, they would pray for you.

The entire societal structure which was redeveloped and restructured upon the foundation of the Catholic church and it's new regulations was hierarchical in nature. The emperor was now the Pope so the royal ruler has now become the religious ruler, next were Cardinals, bishops and priests, even altar boys who all had more 'spiritual power' than the common congregant. This ranking of religious, spiritual power and who had it, who was worthy and who was not was so prevalent for centuries, so ingrained, that vestiges still remain in so many ways to this day. We see this in the average persons belief that some people have a special 'gift' that they are able by their very touch to bless something mundane and make it part of the divine.

So the concept of rosary beads, and other items being blessed by those who were 'special' in God's eyes went with the flip side, hand in hand, with some of those same people, such as priests handing out punishments for those sinners who simply lived life and perhaps enjoyed living life a little more than they were told they should. Especially if they were living as their Pagan forefathers had taught them to, as that was being punished, fasted, prayed and penanced out of them as hard and as fast as possible.  No longer was the Pagan lifestyle accepted and revered but shunned and those who followed it were being eliminated in many ways.

So, still today, the concept that some people, are special and have a power that others do not, so therefore are able to magickally enchant something and make it special is a lovely fairy tale and some refuse to let it go, but truly you have as much spiritual energy and magick within as I do. Yes, some may be in touch with the Goddess on a more regular basis than some others, simply because of what we do and how often we do it, but that can be said about anyone.  Yet if you take the time to sit quietly with your object, say under the full moon, and hold it and feel the energy and feel it flow into your object you will have then blessed it far more effectively than I could.

Having said all of this, I will say I have held objects for the occasional person, as I have met people who simply want  me to hold something of theirs and they do not care that they could bless it better than I, or that I have the same energy as they have themselves. They are vested in the legend and lore they have surrounded me with and to refuse would be mean and petty and I do not wish to do that.

But I hope through my words here I can help those who are walking along this path and are learning about our ways, that you are as magickal as I am, right here and now, no matter if you just stepped upon this path yesterday and I have been on it over 30 years. The magick is pure and strong on day one as it is on day 10,000, the only difference is the longer you are on the path, the easier and quicker you can detect the magick. That is all. The magick remains the same.

If you cast a full magick circle, another way to charge or enchant your items is to, after having cast your circle, take the item you wish to charge, let us say it is a pentagram necklace for this example, and first put a pinch of incense powder on the charcoal and swing the necklace through the scented smoke, then hold it in the candle flame and then dip it briefly in the blessed salted water. That is another way to bless an item, but this works best with items that the flame or water will not ruin. Then lay it on the altar pentacle for a few moments and it is charged.

 These are just some concepts that come to mind when one is discussing blessing objects. But as I often say, you must really do what feels best to you. If it makes you feel better to have another do this for you then by all means, but know you have it within you all along. Hmmm, why am I reminded of the words of the Wizard of Oz to Dorothy?



Live, Laugh and Always Love, Ms. Faith








© 2010-2017 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to receive the link to the most current weekly blog post send me an e mail with your email address. You will receive a new blog post weekly. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.