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Book of Shadows

Witch's Rede

Bide The Witches' Laws Ye Must,
In Perfect Love, In Perfect Trust.
Eight words the Witches' Rede fulfull:
And Ye harm none, do what ye will.

Welcome to my Book of Shadow

A Book of Shadows,also know as a grimoire, is simply a book where witches keep information. Each Book of Shadows unique as the witch who creates it.This online version of my personal grimoire includes a brief description of the sabbats, rituals, spells, inspirations, quotations, incantations, and lyrics. Some created by me, some borrowed and cited where known. Enjoy your exploration
Blessed be

What is a Witch

A witch is simply a practioner of wicca,or the craft,sometimes called a wiccan. There are some witches who are not wiccans but that is another story. I personally use the terms interchangeably. Witchcraft means quite literally "the craft of the wise". The craft as practiced today is essentially an earth religion which celebrates both spiritual and physical realities,teaches a reverence for nature embodied by the Goddess and the God,in which attunement with the Deity is achieved through practice of ritual and magic.Gerald Gardner became the first to bring modern Witchcraft to public attention. He called it "Wicca", loosely translated "wise," and his tradition came to be known as Gardnerian. Magic is practiced for positive purposes: spiritual and psychic development, healing, to attune with the forces of nature or to better yourself in some way. Rituals usually are performed at the New and Full Moons, and at eight Sabbat festivals celebrating the cycle of the seasons and of the moon.

"We are not evil. We don't harm or seduce people. We are not dangerous. We are ordinary people like you. We have families, jobs, hopes, and dreams. We are not a cult. This religion is not a joke. We are not what you think we are from looking at T.V. We are real. We laugh, we cry. We are serious. We have a sense of humor. You don't have to be afraid of us. We don't want to convert you. And please don't try to convert us. Just give us the same right we give you -- to live in peace. We are much more similar to you than you think."
-- Margot Adler
from Drawing Down the Moon

The Sabbats

Winter Solstice
Around Dec. 21

Yule coincides closely with the Christian Christmas celebration. Throughout the ages this has been a time to celebrate rebirth.The Goddess gives birth to the God. On the shortest day of the year this Sabbat represents the rebirth of light. Yule is a time of awakening to new goals and leaving old regrets behind. Wiccans sometimes celebrate before dawn, watching the sun rise in their revelery. A traditional practice is to bring a tree indoors,decorating it with beautiful natural objects(sound familar). A solar festival, Yule is traditionally celebrated by fire and the use of a Yule log. A log usually of oak or pine , symbolically carved and lit in the hearth at dusk.

February 2

Candlemas involves celebrations of banishing the winter and welcoming the spring.The Goddess is recovering after giving birth.awakened by the increased light.The Sun's power is renewing, gaining strength and fertility.At this phase of the cycle, winter is swept away and new beginnings are nurtured. Some Wiccan groups favor this time of year for initiations It is traditional at Candlemas to light every lamp just aftter sunset in the house for a few minutes in honor of the Sun's rebirth.

Vernal Equinox
Around March 21

The Spring Equinox is the point of equilibrium, the hours of night and day are equal.The first day of spring when nature shifts from winter to the exuberence of spring. The Goddess covers the earth in her warm fertility as the God grows to maturity. Ostara is a time for collecting wildflowers, walking in nature's beauty and cultivating herb gardens. This is the time to free yourself from anything in the past that is holding you back, a time for beginings.Take a walk through a field or forest, collect flowers, plant a garden, feel the beauty of nature around you.

April 30

Beltane is the time of the sacred marriage which honors the fertility of the Earth; it represents the divine union of theGod ad Goddess.Beltane celebrates the reurn of vitality, passion and fertility.Celebrations include weaving a web of life around the Maypole and leaping the Beltane fire for luck. Weaving and braiding are common practices at this time,symbolizing the union of two things to form a third.This is a time of self-discovery, love, union and developing your potential for personal growth.

Summer Solstice
Around June 21

The Summer Solstice, the longest day, is a time of triumph for the light. The powers of nature are at their peak. The earth abounds in the bounty of The God and Goddess.This holiday represents the Sun King in all his glory.Bonfires are common at this time,frequently lept to encourage fertlity and good fortune. Healings and love magick are especially suitable at this time.

August 2

This is the celebration of the first fruits of the harvest, when the plants of spring wither and drop their fruit. Once again the day and night are equal.As the daylight lessonsThe Sun King, now Dark Lord, loses his energy to ensure life while the Mother slips into her crone aspect.Now is the time to teach what you have learned, to relish the fruits of theharvest,honoring the bounty of the God and Goddess. Wheat weaving, such as the making of corn dollies, is traditional. Bread is baked and the altar is decorated with fruits and vegetables of the harvest.Have a magical picnic and break bread with friends. Do a meditation in which you visualize yourself completing a project you have already begun. . Make prayers for a good harvest season. Do prosperity magic. Harvest herbs in a sacred way for use in charms and rituals. Kindle a Lammas fire with sacred wood and dried herbs. If you live in or near a farming region, attend a public harvest festival, such as a corn or apple festival.

Autumn Equinox
Around Sept. 21

At the Autumn Equinox, the days and nights are equal once again.It is a time of balance,as light gives way to increased darkness.It is the completion of the harvest. Nature is declining, readying for winter,as the Goddess mourns her fallen consort. It is a good time to walk the forests, gathering dried plants for use as altar decorations or herbal magick.Cornbread and cider are good additions to festivities and fall leaves make good altar decorations.

October 31

Samhain, popularly known as Halloween, is the Witches' New Year. Darkness increases and the Goddess reigns as the Crone,The God, the Dark Lord, passes into the underworld,to be reborn at Yule. Samhain is a time to reflect. A night when the physical and spiritual are thinly seperated. Many Pagans prepare a Feast for the Dead on Samhain night, where they leave offerings of food and drink for the spirits. Divination is heightened this night.It is customary to place a candle in the window to help guide the souls of the dead.Jack-o-lanterns, gourds, cider, fall foliage can be used as altar decorations.

Spells and Rituals

Before casting spells or performing rituals for that matter there are some things to keep in mind. I could'nt possibly improve on this explanation given by Moonraven

Moonraven's Spellcraft

Circle Casting

By Victor Anderson
"By the earth that is her body,
and by the air that is her breath,
and by the fire of her bright spirit,
and by the living waters of her womb,
the circle is cast."

Circle Closing

Adaption of Starhawk's The Spiral Dance
"By the earth that is her body
And by the air that is her breath
And by the fire of her bright spirit,
And by the living waters of her womb,
The circle is open, but unbroken
May the joy of the Goddess live in our hearts
Merry meet, and merry part
And merry meet again"

Mini New Moon Ritual

adapted from Selena Fox's Book of Shadows
Great Goddess
Queen of the Underworld
Protectress of all Wicca
It is my will on this night of the new moon
to overcome my shadows
and bring about change
I invite you to my circle to assist and protect me in my rite.
Invocation to the God
(hold athame with your hands in the God position, crossed over your chest, feet together)
Great God
Lord of Protection
It is my will on this night of the new moon
to overcome my shadows
to bring about change
I invite you to my circle
to assist me and protect me in my rite.
Statement of intent
Dark is the night as I reach this turning point
As the wheel turns, I see birth, death and rebirth
and I know that every end is a beginning.

Ritual of Thanks

from Magical Hearth by Janet Thompson
Set altar facing East. Use the following items: *One blue candle *3 kernals unpopped corn *One apple cut on the cross, showing the pentagram inside
Light your candle with the following words:
"Great Goddess, Lady of the Summerlands, Mother to us all. I welcome you to this place of power and offer thanks to you for what you have given me. I am a priestess of your path and I see with your eyes. You guide me in the lessons I must learn."
Put the bottom half of the apple in front of you. Charging the three kernals of corn between your hands, say:
"As the Maiden is ripe with potential, so is my life.
As the Mother gives birth, so do my thoughts.
As the Crone nourishes life, so do I nourish mine."
Place the kernals in the center of the core-pentagram and melt wax from your candle to cover them. Replace the top of the apple while the wax is till warm. Let the apple sit on your altar for 3 days and nights. Remove wax token and bury apple. The wax token can remain on your altar for as long as you wish.

Love spell

Get a red candle that will burn down in due time. You will have to inscribe it (see below) so it should be bigger than a birthday candle, and you will also have to watch it burn down to nothing (see below), so it should not be a 24 hour votive light. A small taper candle that will burn down in 20 - 40 minutes is about right.
Prepare an altar . Using a rose thorn from a white rose bush, inscribe the a symbol for male,female and love..three times on the candle.(in find runic symbols work well here) Place the inscibred candle in the center of the altar and light it. For the entire time the candle burns, gaze upon it and visualize your love.
simple chant~
"by the candle i draw to me
he would be my lover
Let him have no malice on him
or any ill thing
let him be a comfort to me
that we may join to one another
Let there be not ties
Save those we bring mutually
For the good of all
an according to free will
through all time and space
so mote it be"
When the candle burns out, collect the wax puddle that remains, wrap it up with the mementoes from the altar and keep it in a safe place.

*Now my disclaimer...i am not responsible for any miscast spells..not ones in which the result is more than you can handle..and i would never use this spell..on an unwilling..or unknowing person..but it can be altered simply draw love in general into your life..*

Spell for Protection

The following spell may be performed at any time you feel the need for extra protection...but most effective at the new moon..and friday.. First of all, gather together the following: 1 white candle,1 black candle, implement for inscribing a candle, protection oil (such as Lotus, Dragon's Blood, Frankincense, Sandalwood, or Rose Geranium), lighter, candle holders,a feather, ginger and 4 obsidian arrowheads (obsidian, onyx, or apache tears stones may be substituted if you do not have the arrowheads)..basically any black stone.
Next, cast your circle.cleansing the area of any negative energy.. In the center of your circle, facing North, take the obsidian arrowheads (or stones) into your hand. Charge them with protective powers and place them around the candle holders, one in the North, one in the East, one in the South, and one in the West. Next, take the candles and inscribe a pentagram on both (which is among other things a symbol for protection), along with your name, or the name of the person you wish protection for. Now annoint the candle with your oil, while concentrating strongly on your need for protection. Know that you are divinely protected, a child of the Goddess and God. See and feel yourself being completely safe and secure, protected in your home, car, workplace, etc. Continue to charge your candle and visualize until you feel the candle literally bursting with energy. Now set the candles in the candle holder and light it.
sprinkle a little ginger over each candle..careful not to let the flame die out...and invoke Hecate
Hecate. O Dark One.
Hecate. O Crone..
Hecate. O Wise One.
Dark of the moon
Old one with glowing eyes
now take the feather..and carrying the black candle..walk around the circle..fanning the flame...not letting it go out..chanting..
Mother of night!
Dark Power of the moon!
Keeper of the shadow!
Banish the negativity
Protect me from all harm
Placing the black candle down..take the white candle..and again walk around the circle..fanning the flame..
Hail fair silver moon
ruler of night
guard me and mine
open me to your mystic light
place the white candle visualize yourself bathed in the white light of the
When you are ready, close the circle and allow the candle to burn down completely. It is finished. So Mote it Be!!!

Inspiring Words

This is a colection of my favorite quotes,poems and even song lyrics that have inspired me

Strange Fire
i come to you with strange fire
i make an offering of love
the incense of my soil is burned
by the fire in my blood
i come with a softer answer
to the questions that lie in your path
i want to harbor you from the anger
find a refuge from the wrath
this is a message
a message of love
love that moves from the inside out
love that never grows tired
i come to you with strange fire
mercenaries of the shrine
now who are you to speak for god
with haughty eyes and lying tongues
and hands that shed innocent blood
now who delivered you the power
to interpret calvary
you gamble away our freedom
to gain your own authority
find another state of mind
you know it's time we all learned
to grab hold
strange fire burns
with the motion of love
when you learn to love yourself
you will dissolve all the stones that are cast
now you will learn to burn the icing sky
to melt the waxen mask
i said to have the gift of true release
this is a peace that will take you higher
oh i come to you with my offering
i bring you strange fire
This is a message
a message of love
love that moves from the inside out
love that never grows tired
i come to you with strange fire
I come to you with strange fire
words and music amy ray
copyright 1987 godhap music (bmi)

"And beauty is not a need but an ecstasy. It is not a mouth thirsting nor an empty hand stretched forth, But rather a heart enflamed and a soul enchanted. It is not the image you would see nor the song you would hear, But rather an image you see though you close your eyes and a song you hear though you shut your ears. It is not the sap within the furrowed bark, nor a wing attached to a claw, But rather a garden for ever in bloom and a flock of angels for ever in flight. People of Orphalese, beauty is life when life unveils her holy face. But you are life and you are the veil. Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror. But you are eternity and your are the mirror. "
Kahil Gibran

"Happiness is as a butterfly which, when pursued, is always beyond our grasp, but which if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you."
Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864)

"No one imagines that a symphony is supposed to improve in quality as it goes along, or that the whole object of playing it is to reach the finale. The point of music is discovered in every moment of playing and listening to it. It is the same, I feel, with the greater part of our lives, and if we are unduly absorbed in improving them we may forget altogether to live them."
--Alan Watts

The Miracle of Change
"The journey of life is inward, not upward - all change is really for the better, regardless how painful it is at the time. Life is not a spectator sport: it requires being deeply and actively involved at all times. Change is the process that challenges us and pushes us to the next level of living. To be happy requires not only effort, hope, faith - but also the willingness to move on when faced with change.Welcome change into your life and reap its rewards: freedom to be yourself, absence of conflict, a growing sense of well-being and self-confidence, and most of all, happiness and joy. Happiness and joy are what living should be all about. They are yours for the seeking, the doing. Change is the ticket - and it takes courage to change."
From "The Miracle of Change - The Path to Self-Discovery and Spiritual Growth"
by Dennis Wholey

The Mysteries Remain
The mysteries remain,
I keep the same
cycle of seed-time
and of sun and rain;
Demeter in the grass,
I multiply,
renew and bless
Bacchus in the vine;
I hold the law,
I keep the mysteries true,
the first of these
to name the living, dead;
I am the wine and bread.
I keep the law,
I hold the mysteries true,
I am the vine,
the branches, you
and you.

Hilda Doolittle

"Soul is the font of who we are, and yet it is far beyond our capacity to devise and to control." --Thomas Moore

Nature's peace
Is the knowledge
Of perfection
An unfinished work
That is complete
R. E. Geraghty 1987

"There is transcendent power in example."
- Ann S. Swetchine

Anything I say is my opinion and true for me. That doesn't mean it's true for anyone else. I only bother saying what I say because it gives other a chance to observe their own reaction to my opinion. It doesn't matter whether they agree with me or not. Truth is only absolute for the individual.
R. E. Geraghty 9 May 1994

Nature the gentlest mother is
Nature the gentlest mother is,
Impatient of no child,
The feeblest of the waywardest.
Her admonition mild

In forest and the hill
By traveller be heard,
Restraining rampant squirrel
Or too impetuous bird.

How fair her conversation
A summer afternoon,
Her household her assembly;
And when the sun go down,

Her voice among the aisles
Incite the timid prayer
Of the minutest cricket,
The most unworthy flower.

When all the children sleep,
She turns as long away
As will suffice tolight her lamps,
Then bending from the sky

With infinite affection
An infiniter care,
Her golden finger on her lip,
Wills silence everywhere.

Emily Dickinson

Looking for more inspiration? try these links

Poetry Links
Library of Wisdom
The Prophet

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