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Hey there friends of B+S, I am coming at you today with another “Shadows” post because it’s high time that I pushed another one out, and I just so happened to have found the perfect topic: 3 things that every beginner Witch should start practicing… like right now. I’m super excited about this post and super nervous because it’s my coming out story to all those who know me but didn’t know of my secret witchy life. Let’s see how this goes…
First, a little background on my witchy beginnings:
I didn’t just wake up one day and say “Hmmm… I think I’ll be a witch now.” Nope, not at all. In fact, I grew up in a devout Christian home, and I was the Golden Child of The Church of Christ where my family and I worshipped. I spent my Sundays in church all day and my Wednesdays in Bible Study. I read scriptures from The Old Testament to my great-grandmother (who lost most of her sight before her cataract surgery) as bedtime stories, and I led the prayers in our Christian Youth group whenever we had our weekly meetings.
With all that being said, even as a child, in my heart of hearts, I knew that there was much more to what I believed to be an ideal spirituality for myself. I knew that I was the same but very different from those in which I shared a Faith.
My first case in point, I had a sincere relationship with nature and the creatures that inhabited Earth. I saw a soul in things that others around me looked down at with their noses or saw nothing at all.
Secondly, there were so many “unexplainable” situations that would happen to me that made me realize that I had this unknown source of power dwelling deep down inside of my being. I would experience a little clairvoyance here and there, my intuition was so accurate it was scary, and I had a sixth sense for the things that lurked in the shadows. I just knew there was something more to it than mere coincidence, and I felt that I owed it to myself to further explore the powers that I innately possessed.
Luckily, I had an amazing Latin teacher who was a full-blown Pagan, and he would incorporate his spiritual teachings in his Latin lessons. He would speak about the Pagan Wheel of the Year, the celebrations of Sabbats and the revelry of nature. He encouraged me to embrace my Pagan side as well, and I slowly began to do just that. I’m not going to lie, it took me a long time to fully come to terms with it because I was afraid that everyone would just lump me up into the television versions of what they believed a witch to be, and I felt that I would constantly have to explain and defend myself from onlookers (this part is still proving to be true). But as time went on, and I gained more confidence and less worry about what others thought, I began to embody my Goddess form without restraint. Now, I’m here buying crystals, smudging my home, reading oracle cards in the mornings, and happily telling anyone who cared to know that I am a proud witch without a care for how they may look at me for admitting such… and it feels damn good.
I noticed that the “coming out of witches” isn’t as taboo as it was 15 years ago when I was about to graduate high school, and others are embracing their witchy side with more exuberance. So, I felt that covering some basics into becoming a witch would be a great segway into the Craft for those who may be feeling a bit lost like I was when I was beginning my journey. But before we go into the tricks of the trade, let’s just clarify what it means to be a witch, and shed the misconceptions that come with the term. I saw a great definition on Pinterest of what it means to be a witch:
“Witches: Old souls, protectors of the Earth, defenders of the right, speakers of the truth, guardians of the animals, lovers of the rivers, worshippers of the moon, followers of the sun, seekers of enlightenment, believers in equality, practitioners of magic, protestors for nature, warriors against darkness, fighters against ignorance, and voices for victims.”
I don’t know about any of you, but those things describe me perfectly, and it’s still only a glimpse of what makes us, us.
Yes, we come in all looks, shapes, sizes, and colors; we don’t all have pointy hats with hairy warts on our faces, though I’m certain some of us do.
There’s no right way or wrong way to be a witch, and there are no strict guidelines to follow. You are to just trust your heart, respect all things, and practice with pure love. Don’t wish to cause harm to others- no matter how much you may dislike them. Just know that what you put out into the world always comes back to you times three (Three-Folds Law), so if negativity is what you wish to dish out, be mindful that it will be coming back for you with more intensity. Not too bad right?
Being a witch is just practicing the basic morals of being a good human being, and embracing the source of power that we are all born with by manipulating the elements around us. If you don’t feel this describes you, then being a witch may not be your path. No biggie… this witch life isn’t for everyone, we get it.
3 things every Basic Witch should start incorporating into their everyday lives:
1. Study, Study, Study!
Ok, I know this is probably the most “boring” step for some of you who hate studying anything, but believe me when I say that it is essential to study as much as you can about what it is you will be practicing. I read a really good quote from Mackenzie at Exemplore, “… looking for spells when you haven’t studied the Craft is like looking for sheet music when you haven’t learned how to play an instrument yet.” When you break it down in those terms, it’s easy to see why you can’t just jump into practicing the Craft without properly educating yourself first. It just isn’t practical. There are tons of resources available to you to begin your research. You’ll find that there is much to be discovered, and you can get a narrowed down idea of the type of witch you want to be. There isn’t just one type of witch, and not fully understanding the full scope of the Craft and all that it embodies could be a hindrance to your full potential.
If you don’t know where to start your studies, don’t overwhelm yourself, just choose one topic you were interested in, and as you uncover the information about that topic, more questions will come to your mind, and you can just follow your curiosities. That’s pretty much how I began my studies. But if you are more a structured type of investigator, taking a look at Witchcraft for Beginners: Spells, Exercises, and Lessons will really give you a nice in-depth look into what should become daily/weekly/monthly practices for you as you begin to incorporate the Craft into your life. I just recently found this guide, and after reading over it, I wish I had it when I was starting out. It would’ve saved me a bunch of time.
I don’t have to tell you how many books you have out there waiting to feed your mind with all types of goodies. Don’t forget about them! Find out what aspect of the Craft that connects with you the most, and get yourself some books on the subject. Having these books in your arsenal is always a great idea if you need to refer to them for anything in the future, and believe me, you will need to refer to them for many different reasons for many years to come. You never stop learning when practicing the Craft.
2. Breathe In, Breathe Out… Activate That Third Eye
If I had to go back and do it all over again, one thing I would change is how much focus I put into meditation and my Mind’s Eye at the beginning of my new spiritual adventure. I would hear it and read it everywhere: the importance of your mental strength when practicing the Craft. However, I didn’t take it as seriously as I needed to take it, and most of the workings I tried to accomplish deemed themselves to be useless because I never took the proper time to activate my Third Eye.
Visualizing with your Third Eye what it is you wish to achieve is the first and essential step of any spell or affirmation you wish to bring to fruition. There’s no way around it. If you don’t believe it and see it there first, then you don’t really believe in what you’re trying to obtain. You’re just trying to read some words that rhyme on a piece of paper and see if the “magic” will happen when you’re all done. I hate to burst your bubble, but nothing at all will happen when you’re finished. You will wait and wait, and the world will keep turning without giving you a second thought. And it will be your fault… treat it like a joke and the trick will be on you.
So what do you do? You work on your visualization skills, you align your chakras, you meditate daily, you relinquish any doubts and you fully open your mind to your true potential. There are many exercises that can help conquer a few of those tasks at once. One of my favorites is a meditative exercise that activates your chakras and pushes you to visualize your energies. Let me go find it in my handy-dandy book, How to Ride a Silver Broomstick, that I use for reference often… hmmm… aha! There it is. See… I told you that you’ll refer back to your books a lot…
Ok… so first, you will practice “the fountain” meditation for a week. Here are the steps:
- Dim the lighting in your room; soft candlelight works best
- Wear comfortable and loose clothing, and find a comfortable chair to meditate in, but one that you won’t fall asleep in at the same time
- Set a timer for 10-15 minutes
- Begin by closing your eyes and consciously relaxing your body (some can instantly relax their bodies and become calm, others must relax one body part at a time from their head to their feet… just choose whichever fits you best)
- Breathe deeply: in for a count of four and out for a count of four, about ten times.
- Try to ignore any tingles or tickles over your body as you slip into a semi-conscious state, and bring your mind back to your breathing if you find that you’re thinking about other things. Eventually, your body will stop fighting you and start working with you.
- Now time to visualize: Make believe that you are a fountain of sparkling blue water or light. Visualize this light or water springing from the top of your head and showering down your right side, swirling around your feet, and then coming back up the left side. Watch this continuous flow of blue light or water from your third eye. I always know my third eye is being activated during this exercise because there is heat that starts right between my eyes and a slight buzzing sensation that follows. Listen to your body and it will tell you the signs to look for when you are activating your third eye.
- When your timer goes off, envision yourself being zipped up like a sleeping bag and count backward from ten to one. At one, open your eyes and tell yourself to fully awaken.
Some won’t be able to “see” their fountain right away, it takes practice. If you’ve never meditated before in your life, there’s a great chance that you will have to work harder than someone who has practiced meditation before. Or… maybe you can pick it up first try. You never know. Each person is different and they’re attuned at different levels. Just trust yourself in the process, and don’t try to force it. It will happen for you with consistency.
After you’ve continued the fountain exercise for a week, you can now begin the opening of your chakra centers. Start off visualizing your fountain, like before, but this time you will continue the meditation after you’ve achieved visualizing the fountain in continuous flow:
- Start at your crown chakra and envision a pure white ball. Make this white ball begin to spin in a downward motion, but keep the ball in place.
- When you have this ball set in your mind and spinning, move down to the next chakra, which will be purple and located at the Third Eye area. Set this purple ball in motion as you did your crown chakra.
- Next is your throat chakra, and it is a bright, azure blue ball. Set it spinning baby, and hold it there.
- Your next chakra will be your heart chakra, and it can be envisioned as either a bright green or warm pink.
- Move down to your navel chakra and let that ball burn a bright yellow, and hold it steady.
- Let the chakra between your navel and your groin burn a warm orange… like the setting of the sun.
- Finally, you have your last chakra, the groin, and it is a deep, crimson red.
- Envision every chakra’s colored ball rotating in unison. Hold this vision for as long as you like. Setting a 15 minute time for this visualization practice is ideal to ensure enough time to activate your chakras.
- When your time is up, imagine a big zipper the length of your body that’s been left open. Zip that zipper up from head to toe or vice versa. You must close this zipper to shut down the chakras centers.
- Count backward from ten to one, open your eyes and then tell yourself you are fully awake.
- Take in a deep breath.
I know that seems like a lot, but as I’ve stated before, practice makes perfect. This is a fool-proof way to sharpen your visualization and activate your Third Eye and chakras. Not to mention that your life will embody a new sense of peace that you’ll be forever grateful for.
3. Look to Luna For She Will Never Lead You Astray
Sorry for the super poetic heading, but the moon is a critical point of focus in practicing the Craft, so I had to jazz it up for you guys to drive home the importance of coordinating the ebb and flow of your life with that of the phases of the moon.
The moon goes through 8 phases during one full lunar cycle, and each phase has a ritual that can be performed during those times. The rituals can either sow the seeds of new beginnings or shed the weight of the things that no longer serve a purpose in your life. I wrote a post about manifesting with the New Moon, which is the time to plant new ideas and affirmations you wish to achieve. The post details how you should prepare on the days leading up to the New Moon and what to do on the actual phase day. From smudging your home to cleanse your living space, to taking ritual baths, to meditating to find your heart’s true intentions, all these things are intricate steps to performing a moon ritual. You will come to find that taking part in these rituals every month will prepare you for most spellwork you will begin to do as you progress in the Craft. A good moon ritual is great practice for you and will bring much harmony to your life at the same time. It’s definitely a win-win.
I could go on and on about performing moon rituals, but I think that I will leave it vague so that you can go forth and find the answers for yourself. As I said, there is no wrong or right way to practice, and I don’t want to lead you to only follow what works for me because sometimes what works for one doesn’t work for another. This is your journey, so grab it by the reigns and ride that baby off into the sunset until you find your home in this vast witchy land.
There we have it ladies and gents, 3 essential first steps into becoming a witch. You will begin to see that as you weave these things into your everyday life, the anxiety and fears that you may have will soon fade away. Your confidence in who you are will grow, and your aura will burn bright because you’re no longer shying away from your true form. Start off slowly, don’t overwhelm yourself…
Just take a sip of tea, read a few chapters from one of your witchy books, and meditate over it all. Your path will become clearer and clearer every day, and then one day you will wake up and smile at how far you’ve come from your humble beginnings.
For those seasoned witches out there reading this, do you have any additional essential first steps that you feel should be on this list? Don’t be shy, share the goods! For all you newbies out there, tell me how this list worked for you. I would love to hear about your experience.