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Traditional Witchcraft: Should I Worry About Bad Karma If I Use Black Magic?

Posted in Black Magic, Healing, occult, protection spells, self-defense, spell books, spell casting, Traditional Witchcraft, Wicca with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2013 by littleredridinghood

Dürer_-_HexensabbatSome people regard black magic as a misuse of spiritual energy. Some define it as any act that interferes with another person’s free will and believe that no witchcraft, even healing, should be conducted without the permission of the subject. Some modern ceremonial magicians call it “the left hand path.” Some warn that it is karmically dangerous to the spell caster.

But, none of this is really relevant in traditional witchcraft. In fact, the purpose of most of traditional witchcraft is to affect the outer environment and those around us and what is commonly called black magic is only an integral part of witchcraft, itself.

The definition of “black magic” used by Winter Tempest Books authors is that it is simply malefic witchcraft, meaning it is witchcraft used for the purpose of causing harm or injury to another. Moral judgments and ethical considerations are withheld and reserved for the individual, who is the only person fit to judge his or her own particular situation. Moreover, we always advocate that, for your protection, such witchcraft should be done secretly and without violating the laws of whatever state, country or other legal jurisdiction you live in.

Some members of modern witchcraft religion state that no “real witch” would use black magic. But, if this were true, why is that that most of the documentation of witchcraft in Western Europe, New England and around the world is full to the brim with instances of curses and demonic visitations? Obviously, this assertion doesn’t hold water.

The dominant class of popular, modern religious witches often warn against the use of black magic because of a fear of it “recoiling” on the one who cast the spell. They have various names for this, such as the “Law of Returns,” and the “Three-fold Law,” and it appears that this modern dogma evolved from the Hindu concept of Karma.

The Doctrine of Karma

The ancient Hindu religious principle of Karma is similar to, but, also, differs from the modern New Age concept, which is described below. In Hinduism, which includes a belief in reincarnation, karma occurs after death and it determines the soul’s path in its next incarnation. Both this life and the next incarnation could be affected by your past deeds. At the core of the doctrine is the concept of cause and effect, the idea that your actions in this life and past ones have have effect on the present and the future. Suffering is seen as a “spiritual gift” by which a person learns and becomes stronger, so disease and other adversity is seen as part of life’s lesson.

This doctrine of karma has been recycled and revamped by Western New Agers and Christianized. Then, it was adapted by Wiccans. (Read more about the Christianization of Wicca in the U.S. in a previous article, “Differences Between Traditional Witchcraft and Wicca: How Wicca Became Mainstream Modern Witchcraft.”)

By contrast, in traditional witchcraft, suffering is not regarded as a spiritual gift. People do not need to learn cosmic lessons by disease, injury, violence, etc. There is no God or system that judges and rewards or punishes.

A danger of this kind of thinking is that it engenders the false belief other people want or deserve to suffer or that we, ourselves, deserve to suffer because of some imagined transgression in this or a past life. Crime survivors might internalize the abuses that have been perpetrated against them by others and imagine that they are somehow deserving because of some imagined bad behavior. For instance, an abused wife may be convinced that she deserves to be abused because she abused her husband in a past life – this is the kind insanity that can flourish when this notion of karma is taken to an extreme.

Karma is a religious doctrine that has no place in traditional witchcraft, which is not a religion, at all. Such thinking prevents people from looking for solutions to health issues, excuses criminal behavior and allows evil-doers to prevail.

Then, there is the negative psychological aspect of accepting this religious belief.

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Wiccan Guilt

Morganlfay-smallerWiccans believe that witchcraft and, indeed, all of life is governed by their version of the law of karma. They are constantly warning people about the dangers of bad karma and bad intent.

Among Wiccans there is a common belief that the things you do now can affect completely unrelated events down the road, either for good or evil, based on the nature of the action you have taken.

Wiccan belief is that if you send out negativity, this causes more negativity in the world, which will inevitably boomerang its way back to you. But, if you send out positive energy, positive energy will come back to you. (To that I say, if you’re a woman, try walking down a street in New York City beaming positive energy at everyone you encounter and see how much positive energy comes back to you. A word of warning: Don’t try this without years of martial arts training.)

This concept of karma within Wicca can become absurd, leading to Wiccan guilt, which is a lot like Christian guilt. Neither are mentally healthy. The New Age belief in past lives affecting the present one is similar to the the Christian doctrine of Original Sin. The Wiccan belief of being cosmically punished if you step out of line is similar to the Christian doctrine of Judgment.

Many Wiccans and New Agers swear this Westernized karmic dogma is true. This is because religious people often have a confirmation bias – if they believe a doctrine, they will look for proof of it where none exists.

For example, a Wiccan who gives a sum of money to charity, then experiences some kindness from a stranger in the next day or two might attribute the kind behavior of the stranger to having made a charitable contribution, when in fact, it was just an encounter with a kindly stranger and nothing more. If the same Wiccan had knocked down an old lady and stolen her grocery money the day before instead, he or she would still have experienced an encounter with a kindly stranger the next day. There is no cause and effect in this situation because there is no cosmic overseer judging and punishing your every move. This is simply a religious belief similar to those held by Hindus and Christians.

To further illustrate, if you think a bad thought about someone and then trip over a piece of loose carpeting and stub your toe, this injury is not a result of your “transgression.” Or, if you fail to adequately tip a waiter and a month later your house is foreclosed on, it is not reasonable to say this is because of a karmic law.

Wiccan guilt comes in when you do good, but good does not return to you – then, you may feel you have not been good enough. If some accident befalls you, a loved one dies or you become the victim of a violent crime, you may be encouraged to believe that this was because of some wrong action or thought vibration on your part. Karma-based beliefs engender a remarkable degree of self-blaming, victim-blaming and criminal enabling.

Letting Go of Harmful Beliefs

The doctrine of karma is simply a religious belief, the key word being “belief.” Such cultural and religious conditioning is a form of mind control.

Holding onto such unfounded beliefs is ultimately destructive. It leads to a state of being in which the person constantly fears they are doing something wrong. To let go of this programming, you only have to allow your rational mind to overcome this irrational and unfounded religious belief.

If you have had the misfortune of being subjected to either Christian or Wiccan indoctrination and consequently fear stepping out of line because of imagined cosmic repercussions, you may have to do some deprogramming before you feel comfortable using black magic.

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The Power of Black Magic

Fortunately, black magic can help break the chains of religious conditioning. Traditionally, black magic rituals involving such things as the recitation of the “Our Father” prayer backwards or meeting a spirit in a cemetery or a crossroad at midnight mark a witch’s passage into the world of witchcraft.

Former Wiccans who want to make a break from their religion might perform a short ritual by writing the “Rede,” “The Law of Returns” or whatever other dogmatic belief on a sheet of paper and burning it in a little ceremony to break the psychological tie to this religious philosophy.

Of course, none of this is really necessary. Simply performing acts of black magic is enough to make the break.

witchyThe use of black magic is often a matter of survival. Sometimes violent crime survivors discover their ability to use it very spontaneously.

Sometimes using black magic is the right thing to do in a situation to prevent harm to yourself or someone else. Black magic can be a means of restoring justice and peace – and maintaining it.

Black magic can provide the ultimate form of protection. Once you begin practicing black magic, you will naturally require more protection, but the acquisition of this protection is part of the process of learning more about witchcraft, especially communicating with and employing spirits.

Black magic thinking has the power to release people from a sense of being victimized. It helps crime survivors regain control over their lives. If you have been through a terrible ordeal at the hands of some malefactor, black magic helps you heal, restore balance and re-establish more control over your own life.

Above all, black magic is a mindset. It is a strong self-defense mentality. It helps to undo some of the damage done to us by living in a victim-blaming society in which we are blamed for the failures and evil actions of other people. It helps to restore power and autonomy to the individual.

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The Use of the Magical Circle in Traditional Witchcraft: How it is Cast and Why

Posted in Black Magic, occult, protection spells, self-defense, spell books, spell casting, Traditional Witchcraft, Wicca with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2013 by littleredridinghood
464px-A_Magician_by_Edward_Kelly

A Magician

The casting of circles in witchcraft is very old and appears to be universal.

Those familiar with the modern, popular form of witchcraft, Wicca, know that they cast a circle by “calling the corners.” This procedure is sometimes complex and technical in nature and involves the use of specific colors of candles and other implements. Some of them do it to create “sacred space” to celebrate seasonal holidays, worship their gods and goddesses, or to raise a “cone of power” for some particular purpose. This is one example of the use of a magical circle in a modern form of witchcraft, but there are many others.

The next most familiar type of circle-casting to most people might be the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram described by Israel Regardie in the book, “The Golden Dawn: The Original Account of the Teachings, Rites, and Ceremonies of the Hermetic Order.” In this version four spirits or energies are called to form and guard the circle at the four cardinal points.

The circles described by Regardie are similar to those found in some old medieval grimoires, including “The Lesser Key of Solomon.” These circles are used to summon and converse with demonic spirits. Furthermore, such rituals as these involving circles were documented by the authors of some of these old grimoires who observed and recorded the activities of witches around them at the time.

Those who are new to witchcraft may have the impression that circle casting is something only Wiccans or ceremonial magicians do, however, this is not the case, at all. Although, the Wiccans and ceremonial magicians have their own, often complex methods involving the recitation of specific words and the use of certain magical implements, the casting of a circle as part of a spell is common to witchcraft around the world.

Henry Fuseli - Scene of Witches from "The Masque of Queens" by Ben Jonson

Henry Fuseli – Scene of Witches from “The Masque of Queens” by Ben Jonson {pd}

Worldwide, the circle is primarily used as a place to concentrate power and to perform acts of witchcraft, particularly those involving manifestations of spirits or transformations.

The Obeah men and women were magicians who were among the slaves brought to the Caribbean from some region thought to be in northern Africa. The people from this region of Africa were extraordinary in their beauty, physical strength and intelligence and were prized by the human traffickers who bought and sold them, bringing them primarily to Jamaica despite the fact that they were considered dangerous and inclined to rebellion. The Obeah men and women were both revered and feared by other people because of their magical abilities. The Obeah form of ritual magic sometimes involved the magician drawing a magic circle with a special type of chalk. The origins and content of the chalk are disputed by researchers. Some say that it was formed from the native earth of Africa. Others say that it was made of powdered, white egg shells.

According to researchers, the aboriginals of Australia, also, used similar circles in their magical rituals, including witchcraft for the purpose of cursing enemies. The magician might use the circle alone or with a group of people in this procedure. In such an instance, the circle becomes a metaphysical container for the energy involved in spell casting.

220px-John_William_Waterhouse_-_Magic_Circle

Magic Circle

But, the circle functions to protect the magician and his or her work, also. The following tale, entitled “The Witch as Cat,” involving a chalk-drawn circle comes from Bohemia, historically a German region, which is now part of the Czech Republic; it illustrates the use of the circle in witchcraft as both a protective device and a place from which to conduct acts of magic:

At the end of the sixteenth century a miller woman lived in a mill with her six children. No servant could stay in this mill because during the night a cat with six kittens would always come and bite and scratch the worker, sometimes to death. However, one day a journeyman came to the mill who knew black magic.

When he asked for a night’s lodging the miller woman said that it would not go well with him, because the place was haunted.

“That doesn’t matter,” said the journeyman. “I’m not afraid.”

That evening he lit a candle, drew a circle around himself with sanctified chalk, then sat down at the table. Near midnight a black cat with her six kittens approached the light, wanting to put it out. The journeyman grabbed a hatchet and cut off one of the cat’s paws. She let out a terrible shriek, then all of them ran out the door.

The next morning the miller woman was ill, and no one knew what was wrong with her. However, the journeyman knew what it was; that morning instead of a cat’s paw he had found a human hand lying on the ground. He reported the event, and the miller woman was burned to death, along with her children, for these too someday would have learned witchcraft. ( Josef Virgil Grohmann, Sagen-Buch von Böhmen und Mähren. Erster Theil: Sagen aus Böhmen (Prague: Verlag der J. G. Calve’schen k.k. Universitäts-Buchhandlung, 1863), pp. 225-26.)

Witch and Black Cat

Witch and Black Cat

The following story illustrates how a witch very simply casts a circle to perform a conjuration. This account demonstrates the efficacy of a simple circle for summoning spirits, which is accomplished without elaborate ritual, incantations or a lot of ceremonial tools. A book and a glass in a circle along with a pan of hot coals upon which some stinking herbs were thrown is used to conjure spirits, which take on various forms:

The Witch took her staff and there drew him about the house, making a kind of Circle, and then took a book, and carrying it over the Circle, with her hands, and taking a green glass, did lay it upon the book, and placed n the Circle an earthen pan of Coles, wherein she threw something, which burning caused a very noysome stinck, and told the Maid she should not be afraid of what she should then see, for now they could come, they are the words she used and, so calling Beelzebub, Tormentor, Satan, and Lucifer to appear, there suddainly arose a very high wind, which made the house shake, and presently the back Door of the house flying open, there came five spirits, as the Maid supposed, in the likeness of ragged Boys, some bigger than others and ran about the house, where she had drawn the staff, and the Witch threw down upon the ground Crums of Bread, which the Spirits picked up, and leapt over the Pan of Coals oftentimes, which she set in the middle of the Circle, and a Dog and a Cat of the Witches danced with them; and after some time the Witch looked again in her book, and threw some great white feeds upon the ground… (Bower, Edmond, Doctor Lamb revived, or, Witchcraft condemn’d in Anne Bodenham, 1653, Cornell University Library Witchcraft Collection,P. 4-5.)

Salvator_Rosa_-_A_Witch_-_Google_Art_Project

A Witch in His Circle

The circle may be seen as a three dimensional geometric shape that confines and concentrates the energy that makes possible manifestations and other acts of magic. For example, in the 1947 book, “Ozark Superstitions” Vance Randolph mentions how conjurers in the Ozark Mountains force the appearance of a witch by arranging brush in a circle and lighting it on fire at midnight.

In the following story, we see that a circle large enough to accommodate an outhouse, with the cardinal points marked, is used to make someone ill by means of malefic witchcraft.

An account from circa 1579 from the book, “A Detection of Damnable Driftes Practised by Three Witches Arranged at Chelmifforde in Essex,” demonstrates that the circle not only accumulates power, but holds it in place. It is alleged that an accused witch, Mother Staunton came to the home of a Mrs. Cornell to ask for some milk, whereupon she was turned away on the suspicion that she was a witch. The second time Mother Staunton appeared, she drew a circle in the dirt with her knife outside the door of the house, marking out the cardinal points. Afterward, Mrs. Cornell departed from the house, and stepped across this circle and became very sick.

In many nations around the world, we see the circle used as for both power and protection; to contain the energy needed for a spell or ritual and to guard that energy. Sometimes it is empowered by a prayer, such as the “Our Father” or powerful names or symbols. It is drawn with knives, staffs or special chalk and often oriented toward the four cardinal points, north, south, east and west. But, the circle does not have to be created in an elaborate ritual to be effective.

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How to Study Traditional Witchcraft and Occultism: Witchcraft Versus Witchcraft Theater

Posted in occult, spell casting, Traditional Witchcraft, Wicca with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 3, 2013 by littleredridinghood

by Sophia diGregorio

This article is a continuation of the previous post, entitled “The Dangers of Wiccan Covens and Other Neo-Pagan Groups to Women and Children.”

578px-Fitzgerald,_John_Anster_-_The_Marriage_of_Oberon_and_Titania

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Much of what you will find in Wicca and neo-paganism is a kind of theatrical performance. Wicca may be accurately described as a celebration of witchcraft, but most of it bears no resemblance to actual witchcraft (or what we now call “traditional witchcraft” since the overwhelming growth in popularity of neo-paganism). The same can be said of other re-creationist forms of paganism in which participants dress a certain way, get in a circle and perform some sort of celebration.

The Wiccans celebrate the seasons and the sabbats. They celebrate the phases of the moon and they honor the old gods and goddesses. They celebrate to worship nature – literal nature, such as the trees and the planet. Sometimes they do it in fancy robes and sometimes they do it in the buff. But, it is all a theater of ritual. They do it to have a sense of belonging, for fellowship and sometimes to hold onto some vestige of religion after abandoning some form of Christianity, since Wicca and many other forms of neo-paganism are, in fact, religions.

Sometimes, they actually use witchcraft, but the same could be said of the Catholics, the Pentecostals and the Evangelicals, who use some very powerful magic at their services. This doesn’t make them witches, as such. And, the same is true of most Wiccans and neo-pagans. They are witches in name only. And, some neo-pagans never use this term, at all–they are Wiccans (or Asatrur or whatever) and they do not consider themselves witches.

Of course, there’s nothing really wrong with this as long as the new-comer to witchcraft and the occult realizes what he or she is involved in. The problem comes with the misinformation given by the leadership, some of whom are corrupt while others are simply deluded.

Neo-pagan covens, orders and groups all too often quickly come to resemble their Christian counterparts. Sometimes they become a playground for sociopaths in one way or another. If the leader is not luring women for nefarious purposes, they may be draining the member’s time or wallet. The leader and the members of the innermost circle – and there is usually one or more that other members don’t know about and don’t suspect exists – stroke each other’s egos with the idea of having some power over others.

At the very least, these groups are social clubs with their pot luck dinners, pagan night out (often a drunken affair, in my observation) and opportunities to play dress-up. In groups where children are permitted–something that should be undertaken with caution or not at all, especially, if the group practices nudity–there is the opportunity for people with children to find like-minded people with children.

But, this is all witchcraft theater and there is very little occultism, occult studies or witchcraft going on. If you want to study witchcraft, this is not the way to go about it. On the other hand, if you are done with Christianity, but still want to have a religion and be around religious people with their social constructs, then this is an option.

Wicca and neo-paganism are not subjects serious students of witchcraft or the occult linger on for long, even when they are met by them on their first introduction to the occult, which is very common these days, since it is their books that dominate the shelves of mainstream bookstores and they are the most socially acceptable types of witches, being members of a recognized religion.

The fact is that genuine witchcraft is not a religion any more than it is a theatrical production.

How to Study Witchcraft and the Occult

We’ve seen how not to learn about witchcraft and the occult, so here are some ideas for going about it the right way.

Waterhouse,_JW_-_The_Sorceress_(1913)

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First of all, not all organizations are bad, but many of them are and at the very least most of them are a waste of time. Therefore, when approaching any organization, take a look at the members and their actual purpose. Are they achieving their stated goals? Are their goals your goals? Is the membership comprised of people whose knowledge and expertise you could benefit from? What exactly will they require from you? Never join any organization until you’ve investigated them for a long time and do not reject criticism of the organization without examining its veracity. Always take caution because it is often easier to get into a cult than it is to get out of a cult. Take even greater caution if the group claims to be a coven that is recruiting. Genuine covens do not often recruit, especially from the general public or casual inquiries.

If you must be part of an organization, a better idea is to start your own study group – not a coven or order – with two or three close friends who have similar interests to yours. Let each member research particular aspects of occultism and traditional witchcraft and teach it to the others..

In the very beginning, the best choice is probably not to be part of any organization, but to undertake the study of traditional witchcraft and occultism on your own.

Begin by making your own inquiry into the so-called paranormal. This may be especially important to people who are spiritually out of touch or do not have highly developed psychic abilities. You must verify for yourself the reality of spiritual phenomena.

One of the most important aspects of witchcraft to study is the art and science of healing because it is here that the applied esoteric science of witchcraft can most readily be demonstrated to yourself and others. The skills you will learn as a healer can be applied to other areas of witchcraft and the occult.

Other important areas of study include the history and practice of witchcraft (not Wicca or neo-pagan religions) around the world.

Hermeticism and Theosophical Luciferianism, such as Blavatsky’s Secret Doctrine, and the works of the second wave Theosophists, Besant, Leadbeter and Powell) are, also, important areas of study.

Master some aspects of astrology and Hermeticism by learning to read the tarot, which is a powerful initiation into the occult mysteries and a tool for developing phenomenal psychic abilities, as discussed in the book, “How to Read the Tarot for Fun, Profit and Psychic Development for Beginners and Advanced Readers,” by Angela Kaelin. Complete mastery of the tarot leads to a true initiation into the esteric science of witchcraft. This is not something some one can bestow upon you in an initiatory ritual, which is only symbolism and theatricialism, but an genuine initiation.

This may not be as much fun as joining a group and attending meetings and pot luck dinners in your ritual cloak, but it is a true initiation in the esoteric mysteries of traditional witchcraft and the occult.

What’s Next After Wicca? Non-Wiccan Occult Practices and Traditional Witchcraft

Wicca is the most accessible and acceptable form of witchcraft in existence in English-speaking countries today. It can be a doorway to the the riches of the occult or a trap for the mind and spirit, depending on how it is approached and the knowledge with which this is done.

In What’s Next After Wicca? the author answers the question she often heard from her metaphysical bookstore customers who had studied Wicca, but felt dissatisfied with it and wanted to learn more about the subject of witchcraft, in general: “What else is there?”

This book represents the opinion of the author after 25 years of experience in the occult and several years of owning a store that was, also, a networking center for neo-pagan groups. It is written in an informative, yet conversational style, just as she would speak to friends and customers who would ask for her opinions about witchcraft and the occult.

It includes a discussion on the origins and the present state of Wicca, other alternative religions and philosophies including Satanism, Luciferianism, Germanic Occultism, Gnosticism and traditional witchcraft. Throughout are recommendations for other courses of occult studies, including a categorized bibliography.

Note: This is not a spell book or a manual on how to do witchcraft.

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