To be a witch is magickal indeed To know there is more then the here and now To go where others will not dare For to them it is all pretend To be a witch is magickal indeed To live on earth Yet walk in realms That humankind can not destroy To be bound to earth Yet live so free To access wisdom Schools do not teach To be a witch is magickal indeed One with nature, animals, and earth To know ones place in the universe To work with powers that will not be denied Our magick is as powerful as we believe To be a witch is magickal indeed To embrace the moon and all Her energies To shapeshift, transform, ever changing As the wheel of life continues to turn To be a witch is magickal indeed The moon births Her light We call things forth The moon fades Her light We cast things out As the moon so our magick goes As our will so it is done To be a witch is magickal indeed It is not a name that one calls themselves to be a witch is how you live For your life is your cauldron It is yours to create or destroy For if ye be truly a witch You know for certain The answers are always within Morrighan)0(
Witchcraft or Wicca
By Lady Hecate
What is the difference between Witchcraft and Wicca, Most Witches are Pagans, but, all Pagans are not Witches. And most importantly, not all Witches are Wiccans. In other words, a Witch who practices Witchcraft does not necessarily mean that she believes in the religion of Wicca. A Wiccan involved in the religious practices of Wicca does not necessary practice Witchcraft and which makes them not a Witch. And some Wiccan Pagans feel that no magick should be practiced at all, as Wicca is a religion and not magick. As Scott Cunningham wrote in one of his books "Witchcraft: the craft of the Witch–magick, especially magick utilizing personal power in conjunction with the energies within stones, herbs, colors and other natural objects. While this may have spiritual overtones, Witchcraft, using this definition, isn’t a religion. It is just that some followers of Wicca use this word to denote their religion." So, according to Scott Cunningham simply being a Wiccan does not necessarily mean that you are a Witch. I have seen in many websites that they state "Wicca comes from the root word "wicce" which means to bend or shape." This is absolutely and positively incorrect. I have also seen some websites state that Witchcraft is "the craft of the wise." This is also incorrect. Wicca is a male term for a person practicing his craft whereas Wicce is a term used for a female practicing her Craft
Witches back in the day never called themselves witches, people did.Back then villagers went to wise women who were gifted with the knowldge and use fo herbs for healing, who yes made potions,spells etc. Also they were councilors and advisors.
Some were even astrologers. The knew how to divine for answers by scrying, tarot, crystal ball, and runes and many other ways as well. They were teachers, and even the midwives.
The word "Wicca" is a male gender term while "Wicce" is the female gender. I have read that Gerald Gardner chose the word "Wicca," as he wanted to stay away from the bad undertones of the word Witchcraft. Now, this is very hard to believe for instead of Gardner trying to show the rest of the World what Wicca was truly about, his exploits in his introducing Wicca to the media almost sent the religion back behind closed doors. When one thinks of a Witch, they think of a woman, and they see her with her broom or bending over some cauldron. Even Halloween cards which has a Witch plastered on its front is that of a woman. There have been many fairytale stories of Witches and all of them are of women. One of the museums in Salem, Massachusetts has a manikin Witch flying on a broom, and it is a woman. When one thinks of a man performing magickal practices, he is thought of as a Wizard and/or magician. Rarely is a women depicted as a magician. Rarely is a Witch depicted as a man, and I do believe that that is why Gerald Gardner strayed away from the word Witch and its association with women and instead chose the word Wicca which is a male term. A man who so cleverly created the religion of Wicca could not have been so easily misunderstood in his spelling of the word and that is what some claimed happened. They call the pagan religion a Goddess religion, yet Gardner named it Wicca. In his book "The Meaning of Witchcraft", Gardner says "it may be because Witchcraft is a Moon Cult" yet he names this "Moon Cult," which the Moon is associated with the Goddess, Wicca...a male term. Doreen Valiente, High Priestess along side Gerald Gardner and author of "Rebirth of Witchcraft" and other books, did not like using the word Wicca for that very reason, as do many other female pagans.
There are many different practices of the religion known as Paganism and Wicca sits under that umbrella, just as you have Lutherans, Methodists, etc., sitting under the umbrella of Christianity. Wicca actively worships both the Goddess and her Consort and claim to follow the old religion. They see the Goddess triple in nature and the God Her child and lover who dies in order for us to live. Whereas many Pagans/Witches and Dianics, (while they recognize the existence of Her Consort), only actively worship the Goddess and actually do follow one of the oldest religions, as the Goddess religion is one of the oldest religions. Traditions of Wicca claim that to honor either the Goddess or Her Consort more than the other would be an imbalance and an injustice. However, simply honoring both equally does not make one in balance, because each of us carry more energies of the male or female in us and it is generally the male energy that we all carry too much of. In this modern technology world we live in today and using all that fire energy we need to rush around in our daily lives, we cannot help but carry too much male energy whether male or female.
Wicca is a neo pagan earth based religion founded by Gerald Gardner, brought to the USA by Raymond Buckland. Wicca is a newer religion, that is rooted in ancient pagan pre christian beliefs
Here is a brief history of Wicca for those who are, or may be interested.
After reading what is below I do suggest reading something out of Hecate'sCauldron
As I also encourage looking at the whole picture.
In Hecate's Cauldron there is an article in the witchcraft section about Gardner, I do suggest a read so each can have more of a picture and come to their own conclusions.
In 1954, a retired British government worker named Gerald Gardner claimed that he had been initiated into an ancient nature religion based on pre-Christian European paganism. The practitioners of this religion were operating under the name New Forest Coven. Gardner set about to revive and repopularize this witchcraft religion by writing and publishing a book called "Witchcraft Today," in which he reconstructed and rewrote the fragments of remaining ritual and lore from the New Forest Coven.
He referred to the religion as "witchcraft," and to its adherents as "the Wica." Gardner claimed that this latter term was introduced to him by existing members of the New Forest Coven, and that its use was what keyed him in on the possibility that "the Old Religion still existed." He believed, as do many modern scholars, that this term derived from the Old English term "wicca," which is the etymological predecessor to the modern term "witch."
There is some debate as to the veracity of Gardner's claims to having revived an original European matriarchal pagan religion. A few authors have argued that Gardner invented the rites and rituals of the Wiccan religion from whole cloth, appropriating elements of known ancient religions and occultism as needed. However, most scholars agree that Gardner made his claims in good faith. It seems most likely that Gardner had actually been initiated into an early 20th-century revival of the Old Religion he sought, rather than a pure survival of an ancient European tradition.
Although he published the religion's premises in order to preserve the Craft for future generations, Gardner saw "witchcraft" as a mystery religion that required initiation in order to be properly understood and practiced. A British expatriate named Raymond Buckland gained initiation into the new Wiccan rites from Gardner's own coven, called the Isle of Man, and brought the teachings of this coven back to the United States. Wicca gained popularity rapidly in the United States, where a cultural and spiritual revolution was in progress.
Since the early 1960s, a variety of new incarnations of Wiccan-derived paganism have spread widely. Many of these have owed their origin to Gardnerian initiates who started their own covens and performed their own initiations. Other popular forms of Wiccan practice have derived from self-initiated practitioners and mystics who have created their own forms of nature religion based on the original published materials from Gardner and others. Today several such lineages and derivations of Garderian Wicca are in widespread practice around the world.
Also some have asked do you have to be iniatiated to be a witch, I say no. One initisations are part of the degree system in Wicca,. No one really initiated the first witch.. They just were ,did there thing in a qiet manner and in a hidden place.
Some choose to self initiate or dedicate themselves to a Goddess and thats fine. Initiations can be very powerful.
But to be a witch no for a Witch is a witch She just is.
Do witches really fly?
Ever been asked this or ever asked yourself?
Well the reputaion of Witches flying on brooms goes back to the pagans of old.
Those who lived off the land, in days long agaon some of the people would go out on the full moon wiht broomsticks , hobby horses etc and ride them and jump showing how tall the crop was to grow. This is sympathetic magick at work.
Do all witches belong to a coven?
No many are solitary, and not all covens are Wiccan either. You have ecclectic, and even satanic covens.
But I do not belive in a satanic witch either but that is another topic.
A coven is a sisterhood of witches coming together to learn grow and practicce their craft together.
It is usually held at somones home or in a forest etc.
Coven life can be a blessings and it can be well lets say an experience to.
Covens range from 3 - 13 after they hive off. This is traditionally.
In a Wiccan coven you will have degrees, dedication, initiation and elevations.
You will have first degree priestess (Which I am almost finished 2nd degree really wanted to go all the way but somtimes the path will end abruptly to)
You will have 2nd degree priestess sometimes high priestess usually it is third, then Elder.
In some you will have a Maiden, Mother, Crone, a Summoner, Mistress etc.
Covens rites and rituals are usually secret, and members take an oath. Back in earlier days to break an oath was death.
Covens usually gather for rituals during the sabbats and full moonss.
In Wicca there are 8 sabbats and 12 - 13 esbats
Esbats are full moon celebrations
Sabbats honor the wheel of the year and the seasons these are solar festivals.
Do witches sacrifice in blood animals etc.
Some as myself will use menstral blood to consecrate the altar, or as an offering to a particular Goddess like the Morrighan However its not required and Witches love animals and care for them infact Witches have familars and totems. Althopugh some may not know what theirs is right now. It is ashame but some people really belive everything hollywood shows. Witches are promoters of life and healing .
Witches and the pentecle
It is a symbol of protection but much more
The pentacle represents the elements of life Earth Air Fire Water and Spirit
It Also rep the Wheel fo the year, and the human body.
A Witch when She wears it upside down inverted- ( Satanic practice)
It reflects a time of introspection, time of looking within shadow work.
Symbolism and History of the Pentagram: by Calixto M. Lopez with additions & comments by Gaia & others The five-pointed star is often represented as the morning star. The descending ray of the Nauvoo Temple's inverted five-point starstones (there is only one surviving example and it is damaged) was extended downward. Such an orientation suggests the rising morning star. This "star" is not a star at all, but the planet Venus. Venus has long been associated with the Pentagram (aka "Pentalpha", since it's composed of five "A's") because from the earth, Venus actually inscribes a Pentacle (5-pointed star) in its apparent "movement" through the heavens. (Dictionary of Symbols, 1991, pp. 333-334). No other celestial object, whether planet or star, has this orbital characteristic; it is wholly unique to Venus (the Morning/Evening Star). Scripturally, Jesus has been associated with Venus as the "Morning and Evening Star". Venus' brightness is a reflection of the sun, which is invisible below the horizon when Venus is at it's brightest. The extended ray points to the source of the morning star's brightness, not the planet itself, but the sun's brilliance. The earliest physical evidence of the existence of the pentagram comes from the very place where agricultural civilization is popularly believed to have started. The pentagram was frequently found on potshards and tablets (which have been dated to as early as 3500 BCE) in the location of the Kingdom of Uruk (at the mouth of the Tigris-Euphrates valley). The symbol was found accompanying signs relating to the foundation of written language. There is also evidence that the pentagram was used in ancient Mesopotamia to indicate the seal of royalty, and power which extends to the four corners of the earth. The pentagram has appeared in myth and folk lore ever since that time. The Greek Pythagoreans (a school of both science and metaphysics, founded by Pythagoras 586-506 BCE) referred to the pentagram as 'pentalpha' because it could also be formed by laying 5 alphas (A) together. The Pentagram became a major mystical symbol in the Mystery school established by Pythagoras in Croton. Pythagoras seems to have learned of the symbol which studying in Egypt. The Pythagoreans viewed the Pentagram as a symbol of wholeness or soundness. It represented Ugieia or Hugieia, which is the root of hygiene. Hugieia also indicates exactly what the Pythagoreans meant by it: soundness or wholeness (which is one meaning of health) or divine blessing. To the Pythagoreans, wholeness was important, and they greeted each other with Hugiaine! ("Be Whole/Sound/Blessed"), instead of Khaire! (the normal greeting meaning "Cheer"). The Pentagram was their symbol of recognition. It was the link to the Divine Aperion or "One which was the source of the Universe." (Interestingly for modern mystics, indications are that the Pentagram was often inscribed "inverted" in this time period without prejudice.) The pentacle was used to represent the four philosophical elements plus spirit. The four elements are caused by the four qualities (hot, dry, cold, and wet). Discussion of these elements can be found in De Caelo by Aristotle. There were also associations with the first five regular solids (the Platonic Solids). The points also represent various seasons in the year and in life, as well as the phases of the moon. Air was the point associated with spring, childhood, and the 1st quarter of the moon. Fire was associated with summer, youth and the 2nd quarter of the moon. Earth was associated with autumn, adulthood, and the 3rd quarter of the moon. Water was the element of winter, old age and the 4th quarter of the moon. Spirit was associated with death and the new moon. Since all of nature could be described in one glyph, it is obvious why the Pythagoreans assigned the name of "Wholeness" to the Pentagram. Wholeness was vital to health in their view. Only by maintaining the proper balance of the four elements and qualities (as expressed by the four humours) could one maintain health. Also important was the harmony in the union of body and soul (this was Virtue or Arete). Soundness of mind was a prerequisite for all happiness and prosperity. In one symbol, one found soundness and wholeness in the microcosm, and the macrocosm, and between the two. It is in short, symbolic of Balance, Harmony, the Union of Opposites. Some sources indicate that the inverted Pentagram was utilized by the Pythagoreans to show that their House or Order was well rooted or founded (the lower point being the root or foundation). These sources also say that the Five Truths on the pentacle were Zoos, Psyche, Physis, Hypopteros Drys, and Dikaion, and were listed clockwise from the bottom point. The Pentagram is related to a mathematical principle called the "Golden Section" -- a naturally pleasing mathematical relationship symbolized by the pentagram, used in geometry, architecture, and even music. "the human body is divided by the rule of the Golden Section, exactly at the navel. (Lawlor, p. 59). It was therefore used both as a symbol and as a mathematical relationship, extensively in architecture. Many temples and cathedrals have used this to build creations that naturally appeal to human senses of proportion, balance, unity, and beauty. In late antiquity and in the medieval world, the Pentagram took on a new meaning as well. To Constantine, and others, the Pentagram represented the five wounds of Christ (the scourges, the crown of thorns, the nails, and the spear; or alternatively, the four wounds from the nails plus the spear wound). Constantine used the symbol extensively as his personal seal and amulet. He had even considered making it the official symbol of Christianity. This did not happen, although the Pentagram continued to be used in the manner in the medieval time period to represent Christ's sacrifice. If things had gone slightly differently, Christians would be wearing the Pentagram around their necks, not crosses. At this time too, the Pentagram was associated with the Seasons. The upright Pentagram represented the summer season, while the inverted Pentagram represented the winter season. Jewish mystics associated the Pentagram with the five books of the Pentateuch. They also associated a vertical rhombus with the four letters of the Holy Name, Tetragrammaton YHVH. This is the name of Yahweh or Jehovah. The Jews attribute the pentagram to the five books of the Pentateuch (first 5 books of the Bible). The Muslims attribute the pentagram to the five pillars of faith and the five times of daily prayer. The symbol is prevalent throughout Islam and is featured both upright and inverted. Within Christianity the pentagram symbolizes the 5 wounds of Christ on the cross. In it's inverted form it is said to point the way to the Nativity -- the birth of the Christ child; and is also referred to as St. Peter's Cross. According to legend, St. Peter considered himself unworthy to be crucified upright as was Jesus, so instead he was crucified upside down. One of the last Pagan Roman Emperors, Constantine (who converted to Christianity on his death bed in the mid 300's CE) used the pentacle as the symbol of his royal office. In Arthurian legend the pentagram was emblazoned in gold upon the shield of Sir Gawain and symbolized his mastery of the 5 virtues (generosity, courtesy, chastity, chivalry and piety). In the legend and thence forth throughout England the pentagram is known as the "Endless Knot". In Freemasonry the pentagram or 5 pointed "Seal of Solomon", is associated with Man as Microprosopus. Leonardo de Vinci's "universal man" is often seen with his arms and legs outstretched, and along with his head, all five forming the "points" of the Pentacle -- also know as the "Microcosm" of the Universal macrocosm. Jesus has been associated with this as the ultimate "Universal man". In Christian Kabbalism (Kabbalah is a Jewish mystical system, it was somewhat altered and developed into a Christian metaphysical-mystical system during the Renaissance and later) there was another association for the Pentagram. In Hebrew, Jesus' name can be represented as YHShVH or YHVShH ("Yeshua" or "Yehovashah"). These five Hebrew letters can be placed around the points of the Pentagram, just as the Pythagoreans placed UGIEIA - UGIQA around the Pentagram. This fact, and the association with the wounds of Christ meant that this symbol was still very holy to these thinkers. Throughout the ancient world, and past the Renaissance, the Pentagram was drawn either upright or inverted without any real preference. There was no real regard for orientation of the Pentagram, and the inverted Pentagram can be seen without any negative connotation in Masonic imagery, and even as the symbol of the attainment of the Second Degree in Wicca (which has many commonalties to the Craft of the Masons). The first person who applied a negative connotation to the inverted Pentagram was Eliphas Levi (Alphonse Louis Constant, a French Catholic deacon who lived from 1810-1875)). He was the first to argue that the "upright" Pentagram was associated with good, and the "inverted" Pentagram was associated with evil. He drew a diagram that displayed the two Pentagrams side by side. In the upright Pentagram, he drew the figure of a man. This man is the microcosm. Spirit is shown topmost and honored, dominant over the physical elements of earth, air, fire and water. This was the symbol of good, he argued. In the inverted Pentagram, Levi drew the head of a goat. Matter is honored above spirit, the passive and base exalted above the active and Divine. The goat's head represents lust, and reinforces the image. Around the goat's head, Levi wrote the words SAMAEL and LILITH, the two chief demons of Hebrew Kabbalistic thought. The Pentagram was associated by Levi with a creature he claimed to be the Baphomet supposedly worshipped by the Knights Templar. Due to the church's persecution of anyone who posed a political threat, the Masons were forced to flee to the border of Poland and Germany, which had become a gathering place for free thinkers of all kinds. Many spiritual organizations derive their history from that time and place, and so too does the dissemination of the pentagram's symbolism into Western spiritual-metaphysical usage. Oswald Wirth drew a variation of this Pentagram with a double circle around the Pentagram. In the circle he placed the letters LVYThN (Leviathan) counterclockwise around the Pentagram at the points. Maurice Bessy used this design for the cover of his book Histoire en 1000 images de la magie. An English edition was printed in 1964 and this was acquired by Anton Szandor LaVey. LaVey traced this image, and used it as his "Baphomet" symbol for his Church of Satan. It was the perfect representation of indulgence, hedonism, and defiance of "white light" religion and Christianity (by Baphomet's association with heresy). LaVey threw in a new interpretation as well, that the three points down indicates that the Trinity is denied, while two points up represents duality. It is around this time that the Inquisition horrifically tortured and murdered hundreds of thousands of women, children and men, who supposedly consorted with a cloven-hoofed devil. Thus began the demonization of what had long been a *revered* symbol within many Spiritual systems -- including Christianity. The pentagram was particularly popular in the British traditions of Freemasonry in the 18th and 19th centuries and is still often used to represent the seated Master of the Lodge. .... In the case of the Order of the Eastern Star, each point of the pentagram represents a heroine of Biblical lore (and also associated with Goddesses of pre-Biblical times). Another aspect to consider is the Numerology (an ancient metaphysical science/art) of the Pentacle. The number 5 corresponds to 'change' according to the contemporary Pythagorean system. In Kabbalistic thought (the Kabbalah is the Jewish mystical system) the number 5 corresponds to the sephiroth Geburah (glory). Geburah is in turn associated with the planet Mars (named after the Roman God of agricultural, who in later Classical times also became God of war). Thus the pentacle has been used in modern military and paramilitary symbolism -- on uniforms, badges, etc. The Pentacle became associated with the 5 sacred elements: (in Western usage: air, water, fire, earth, and Spirit. (In some metaphysical systems, such as Wicca, the point facing upward symbolizes Spirit above/ ruling over the other elements; downward, it symbolizes Spirit not yet "over" the others.). In the Oriental systems, the elements are Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. The elements did and still do have an important place in the various African Traditional Religions amongst the Bantu, Fon, and others of the Kongo delta region including their contemporary diasporia, as well as among the Celtic tribes, and Amerindians. In contemporary America the symbol of the pentagram has gained the most notoriety through the works of Anton Zandor LaVey (founder of the "church of Satan"). LaVey borrowed almost entirely from the illustrations of Francis Barret and Eliphas Levi, and subsequently lumped them together to create the modern association between the inverted pentacle and the goat head. Plus, since the Pentagram in general is linked to *mystery religions*, magic and alchemy, it is also considered Satanic. Fundamentalist Christians simplistically and *erroneously* take Anton LaVey and Eliphas Levi as absolute authorities on the history of the Pentagram. As a result, any inverted Pentagram is immediately a dead giveaway that the owner or user is evil or Satanic. (Never mind that no one held this view before Levi wrote in the mid 19th century). Meanwhile, looking at things from an older, non-dualistic point of view, we can make an observation on the inverted Pentagram as currently conceived: While it is generally viewed as evil because it exalts matter over spirit, spirit is still on the Pentagram. It is now buried, or hidden beneath matter. It can (symbolically) be reached by the means of an *underworld*/ "Otherworld" journey, as a shaman would undertake. There one confronts death and the Shadow. By confronting death and the Shadow, and dealing with them, one finds oneself in the womb of Mother Earth, one now finds Wholeness again... -- or as Mormons might say, "in the position of potential rebirth and renewal, and then on, to justification, sanctification and exaltation -- through the power of Jesus Christ". Thus, we see the power of symbols -- we can let them speak to us and teach us great insights, if we but seek with open minds, hearts and spirits. The Pentacle The Pentacle is a Magickal tool that some folks do not use. Theirreasoning is sound since it is obviously an adaptation from ceremonial Magick, as is the athame. These people use only the wand and the chalice in their work. But I like the use of the pentacle and athame because Wicca has always been quite ecclectic and drawn from several Pantheons and systems. So it doesn't make any sense to me to say we can draw on all systems EXCEPT the Kabbalah as used in Ceremonial Magick. Also I like the way using all 4 of these main tools that most traditions and practitioners share brings correspondences to the 4 suits of Tarot cards and to the 4 elements. The Pentacle is a flat disk, traditionally inscribed on copper and coated with a clear finish of some type to prevent corrosion after it has been inscribed with the continuos 5-pointed star or pentegram. This is not an open pentacle like many witches wear. It is ENGRAVED on the disk. The reason being you put SALT on this disk in circle and if it was open all the salt would be on the altar, on the floor, everywhere but where you need it. Since the pentacle is feminine and relates to earth either the copper or the stone is appropriate. However brass I find less so as it is usually considered a solar metal and masculine. That is why I also prefer to avoid brass chalices. Copper chalices are avoided because they give off a metallic residue that is poisonous into the liquid, if they corrode - and alcohol in wine or ale and acid in wine or juice WILL do this. But copper is perfect for the pentacle. What you engrave on your pentacle is entirely up to you. The NeoGardnerian and NeoAlexandrians (as well as the originals of these traditions) have very specific symbols that they always use. Other traditions sometimes have specific symbols they require as well. But others just use a plain pentacle, or tht pentacle with runic symbols of their choosing or whatever has meaning to them. I have seen beautiful pentacles - in fact our distributor of jewelry carries them - that are pentegrams surrounded by inscribings of Celtic knotwork. I have also seen some gorgeous stained glass altar pentacles - my favorite of these was one where the points where the colors of the elements. The 4 lower points were the Red, Yellow, BLue and Green my tradition ascribes to the elements and the top one was silver for Spirit/Divinity. The center and background were a lovely violet color. Obviously SOMEONE put a lot of work into it. One note - a specific coating I have found to work well on copper pentacles so that the salt doesn't destroy them is CLEAR NAIL POLISH. This has to periodically be reapplied, however.
The word pentagram comes from the Greek: "pente means 5 (as in Pentagon). "Gram" comes from the Greek verb graphein, "to write". The same ending is found in such words as telegram. Thus, pentagram refers to a five pointed star, or "any figure of five lines." 8 It is most often used to refer to a symmetrical, five pointed star, with equal sides, drawn either with a single line or with two closely spaced parallel lines. Their overall shape is like the decoration on the top of many Christmas trees, and the stars on the American flag. inverted pentagram is a 5 pointed star with two points aligned upwards.An upright pentacle is generally defined as an upright pentagram surrounded by a circle, as is shown in the following icon. It often takes the form of a pentagram printed on (or cut into) a flat disk.
Upright pentacles and pentagrams are among the most widely used religious symbols. They have been used in many eras and by many cultures and religions of the world: by ancient Pagans, ancient Israelites, Christians, magicians, Wiccans and others. The following pentagram-using groups are listed in chronological order:
This symbol apparently originated as the symbol of a Goddess who was worshiped over an area which extends from present-day England to Egypt and beyond. Her name was Kore (a.k.a. Car, Cara, Carnac, Ceres, Core, Kar, Karnak, Kaur, Kauri, Ker, Kerma, Kher, Kore, Q're, etc.). As Carmenta she was said to have invented the Roman alphabet. From her alternative Roman name Ceres have evolved many English words: cardiac, carnal, cereal, core, corn, and kernel. The port of Caraalis, (now Cagliari, the capital of Sardinia), was named after her.
Kore's sacred fruit is the apple. When an apple is cut through its equator, both halves will reveal a near-perfect pentagram shape at the core, with each point on the star containing a seed. Many Wiccans, other Neopagans and Roma (Gypsies) continue to cut apples in this way. The Roma refer to the core as the Star of Knowledge.
In ancient Greece, Pythagoras (586 - 506 BCE) established a school which pursued knowledge in mathematics, music, religion, and other specialties. Driven underground, his followers used the pentagram as a secret sign to identify themselves to each other. The Masonic Order has traditionally traced its origins back 2,500 years to the Pythagoreans.
Kore was worshiped within the Coptic Gnostic Christian religion in Alexandria, Egypt, during the 4th century CE. Her festival, the Koreion, was held yearly on JAN-6. This was adopted by the Christian church as Feast of Epiphany (a.k.a. Twelfth Night). 4 This date is still celebrated as Jesus' birthday in Armenian churches, and is observed with more pomp than is Christmas by the Greek Orthodox church. 5
In England, the Koreion became the Kirn - the Feast of Ingathering. The Christian church later adopted it to the Feast of Our Lady of Mercy. 4
During the times of the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament), the pentacle was the first and most important of the Seven Seals - an amulet whose seals represented the seven secret names of God. It was inscribed on King Solomon's ring, which is often called Solomon's Seal in error. 6 Each point of the pentagram was also interpreted as referring to the five books of the Pentateuch - the first five books in the Hebrew Scriptures; the Torah.
The Celts believed that the pentacle was the sign of the Goddess of the Underground, who they called Morgan (a.k.a. Morrigan). The concept of five points seems to have permeated at least one of the Celtic lands. "Ireland had five great roads, five provinces and five paths of the law. The fairy folk counted by fives, and the mythological figures wore five fold cloaks." 9
In Christian times:
The five points of the pentagram have been interpreted as representing the five wounds of Christ (2 wrist, 2 ankle and 1 side). The Roman Emperor Constantine used the pentagram in his seal and amulet. 14 It has been referred to as the Star of Bethlehem It was used to symbolize the star which allegedly led three Zoroastrian astrologers to the baby Jesus; it was called the Three Kings' star. The English warrior Sir Gawain, a nephew of King Arthur, adopted the pentagram as his personal symbol and placed it on his shield. 7 It appeared in gold on a red background. The five points symbolized "the five knightly virtues - generosity, courtesy, chastity, chivalry and piety." 14 Tarot cards originally had a suit of coins or discs. These were changed in the 19th century to pentacles when the Tarot became associated with the Kabbalah. They eventually became the suit of diamonds in modern playing cards. It has been widely used by past Christians as a protective amulet. During the burning times when the Christian church burned alive or hung hundreds of thousands of innocent people, the meaning of the pentagram changed. It began to symbolize a goat's head or the devil in the form of Baphomet. "The folk-symbol of security - for the first time in history - was equated with evil and was called the Witch's Foot." 14 Modern times:
The religion of Wicca is based in part on ancient Celtic deities, symbols, days of celebration, etc. The pentacle and pentagram are their main symbols. Many religious and spiritual groups use the pentacle or pentagram today.
The Points of the pentcale are rep of each of the five elements we work with Spirit, Air, Fire, Water. Each corres[onds to elemtals, dieties, angels, and anmals.
It is also a reminder wof the Wheel of the year......
Evoking and Banishing Pentagrams
Magical Theory: Pentacle Exercise (Weeks One and Two) Exercise One: Symbol Formation Gather together a candle, your cup, and your athame, then place the working pentacle, black side out, against the wall at eye level. Light the candle and turn off the lights. Visualize the cup being filled with a pure white fluid light, then dip the point of the athame into the liquid. Using the athame as a writing tool, draw a pentagram on the pentacle. See the glowing lines of the shape. As the lines dim, dip the athame back into the cup and paint the shape again. The goal is to have the shape remain without need of repainting. When you are done, erase the shield by passing your hand over the pentacle. Repeat this exercise nightly for two weeks and record your progress. Magical Theory: Pentacle Exercise (Weeks Three and Four) Exercise Two: Word Formation Repeat Exercise One, but instead of using the athame to draw a pentagram, use it to write words. Start with only one word. When it remains on the pentacle without having to repaint, add another word. Continue to add words until a complete sentence remains. Erase with your hand when finished. Repeat this exercise nightly for two weeks and record your progress. Magical Theory: Pentacle Exercise (Weeks Five and Six) Exercise Three: Picture Formation Repeat Exercise Two, but instead of using the athame to write sentences, draw a simple picture scene. Don't worry if you're not artistic. Simple stick figures will do. Repaint as necessary. The goal is to have the scene remain on the pentacle without adding more paint. Erase with your hand when finished. Repeat this exercise nightly for two weeks and record your progress. Magical Theory: Pentacle Exercise (Week Seven) Exercise Four: White Shield Work Repeat Exercises One through Three, but this time work with the white side of the pentacle and visualize the liquid in the cup as being black ink. Erase with your hand when finished. Work with these exercises nightly for two weeks and record your progress. Magical Theory: Pentacle Exercise (Weeks Eight and Nine) Exercise Five: Scene Projection With the room darkened and a lit candle placed behind you, sit within reading distance from the black side of
the pentacle. Visualize a beam of light streaming from the spot between your eyebrows and onto the pentacle
surface. See that light projecting full color images on the surface. Start with simple stationary objects
like a bird or a stop sign, for example, and work up to moving scenes with three-dimensional objects and people. Erase with your athame. Repeat this exercise nightly for two weeks and record your progress. Magical Theory: Pentacle Exercise (Weeks Ten and Eleven) Exercise Six: Scrying and Divination Repeat Exercise Five, but instead of projecting chosen images, allow the images to come of their own accord.
Don't worry if the pentacle fills with mist, then darkens and brightens before anything else happens. This is normal. Try to remember the images so you can record them in your progress notes. Repeat this exercise nightly for two weeks and record your progress. Making the Working Pentacle Although this pentacle may be constructed of wood, I find it easier - and much less expensive -
to make it from poster board. It should be at least twelve inches in diameter for easy use.
Use the following instructions, and you'll have a good, serviceable pentacle that works well for the exercises
that follow. Materials Length of string or twine a couple of inches longer than the diameter of desired pentacle size Pencil 1 large sheet white poster board 1 large sheet black poster board Scissors White glue Tie one end of the string around the pencil, then tie a loop in the other end.
With your finger in the loop, move the pencil away from you until the string is taught.
Positioning your finger in the center of one piece of poster board, use the pencil to draw a circle.
Repeat the process for the other piece of poster board, then cut out both circles. Glue the circles together
back to back so one side is white and the other is black. Consecrate the pentacle using the Tool Consecration.
Basic Tools of a Witch
There are many tools a witch will use and this is just the basics and a few. The Greatest tool a Witch has is their will and themselves.
1) The Athame - Very useful tool. The blade is traditionally double edge. There two sides to everything including magick. One of the main functions of the Athame is to draw invoking, and banishing pentagrams.
2) The Pentacle - It's Element is Earth. The basic function of the Pentacle is to shield and protect. It is also a device of manifestation as well. It grounds all energies we invite, and wraps them up and keeps them from scattering.
3) Wond- The purpose of the Wond is to move and direct energy. The best kind is given by nature like a willow wand, or Alder.
5) The Cauldron- usually made of iron, used tocreate potions, used in spell work. Truly is at the heart of a witch. The cauldron also rep the belly or womb of the Goddess.
8) The Besom
The old picture of the witch riding around on the broom's stick casting magick spells is believed to have come from a agricultural fertility rite, where the women rode around the fields(like on a hobby horse), with the broom between their legs, hoping to bring the farmers a good harvest. This was done on the nights of the full moon usually.
Many pagan traditions have the bridal couple, jump across the broom, a symbol of fertility (old bit of agricultural fertility magic), to signify the establishment of their new household. The brooms are usually decorated for the occasion and then kept in a place of honor in the home.
In many Wicca handfasting(marriage) rituals, couples often jump over the broom if they want children.
Historically, brooms made great gifts for weddings or handfastings. Just add a little ribbon, some flowers, and your are good to go. No wrapping needed. Every new home needs a new broom!
Witches use brooms in magick and ritual. The pagan broom or "besom" is used in ritual for cleansing the general circle or ritual area. The besom is sweeping away the psychic dirt, getting the area purified for the ritual at hand.
A Witch may begin a ritual by sweeping the area with the magick broom, visualising the psychic dirt being swept out of the ritual area. The sweeping also helps to get the mind ready for the ritual, quieting the mind and narrowing the focus for the witch. The besom is a purifier and is related to the element of Water.
7) The Altar
This is a traditional Wiccan altar set up very simple
The altar ...you have a working candle that can be anywhere. It is to light other things, including other candles and incense. There are 2 other candles on the altar; a power candle and protection candle on the side away from the priest/priestess and on either side of the altar.
The Goddess candles silver for the Goddess on your left and the God - gold on your right
The left side of the altar is symbols honoring the Goddess while the right side is for the God.
Your altar can be very simple or more elaborate depending also on space
Usually at least I still do this for the elemental candles I use colored ones
Red for fire , green earth, yellow Air, blue water.
if they are not available you may use white .
This is a standard altar arrangement with the Athame on the right, the Chalice to the left.
The Pentagram is one of the single most misunderstood symbols in human history. It is not representative of satan. il. The Pentagram represents the four Powers: Air, Fire, Water & Earth. The fifth point represents Spirit and is always above all the others. The candles are placed at the points of the Pentagram to indicate the five powers. Each is lit as the powers are called to ask for their assistance in the ritual.
Now my Altar
I am both a priestess and witch and I am dedicated first to the Great Morrighan who is my Matron Goddess
Hecate sharesd same altar, I am in process of cleaning out another space as I feel my main altar must be for Morrighan My Altaer sits in the Norht in south I have an altar to Isis.
Every witch will do their altar differently . Also important note not every witch is a priestess of a Goddess for not every witch has felt the need or deisre to dedicated themselves to the serice of a spec Goddess.