Category Archives: Folk Magic

Consecration and Desecration

By | Folk Magic, Witchcraft & Magic | 3 Comments

I am very much a “consecrate all the things” type of magician. I consecrate altars, ritual tools, divinatory tools, fetiches, talismans, charms, idols, candles, holy water, and even herbal preparations. To consecrate simply means “to hallow or to make sacred.” To me, it means to cleanse and bless something and charge it with a purpose. A skull is just a skull, but when consecrated it becomes a spirit house. A statue of Odin is just a statue until you consecrate it to be a vessel for deity. A candle is just a candle until it is anointed with oil and its purpose for a spell stated aloud. A stick is just a stick, but if you carve it, sand it, oil it, sprinkle holy water on it, smudge it with smoke, name it’s purpose as your wand of art, and imbue it with the desired powers of blasting, protection, and blessing then it becomes a potent tool of magic. To further the process of consecration, the more the object is actively used for its named purpose, the more power it will wield and the more it will simply “be” that sacred tool. There are as many ways to consecrate as there…

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By | Folk Magic, Seership | 8 Comments

“The first cup moistens my lips and throat. The second shatters my loneliness. The third causes the wrongs of life to fade gently from my recollection. The fourth purifies my soul. The fifth lifts me to the realms of the unwinking gods” Chinese Mystic, Tang Dynasty y Scots-Canadian Grandmother taught me how to read tea leaves. I now possess her tea cup collection of bone china, gold paint, delicate handles, and endless colours and patterns. Sitting at her dining room table, which sits now in my kitchen, she showed me how to brew with just the right size of loose leaf tea. To let it steep and to drink it without eating the leaves, filtering them through your teeth. She taught me how to flip the cup onto the saucer with just enough force to cause patterns. Then she would carefully turn the tea cup upright again, full of spiralling shapes of dark tea leaves from far away lands. With great solemnity she would look at me and say “and now you bullshit.” At first I thought she was being mischievous, but after years of reading tea leaves I realized that she was indeed quite serious.  Tasseomancy, or reading tea leaves,…

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Guide to Pacific Northwest Incense

By | Bioregional Herbalism, Ethnobotany, Folk Magic, Herbalism, Recipes, Wildcrafting | 19 Comments

Burning botanicals for pleasure, ceremony, and medicine is something we humans have performed for millennia. We just really like to light things on fire and the act never fails to bring us a child-like awe and some kind of primal pleasure. Imagine our pyromaniac ancestor’s excited delight in discovering that certain plants smell amazing when lit on fire and the smoke inhaled.  I burn incense on an almost daily basis. I started blending my own loose incenses and making my own smudge wands eight years ago and my passion for knowledge on native plants quickly drove me to research which aromatic botanicals from the Pacific Northwest would be best for incense and smudge. This guide is the result of almost a decade worth of research and hands-on experience. This short guide is designed for use by those with some wild harvesting knowledge and experience. Please practice ethical harvesting of any of the botanicals mentioned only taking 10% of a plant or colony of plants and 20% of the aerial parts of a plant (leaves, flowers, seeds). Special care should be taken not to harm trees when harvesting resin which should not be confused with tree sap. Resin flows from wounds and is needed…

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Love Spells

By | Featured, Folk Magic, Witchcraft & Magic | 5 Comments

“A woman could want a man so much she might vomit in the kitchen sink or cry so fiercely blood would form in the corners of her eyes. She put her hand to her throat as though someone were strangling her, but really she was choking on all that love she thought she’d needed so badly. What had she thought, that love was a toy, something easy and sweet, just to play with? Real love was dangerous, it got you from inside and held on tight, and if you didn’t let go fast enough you might be willing to do anything for it’s sake.” ~ Alice Hoffman, Practical Magic WHAT THE HEART WANTS The first spell many of us perform is a love spell when we are young and magic is shiny, new, exciting and limitless. Some of our spells worked and we now have horror stories or cautionary tales to tell. Some of ours didn’t and years later we are relieved about it. The yearning for love magic doesn’t disappear with youth, however. It isn’t the teenage heart that desires another to fall madly in love with it, it is every heart. The old blind seer who can no…

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The Call from the Great Below

By | Folk Magic, Storytelling | 34 Comments

The Three who are in the earth, the Three who are in the air, the Three who are in the heavens, the Three who are in the great pouring sea. Two years ago the old fairy doctor with her long white hair used the words translated from Scots Gaelic I too use in my rites to cast a protective caim. The trance came on easily with the soothing sound of the familiar words, this world fading and turning black. She took us to an island whose earth was made of the bones of the dead and yet still covered in green growth. An island in the centre of our hearts. There on the white beach, trees behind me, sea in front of me, she asked what we were to create and build in the near future. The ground shimmered in front of me and first appeared my wood carving tools. They soon disappeared and were replaced by a small cedar wood cradle. It alarmed me to say the least. At the time I was single, living alone, and juggling two businesses plus web design work and a busy social life – a baby was the furthest thing from my mind. I…

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