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any help with witchcraft please


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#1 dianap.4884

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 12:32 AM

I have always been attracted to wanting to practice witchcraft and learning more about it, but there's so much information out there I don't even know where to begin. Any suggestions on where to start/ what to learn? Ive also been wanting to learn more about tarot as well :) 


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#2 Katurian

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 02:50 AM

I'm a relatively new witch and I can relate. It can definitely be intimidating in the beginning.

 

If you're just starting out, it might help you narrow things down by asking yourself what you want to get out of your witchcraft.

 

Do you want it to be a religious thing, or a secular thing?

Something that you practise with others, or alone?

Do you want to reconstruct historical traditions or piece together something new?

What do you want to do with your magic?

What do you find inspiring? What activities feel intrinsically magical/spiritual to you?

Is there a culture whose folklore and traditions you're drawn to (with the caveat that it's very important to be respectful of traditions from cultural and ethnic groups that you do not personally belong to, and only borrow from those traditions if you know for certain that outsiders are welcome to do so)?

 

Once you've got some basic answers to those questions, you can use that as a jumping off point to find other witches with similar beliefs and priorities. You could search for "modern secular witchcraft", or "Ancient Greek divination", for instance. And go from there, becoming more familiar with various concepts that are relevant to you.

 

As far as sources go, I really respect Trae Dorn as a resource. They have a tumblr (traegorn) and a podcast called BS-Free Witchcraft. Several episodes discuss topics that would be helpful for someone starting out, including book recommendations and advice for a "dabbler's week" to get started. They're a little rambly, but I find it comforting.

 

The nice thing is, there's no single form of witchcraft, and even within a particular witchcraft tradition, individual witches can have very different ways of actually doing the witch things. And that gives you a lot of freedom, right from the beginning. Research and study are important, for sure, but you don't need to feel like you have to find a very rigid set of rules before you can explore witchcraft. You don't even always need to research from specifically witchy sources. I'm no authority, but I'd say that it's a good idea to have a blend of "witchcraft info by witches, for witches" stuff and more "mundane" sources.

 

So, maybe read up on some common plants and herbs. Or maybe wild animals, geology, basic astronomy, or meteorology. If you find out what their natural properties are, some insights about their supernatural properties might become apparent to you. By studying these things on your own, you'll have a broader base of knowledge to draw on in your witchcraft, and it can bring you a lot of inspiration.

 

Or, maybe you'd prefer to study various myths and legends and take inspiration from those. You could seek out some history/anthropology books about witchcraft and folklore, as a contrast to the witchcraft books in the "spirituality" section of the bookstore. This in particular can help you spot witchy authors who are peddling misinformation and historical revisionism.

 

These things are what helped me, at least! I wish you all the best in your path!


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#3 dianap.4884

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 04:15 AM

This is really good advice! I'll defiantly have to check out those resources :) I have been looking at the "types of witches" and tying to see which category I would be more comfortable identifying as and which one one draws me in the most. I have also heard that learning the history of witchcraft is important, should I look into that as well? This defiantly makes it seem less overwhelming for sure!


Height: 5'9

HW: 167

LW:125

SW:155.8

CW:149.6

 

GW1:140

GW2:130

GW3:125

GW4:120

UGW:115

 

 

 

 

 


#4 Katurian

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 12:04 PM

This is really good advice! I'll defiantly have to check out those resources :) I have been looking at the "types of witches" and tying to see which category I would be more comfortable identifying as and which one one draws me in the most. I have also heard that learning the history of witchcraft is important, should I look into that as well? This defiantly makes it seem less overwhelming for sure!

That's awesome!

 

Absolutely, learning about the history of witchcraft is a great idea--it's also just interesting in and of itself. It's a great rabbithole to fall down.

 

Just be careful about sources; there's a lot of misinformation out there. A lot of stuff gets passed off as being more ancient than it actually is, or historical beliefs get slanted so they fit better into a specific narrative.

 

For instance, Tarot (you might know this already) started out as a deck for just normal card games, and only later was used for divination; the deck changed over time to reflect that. That doesn't make it any less valid as a form of magic. It shows that beliefs and traditions change over time, and that we can create magical tools out of ordinary things. And I think there's a lot of value in those realisations. But some authors try to "legitimize" witchcraft by saying that all of this stuff stretches back centuries unchanged. Unfortunately, that's just not true in all cases. And, at least to me, the messy reality is a lot more interesting, and no less magical.

 

So definitely go for it! Just keep an eye out for authors who mysteriously don't cite any of their research :)


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#5 dianap.4884

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Posted 29 July 2020 - 08:21 PM

Would you have any good sources? I can also look into it myself. I did not know that about tarot that's so cool :o i like that way better since i feel like it shows people like me that anything can be magical with intent :)


Height: 5'9

HW: 167

LW:125

SW:155.8

CW:149.6

 

GW1:140

GW2:130

GW3:125

GW4:120

UGW:115

 

 

 

 

 


#6 Katurian

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Posted 31 July 2020 - 12:22 AM

Would you have any good sources? I can also look into it myself. I did not know that about tarot that's so cool :o i like that way better since i feel like it shows people like me that anything can be magical with intent :)

 

Yep, absolutely. Some people would disagree with me on this, and that's 100% their right, but I kind of see it that there's magic inherent in everything, and all our symbols and rituals help us tap into it. All the variations reflect differences in various human perspectives, and are built out of how we experience the world around us. Sometimes those rituals get baked into folklore and tradition, and sometimes it's just one person in their bedroom with a candle, making up incantations that sound "right" to them. That doesn't mean everything you'll try is gonna work, but it means that magic doesn't work on strict rules--by definition, it won't operate on the same logic as science does ;)

 

 

I'm a sucker for primary sources, myself. Gutenberg.org has a bunch of old books for free, and there's some great information there if you go exploring.

 

I might be able to be a bit more specific if you let me know a bit more about the kind of witchcraft you're interested in, or even cultures that you have a connection to! It's okay even if you're starting from a super vague "I like X witchy aesthetic" kind of feeling. (That's absolutely where I started.) Or, if you're inspired by fantasy books/shows, a lot of those take inspiration from real-world folklore, and it can be worth finding out how it all connects. There's always history and symbolism in the little things, and sometimes we're subconsciously drawn to these things for a very good reason!

 

The only reason I'm being so annoyingly hesitant to recommend specific stuff is because beliefs in spirits, magic, divination, etc. show up all around the world to one degree or another, almost definitely going back before written language. So the history of witchcraft is kind of tied in with the history of humans in general, and it's not a super linear timeline. It even ties into various religions, either by clashing with them, or by being a part of them. Faced with all of that, it can help to pick one smaller area to focus on first, and then branch out from there--you'll have a reference point to relate new information to, that way.

 

I'm also just a bit nervous to give specific advice because I'm a relatively new witch myself and I'm still cobbling together my own belief system, and I wouldn't want to mislead you. Some of the things I prioritise might not be important to you--and that's okay! But I'll do my best to give some thoughts if I have a bit of an idea of what you're looking for :)


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#7 dianap.4884

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Posted 01 August 2020 - 11:40 PM

That's true you have a point but I still like the idea of being able to use most things for magic purposes  :D  

 

I'll definitely have to check out that source for sure :)

 

Hmm well as ive been looking into the types of witches and stuff I think I would identify with the eclectic witch the most since everything seems so interesting! I know I would be into divination the most for sure. But I find everything really interesting so I wouldn't have a problem looking into different types of witchcraft.  

 

It's totally okay and understandable I don't blame you! I was honestly looking for any type of advice and you have really helped so thank you so much for that! There is just so much information out there i didn't want to look into unreliable sources 


Height: 5'9

HW: 167

LW:125

SW:155.8

CW:149.6

 

GW1:140

GW2:130

GW3:125

GW4:120

UGW:115

 

 

 

 

 


#8 Luna_Firefly

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Posted 19 March 2021 - 05:35 PM

Hi! I've been studying witchcraft for over nearly 3 years now, and I started with researching basic associations and meanings (the elements, and how they're used, common herbs and plants), practicing meditation and just small things like that. As a craft it's not something you need to rush headlong into, and as mentioned above there is definitely no need to rush into buying equipment you don't understand yet! Take your time, research the theory and eventually you'll be comfortable putting things into practice!


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