Sunday, June 15, 2014

Wiccan Ritual Tools

Tools are used for ritual purposes to allow Witches to direct energy or ward off negative energies. These tools have no power in them until you charge them with your own energy. Tools however are not necessary for some Witches who are able to work just using gesture. All tools should be ritually cleansed before it becomes a part of ritual. To do this mix a small amount of sea salt in water during a waxing moon and wash the tools.
  • The Besom
The besom is more commonly known as the Witch’s broomstick.Witches never used brooms for flying. It is a myth created by the persecuters of witches. Witches “flying” was a basic attempt to explain astral projection. The besom is used to symbolically cleanse an area by sweeping away its negative energies. It is more symbolic than actually physical. It is linked to the symbol of Water because of its purifying qualities.
Besoms of old were made of willow binding, birch twigs, and ash staff, though any natural material can be used today.
  • The Wand
The wand has been used for thousands of years as a primary magic tool. It is an instrument of invocation, to direct energies, to draw circles and to create magical symbols. It is linked to the symbol of Air, a sacred element of the Gods.
Wands are traditionaly made from willow, elder, oak, apple, peach, hazel, cherry etc, though other material including crystals can be used to great effect. Any wand can be infused with energy and power.
  • Censer
The censer is a ceremonial incense burner. It holds the incense during ritual. Any bowl or cup can be used, it doesnt have to be elaborate. The act of burning incense and breathing it, can sometimes bring forth an altered state of consciousness.
It is often placed before the images of deity on an altar and is considered the element of Air to most Witches.
  • Cauldron
It is a traditional vessel of cooking and brewing. It is seen as a tool where transformation takes place. The cauldron is a symbol of the Goddess the manifested essence of fertility and femininity. It is the symbolic element of Water. Often used as a focal point of ritual because of its multipurpose functions.
Ideally cauldrons should be made of iron, resting on three legs.
  • Athame
It is not used for cutting, but to direct energy in ritual. The athame is often dull, usually double-edged with a black or dark handle. It is important that this tool be made by the hand of the witch. Your own personal power will be stored in its blade. Your athame may be engraved with magikal symbols but this is not really necessary. What is important is that you make this blade represents you. A sword has the same function as an athame. It is linked to the element of Fire. Its phallic nature links it with the God.
  • Bolline
A white handled knife used for practical purposes rather than ritual ones. It is used in cutting sacred herbs, cutting cords or wands or inscribing symbols. It can be used within and without the circle.
  • Crystal Sphere
The quartz crystal sphere is an ancient magical tool. It is used in contemplative divination. The diviner gazes into it and sees images raised from the depths of the crystal according to the persons own psyche.
In ritual it is sometimes placed on the altar to represent the Goddess, because of its roundness and its colder temperatures similiar to the sea. The domain of the Goddess. It can also be used to store energy raised in ritual. Moonlight and rubbing the crystal with fresh mugwort can increase its powers.
  • Cup
Is analogous to the cauldron. It symbolises the Goddess and fertility. It is the element of Water.
It can hold either water or the ritual beverage. Can be made either of silver, brass, gold, earthenware, soapstone, alabaster, crystal and other materials.
  • Pentacle
The most common symbol, a five pointed star has been used in magik for millenia. It represents the five elements, air, water, earth, water and spirit. It usually made of brass, gold, silver, wood, wax or clay.
It is an instrument of protection and a tool used to evoke spirits. It is also used to consecrate objects upon. It is sometimes hung above windows and doors because of its protective qualities.
  • The Book Of Shadows
This is the Witch’s workbook which contains invocations, ritual patterns, spells, runes, rules governing magik and so on. A Book of Shadows can be either handwritten, typed, or stored on a computer disk. No one person can lay claim to having the most correct Book of Shadows.
It should not be seen as the Holy word, as a Book of Shadow is designed for change by the Witch using it.
  • Bell
The bell has been used in wiccan ritual since antiquity. The bell is a feminine symbol and is used to invoke the Goddess. It is also rung to ward off negative spells and spirits and to evoke positive energies.
It is sometimes hung in cupboards or doors for protection. It can also be used to mark various sections of rituals and to signal a spells beginning or end.