The Ultimate Crossroads

If you’re a spiritual person, chances are you have encountered THE crossroads, either in the past or perhaps right now in your life.

So what is the ultimate crossroad?

When it comes to living your purpose, for people who incarnated with a mission in life, usually we all fall into the trap of living basic, or living mediocre. The world around us tells us who we’re supposed to be what we’re supposed to aim for and generally it is very superficial, consumption based, material based and generally devoid of real heart connection.

So what happens after a while of getting bogged down in the base chakras is that our bodies literally start overriding our intellect. When I say “intellect” I’m referring to the conscious mind which relies on tangible evidence in order to make choices and usually disregards emotions and extra senses.

The body, on the other hand, pays attention to meta-data or extra-sensory perceptions and is usually based in heart logic, not brain logic. The heart knows things about the world which the conscious mind may not be aware of, or may have dismissed as “fanciful” or “emotional” (and therefore inferior).

When your body has reached it’s threshold for being ignored and maligned by the intellect, or it has been drained by others around you who may be just energy vampires, it has a breakdown. The symptoms for this can be found in a previous article about the Awakening process.

That breakdown serves two purposes:

First, it forces you to take better care of yourself and to listen more closely to what your body needs. After all, the body is your truest ally in life. It nurtures you, protects you, and gives you the means of performing meaningful actions.

Second, the breakdown usually purges your life of all the meaningless crap you have been surrounding yourself with and striving to obtain. You will find relationships either falling away or dramatically imploding. Your job, house, car and other material goods may be either taken away from you or you may end up rejecting them yourself. You might no longer be physically able to perform certain activities which once made your life meaningful, such as sport or fitness.

All of this is a massive and traumatic purge. You will probably hate it.

Congratulations, this is the crossroads.

A lot of people assume that an awakening process takes away our free-will and forces us to evolve into the stunning butterflies we were supposed to be, however, that’s not entirely true.

We always have a choice, it’s just that the choices often suck at this point in the process.

Choice number 1: Truly change your life for the better and embrace a spiritual way of being which provides you with self-care, integrity, autonomy and courage. AKA finding the path of love and joy.

Choice number 2: Stay in hell and bemoan your trials in life because you don’t want to change, don’t feel like you should have to, or believe that its too hard and too painful. AKA living out of fear.

Choice number 3: Bowing out of life permanently.

A lot of the time no one wants to talk about option 3 because it is such a taboo subject, but I’m sure if you have endured the crossroads and come out the other side, you probably thought about option 3 at some point.

That’s the biggest challenge of the cross roads; you have to choose life. If you don’t, then you stay in a place of despair or you give up entirely.

Living life to it’s fullest and being an authentic person is a huge act of bravery and not everyone has the guts to step up. However, if you do decide to cut the crap and do what you came here to do, the rewards are surprising, amazing and definitely worth the trials undertaken to finally get to that point.

Anything worth having is going to demand your very best. I’m not saying it needs to be difficult, I’m saying that it needs to be of high quality. You need to bring forth honesty, bravery, integrity, decisiveness, strength of character and conviction. Add to that pure, unabashed, unapologetic kindness and love.

Other people probably will call you a nut. But who gives a shit what scared people say? Don’t let other people’s fears and lack of conviction throw you off course from what you need to do with your life. If they can’t handle it, and aren’t willing to let you try, then they aren’t up for the journey and all they’ll do is hold you back.

Find a new tribe, forge a new path, discover new worlds hidden in plain sight. Keep a sense of wonder and curiosity about life and the rest will unfold. Have the back-bone to be yourself.

Most importantly, realise that the crossroads is just a phase of transition. It’s not the end of your world, just the start of a new one.

Why Summoning Demons is a Bad Idea

There are plenty of witches out there who see no problem with working really dark magic. From poppets to demons, curses and hexes, the options for utilizing dark power is quite extensive.

But what are the risks of dipping your toes into the black, fathomless lake of evil? Is there ever an appropriate time or place for such things?

Obviously the allure of power and knowledge is very enticing. Flexing your magic muscles is just as addictive as becoming a gym junkie, or developing an eating disorder. If you have ever struggled with addiction, then magic can become a new drug and like any other addiction, you start out with the small stuff and graduate to the much harder substances when the highs need to become higher.

The other problem a lot of people face is dealing with their own shadow self. Delving into your own darkness can pull you into the black hole of depression. The shadow is all about your pain, your fears, your psychological wounds, and all of your weaknesses. The density of shadow vibration can become overwhelming and strip you of hope. Once you are devoid of hope, depression sets in and suicide becomes a real danger.

Don’t get me wrong, shadow work is vital for your growth, understanding, and ultimately maturing into a stronger person who has conquered (or at least made peace) with their inner demons.

However, shadow work needs to be done in small doses and balanced out by higher vibrations and more joyous emotions.

Half the time when you begin witchcraft, you have to be very mindful of what vibrations you’re putting out and ultra-hygienic with your spiritual practice. Cleansing is a major part of everything you do because if it isn’t, you leave the gate open for all sorts of vampiric, negative entities to latch on like a tick.

It can be so easy to let in the wrong energy, and so hard to get it out.

Have you ever looked around at your life and thought; Who the fuck are all these assholes I keep being surrounded by? Why is so much bad luck happening to me? Are all of my friends and family just using me?

I know I’ve been there, before I began my journey into personal sovereignty and self-care.

When you get stuck in the lower, more dense vibrations, where all the jerk-faced people and evil entities exist, then you get stuck in survival mode. That world is dog-eat-dog. There’s no room for growth. No room for expansion. No room for love and joy.

Ultimately you have to figure it out for yourself, but for me I know I can’t allow room for that shit in my life.

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of things which piss me off and make me consider taking the option of revenge. Some days I really have to consciously choose which sort of person I want to be: Do I want to get bogged down into negativity, or do I want to be free of it? Would I like to waste my time and energy on people who don’t deserve it, or would I like to spend that time on something nice for myself?

Discernment is key.

We all have choices, and those choices ultimately shape our lives.

Non-Duality & the Yin-yang

There’s a lot of buzz at the moment about being “non-binary” or obtaining a state of true neutrality. But what is neutrality? By its very definition it is an absence rather than a presence of anything.

So if Non-Duality is a red herring, how does duality work?

First off, we need to stop looking for a bad guy. Masculine is not any more a dirty word than feminine. Light is not better than dark. Data is not always more reliable than intuition.

Have you ever seen Inside Out? It’s an animated kids film about emotions. The overall message is that we’re told to “be good” for others and always put on a happy face. We’re supposed to shun sadness and suppress all our “uglier” emotions. However, the reality is that we feel things for a reason and we need to honour and process the whole spectrum of our emotions. If we don’t, then they fester and become toxic.

In the same way, duality isn’t good-guy/bad-guy: it’s not antagonistic. It is complimentary opposites.

What are complementary opposites? They’re the Yin-yang within us, which make us complex emotional beings with rich inner worlds.

Think of the most boring and stereotypical people you’ve met. I can almost guarantee that they have either subscribed to neutrality or they’re caricatures of stereotypes.

Either way, they haven’t explored their masculine/feminine or their sun/moon or the shadow-self/light-self.

When you know your dark side, when you can man up and nurture others, or when you embrace the power of the sun as well as the moon, you’ll truly know yourself. You’ll also be able to draw on aspects of your personal power which others might not know you have.

In short, whether you’re male, female or a sliding scale in between, being able to reconcile your own duality will make you a bad-ass witch.

Witchy Tools

People might not tell you this, but it’s not really essential to use tools in witchcraft. On your own, you’re far more powerful than any magical implement can ever possibly be and the key to magic is knowing this and using it.

However, all that energetic potential you have swirling inside your being sometimes needs a focal point or a direction in order to be sent out with purpose and clarity. That’s where the tools of the trade come in. They’re symbols to help you direct your energy into a focal point in order to manifest and set intentions.

A tool is also an extension of your physical being, since magical workings will incorporate it into your energy field. That’s why no one shares tools and also why it is really important to choose them carefully.

Never rush the process of acquiring your tools. Always take your time to source them and make a connection. How do you know that you’ve found “the one”? You’ll feel a thrill in your heart and a longing in your gut which fills you with excited energy for all the possibilities ahead.

The reason why I say “acquiring” instead of “purchasing” is because not all tools are objects which money can buy, nor should they be. For example, I work with feathers and sea shells which I have stumbled across while walking and connecting with nature. I also acquired my staff that way (it’s a Druid thing, I know, not all witches feel a connection to using a staff).

That’s another thing; some blogs or videos or covens or orders will tell you which tools to use and what you should have. The problem is, not every witch is called to use every tool. It depends on what your skills are, or which area of witchcraft you’re most drawn to. A garden witch will work with tools attuned to gardening, whereas a kitchen witch will need different tools. Some witches like to work with the ocean, other prefer to work with fire, or crystals, or any number of other paths.

Your practice also evolves over time. What you connected to a year ago might not serve you anymore, or you may have expanded your repertoire to include more interests.

No doubt you’ll collect over the years, and that’s half the fun of it.

As a Hearth Witch these are the tools I have found most useful to me so far:

  • Book of Shadows (invaluable for keeping a record of rituals)
  • Shells and Feathers
  • Wooden staff
  • Sage smudge stick
  • White candles with black holders
  • Mortar and Pestle
  • Crystals
  • Selenite wand (I was so excited to find it in a crystal shop, I was expecting to get a wooden wand but knew this was my wand when I saw it)
  • Glass bottles for all my potions, herbs and salts
  • Cauldron incense burner (I love working with iron and this is especially cute)
  • Oracle deck (I have the Druid Animal Oracle deck, which has lovely drawings)
  • Wooden chest for little treasures (my brother gave me this when I was a teenager and he had filled it with Frankincense. These days I keep my little crystals in it and my pendulum, the Frankincense goes in a metal container)
  • Bessom (a witch needs to be able to clear her space for rituals)

No doubt the list will expand as I work. I’m currently getting a friend to forge me an Athame so that’s very exciting.

If you have a tool you like to work with, add it to the comments below and tell us what you love about it.

Black Salt Recipe

As all good witches know, black is a powerful colour to absorb and neutralise negativity. As all good healers know, activated charcoal is an excellent ingredient to absorb toxic chemicals from the body and transport them out.

If you have a need to cleanse and protect your space or property, Black Salt is an excellent tool to use and really simple to make. The only difficulty is that it’s more effective to make black salt from the ash of your incense cauldron or burner than to simply mix salt and activated charcoal (although you can do that too).

Ingredients

  • Salt (Epsom or sea or Himalayan salts are all good)
  • Activated Charcoal (can be bought from health food stores)
  • Ashes from your incense burner and sage stick
  • Scrapings of iron from your cauldron or cookware (only a small amount needed)
  • Black Tourmaline (only to sit in the salt and infuse with energy, can be cleaned afterward and placed back on your altar)
  • A jar with a tight seal, preferably in glass or metal.

For details on a cleansing ritual, click on the link in this paragraph. You can use the ash and salt from this ritual as ingredients in your black salt mix.

Grind any rock salt in a mortar and pestle, then add salts to the jar. Depending on how much area you need to cover, you might use a cup or two of salt.

Add a couple of teaspoons of activated charcoal and mix through.

Collect the ash from your burner and sage stick and grind them into a fine powder in the mortar and pestle. Add that into the mix.

Add the iron shavings and black tourmaline crystal. Secure the lid and then roll the jar around gently to mix the ingredients. Say the following invocation as you roll the jar around in your hands;

Salt of the earth and ash of the fire, absorb all negativity and set me free to inspire.

Carefully extract the tourmaline before using the salt as a boundary sprinkle outside, or an additive to your bath (clean the tub thoroughly afterwards) or sprinkle a little on the floor of your car, or keep a little open jar of it beside your bed. The uses are almost endless, but remember it will make a serious mess if not contained.

Energy Cleansing Ritual

This is a ritual which you can use to clear stagnant or discordant energy from your life. Use as often as you need to.

Incense Ingredients

  • White Sage
  • Frankincense
  • Myrrh
  • Cinnamon Bark
  • Lemon Zest (dried overnight)
  • Rosemary (dried)
  • Lavender (dried)
  • Juniper berries

Crush or tear up any of the bigger pieces and combine everything into an airtight container, preferably either glass, wood or metal. Don’t use plastic, it’ll mess with the energy.

Can be burnt on a charcoal disc inside a heat-proof container like a cast-iron cauldron. Use lava rocks in the bottom to create an extra heat layer. Sand can be used, but the rocks are better if you wish to use the ashes in a black salt recipe.

Ritual Tools

  • White candle
  • Incense and burner
  • Selenite of Clear Quartz Crystal
  • Glass of water (filtered and fresh)
  • Feather to help disperse the smoke (I find them on walks, rather than take from a dead animal)
  • Bowl of salt
  • A suitable meditation music track playing quietly (can be found on YouTube)

Set up your ritual space, play the misc track and cast a circle of protection using the crystal. Call in your guides and angels or light-beings. Ask for their support and protection.

Light the candle and then light the charcoal disc and place in the burner.

Center yourself, close your eyes and listen to the music. Connect to all the elements and ask them to assist in clearing away any unwanted energy. Fire to burn it up, air to freshen your spirit, water to wash everything clean, and earth to absorb the mess and transmute it into new growth.

Add the incense to the burner and use the feather to brush the smoke up and around you. Feel free to stand up and continue to add incense while wafting the smoke all around your body and through your aura.

Visualize the smoke clearing out old energy and invigorating new energy. Imagine it filling any pockets of boundary breaches with white smoke which then turns to sparkling light. Bring a rainbow of colours into your aura, bright and pure.

Waft the bowl of salt through the incense smoke and say;

I purify this salt of the earth, may it ground me and guard me.

Next, waft the glass of water through the smoke and say;

I purify this water, may it cleanse me and wash away my troubles.

Now drink the glass of water and feel the sensation of it washing through you, crystal clear.

You can take the salt and sprinkle it on a piece of ground outside, then stand on it and visualize any residual gunk oozing out through your feet and into the earth. The salt will draw out any impurities and neutralize them.

The salt can also be kept, or some of it kept, to make black salt as well as the ashes from the incense.

Thank your guides and light-beings, remove the circle and snuff out the candle.

Why Healers are Always Sick

It’s a truth universally acknowledged that a sick person must be in want of healing. But what if you’re both the sick person and the healer? How does that work?

A continuously healthy person cannot understand the healing arts. They haven’t spent enough time holding an illness within their own body, integrated the sensations and feelings, then transmuted them out again.

Also, someone who has struggled with their own health will have spent quite a bit of time seeking out remedies and if you’re anything like me, you will have used yourself as a guinea pig to figure out what works and what doesn’t.

There’s an old saying; Physician, heal thyself. It’s supposed to be ironic in that a healer shouldn’t be sick in the first place, and also that a sick person cannot be their own healer. In our society we are taught not to trust someone who hasn’t already got it all figured out and only take advice from those who display the paramount example of physical perfection.

It’s a load of crap.

If you have been put here on this earth to be a healer, you’re not going to be given excellent health throughout your life. What would be the point of that? You would have no impetus to seek out and understand remedies.

Instead, if you have endured ill health from a young age and survived to become an adult, or have experienced a breakdown in health as a young adult, or possibly both, this isn’t the universe punishing you; this is your schooling. You’re in training to fully understand the body and integrate this into your healing practice.

hieroglyph 4

Does that mean you should stay sick? No, of course not. You’re always supposed to be resolving lessons throughout life. If you have risen to the challenge of being a healer, then you should be able to gain small victories along the way.

Remember, an illness or a condition is not who you are. It’s just a challenge. When you let something define you, that’s when you have lost the battle. Even if the condition is permanent, it does not have the power to decide who you are and what you do with your life. Only you can exercise that power and choose to either give it away, or take control of it.

Overcoming adversity is how we learn best. It sucks, but it’s true. The reason why we learn better that way is because it forces us to care, and research has proven that our emotions tie closely to our memories. This means that the stronger an emotion, the stronger the memory.

We’re meant to care. One of the most crucial lessons we learn in this life is self-care, because it underpins any practice of helping others.

Wanna be a bad-ass witch healer? Figure out how to heal yourself and then you can teach others how to get there for themselves.

The Moon, the Goddess & the Pentacle

For the last 2000 years the number 13 has been demonised by the Romans and subsequently the Christian Church. But what is the significance of the number 13? Why does it pose such a threat to patriarchal religion?

The obvious answer is that it is the number of the Goddess, or the divine feminine aspect of consciousness. That’s the simple answer, but there is a whole lot more to it than that and the symbolism goes very deep.

First of all, Goddess was usually related to the moon. In pagan cultures, they observed the months of the year by lunar cycles and had a 13 month calendar (13 x 28 = 364 days, almost a perfect year). The early Romans instead observed a 10 month calendar because they believed that 10 represented perfection since it almost a neutral number, or possibly a number of duality like binary code.

Later on the Romans changed their calendar to 12 months with the addition of July (named after Julius Caesar) and August (named after Emperor Augustus). This pushed September from 7th to 9th, October from 8th to 10th, November from 9th to 11th and December from 10th to 12th, which is why their names no longer correspond to the Latin numbers they’re named after.

The number 12 is significant to the Jewish and Christian faiths as a representation of God, or the masculine aspect of deity. It is an orderly number which underpins much of the universal code of reality, as does the number 9. If you would like to know more about this subject, watch the video below:

So we know the moon goes through 13 months every year, as does the female reproductive system. This is more than enough to tie it to the Goddess, and to femininity. However, there’s more.

For the planet Venus and our planet, Earth, to align with one another in the same position of the sky, they must cycle through different numbers of orbits around the sun:

As the video showed, for every 8 orbits that Earth makes, Venus must make 13 in order to come back into alignment with the Earth. The resulting pattern played out in the cosmos is a 5-pointed star, or the flower of life, or the Pentacle. All of those symbols are associated with Goddess and all of them refer to the secret of new life.

So how did the Church demonise this aspect of deity? They called the “devil” Lucifer, which meant the Morning Star. Venus is the first star we see at night and last one we see before morning, which makes it the Morning Star. If you want to run a smear campaign against feminine deity, turn it into the devil.

They also turned the number 13 into an omen of evil. They refer to Judas as the 13th member of the last supper, and therefore it becomes a number of betrayal. The King of France arrested the Nights Templar on Friday the 13th of October 1307, again perpetuating that number as unlucky or cursed in some way.

As witches, both male and female, it is important for us to reclaim this number and to remember what it truly represents.

The last important aspect of the relationship between Venus and Earth is that for every 13 orbits of Venus, we orbit 8 times. This ties into the pagan observance of 13 lunar months cycling through the Wheel of the Year, or the 8 festivals. Once more, 13 is the goddess (Venus and the Moon) and 8 is associated with the Earth (planet and seasons).

If you live the pagan tradition of 8 Sabbats and 13 Esbats you will cycle through a harmonious year of balance between masculine and feminine energy. This balanced way of approaching the divine allows both male and female to co-exist as partners rather than adversaries, free from oppression or rejection.