Learning Witchcraft these days, one would think, is so much easier than it used to be before the internet. That is true in many ways, however, the misinformation and lack of depth means that people are NOT learning properly themselves, then going on to ‘teach’ others with incompetence or simply teaching the wrong things. I’m not saying it’s all wrong, in fact there are some fabulous authors out there. Unfortunately, you need to read 10-20 books in order to find the one that teaches necessary foundational skills and the information one truly needs to get started on the path.
It has become fashionable to fill books with the same old fluff and seems to be what publishers want, meaning that the real knowledge and ‘Gold’ is being diluted and lost. So, what DOES one need to learn in order to be the best Witch possible? Everything you possibly can, and never stop learning!
But first things first, here are my recommendations on where to start and what to focus on learning first:
1. Know Thyself: This one is absolutely imperative! You must get to know yourself in all your parts. If you don’t know who you truly are, what you want/don’t want, your feelings and thoughts etc… you will not be able to control your mind or direct your thoughts, which is necessary for Magick.
2. Meditation (various forms): This is how you learn to not only gain control of your own mind, thoughts, feelings and body, but it also opens you up to receive communications from other beings and to be able to sense different energies.
3. Energy: Learn all about energy – what it is, how it works, how to sense, build, manipulate and direct it. Magick is energy, as is EVERYTHING else. This is where it all starts and ends.
4. Foundational Skills of Magick: This actually ties in with the top three. When you know the skills, you can perform successful spells, rituals and any Magick, anywhere, anytime with nothing but yourself and your own mind.
5. Grounding, Centring and Protection: These will often fall under ‘Energy’ or ‘Foundational Skills’ as they are 3 things that one must be able to do with ease before performing any rituals, spells or magickal acts.
6. Cleansing Space and Self: You need to ensure that your space and energy field are clear of harmful and unhelpful energies as well as that which does not belong to you.
7. Theory: Learn the history of Witchcraft, different types of magickal practices, the difference between Witchcraft and Wicca (coming in next issue) and the various beliefs of those who practise.
8. REMEMBER – Your Beliefs are Your Own Though, so don’t take anything as absolute truth until you test it for yourself. We as Witches do not believe anything blindly. We do not follow dogmatic traditions or believe things ‘because it is written’. We experience for ourselves and tune into our own soul’s truth. Beliefs can and do evolve over time as we grow.
9. Nature’s Cycles: Moon cycles and what they influence, seasonal cycles and what happens in YOUR local area; it is important to get to know your land. Most books work with seasons and the wheel of the year as was written many decades ago, relating to the climate in the UK at the time. Learn about your own home, the plants and animals, what their powers are and how you can live in tune with them.
I would love to go deeper into this for you, as there is so much more to learn. This is just a starting point for you. I will leave you with two very important things to remember though. First, you do NOT need fancy tools or items to do Magick. When you learn properly, the only thing you need is yourself. Secondly, intention IS NOT EVERYTHING!! It is important but is only ONE of many things. Check my article on the essential components of Magick for more on that.
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