Where there is a woman there is magic. If there is a moon falling from her mouth, she is a woman who knows her magic, who can share or not share her powers. A woman with a moon falling from her mouth, roses between her legs and tiaras of Spanish moss, this woman is a consort of the spirits. — Ntozake Shange, Sassafrass, Cypress, & Indigo
Another repost, I will post some methods for finding / calling your familiars later in the week .
Well actually that might end up being after Yule . :)
We have all heard about cats and rats as Witches’ Familiars, but do you really understand what a Familiar is? A Familiar is an animal you have a psychic connection with, or one that will help you with magick. Most modern Witches don’t have Familiars, they have pets and animal companions whom they love dearly.
There are two types of Familiars identified in The Witch-Cult of Western Europe (1921). There is the physical (domestic) Familiar and the spiritual (divining) Familiar.
The domestic Familiar is an animal that stays with the Witch, provides magickal assistance and represents sacred nature. The divining Familiar is an animal, usually wild, that is in the Witch’s life for a short time, and can change from year to year. The divining Familiar provides spiritual guidance, teachings and is connected with the animals within us.
You can call upon your Familiars for help. Finding your divining Familiar is a long, meditative process. Many Witches have neglected finding their divining Familiar, although there has recently been a resurgence of totem animals (using the Native interpretation of animals). The domestic Familiar is easier to contact, simply because it is with you all the time.
The domestic Familiar is sacred, a representation of the Goddess and God in living form. As a Witch, or as a Pagan, you have a heritage of a connection with nature, a spiritual connection with animals. Your pet is not necessarily a domestic Familiar, so don’t think that you can force your hamster into magickal service for you.
The animal must want to work with you. Never force an animal. If it leaves the room when you start to cast a circle, don’t chase after it. It does not want to participate, and will not be your domestic Familiar.
Along those same lines, never bind, cage or restrict the movement of your domestic Familiar during magickal work. So if your hamster won’t stay with you unless you cage it, your hamster will never be a domestic Familiar. The animal must be free to come and go as it pleases during all magickal and spell work.
Do not harm your domestic Familiar, especially during magickal work. Do not put candles and incense at a level where tails and whiskers can burn, do not use an athame or knife that could cut them, and do not allow them to chow down on your herbs and ritual foods. If your domestic Familiar is injured or becomes ill as a result of your magick, you will offend the Goddess and bring her wrath down on you. Not good!
Consider alternatives to candles and incense. Draw a picture of a flame, use one of those fireplace videos, use a battery-operated fake candle (like the kind that go on Christmas trees), use anything that represents fire or flames to you, without actually being fire or flames. For incense replacements, use any air tool: a bell, a feather, a dandelion head, an environmental CD with the sound of the wind, and so on.
If you do not have an animal in your life that currently acts as your domestic Familiar, or one that doesn’t want to, give some serious thought to whether or not you want to run out and buy one.
You can’t just go buy an animal and assume it will help make you a stronger, more powerful Witch. They can be rescued, found or borrowed (an occasional visit from your neighbor’s cat might have more meaning than you think), Domestic Familiars can be a pigeon you feed every day, the dog you’ve had since you were a child, or a cat that visits at dinner time. As long as the animal is willing, it can be trained as a domestic Familiar.
Your domestic Familiar will find you, when you are ready. Don’t think that you can hide a dog from the landlord, a rat from your parents, or a cat from your children. If you don’t have an animal in your life who may become your domestic Familiar, you can call one. But remember, it’s their choice to reveal themselves. You’ll know instinctively.
Pet ownership familiar or not is a huge responsibility , please make sure you are ready to take on this life partner before you make the decision to try and find them .
As the wheel of the year turns again, it is a wonderful time to embrace the changes in nature and our own lives, as well as our existence together on this changing planet. Unfortunately, we are often too flooded with holiday shopping lists, family drama, travel snafus, work deadlines, and the stresses of gift-giving, office parties, and carol singing to enjoy all the magick this season holds.
Yet beyond the craziness of the holiday, this magickal season does reflect similarities with the ones celebrated by our ancestors. Those who honored the turning of the wheel, and Yule, participated in pagan rituals which history has noted were later adopted and adapted by the Church, to influence followers. Thus, similarities arise in the celebrations of Christmas and Yule.
For Yule, known as the Winter Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere and the Summer Solstice in the Southern Hemisphere, celebrates the arrival of the sun and rebirth of light, played out as the Oak and Holly King battle. Christmas emphasizes the birth of Jesus Christ, the son of God and the light of salvation, with the Nativity. As pagans offer ritual and libations to honor the Gods of grain and vine, the Church shares bread and wine to represent the body and blood of Christ.
During Yule, the Oak and Sun King were honored by ancestors through decoration and ritual as they appreciated the extra light, warmth and strength, longer days of daylight and enhanced fertility of their crops and animals. Pine trees, evergreen wreaths, holly, mistletoe, gold pillar and bayberry candles and dried fruit, meats, nuts, apples, clove spiked oranges and cider were popular in festivities, much as they are today. Even Christmas lighting inside and out was used by ancestors to honor Gods.
Our ancestors hoped for large harvests and often fasted before the Sabbat, later feasting on Boar’s Head, oxen, and wine with much pageantry, while sharing food and small gift-giving of honey, figs, popular pastries, cakes, coins and candles with the community. Today, some fast and then enjoy sharing the same festive dishes and family recipes including rosemary seasoned fowl, turkey and pork, smelts, mashed potatoes or potato latkes, and stuffed mushrooms, along with eggnog, spiced cider and ale, and roasted chestnuts, powdered caraway cookies, honey balls, and Yule Log Cake.
So whether celebrating Yule or Christmas, we can offer to garnish the similarities while adding our own magickal enhancements. Place a Yule Log in the fireplace, or put one used as a base for candles on the mantle, and then brighten up the day with a bonfire celebration. Invite the aroma of spiced cider and decorations of evergreen, pine, wheat stalks, sprigs of Holly, and mistletoe in to your home. Enhance your tree with Yule Spell Ornaments filled with bayberry, juniper berries, cinnamon, elderberry, frankincense and myrrh along with intentions for harmony, peace, success, health and happiness.
This season, take the time to pause, inhale and acknowledge the turn of the wheel. Integrate the changes in nature along with the spirit of the season and simply be. For like our ancestors, we too are surviving from one moment to the next. So put aside societal expectations and pressures and create a ritual infused with the elements, vibrations and sensations that resonate with you. And then add in a hearty splash of your own majick to the festivities to truly enjoy the presence of this season!
It amazes me how since the beginning of our species, we have been so obsessed with getting answers about ourselves, the future, and the uknown that we have tried to find them in everything. From the moon, to seeds in dung. XD;
Most people only know the word “necromancy” but here are a few more interesting ones:
selenomancy divination by studying the moon
sideromancy divination using stars; divination by burning straws
spasmatomancy divination by twitching or convulsions of the body
spatilomancy divination by means of feces
spheromancy divination using a crystal balls
podomancy divination by means of ashes
stercomancy fortune-telling by studying seeds in dung
stichomancy divination by picking passages from books at random
stolisomancy divination by observing how one dresses oneself
sycomancy divination using fig leaves
tephromancy divination by ashes
theomancydivination by means of oracles
thrioboly divination using pebbles
thumomancy divination by means of one’s own soul
tiromancy divination using cheese
topomancy divination using landforms
trochomancy divination by studying wheel tracks
uranomancy divination by studying the heavens
urimancy divination by observing urine
xenomancy divination using strangers
xylomancy divination by examining wood found in one’s path
zoomancy divination by observing animals