Category: Pagan

If there is one book that needs to be read by every Wiccan practitioner, it is this. WICCA: A guide for the solitary practitioner. By Scott Cunningham This book is awesome! There are many people out there who would like to practice Wicca and are unable to find a coven in their neighborhood. This book teaches them all about how to practice Wicca in the privacy of their home. The author introduces Wicca as it is today, a nature loving religion that is also a peaceful, harmonious lifestyle which promotes Oneness with the Divine and everything else around us visible or invisible.

This is a very easy book to read, written in simple, assertive style. Scott Cunningham has also included his Book of Shadows in this book which details rituals for Sabbats and Esbats, recipes as well as other important initiations and rituals that is relevant to any Wicca practitioner.

Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft by Raymond Buckland
This is a very comprehensive book on Wicca. This book begins with a history and philosophy of Witchcraft and moves on to earlier practices, tools and clothing. There is also detailed information on Coven initiation, self dedication, and other rituals. My favorites were the chapters on Channeling and Divination. The author goes on to describe Auric healing, Gem therapy, Meditation as well as the advantages of positive thinking in Magickal ways of life. Rituals are given a lot of importance in this book. The reader can learn how to create spells, form a coven or establish a church or temple for Wicca. The book ends with a descriptive chapter on the different Wiccan denominations. Overall, this book is, in my opinion, a best reference book to keep forever.

To stir a Magick Cauldron A Witch's guide to Casting and Conjuring by Silver RavenWolf
This book is for beginners who would like to understand Wicca from the ground up and be able to start working spells as soon as possible. The author starts with information on creating your sacred space and conjuring the mechanics o fQuarters. She helps us cast circles, and continues to lead us into major spell working.

Most impatient teens who get introduced to the Wiccan religion are in a hurry to start working spells. However, it is very important to understand how we clear a space and invite the Powers and Energies necessary to guide our intentions. This book also includes information on the Craft Community including the Witches Anti-Discrimination Lobby and the International Wiccan/Pagan press Alliance.There is also a Wicca 101 test to see if you have understood the essentials of practicing Wicca in your life.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about Wicca Books Reviews here:

The Wiccan religion believes that all things in nature including ourselves are sacred and have magickal properties. The rituals and ceremonies in this religion focus on using objects from the earth such as stones, sticks, crystals and herbs. Some of these items are used in the altar and "charged" with positive energy believed to protect the person holding it or wearing it.

Most jewelry used by followers of this religion are objects that promote healing and spiritual completeness. It can also be a symbol of of transformation and appreciation of the Wiccan beliefs and traditions. The pentagram in a circle is the most recognizable symbol in the Wicca culture and it symbolizes the integration of the physical and spirit worlds.

Due to the aggressive nature of the organized religions, the Wicca or other pagan religions sometimes had to resort to secrecy in their daily lives, wearing symbols that are sacred to them mysteriously disguised as flowers or other intricate designs on pendants, bracelets, etc. Sometimes the jewelry may be in the shape of weapons such as the Athame, Sword or Thor's hammer to signify protection for the wearer.

The planets, the Sun and the Moon are also very important for Wiccans. As a result, moon shaped pendants, earrings, rings and amulets are very commonly used. Sometimes the combination of the new moon and full moon is worn to represent the Horned God, who represents the masculine polarity of the Universe. Also, the three phases of the moon, waxing, waning or full are used in several designs to revere the Lunar Triple Goddess.

Egyptian Hieroglyphs are also used in designs such as a circle with extensions for the cow goddess Hathor, who represents feminine centered Pagans. Other symbols that are used in Wiccan Jewelry are the Wheel of the Year with eight spokes and the Witch's sign, which is used to mark ritual tools.

The emblem of Seax-Wicca which symbolizes the sun, moon and the eight holy days and Hecate's wheel, an ancient Greek symbol also is used by certain practitioners of the religion. The seven pointed Elven Star is also used by followers of Celtic style Faery Wicca.

Asatru symbols as well as symbols from African and Native American cultures as well as ancient Hindu and Greek symbols are also used in Wiccan jewelry. Other themes for jewelry are female deities, male deities, Stonehenge, witches and wizards, Tree of life, Gothic Cross, Dragon and Fairy designs, Viking Axes and Shields, Viking Ships, Runic Horses, Bat wings, Tetragrammaton, Triquetra, Chakra wheels, Ravens, and Cat symbols.

Tarot card designs such as the Moon, the Sun, The Star and the World as well as the signs of the Zodiac (Aquarius, Taurus, Gemini, etc.), are very popular when used in traditional Wiccan jewelry.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about Wiccan jewelry here:

Most of us have heard of lucky charms such as the rabbit's foot and the four leaved clover.

The use of these objects as good luck charms began in the early ages of human civilization, when people started to treasure simple, everyday objects and assumed that they would help them against the "evil eye". They believed that these treasures often worn as talismans, amulets or symbols carved on rocks would help them in times of visible and invisible dangers. It is believed that lucky charms were worn by most of the ancient cultures including Africans, Chinese, Indians, Native Americans and Europeans.

Some of the magickal charms used in the old days include religious objects such as statues or symbols of a deity or gemstones that were believed to safeguard the person wearing it. The swastika (fylfot cross), which is as ancient as Hinduism, is one such symbol that was used extensively over the years up to the present times. It was actually perceived to be in use in almost all civilizations including the Native Americans who were believed to have moved to the Americas from Indian subcontinent during the last ice-age (20,000+ years ago!)

Lucky charms are used most when a person is afraid of facing uncertainty or dangers in their path. In ancient Africa, carrying a swift animal's foot or other parts was believed to empower a person with the speed of the animal. That is how the use of "rabbits foot" as a lucky charm originated. Also, African Voodoo ceremonies included a "Mojo" bag or good luck bag that would carry objects such a feathers, teeth, spices and herbs for luck as well as for use in spells and ceremonies.

The Chinese people used rice as a symbol of luck. In the past, they captured crickets and kept them in boxes to attract fortune. Also coins or money were spread on the floor for auspicious occasions. Yantras, Rudraksha beads, horse shoe, etc are also considered lucky charms.

Talismans were created by chanting prayers to conjure protective spirits who energized them with magical powers. These ceremonies were usually performed on auspicious days under favorable astrological signs.

In Ireland, followers or St Patrick adopted the Shamrock or the four leaf clover as a symbol of the luck of the Irish. During the time of the Medieval Crusades, when Christians turned violent towards non-Christians under the pope's orders, people who followed other religions turned to magickal charms to save their lives. The Nordic countries used magickal alphabet knows as "runes" for protection, carving these symbols on stones to prevent danger and destruction. The period of the Crusades was a terrible time for followers of pagan religions.

During the middle ages, a Romanian prince, Vlad the Impaler horribly tortured and killed thousands of people. Legends of undead or vampires spread fear into the hearts of people and as plague advanced and killed even more, people turned to the religious symbols such as the Crucifix as well as natural remedies such as garlic for protection from the supernatural threats.

In recent times, people have used medals, statues of St. Jude, St Christopher, lucky clothes, lucky pennies, etc as charms.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about lucky charms here:

There was once a time, when magickal beings started appearing on earth; wise ones who knew that since they came from nature and would return to nature it was urgent that they didn't affect the delicate balance of all that constituted our environment on this paradise. They revered the land, the seasons, celebrated the Sun and the Moon and held all animals sacred to their hearts.

As civilizations grew and selfishness and greed enveloped the world, wars and destruction became common and human beings found weapons to kill each other and thought of themselves as civilized and advanced societies. They created new religions and almost destroyed the old magickal cultures.

Deep in their hearts, some of these beings still held on to old beliefs and traditions which were the secret to the survival of our universe. These religions were called "pagan religions" by the ignorant warlords who used the new religions to conquer and destroy magickal people they called "savages" and "heathens". They also tried to kill and burn people who did not believe in these new religions and called them Satanic or evil to incite the common people to destroy them.

Further, they came up with the idea of "Hell" where people would go to, if they did not believe in these new religions.

However, magick always prevails. In spite of the greed and ignorance of these so called "advanced" religions, some of the wiser, gentler, nature worshipping religions survived. They didn't bomb each other, they didn't create havoc and they didn't pollute the world. They respected the environment, taking only enough, leaving plenty for others and never breaking the laws of nature.

Wicca is one of those nature loving religions that was practiced in Northern Europe before the advent of the middle-eastern Judeo-Christian religions and is now on its way to a revival in many parts of the world.

The Wiccans celebrate the cycles of nature and the four seasons, the Sunrise and Sunset as well as the phases of the Moon. They worship the Female Goddess as well as the Male God, and believe that all of us have the power of the cosmic energy that created us. "Wicca" is the old English term for witch. All ancient religions practiced some form of magick. Most of the witches worshipped nature and looked upon all creation as sacred.

Unlike some of the other religions which accept a male God and give up everything to HIS will, Wiccans believe that the Goddess and God are divine powers WHO guide us in our search for spiritual harmony and our urge to CREATE.

Nature had to take a backseat to wars and politics while fundamentalists attacked each other with bombs and chemical weapons to manipulate nature for selfish purposes. The answer to this catastrophic behavior is simple - to return to a peaceful, nature loving way of life.

Natural religions are being accepted back into cultures as a response to the tremendous damage done by modern religions on the earth's resources and environment. Wicca seems to be one of the answers to such a dilemma.
Anyone can join the Wiccan religion. Although there are groups of Wiccans (covens) that make rules and initiate others into this religion, there are no basic requirements to join this religion other than a yearning to live a life of peace and joy in harmony with nature.

Anyone wishing to join the Wicca religion can read and study its history, principles and practice, perform the self-initiation ceremony and start practicing the religion immediately.

Wiccans usually have certain objects that are used for rituals and spells. To increase concentration, objects such as candles, incense, large pots (cauldrons), cups (chalice) and natural treasures such as sticks, stones, wood, etc are used. The symbol of a 5 pointed star, called a pentagram is especially significant to this religion and is used in rituals and ceremonies. To emphasize the importance of these ceremonies, Wiccans use ceremonial robes and wands. There are many books and websites on the Wiccan tools and sacred objects used in rituals.

Wiccans believe that whatever we do in life, whether it has a positive or negative outcome, we get it back three-fold. This is sometimes called the Threefold Law. Because of this belief, Wiccans always think before doing harm to anyone.

Magick is the method of directing energy that is around us to produce a pre-determined outcome. Magick is a command that is directed to the world with the expectation of immediate action. It's a reinforcement of an expected outcome, without a hint of a doubt that it may not happen. Magick not a plea to an all powerful God, it's a command to the divine Goddess of nature who is always ready to make it happen.

Tis the witching hour of night,
Orbed is the moon and bright,
And the stars they glisten, glisten,
Seeming with bright eyes to listen
For what listen they?
John Keats (1795 - 1821)

Wicca is a healing tradition that is based on the love of the Earth. Herbs and healing crystals as well as stones are usually used in rituals. The more they practice the religion, the better they get at understanding how spirituality can restore the world. Wiccans can help heal people with herbal remedies and other holistic healing methods such as Reiki and Meditation.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about wiccan religion here:

There are regularly much discussion within - and without - Wiccan circles on the practice of Magick and its ethical implications. During such discussions the topic of white and black Magick invariably arises. For the uninitiated it may appear that two completely different Magickal arts are addressed and that two completely different groups of practitioners are involved in its practice. This is, in fact, a bit of a fallacy.

Consider a pallet containing oil paints. The white oil paint is simply white, and whilst it contains all other colors, it shows none of the characteristics of other colors. The red oil paint on the palate is simply a primary red. When you paint a pair of lips, you could use just the red or you could mix the red paint into the white paint, to create a brand new color - pink - that possesses some of the characteristics of red. If more red is added than white, the ensuing color will be dark pink. If more white is added than red, the resulting color will be a light or pastel pink.

Magick, like the color white, is neutral. To be neutral, it has to contain both positive and negative without displaying characteristics of either. Performing Magick refers to the act of engaging with certain universal and natural elements to affect a change to other universal and natural elements. To this is added human intent or will.

Human intent or will is like one of the colors on the pallet. It can never be neutral and will subsequently serve to disrupt the neutrality of Magick. If the intent is positive, the neutrality in Magick will swing to the positive side or differently put, be positively charged. If the intent is negative, the Magick performed will swing to the negative side and negatively charged.

Now, painting is painting. It is an act. The picture painted will contain colors and form. The colors and form are decided upon by the artist and can either be pleasing and beautiful or offensive and ugly. Magick is Magick, too. It will contain neutral universal and natural elements. The result of the Magick, will reflect what the magician wishes to achieve and can either be positive and constructive or negative and destructive.

Positive and constructive Magick, is commonly referred to as White Magick, Negative and destructive Magick, is referred to as Black Magick. If we are really pragmatic about this, all Magick is white due to its neutrality, and black Magick non-existent because black is not a color. The choice of words is historic: perhaps the term "Black Magic" has its origin in the Burning Times and "White Magick" in the neo-pagan movement of the previous century.

Whether these terms are semantically correct or not, is an academic debate. The point is that practitioners of Magick prefer describing the path they follow in this way. Right hand path practitioners perform White Magick and Left hand path practitioners perform Black Magick. This is the common assumption. Strictly speaking this is not true either.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about white and black witchcraft here:

If you know anything about word etymology, you would know that the word "Celtic" is derived from the Greek word "Keltoi" and it refers to the people who lived beyond the Alps. In modern geography, Keltoi included France, Germany and northern Italy; but did not originally include Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England as the Greeks were unaware of its existence altogether.

The terms "Celtic Wicca" and "Celtic Witchcraft" are often used interchangeably, but are in truth not one and the same. Wicca is a modern neo-pagan movement, founded by Gerald Gardner. Celtic Wicca refers to a specific Wiccan path which incorporates several of the elements of the Celtic Tradition into their practices, beliefs and rituals. Celtic Witchcraft, on the other hand, is the traditional Craft as practiced by Celtic Witches for centuries, perhaps even millennia. There are sadly very few of the original and truly traditional Celtic Witches around today.

The traditions, practices and beliefs of Celtic Wicca are relatively diverse and to some extent dependent on the lineage of the coven. Each coven within a single lineage may also have their own special deities, rituals, traditions, practices and beliefs. The very nature of Wicca promotes eclecticism - irrespective of the path that is followed.

Strong spirituality, a reverence for the Earth and respect for everything the earth contains, form the basis of Celtic Wicca. An integral part of this religion is the love for and worship of Celtic Goddesses and Gods.

The pantheon is three tiered. On the first tier you will find the children and subjects of Danu / Anu (the Mother Goddess) and Dagda (the Father God). On the second tier are the children of the first tier Gods and Goddesses. They sometimes bumped into humans and nature spirits. Nature spirits form the third tier of the pantheon.

The Celts celebrate the Triple Goddess. She is Danu/Anu in Her maiden aspect, Badb in Her mother aspect and Ceridwen in Her crone aspect.

Although there have been some historic "battles of the sexes" in the traditional Celtic Witchcraft, Celtic Wicca opted for parity and peace. Unlike Dianic Wicca, in which there is either female dominance or exclusivity, Celtic Wicca has a gender-equal belief. Of interest in the Celtic pantheon is that the female goddesses are the warriors (Badb, Brigantia, Macha, Nemain etc.) and also that the Goddesses have multiple portfolios (Brigid = Healing, Fertility, Poetry and the Forge), whereas the Gods generally only have a single task to accomplish.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about Celtic wicca here:
...and ask her any question here:

Modern Witchcraft is both the product of evolution and invention. For a thousand years, traditional witches had to remain underground for fear of persecution, torture and death. Whilst many books were published on the topic of Witchcraft during the Middle Ages, the content was without exception, aimed at sketching the Craft as an evil, maleficent practice. The grotesque image of the Craft was fed by unadulterated lies and fabrications by those who claimed to be experts. These self-proclaimed experts also happened to be lackeys of Rome and supporters of that genocidal period labeled the "Burning Times" today.

The first well researched and impartial study of Witchcraft was undertaken by Egyptologist, folklorist and anthropologist, Margaret Murray, who published "The Witch-Cult in Western Europe" in 1921. She was also a close friend of Gerald Gardner, who is seen to be the founder of Modern Witchcraft together with Doreen Valiente. Whilst Witchcraft started re-emerging from the proverbial broom closet in the 1930s, it was only after the repeal of anti-Witchcraft Acts in the 1950s that a notable resurgence started taking place.

Sadly, Traditional Witchcraft was all but completely lost. Hence, only some of the original practices survived. Where practices lacked, these had to be reinvented or borrowed and amended. The subsequent additions and changes saw the birth of a new pagan movement: Wicca - a modern form of Witchcraft. Perhaps an overview of the differences will show that there is not that great a difference between the Old Ways and the New Ways after all.

Learning the Craft

Traditional Witchcraft is an oral tradition. Knowledge and practices were transmitted in person from one generation of witches to the next. Nothing was ever documented: perhaps out of fear, perhaps because of illiteracy or perhaps a little of both. Modern Witches can study the craft in a coven setup or on their own as solitaries. The book stores and the internet offer a large variety of high quality information to those wanting to learn the Craft.

Gardner developed the Book of Shadows concept. The Book of Shadows will typically contain the Creation Myth, the Rede, the Coven's Laws, a herbal grimoire, correspondences, recipes for potions, oils, brews and incense, correspondences, a list of tools, ritual descriptions and Spells, amongst others. Considering the vast amount of wisdom and knowledge lost during the Burning Times, this is most appropriate practice - one that the vast majority of Wiccans diligently adhere to.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about modern witchcraft traditions here:

Some of the most beautiful and honest vows I have heard are from those involved in a Pagan ritual, the Wicca Handfasting or Handbinding.

This is a ceremony that binds two individuals together but instead of traditional wedding vows, the two are bound by their belief in one another and their promises to the Natural world around them.

I simply love this type of ceremony. There is something so peaceful and beautiful there. Not only is it the colours and smiles, as with every weddings, but also the grounded suitability and altruism of the people involved.

Pagan Handfasting involves a number of different aspects. It can be done in several ways but the most popular is for the two individuals holding hands and the celebrant wraps a cord or ribbon around their hands, tying a knot in it. The couple exchange promises (and kiss - I think it is a great time to put a kiss in there) and then the celebrant unwraps the cord without untying the knot, thus symbolising their union.

Guests may be asked to stand in a circle to call the quarters, lighting of a unity candle and ultimately, the "binding of hands". There can be any number of readings and sometimes the Jumping of the Broom! Overall the ceremony is full of rituals that are centuries old.

Some like to promise their love for "as long as it lasts" and after such time are free to part ways. A more traditional view is for the promise of a betrothal of "a year and a day", at which point it can be decided to renew or not. Equally "a lifetime"and"for all of eternity" can be appropriate pledges.

The time of day, the setting of the sun and moon and time in the year are all important aspects. The most important is choosing the right celebrant to write an individual script for the happy couple involved. (Hint, Hint!)


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Wicca Explained

Wicca is commonly described as a Neopagan faith, though Isaac Bonewits, the influential Neo-druid, has claimed that early
Wicca (at a time when it was still called "Witchcraft") was in fact a Meso-Pagan path. Wicca as a religion was introduced by Gerald Gardner in the 1950s.
Wicca is a deep appreciation and
awe in watching the sunrise or sunset, the forest in the light of a glowing moon, a meadow enchanted by the first light of day.

Wicca is the fall of colorful autumn leaves, and the softness of winter snow.
Wicca is a belief system and way of life based upon the reconstruction of pre-Christian traditions originating in Ireland, Scotland, and Wales.
Wiccan believe that the spirit of the One, Goddess and God exist in all things.

Wiccans do NOT believe in hurting people, taking drugs, killing animals, telling lies, doing sexually perversive acts,
drinking animal's blood, stealing, summoning demons (they don't believe in demons) or performing Black magic.
Wiccan beliefs vary between different traditions, however there are commonalities between the various groups,
which usually revolve around views on theology, the afterlife, magic and morality.

Wiccan beliefs vary between different traditions, however there are commonalities between the various groups,
which usually revolve around views on theology, the afterlife, magic and morality.

Wicca as a religion was introduced by Gerald Gardner in the 1950s. Wicca is not an ancient religion, but Gardner did incorporate
some old esoteric knoweldge into his original tradition, including Eastern mysticism, Kabballah, and British legend.
Wicca is the native tradition for the nations of England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales, and is rooted in the period
before 500 BC which marks the start of the iron age. Wicca is a Neo-Pagan religion based on the pre-Christian traditions ofEngland,
Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. Wicca is based on a deep respect for nature and the certain knowledge that we do not have the right to exploit it for our own gain.
Looking to find information on Wicca, then visit to find the best advice on wiccans community.

Halloween and All Souls Day are a mixture of both Pagan and Christian beliefs. Two thousand years ago the Celts used to make sacrifice to the dead by burning the bones of animals on large bonfires. This was thought to protect them from spirits who on October 31st, the end of the Celtic year, were said to return to Earth once more. If the person had died within the year, on this night they were thought to pass to the next world. Therefore this evening was believed to be one of great spirit activity.

Christianity gradually spread over the years and had spread into the Celtic lands by the 800s. In the seventh century Pope Boniface IV made November 1 a day more in line with the Christian faith named All Saints Day, yet October 31st was still a day of significance for many . Even later, in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas.

Halloween today is on October 31 in line with the old pagan practices and superstitions. Even today we practice ancient traditions, often without even knowing so. For instance many people still feel that October 31st is the most spooky night of the year, keeping with the Celtic tradition that on the last day of the Celtic year the line between the worlds of the living and dead was very hazy.

Many people also put on masks ready to go out trick or treating. The idea of putting masks on at night roots from both Celtic and European ideas. Winter was a time of worry, as food supplies from the harvest were precious. People were constantly on edge and many were scared of the dark. Electricity was non existent, resulting in incredibly short days. It was thought that if you wore a mask after dark on the particularly frightful night of Halloween ghosts would not recognise you. They would instead mistake you for fellow spirits. Even today you can see people wondering the streets in a variation of masks, most probably unaware of the history behind the tradition.

People used to also leave bowls of food outside their houses to keep the ghosts happy and try to protect themselves and their homes. Many people today give sweets in fear of trick or treaters damaging their houses.

The concept of asking for sweets is likely to originate from All Soul's day where the poor would knock on people's doors and beg for food. they were often given caked known as "soul cakes", fruit and sometimes money. This tradition has now turned into the custom that we know as trick or treating.

The history and customs of the past are still with us today in many shapes and forms whether we are aware of them or not. Therefore, this Halloween take a moment to reflect upon how it was once originally celebrated.