Witchcraft is a religion that is based on reverence for Nature. It is a belief system that is focused on the merging of the energies of everything that is visible and invisible in this world and in other worlds.

Beginners to this way of life will need to understand what it takes to believe in a religion that is not organized in a traditional sense. If they are used to following the words of priests or other leaders, then they will have to start thinking for themselves.

Practitioners of witchcraft usually do not have to worry about following any rules that are prevalent in other religions. So they need to first find out why they are interested in this religion and if they really understand the freedom that this way of life entails.

Many Wiccans use tools such as The Broom, The wand, Athame, Cauldron, Chalice etc. These tools are not absolutely necessary for regular practice, but they do increase the energies surrounding your space by allowing you to focus and visualize more strongly.

First you need to decide whether you want to be part of a coven or group of witches. You may also go solo. If you plan to do the latter, make sure you get the book "Wicca - A guide for the solitary practitioner" by Scott Cunningham which details everything you need to know as s solitary witch.

If you are practicing Wicca, it is good to know the names of the Gods and Goddesses and what they stand for. Also, while doing spells, it is good to be aware of the powers of your zodiac sign, your symbol, your colors and your herbs. These are specific to your birthday and will assure more success in your rituals.

Everything in nature is sacred. So we witches need to respect all plants, trees, stones, rocks, mountains, rivers, etc. It's good to join an organization such as Greenpeace that really does a lot for the environment. Even if you do not join any organization, take a vow to conserve energy (water, electricity, food, consumer goods etc) and use every chance you get to save the earth. Be meaningful in your actions and deeds as well as your thoughts and words.

Instead of buying a broom, make one with an ash staff, birch twigs and willow binding. This can be used to cleanse the area, our sacred circle, etc. For the wand, use the branch of a willow, oak, cherry or whatever is available in your neck of the woods.

Remember, everything natural is sacred. The more you use these tools, the more consecrated they will be. Your energy is that powerful!

When it comes to clothes, house decorations, gifts, etc, try to make them by hand. Our hands are powerful tools by themselves. Making crafts with natural gemstones, twigs, leaves, pine cones, acorns, pine needles, etc encourage wonderful magick in us that we may not even be aware of.

Plant a garden with all the herbs that you can get your hands on. In fall, dry them and store them or make sachets and protection bundles that will keep your house safe all winter. Make candles, soap, perfumes, incense, etc using these treasures from our garden.
Rose Ariadne has been practicing ancient forms of Witchcraft for over 25 years. Get more info about witchcraft 101 here: http://www.askroseariadne.com/editorials/witchcraft-101.html

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