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Monday, February 28, 2011

Anti-Depression Spell

Depression is defined as "a mental state characterized by a pessimistic sense of inadequacy and a despondent lack of activity." At one time or another, depression affects everyone. It can appear at any time and last anywhere from a few days to a chronic condition lasting many years. Depression has a number of physiological causes, such as not being exposed to enough natural Sunlight as well as psychological ones. For example, depression can be an emotional response to loss, the death of a loved one, or the end of relationship. 

The spell shared below is not intended to treat severe, or chronic depression, but rather is intended to speed up the natural process of alleviating minor depression. To cast this spell, you will need:
  • Blue Candle
  • Oil 
  • Dried Orange Peels
  • Mirror
  • Pencil and Paper

Begin by writing the word depression on a piece of paper and then place it on your altar with the mirror on top of it face down. Next, etch the word depression on the candle backwards so that the letters appear reversed. Flip the candle by cutting off the tip turning it upside down and digging a new wick out of the bottom. Anoint the candle with oil, set it in a holder and sprinkle it with dried orange peels.

Then form triangle with your thumbs and forefinger and hold it over the candle with the candle inside the triangle. Visualize a bright, shining sun over your head bursting forth with power. Imagine that power coming down and entering your body at the head and let it move down your body and out your hands into the candle. Continue this visualization until you feel the candle overflowing with this power. Chant:

"Sapphires and violets should be blue, 
and roses and candles come in that hue;
but people should be both happy and free, 
and so to depression I now say adieu!"

Finally, light the candle and let it go to work for you. 


--Carolina Dean

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Introduction to Hoodoo


What is Hoodoo?

Hoodoo is a set of magickal practices originating in Africa which, through the process of syncretism, has absorbed some beliefs and practices from other cultures such as Native American spirituality and European Ceremonial Magick. In some cases, the word hoodoo can also refer to

  • A person who practices Hoodoo: Dr. Buzzard was a powerful hoodoo man.
  • The act of working magick itself: Someone is hoodooing you!

Additional words which are synonymous with Hoodoo include: conjure, witchcraft, rootwork.

Origin & Development

Hoodoo is believed to have originated with Africans who were brought to America as slaves, mainly in the Southeastern states where slavery was legal, and moved West across the nation. These men, women and children often arrived on American soil with very few personal possessions, if any at all. They did not bring their native herbs with them, and if they did those items were most likely taken away. The slaves found themselves in a place where they were considered the property of abusive slaveholders and they didn’t know anything about the herbs, plants and curios of this strange, new land. African and Native American slaves often found themselves working along side one another and it is believed that through this co-mingling the slaves learned a great deal about the medicinal and magickal uses of the herbs native to America.

As many slave-owners identified with Christianity, they often attempted to covert their slave workers--going so far as to forbid them to practice their religion under threat of death. In order to be able to practice their religion, the slaves expressed their beliefs under the guise of the dominant religion of their region. In the southeast, where people were mainly Protestant Christians (or one of its offshoots) the Dark Man of the Crossroads became identified with the Devil of Christianity. This example is cited as one of the many reasons that Christians believed that Africans worshipped the Devil, which itself was given as another reason for their desire to convert the slaves to Christianity.

In those areas where Catholicism was the dominant religion, such as New Orleans, hoodoo practices mingled with not only Catholicism but Vodoun (Voodoo) as well. In these instances, Christian Saints often became associated with the spirits and deities of Voodoo. For example, because St. Patrick was mythologicaly associated with snakes (having driven them out of Ireland) he became identified with the Voodoo deity called Damballah who often took the form of a serpent. Today, many people still confuse the magickal practices of Hoodoo with the religion of Voodoo.

In Northern states where African-Americans were, more-or-less, free they were introduced to European immigrants who came to American seeking religious freedom and who brought their own religious and folk-magic beliefs and practices, such as Pow-Wow, with them. It was through contact with these immigrants, and later through their writings, that Hoodoo absorbed elements of European Grimoires and Jewish Kabalistic magic and sorcery. 

Beliefs & Practices

As a result of the exposure to various beliefs and practices the religions of African slaves transformed into a hodge-podge of magickal practices identified as Hoodoo. Although Hoodoo is not a religion adherents often draw upon Christian mythology, however, some practitioners are just as likely to petition Ganesha or even Papa Legba to remove obstacles and open the way before them.

Even so, there are a few common beliefs that most practitioners of Hoodoo hold. They are:

  • Divine Providence- Most adherents of Hoodoo believe in some type of Higher Power to whom they direct their prayers and petitions. This power may simply be referred to as God or any number of deities or spirits from the world’s major religions. It is not unheard of for a practitioner to petition Hotei Buddha for prosperity in the morning, Santo Muerte for a lover in the evening, and Jesus for protection at night. These beings are believed to take an active interest in the affairs of humans and to have the ability to influence our lives.
  • Life After Death- Along with the belief in a Higher Power comes the belief in the continued existence of the soul after physical death. Many Root-Workers start out working with spirits of the dead in the form of the Ancestors, the spirits of the dead connected to them by blood. It is believed that the dead don’t die, but rather ascend to another level of being, from which they can look on and assist us. From this higher level, the Ancestors can guide us in our daily lives, intercede with the Godhead on our behalf and protect us in times of need.
  • Divination- The ability to foretell the future and communicate with disembodied spirits is one of spiritual practitioner’s most important abilities. Divination allows the individual to analyze the past and present in order to determine the probability a future event(s). Divination teaches that by active participation in the events occurring in the life of a person, he or she can shift the probabilities towards their desired ends.
  • Doctrine of Signatures- A belief which holds that the Creator (i.e. God, the Universe, etc...) marked everything in existence with a sign, or signature, which indicates its intended use. Furthermore, by careful observation one can determine the uses of a plant from an aspect of its form such as the shape of its roots or leaves, its color, place of growing, or even its name.
  • Retributive Justice- Retributive justice is a theory of punishment based on the biblical principle of an “eye for an eye”. Unlike other religions which accept magick as part of its philosophy and adjure its adherents to “do not harm”, Hoodoo allows for an individual to not only protect themselves by magickal means but also to retaliate against those who have wronged them. However, in the case of the latter, the punishment must fit the crime.
  • Intention- In the Hoodoo Tradition, curses are seen as a wish which can only be fulfilled by God and only when the curse is deserved. For example, if you lay down a powder to curse one individual it will only have an effect on that individual an no one else who happens to walk over the powder.. Furthermore, it is believed that curses which are not justified or deserved have no effect (Proverbs 26:2). A curse which is both deserved and uttered by a person in authority, such as a rootworker, is said to never fail.
Carolina Dean 

See Also:

A Hoodoo Dictionary



Monday, February 21, 2011

An Introduction to Honey Jars

Honey Jars are a type of container-spell which uses sweeteners such as honey, syrup, molasses, etc… in conjunction with the burning of a series of fixed-candles for the purpose of compelling an individual to favor your petition in business, love, or court-cases.

A typical honey jar is created using a small glass container, such as a baby-food jar, that has a metal lid and filling it with honey. Depending on your specific intent as well as what herbs, curios, and/or personal concerns you have available, additional items may or may not be placed inside the honey. At the very least, a written petition should be placed inside the honey. The jar is then sealed and a prepared candle is affixed to the top of the lid.

The candle is lit as one’s prayer or petition is made and then allowed to burn itself out. The following day, and each successive day for a total of seven days, a new fixed candle is burned on the honey-jar to heat up the situation and get movement on your issue. After the first seven days, a new fixed candle is burned three times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

Theoretically, honey-jars work on various principles including sympathetic magick and correspondences.

Sympathetic magic is a concept which states that “invisible bonds connect all things.”  It can be divided into two distinct subcategories. They are:

  • Homeopathic Magick holds that “like attracts like.” While making the petition for a honey jar, the practitioner will often ask that the individual it is intended to affect will become as sweet to the practitioner as the honey is sweet to the taste.

  • Contagious Magick holds that “things once in contact with one another continue to exert an influence on one another after they have been separated.” When available, the personal-concerns of the individual the honey jar is to affect will be included in the jar so that it will have a more powerful affect on him or her. Examples of personal concerns include: blood, hair, semen, photograph, handwriting, etc….

Correspondences refer to the relationships that can be used for magickal workings. They make use of how things relate to one another. It is helpful to think of correspondences as a list of possible ingredients from which you can make selections. Correspondences are present in the form of the herbs and or curios, if any, that are included in the honey jar as well as the color of the candle chosen and the type of condition oil with which it is anointed.

The term correspondences can also refer one’s choice of time in which to work the spell. Choices include the Moon Phase, Moon’s Sign, Day of the Week, and Hour of the Day. Most honey jars are worked for positive purposes, therefore they will often be begun while the moon is Waxing, or growing in size. The reasoning for burning the candle on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays has to do with the planetary correspondences attributed to those days of the week as well as their associations.

  • Monday: The Moon, emotions
  • Wednesday: Mercury, Communication
  • Friday: Venus, Friendship and Love

As most honey jars are worked for love and friendship, the burning of the candles on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays is to communicate the emotion of love and friendship to the individual and have those feelings returned in the form of having one’s petition granted.

Although most honey jars are worked on individuals, I have seen instances in which honey-jars have been worked on inanimate objects/concepts such as “prosperity” in order to get that concept to favor the petitioner. In other instances, I have seen honey-jars worked on entire cities.


In the first instance, the petition was written on a two-dollar bill which was wrapped around a lodestone fed with magnetic-sand. The jar included herbs for money drawing and increase such as cinnamon, chamomile, thyme, and basil to name a few. Finally, green candles anointed with Money-Drawing Oil were burned on top of the jar three times per week.

As you can see, honey-jars are a powerful tool to sway others to your cause and win favors in business, love, or even court cases.

Carolina Dean 

Updates on Old Posts


A few weeks ago, I began getting emails from visitors to my blog that photos where not loading in some entries. I discovered that the problem wasn't that the photos weren't loading, but that the account I had at flickr which hosted many of my photos was deleted.  It took me a little while but I believe that I have replaced all the missing photos in this blog. Updated entries are as follows:

If anyone sees an entry that seems to be missing a photo, please comment on that entry and I will fix is asap. Thanks. Also, I have several videos covering these topics and more at my youtube channel

Carolina Dean

Friday, February 18, 2011

Dreaming True

Dreaming-True, also known as lucid dreaming, is a term which refers to an individual’s ability to maintain conscious awareness and control while dreaming. It is an important aspect of dream work for various purposes, which includes:

  • Communicating with non-human entities (God, Spirits, The Dead).
  • Discovering practical solutions to one’s problems.
  • Receiving information about the past, present, or future.
  • Obtaining lucky numbers for gambling
  • Receiving warnings in regard to pending death or the work of your enemies.
While most people are inclined to categorize dreams as either lucid or non-lucid this is not the case. Studies show that there is something of a degree between lucidity and non-lucidity.

  • While most dreams are non-lucid, the question of whether or not the individual is dreaming never arises. 
  • Pre-lucid dreams refers to those dreams where the dreamer questions whether they are dreaming or not. If the dreamer decided that he or she is dreaming, pre-lucid dreams can lead to lucid dreams.
  • Intellectually Lucid Dreams are dreams in which the dreamer knows that he or she is dreaming but they still have an emotional reaction to dream dangers.
  • Experientially lucid dreams are those dreams in which the dreamer is aware that he or she is dreaming and they have complete control over the dream.

     Another aspect of dream work takes place while you are awake and another individual is asleep and this type of dream work is often performed to influence the will of the other person.

    Interpreting Your Dreams

    There are three main schools of thought regarding dream interpretation. They are:

    1. Literal Interpretation
    2. Reversed Interpretation
    3. Symbolic Interpretation 
      
    Literal Interpretation

    The literal approach views dreams as they are with little to no interpretation whatsoever. For example, if you dream of being in a car accident then you will be in a car accident; if you dream of receiving a letter from an old friend, then you will receive a letter from an old friend.

    Reversed Interpretation

    In these cases dreams are interpreted as representing the opposite of the essence of the dream. For example, dream of a death and there will be a birth; dream of a wedding and there will be a divorce.

    Symbolic Interpretation

    This approach to dream interpretation holds that elements in a dream are symbolic of something else. Those who follow this approach often make use of dream books which assign meanings to various elements found in dreams. The meanings assigned to these elements often have no logical connection. For example, dream of a bedpan and it augurs a sudden rise in your fortune.

    Some dream books also assign numbers to the elements. For example, the number assigned to mirror is 953. Therefore if you dream of a mirror, it is a good idea to play that number in the lottery.

    Dream Incubation

    Dream Incubation is a term which refers to programming your mind before sleep to dream about a specific issue or topic. There are three basic steps to dream incubation, they are:

    1. Preparing Yourself to Dream
    2. Setting Your Intention
    3. Receiving Your Dream

    Preparing Yourself to Dream

    Fasting and sincere prayer are believed to encourage dreams, especially those of a prophetic nature. You can also burn herbs such as jasmine flowers, calendula flowers, or poppy to bring prophetic dreams.

    Psychologists have shown that it is not the amount of sleep we get per night as much as it is the regularity of our sleep cycles. Therefore to help sleep come on easier, it is best to adhere to a regular schedule of going to bed at the same time each night and rising at the same time each morning. It is also a good idea to get plenty of exercise so that the body is naturally tired at the end of the day.

    Setting Your Intention

    This is probably the most important aspect of dream incubation. It is important to be clear of that wish your wish to dream. Some people find it helpful to write their question on a piece of paper, placing the paper in the Bible at Act 2:17 and then placing the Bible under their pillow. For this purpose, I often use a small Gideon Bible. As you lie in bed, repeat your question or statement over and over to yourself. For example, you might say “I will dream about my financial situation.” The Bible and paper is left under the pillow until you receive your dream, after which the paper is taken out and burned.

    If you have a specific question that you would like answered with either a yes or a no, then you might say “Will I get the administrative job I applied for? White is Yes, Black is No.” If you dream of something white, the answer is yet; conversely if you dream of something black, the answer is no.

    Receiving Your Dream

    You may not immediately dream about the subject of your intent. It may take as much as two weeks before you have a dream that relates to your question. It is important to establish habits that will assist you in remembering your dreams when you do receive them. Some methods that assist you in remembering your dreams include writing them down as soon as you awake, reciting them into a recorder, or telling them to yourself out loud several times until it is committed to memory. 

    Carolina Dean 

    Thursday, February 17, 2011

    A Hoodoo Dictionary

    A basic list of terms

    • Anointing- A term used to describe rubbing a condition oil on an individual. It is sometimes used interchangeably with dressing.
    • Blessing- A type of spell or prayer intended to spiritually cleanse a person, place or thing while infusing it with the positive energy of the divine and one’s hopes.
    • Butting- A term used in candle-magick to describe the act of cutting the tip off of a candle, turning it upside down and digging a new tip out of the bottom. Symbolically this is said to reverse people and conditions as symbolized by the color of the candle or the words carved upon it. Sometimes also referred to as Flipping.
    • Cold Reading- A type of technique used by disreputable psychics, mediums, and fortune-tellers which utilizes general statements to determine details about a person. By gauging the individual’s reaction to these general statements, an experienced fortune-teller can extrapolate more information about the subject giving the appearance of having true psychic ability. This technique is also used in the entertainment industry by mentalist, illusionist, and stage-magicians.  Compare to Hot Reading.
    • Condition Oil- A term used to describe oils which have been designed to address a specific issue or bring about a specific condition. Examples include, Cast Off Evil Oil, Follow Me Boy, and Money Drawing Oil.  
    • Crossroads- A place where two roads connect forming an X. Crossroads are places of spiritual power where magickal items are often disposed of and rituals pacts are formed.
    • Divination- The ritual process of gaining information about the past, present, or future either with the use of tools such as Tarot Cards, Playing Cards, Sortilege etc...or without tools utilizing one’s own psychic faculties, or through the observation of signs and omens.
    • Dressing- A term which refers to rubbing a condition oil on an inanimate object such as a candle, a mojo bag, or a talisman. It is sometimes used interchangeable with anointing.
    • Feeding- The act of dressing a mojo bag with oil, or a lodestone with oil/magnetic sand to nourish it and keep it strong to work for you.
    • Hand- Another word for a Mojo Bag.
    • Honey Jar- A type of spell which uses sweeteners such as honey, syrup, molasses, etc… in conjunction with a candle(s) and designed to compel an individual to favor your petition in business, love, or court-cases.
    • Hoodoo- A form of folk-magic originating in Africa which, through the process of syncretism, has absorbed beliefs and practices from other cultures such as Native American spirituality and European Grimoires.
    • Hot Footing- A type of spell or ritual intended to drive a person, such as an enemy or some other troublesome person, away. It is synonymous with banishing in other magickal traditions.
    • Hot Reading-The use of knowledge gained about an individual beforehand when performing a reading for another individual. See also cold reading.
    • Job- Another term for spell. Also working.
    • Lady Hearted- A Rootworker or spiritual practitioner who is morally opposed to bringing harm to another individual or animal through the use of spells and magick.
    • Live Things In You- A term which refers to the belief that, through the use of magick, live beings such as snakes, scorpions, and/or spiders have been introduced into the human body.
    • Loading- A term which refers to digging a small hole in the bottom of a candle and introducing herbs, personal concerns, oils, powders, etc… into it before resealing the hole.
    • Mojo Bag- A type of talisman which takes the form of a small flannel drawstring bag containing an assortment of animal, vegetable, or mineral curious believed to attract or dispel certain influences.
    • Personal Concerns- A term used to describe anything that is associated with a person’s physical body either having once been a part of it or having intimate contact to the body. Examples of personal concerns include blood, semen, hair, clothing, one’s signature, photograph, etc…
    • Poisoned Through the Feet- A term used to describe when a person has walked over or stepped through a magickal powder that has been laid down in their path for the purpose of affecting them in a negative way.
    • Reader- A Rootworker, or spiritual practitioner, who is psychically gifted.
    • Rootworker- A practitioner of Hoodoo. See also Two-Headed Doctor.
    • Runs- A term used by candle-workers referring to the practice of lighting a new candle for the same intention shortly before an old one has burned out until satisfactory results are achieved.
    • Setting Lights- A term which refers to the process of preparing a candle for an individual’s petition and praying over it daily until it has burned out.
    • To Throw For- A term which refers to throwing down powders where a person will step over or walk through them.See also Poisoning Through the Feet.
    • Two Headed Doctor- A Rootworker, or spiritual practitioner, who is also a reader. 
    Carolina Dean 

    Tuesday, February 15, 2011

    A Honey Jar for Self-Esteem

    We are now roughly 6 weeks into the new year and many people have probably resolved to make some form of positive change in their life. Whether their goal is to lose weight, save more money, spend more time with loved ones, find a better job, stop smoking, attract a mate, etc… by now they have either broken their resolution or are foraging ahead. According to one study after 6 months roughly 46 percent of those who made resolutions have kept them.

    In and of themselves there is nothing wrong with any of these goals. However, sometimes the problems we chose to address are really a symptom of a greater issue and achieving our initial goal doesn’t always deal with that issue. For example, according to one study of the Top Ten Most Popular New Year’s Resolutions of 2011, losing weight ranks at number three. There are many reasons that people are overweight, some of these include poor diet and lack of exercise, medical issues such as an overactive thyroid, or even psychological issues such as food addiction, or a even a desire to push others away out of a fear of rejection.

    Similarly, many people resolve to find a mate in the new year. The desire to love and to be loved in return is very natural and normal. At one time or another everyone finds them self alone and for many people that is perfectly all right. In some cases, a person may find that there is simply a lack of available suitors, or even a question of timing. However other people find themselves alone because they don’t believe that they deserve love or they feel that they are too unattractive, among other reasons. The person may vacillate between sincerely desiring love and purposely pushing it away. They may intentionally sabotage their own success by setting impossibly high standards, alter their physical appearance to make them less attractive, or even engage in negative thinking.

    As you can see the individuals in these cases are seeking something outside their self in response to a lack of something inside their self —which is love. Psychology defines this type of love as self-esteem and it is regarded as a person’s overall evaluation of their own self worth. Without a healthy dose of self-esteem, all other goals are a superficial fix for a much deeper problem. Therefore before we can address the outer, we should address the inner.

    By now you should all be familiar with Honey Jar spells, which are a family of spells utilizing sweeteners such as honey, sugar, or syrup to cause people (judges, potential suitors, prospective employers, etc…), favor you above all others; objects such as money to be drawn to you. However, this type of sympathetic magick can be used on yourself, just as well as it can be used on another.

    To begin a honey jar for self-esteem, you will need:

    • honey
    • glass jar with a metal lid
    • pink-candle
    • photograph of yourself
    • lemon grass
    • master root
    • coriander
    • Cast Off Evil Oil
    • Blessing Oil
    • Attraction Oil
    • a small lodestone
    • magnetic sand
    • Holy Bible
    To begin, fill the glass jar ¾ of the way with honey and set it aside. Next, take a photograph of yourself from at time in your life when you were happy, smiling, and upbeat. Turn it over and write a list of all the things that you like about yourself. When you are done, turn the photograph over, look yourself in the eye and tell yourself all the things that you like about yourself that you are valued, and that you are loved. Here is a sample script for you to try.

    Dean, I am so glad that you were born. You are a special person, with a great sense of humor. You are strong, intelligent, creative, talented, and can achieve anything that you desire. You are perfectly all right just the way you are and I love you. ”

    When you are done, place the lodestone on top of the picture; sprinkle it with magnetic sand saying

    “As I feed you, so will you feed me and draw these qualities out in me so that like this honey I will shine with the light of the sun and be as sweet to myself in thought, word, and deed as this honey is sweet to my tongue. Amen.”

    Dip your finger in the honey and taste a bit of it, then fold the photograph around the lodestone and place it inside the honey-jar. Sprinkle in the coriander and lemon grass, and then place the master root inside the honey jar. Place three drops each of the condition oils for a total of nine drops. Screw the lid on the jar.

    Carve your name on a pink candle and anoint it with the Blessing Oil. Affix the candle to top of the honey jar. Place your hands a few inches above the candle and spend a few moments visualizing yourself happy, smiling, and upbeat. Focus your thoughts on the things that you like about yourself.

    When you are ready light the candle, take out your bible and read Psalm 139. Allow the candle to burn out on its own. Each day thereafter for a total of seven days burn a pink candle on the honey jar and read the Psalm to set it working. After the initial week, you will burn a dressed pink-candle on the jar three times a week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

    Carolina Dean

    Sunday, February 13, 2011

    Learning Magick: A Basic Guide

    As a witch and magickal practitioner I’m often asked by curious seekers the best way to go about learning magick. Arguably the most popular definition of magick, which was coined by Aliester Crowley, is “the science and art of causing change to occur in conformity with will.” When people think about magick, they often assume that its all about burning candles before strange altars, sticking pins in dolls, or chanting magical rhymes in order to instantaneously bring about their wishes. They often believe that magick will make their life easier, when in fact it is very hard work!

    The truth is that it takes a long time to learn how to successfully practice magick. In fact, magick is a science and an art that in all likelihood you will never master—which is why witches, magicians, and sorcerers are said to practice magick.  When asked by those who wish to undertake a study of magick, I often suggest that they begin their journey by seeking to understand themselves. To this end I advise the new student to begin meditating and journaling on a daily basis.

    Meditation is a skill which the aspiring magician will find invaluable as they begin their study of the occult. It has been defined as both the absence of thought as well as the focusing of one’s thoughts on a singular matter for a period of time and whether you believe the former definition or the latter, you’re right. Proper meditation helps build mental discipline and the ability to focus one’s thoughts and attention--- traits which assist the magician in exerting his or her will.

    Journaling is a practice widely utilized by magickal practitioners. More than a past time, however, journaling acts as a focus for one's creativity, a means to listen to one's spirit, a form of meditation, and dealing with daily stress; in addition your journal will become a valuable resource in the recording of information that you will often refer back to in your studies of the Craft. Maintaining a magickal journal often gives the writer a strong sense of comfort in that he or she has an 'audience' for their thoughts, feelings, and emotions; even if no one else reads the journal. In addition psychology teaches that writing about our problems and issues helps us to deal with them.


    When it comes to deciding what to keep in my magickal journal, I live by one rule, which is "if you don't want anyone to know it, don't write it down." With that said, you can put anything into your magickal journal that you wish. Most of the entries in my magickal journal can be categorized in the following manner:
    • Magick, Spells, and Rituals
    • Correspondences
    • Newspaper & Magazine Articles
    • Workshops and Various Research
    • Art and Photographs
    • Quotes and Poetry
    • Personal Insights and Musings
    • Dreams and Divination
    • Memorabilia (movie tickets, play bills, pamphlets)
    • Magick & the Occult in Popular Culture
    In effect your magickal journal is a map of your spiritual journey. The first step of which is to define what type of magick they are interested in. There are many types of magick, however, they can often be divided into three categories. They are:

    1. Ceremonial Magick- An umbrella term for a wide variety of complex magickal rituals. It is characterized by ritual ceremonies as well as the need for a variety of magickal instruments which have been manufactured and consecrated under strict conditions. Examples of Ceremonial Magick include The Golden Dawn, Thelma, and Enochian.

    1. Religious Magick- Religious magick refers to the magickal beliefs and practices associated with a specific religion. Virtually every religion has some form of magic (though it may not be called such). Practitioners of religious magick will often have specific deities who are petitioned, practices which are held, and a code of conduct which is adhered to. These sets of beliefs, rules, and practices will vary from religion to religion. Examples of Religions which accept the practice of magick as part of their beliefs include Wicca, Santeria, and Vodou.

    1. Folk Magick- A term which refers to the ethnic or regional religious customs under the umbrella of an organized religion, but outside of official doctrine and practices. Examples of Folk Magick tradtions include Hoodoo and Pow-Wow.

    It is often a good idea for the new student to begin with the magic of their Ancestors or the magick associated with their chosen religion.  In other cases, a person may inexplicably feel drawn to a specific tradition or type of magic. For example, my ancestry is part Jewish, Native American, and Irish. While I’ve never had a any significant interest in my Irish or Native American roots, I have always been interested in Jewish Folk Magic as well as its connection to the practice of Hoodoo. In addition, I grew up with a deep interest in Greek Mythology. When I began studying and practicing Wicca, I often found myself calling upon the deities associated with Ancient Greece.

    Once an area of interest has been chosen I feel that it is necessary for the student to read anything and everything that they can about their chosen subject. I don’t think that it is ever a good idea to get all of their information from one source, as the individual will have a tendency to believe only what that source has to say on a subject. Learning from many different sources will allow the student to get a healthy cross-section of ideas and opinions so that they can find their own truth. Sources of information can include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • Books
    • Websites
    • Social Networks
    • Community Forums
    • Workshops

    In order to get a solid foundation about the science and art of magick, there are four main concepts which I feel the new student should study at some length. They are:

    1. The Doctrine of Signatures- A belief which holds that the Creator (i.e. God, the Universe, etc...) marked everything in existence with a sign, or signature, which indicates its intended use.  Furthermore, by careful observation one can determine the uses of a plant from an aspect of its form such as the shape of its roots or leaves, its color, place of growing, or even its name. For example, Walnuts are believed to cure ailments of the head because they resemble a human head; buckeyes are carried for male potency, and to attract sexual partners as they resemble a young boy's testicles; in like fashion ammonia, which sounds like harmony, is often used to cleanse objects of negativity; and Thyme which sounds like time, is believed to draw in money as it has often been reported, "time IS money."

    1. Correspondences- Refers to the relationships that can be used for magickal workings. They make use of the connectedness of things. It is helpful to think of correspondences as a list of possible ingredients from which you can make selections. There are three types of correspondences, they are:

      • Astrological Correspondences- This term refers to the energies of the Moon Phases, Days of the Week, Hours of the Day, and the position of the Moon in the Zodiac, as they pertain to the timing of casting your spells.

      • Natural Correspondences- This term refers to those things occurring in nature which relate to our goals in a direct manner. These correspondences include color, shape, sound, numbers, herbs, scent, gems, elements, animal energies, deity energy, the energy of the cardinal points, the winds, etc….

      • Personal Correspondences- This term refers to those correspondences which resonate with us on a deeply personal level, and which empowers us more than any other correspondence.

    3. Sympathetic Magick- A theory which holds that ‘invisible bonds connect all things’. It can be divided into two categories, Homeopathic Magick and Contagious Magick. The Scottish anthropologist Sir James G. Frazer first described these types in his book The Golden Bough (1890). 

    • Homeopathic Magick holds that “like attracts like.” A classic example of this type of magick is the melting of a waxen image of an enemy resulting in his or her death. Visualization is a form of sympathetic magick, instead of creating a physical image of your goal, you create a mental one.
    • Contagious Magick holds that “things once in contact with one another continue to exert an influence on one another after they have been separated.” An example of Contagious Magick from a folk magick remedy to cure a wound would be to rub some medicine on the object which caused the wound in the first place. People who believe in contagious magic fear that an enemy can gain power over them by obtaining parts of their body. Therefore, they carefully dispose of their nails, hair, teeth, and even their body wastes.

    4. Divination- Divination is the process of gaining information about the past, present, or future using certain objects and tools which may include but are not limited to Tarot Cards, Runes, Astrology, Playing Cards, and the use of Crystal Balls---these being the most popular modes of divination today.

    Human beings have developed a wide range of techniques to obtain information from supernatural sources. Of these many methods, they can fall into three main categories. They are:

    • Inductive Divination- relies on the individual to observe and interpret various signs and omens. The modes of use in inductive divination are caused by chance and therefore cannot be affected by human behavior, which is believed to increase the validity of the information given. Forms of inductive divination include Astrology, Palmistry, The Shapes of Clouds, The Flights of Birds, etc… 
    • Interpretive Divination- relies on the ability of the individual to read and understand a collection of pictures, symbols, or patterns that have a pre-determined meaning. The individual then interprets the meaning of the symbol in relation to the question asked. Forms of interpretative divination include: Tarot, Playing Cards, I-Ching, The Runes, Dominoes, etc...
    • Inspired Divination- often occurs spontaneously with no effort on the part of the individual and is often associated with higher powers such as Deities and Spirits who directly give information to the individual. However the mode in which that information comes to the individual can vary.  Forms of inspired divination include Clairaudience, Clairvoyance, Clairsentience.

    Divination allows the individual to analyze the past and present in order to determine the probability a future event(s).  The more accurate readers are able to focus on the most probable alternate-futures.  The accuracy of a reader’s ability to foresee a future event decreases in direct proportions to the distance those future events lie ahead in time. Divination teaches that by active participation in the events occurring in the life of a person, he or she can shift the probabilities towards their desired ends. 

    With an understanding of these four concepts and practices the student can begin laying a strong foundation for understanding how magic works.   As you narrow your focus down to specific media, it then becomes necessary to learn the rules and techniques for practicing magic with certain materials. Examples of materials used to practice magic include,

    • Amulets
    • Candles
    • Cords
    • The Four Element
    • Gems & Crystals
    • Written petitions
    • Herbs
    • Magickal Alphabets
    • Potions
    • Rituals
    • Dolls and Images
    • Sex
    • Talismans and Mojo Bags
    • Tarot Cards

    For example, candles are a popular tool for casting spells. However, to successfully practice candle-magick the student must learn how they are prepared and deployed. This usually entails cleanings the candle, carving words or symbols on it, anointing the candle with oil, charging with visualization/prayer and finally lighting the candle.  Depending on the tradition of magick you are practicing there may be specific rules/beliefs associated the medium with which you are working. For example, a Wiccan may or may not cast a circle within which to cast their spells; whereas a practitioner of Hoodoo never casts a circle.

    The final step in learning magick is to put theory into practice. The student will begin to actively perform rituals and cast spells recording their experiences in their magickal journal. Through a long process of trial and error you will learn what works for you and what does not.  Overtime, your journal will become an invaluable source of information that will grow into your personal Grimoire.

    --Carolina Dean 

    Links 


    Sunday, February 6, 2011

    Aura Cleanse Ritual

    The Aura is an invisible field of energy which surrounds all living things. This emanation of ethereal light and energy surrounds human beings and extends from two or three feet in all directions from the body. 

    The colors of the aura are a good indicator of a person's disposition, health, and spirituality. The Aura is many-colored, it flows and moves with you changing color with your moods, feelings, and spiritual condition. Those blessed with the gift of second-sight can literally see the aura around living things, while others psychics are said to perceive it with the inner eye.

    The Aura acts as a natural shield against negativity, black magick, and the evil eye. Over time, stress can weaken the aura and negativity can cling to it resulting in  feelings of being weighed down, and can cause depression, illness, and nervousness. A person with a weak aura will also become vulnerable to magickal attack as well.  

    When this occurs, it becomes necessary for the person to cleanse their aura. In fact, like the chakras, it is a good idea to cleanse one's aura on a regular basis. Depending on your several factors including your own personal health, emotional outlook, level of stress, and personal disposition you may want to do this anywhere from once a week, once a month, or four times a year at the change of the seasons.

    To cleanse your aura, you will need:

    • Dried Sage
    • Rubbing Alcohol
    • Match
    • Cauldron

    Directions: Place the dried sage in the cauldron of transformation. Pour in a capful of rubbing alcohol, light a match and set the sage to smoking. Stand over the cauldron with your feet wide apart and your arms outstretched. Allow the smoking sage to waft over your body.

    Chant:

    "Protective shell of light unseen, 
    tarnished be your radiant sheen;
    I cleanse you now that you may shine, 
    just like the sun at noon-time!"

    Visualize your aura about yourself glowing strong and bright.

    Carolina Dean 

    Friday, February 4, 2011

    Witch-crafting: Make a Cup from a Soda Bottle


    You will need:

    • A Soda Bottle
    • Scissors
    • Glue 
    • Paint
    • Ribbon
    • Tin Foil

    STEP ONE: Start with a clean soda bottle. Rinse it out, remove the label and allow it to dry. 



    STEP TWO: Using your scissors, remove the midsection of the soda bottle. Trim the cut edges of the two ends creating a smooth edge.



    STEP THREE: Using superglue, connect the stem to the base (see photo below) at the rim. Allow to dry.



    STEP FOUR: You can now decorate your cup by painting it, covering it with strips of tin foil (glued on), or paper mache, decorating it with ribbon, buttons, glitter, etc...Use your imagination.

    Tips
    • If you fill the bottom in with paper-mache, it will weigh down the cup and make it less likely to tip over when accidentally bumped or knocked. 


    ---Carolina Dean

    Thursday, February 3, 2011

    MM: Leading a Class or Workshop

    Organizing and leading a workshop can be a fun and interesting approach to promoting your spiritual practice, expanding your network, and earning extra income. Before deciding to teach a class or workshop, however, you should keep in mind that teaching is a special skill that not everyone possesses.  

    To be an effective teacher you must 1) have a strong desire to teach 2) have the ability to teach and 3) be knowledgeable enough about your subject to teach it. Other considerations to keep in mind include:

    • Subject Matter
    • Location
    • Advertising



    Subject Matter

    Your subject matter can be as narrow or as broad as you like, but keep your student’s level of education and understanding about the subject in mind when preparing the lesson. In addition, you will want to specify whether this class in an introductory or advanced class on the matter at hand.

    Once you have decided on your subject matter, write a lesson plan which should include the following:

    • Title of Lesson- What the lesson is about.
    • Time required completing the lesson-
    • Material(s) Needed
    • Lesson Objective(s) - This should describe what the student should be able to do upon successful completion of the lesson.
    • Lead In- Introduces concepts and/or skills which are the focus of the lesson. This will often include the use of visual aids such as photographs and models, and asking leading questions.
    • Instruction- This includes describing a logical sequence of events making up the lesson and will often include the teacher’s input along with a guided practice.
    • Independent Practice- A period of time whereupon the student is encouraged to extend his skills and knowledge on their own.
    • Summation- A quick overview of the lesson, wrapping up all discussion and allowing time for questions and answers.
    • Evaluation- Though this is not always necessary, some students prefer a test to evaluate the mastery of skills or knowledge to assess what they have learned.

    Location

    You have several choices when deciding where the class will be held. They include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • Independent Bookstore or Metaphysical Shop- Many independent retailers who cater to the magickal community will often allow their shop to be available for classes and workshops during certain times. This is usually with the understanding that attendees will also purchase some of their wares. If you are a regular customer at a certain metaphysical shop, speak to the owner about making arrangements to use their shop to host a class or workshop.
    • College Classroom- Local colleges, especially if you are a student yourself, may be willing to allow you to use an empty classroom or auditorium to teach a workshop.
    • Local Library- Libraries sometimes have rooms which the public can rent for meetings and workshops.
    • Public Meeting Hall- Many town have halls that can be made available to the public for meetings in exchange for a small fee.
    • Outdoor Space- Depending on the nature of your class as well as the weather, you may be able to hold your workshop in an outdoor space such as a park. Some parks even have an enclosed picnic area with tables that are ideal for small groups. Keep in mind that although parks are public areas, you may still need a permit from your local Parks and Recreation Department to use it for a meeting.
    • Private Residence- Although the option of using a private residence to hold your classes and workshops is always available, it is not always recommended especially if you are meeting with a group of people that you do not know.

    Advertising

    Once you have your lesson written and your time and place set, you’ll need to make people aware of your class and sign them up. Avenues for advertising your class include:

    • Distributing fliers
    • Posting Notices on Community Boards
    • Mass Emails to your Business Mailing List
    • Posting Notices on Your Company Website
    • Through Online Social Networking Sites

    Any advertising that you utilize will have to include the following:

    • Class Title and Description
    • Time and Place
    • Cost of Class
    • Materials Needed
    • Closing Date for Registration.

    In addition, you will have to provide information on how students can register and pay for the class. Registering is important so that you will have an accurate count of how many people intend to attend the class. Depending on the location of your class, the nature of your lesson, you experience teaching a group of people you may want to limit the number of people who will attend.

    Options for paying for the class include accepting paypal © payments online or the student may be able to pay via cash or money order at the time of the class. Have a receipt book on hand to write receipts if asked.
    Have a sign-in sheet in which students can leave their name and contact information to be included on your mailing-list. You can use this list to inform students about future classes, as well as your products and services.

    Afterward the Lesson

    When the lesson is ended and before you dismiss the class it is a good idea to ask each student to fill out an anonymous teacher-evaluation form. This will give you some feedback about your ability to teach, areas which need improvement, aspects of the lesson which students enjoyed, or even suggestions for additional lessons or subject matters.

    Before dismissing the class you may also want to stand at the exit and greet each student as they leave. This will give them the opportunity to speak with you one on one even just for a minute or two. You may also want to pass out your business card to each student which you have stored in a glass jar along with a cotton ball that has been anointed with steady-work oil.

    Carolina Dean