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What Exactly Is Witchcraft?
A Witch in the Bible Belt: Questions are Opportunities
On Death and Passing: Compassion Burnout in Healers and Shamans
What I Get from Cooking (And How it’s Part of My Path)
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Witchcraft from the Outside
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Wild Mountain Woman: Landscape Goddess
September 3rd. 2016 ...
Rethinking Heaven: What Happens When We Die?
What is Happening in My Psychic Reading?
August 12th. 2016 ...
When Reality Rattles your Idea of the Perfect Witch
Hungarian Belief in Fairies
Designing a Pagan Last Will and Testament
July 13th. 2016 ...
What Every Pagan Should Know About Curses
Magic With A Flick of my Finger
An Open Mind and Heart
Finding and Caring for Your Frame Drum
June 13th. 2016 ...
Pollyanna Propaganda: The Distressing Trend of Victim-Blaming in Spirituality
Living a Magickal Life with Fibromyalgia
My Father, My First God
Life is Awesome... and the Flu
May 15th. 2016 ...
Faery Guided Journey
How to Bond with the Elements through Magick
Magical Household Cleaning
Working with the Elements
April 2nd. 2016 ...
An Alternative Conception of Divine Reciprocity
Becoming Wiccan: What I Never Expected
The Fear of Witchcraft
Rebirth By Fire: A Love Letter to Mama Maui and Lady Pele
Blowing Bubbles with the Goddess
Magic in Sentences
The Evolution of Thought Forms
March 28th. 2016 ...
Revisiting The Spiral
Lateral Transcendence: Toward Greater Compassion
Spring Has Sprung!
January 22nd. 2016 ...
Coming Out of the Broom Closet
Energy and Karma
Community and Perception
December 20th. 2015 ...
Introduction to Tarot For the Novice
Magia y Wicca
October 24th. 2015 ...
Facing Your Demons: The Shadow Self
The Dream Eater--A Practical Use of Summoning Talismans
Native American Spirituality Myopia
A Dream Message
Feeling the Pulse of Autumn
October 16th. 2015 ...
Sacred Lands, Sacred Hearts
September 30th. 2015 ...
September 16th. 2015 ...
Vegan or Vegetarian? The Ethical Debate
Nature Worship: or Seeing the Trees for the Ents
August 6th. 2015 ...
Lost - A Pagan Parent's Tale
July 9th. 2015 ...
Love Spells: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
The Magic of Weather
June 7th. 2015 ...
A Pagan Altar
A Minority of a Minority of a Minority
The Consort: Silent Partner or Hidden in Plain Sight?
Why I Bother With Ritual: Poetry and Eikonic Atheism
May 6th. 2015 ...
Gods, Myth, and Ritual in Naturalistic Paganism
I Claim Cronehood
13 Keys: The Crown of Kether
March 29th. 2015 ...
A Thread in the Tapestry of Witchcraft
March 28th. 2015 ...
On Wiccan Magick, Theurgy, Thaumaturgy and Setting Expectations
March 1st. 2015 ...
Choosing to Write a Shadow Book
Historiolae: The Spell Within the Story
February 1st. 2015 ...
Seeker Advice From a Coven Leader
The Three Centers of Paganism
Magick is No Illusion
The Ancient Use of God/Goddess Surnames
The Gods of My Heart
January 1st. 2015 ...
The Six Most Valuable Lessons I've Learned on My Path as a Witch
Manipulation of the Concept of Witchcraft
Publicly Other: Witchcraft in the Suburbs
Pagans All Around Us
Broomstick to the Emerald City
October 20th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Conjuring Spirits
A Microcosmic View of Ma'at
October 5th. 2014 ...
The History of the Sacred Circle
Abandoning Expectations and Remembering Your Roots
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
A Lesson In Advanced Hearth Witchery
Article ID: 14263
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 2,230
Times Read: 6,654
RSS Views: 14,924
Author: Deborah Castellano
Posted: October 31st. 2010
Times Viewed: 6,654
When learning basics, most of us want to rush through and get to the good stuff. When can I start summoning things! When do I get enlightened! When do I light candles with the powers of my mind? What can I say? The movie The Craft was very popular in my teen almost-a-witch years.
Let's say you've been a good little Hearth Witch worker bee, as outlined in my previous WitchVox article. You've learned to iron crisp pleats in your apron, you cook so good your kids don't complain about it, you bring hand poured candles to parties as hostess gifts, you can pull a Flylady drive-by cleaning no problem-o, you can even sew a button and a button hole.
Where's your prize? What's the carrot? How do you power up? How do you achieve enlightenment? Obtain obtainments and other merit badges?
Here's the secret to 300 Level Hearth Witchery: Your hands.
Let that really sink in for a minute so you can understand how much you’re swinging from a trapeze without a safety net. You don't have thousands of years of recorded historical tradition and practice to rely on. While holy men and occasional holy women all over the world were spending their lives in contemplation and recording their thoughts, your Hearth Witch ancestors were busy being pregnant, sowing the fields, burying their children, churning butter, burying their spouse, jarring, canning, sewing, creating fabric, laughing, crying, having sex and making magic from things they had handy around the house. They were never given the luxury to do anything more than that, it’s all they had. Their hands.
Do you think that these midwives, these hedgewitches, these stregas were any less holy because they were not given the luxury of a life of meditation and expensive and obscure spell components, my sisters and brothers of the hearth? Of course not. You are not made any less holy or sacred than your contemporaries who carefully study formal magical systems that have been written down for hundreds of years.
You are too enmeshed in the business of living to have the luxury of devoting your life to a system, even a modern one. Even if we had one, we'd be too busy to follow it. It’s just the way we are. You have children to feed, clothe, and entertain. You have a hearth to manage. You have food to put on the table. You have a day job that you bust your butt at. Your sister is short on rent. Your brother is crying. Your kid needs a new pair of shoes and your spouse needs new buttons on her shirt (again) .
This life, this beautiful, glorious life gets underrepresented and underappreciated in the magical communities. We start to feel that because our magics are simple that they are lesser because we don’t have hours a day to devote to meditation and high ritual. We start to get a sinking feeling we will never be enlightened. We will never be good enough. We will never have magical merit badges. So our altars collect dust, we stop even lighting candles sometimes because, why bother? No one takes us seriously, not even ourselves. We’re relegated to the role of a “dabbler” a “bored housewife witch”.
It’s true, many of us don’t have years of acute study in one particular field of magic, but that doesn’t make us any less powerful. We can’t forget our small daily magics we all do, the secret rituals we keep just to ourselves. The smell of bread and the symbols we etch into it with our fingers. How we absent-mindedly Reiki our spouse’s head with one hand while tying a kid’s shoe in the other. The prayers we say for our loved ones. The tea lights we light in our kitchens in moments of devotion and desperation. The tiny bags of herbs and rocks we stuff into our bras. The makeup and perfume we put on (or don’t) when we want to show we mean business.
The extra dash of rosemary we put into our marinara so that our families and loved ones will be happy. The public rituals we dash to, casserole under our arm and our car keys in our teeth. When we make the act of listening sacred. When we take the tears, vomit, blood and desperate energy thrown at us by loved ones in moments of desperation. How we take that energy and ground it out and take a breath. When we transform that into a healing embrace. The moment of stillness in the house when you can hear yourself breathe just for a moment and your mind goes still.
There is no manual to any of this, my darlings. No manual at all. We have no unifying structure to hold us up, to hold us together in faith. No spirits to compel, no meditation to guide us. All we have is our hands. Your hands to grind herbs from the kitchen from the grocery store with a mortar and pestle you got at a garage sale. Your hands to light candles and say prayers to your gods and goddesses. Your hands to call whatever phone tree you're in charge of. Your hands to scribble down a recipe, a receipt for whatever spell you came up with on the fly that you will use with all your will. Your hands to feed. Your hands to sew. Your hands to write. Your hands to put in soil. Your hands for your children to hold. Your hands covered in blood, sweat, tears, and more terrible things on a bad day.
It's all you're given in this path. It's not glamorous, you'll not win in an occult power wand-waving contest. But you'll get things done. You'll work hard. You'll be able to charm or hex, you'll see results. You'll have the grace that is found in simplicity, even in magic.
Your hands. That's it. End of lesson.
Cooking Dinner Does Not Make You a Kitchen Witch: http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usnj and c=words and id=14051
Copyright: The copyright belongs to me.
Location: , New Jersey
Author's Profile: To learn more about Deborah Castellano - Click HERE
Bio: Deborah Castellano has written for magazines such as Witches and Pagans, NewWitch, Venus and SageWoman. Her work has been included in anthologies by Cleis Press and Freya’s Bower. She writes regularly for Demand Studios.
She blogs regularly about Hearth Witchery on Charmed, I’m Sure: http://dropoutdilettante.blogspot.com.
Other Articles: Deborah Castellano has posted 29 additional articles- View them?
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