As far back as I can remember, I knew I was a witch. I knew that I had a connection with the universe that was special. I also found mythology fascinated me. That somehow it called to me in a way that was different from others. Though until the last couple of years I didn't put the connection of the two together. My parents knew that I was a witch from birth. They would drive me around the block each night to put me to sleep. It wasn't long before they realized that I was making them do this! As a young girl my mother would take me to cemeteries. She wanted me to feel the energy that was there and to realize what was inside of me. She didn't know that I had already realized it.
I called myself a Christian witch. I believed in the one God and Jesus. Though I was constantly questioning what I was being taught.
I didn't come in contact with the pagan community until about 4 years ago. I threw myself a birthday party and invited a new neighbor of mine. After everyone had left, except her, she was helping me clean up. She asked me if I was a witch! She had noticed the little things in my home that indicated this. Even though I also had Christian items in my living room.
It was this neighbor that first invited me to "Pagan's Night Out". I went with her a couple of times and found it very refreshing to be with people that felt like I did. This neighbor soon moved back to Texas. I couldn't get myself to go alone to PNO. I was still very shy at that time.
About 1 year later I was attending Heritage College when I met someone there that I was drawn to. She was also drawn to me. After a few times of talking to each other she finally questioned me and I realized that she also was a witch! Donna invited me back to PNO. I went with her and then continued to go. Later Donna invited me to my first ritual. It was Beltane. That ritual opened me up wide! I had never felt such wonderful energy!
After this I started going to meetups and learning more about paganism. It was my mom that got me started there. I had my name on the lists, but I had never attended. She called me one day and told me that my sister was attending a witch's meetup and told me when and where. She told me that I should go; this was the motivation that got me there. It wasn't until I had been going to these meetings and had started joining in rituals with "The Coven of the Goddess" that I realized that I was truly a pagan! So sometimes things are so ingrained into our minds that it's hard to change!
It was after my second Beltane ritual that my magikal name was given to me. I had a dream that night, and in that dream there was a voice that did not belong to the dream. It was a young male's voice and said to me "Your name is MoonFox"! I told myself to remember this when I woke, and I did. Later, when I discussed this with my two high priestesses, it was suggested to me that I should meditate on the name. When I did this, the first thing that I saw was a red fox sitting in the snow in a field. Then I saw another fox running from some hound dogs. The fox ran into a hole and the dogs ran past. The fox thought this was just great and was giggling! This felt so good. I decided that this was to be my name. I don't know if this will ever change or be added upon, but for now it's perfect.
Since that time my relationship with the Goddess has only grown stronger. I have realized that she is with me and in me and that I can call on her anytime that I want or need. She has been with me all my life; I just called her by the wrong name.
To me the Goddess is purity, love, strength, devotion, spirit, and a natural part of me. She is the part of me that knows I can do what I need to do. She is the little voice in my head that tells me when I am on the right path or the wrong one. She is the one that I love and who loves me in return, unconditionally!
The Maiden aspect of the Goddess represents the spring, new beginnings, and the waxing moon. She can be found in any woman, no matter her age. The maiden is ageless in her youth. She is the part of us that knows that things will be ok, that a new beginning is just around the corner and all we have to do is look for it.
The Mother aspect represents the fall when things are harvested, fertility, and the full moon. She is the one in us that calls us to be nurturing, to care for ourselves, the earth, and others. It is the Mother that I most identify with. I have always been in touch with her, even before having my own children.
The Crone aspect of the Goddess represents the winter and going into the darkness. She represents the waning moon. This is the time when things end and leave room for others to begin. This is the time that things seem to be dormant when they're really waiting to start over anew. The Crone is the wise woman who guides us through the darkness.
My daughter has told me that she sees all three aspects in me. She sees the Maiden that likes to play with her, the Mother that cares for her, and the Crone that helps to guide her. I know that all three exist inside of me and all women.
When calling on the watchtowers I imagine this as being a place where the elements are watching and waiting to be called upon. It's open and can be accessed by anyone that has the need or desire to access it.
I have found that the elements can lend an energy that is totally different from any other energy I have used. As I worked on my totems I found that they each came to me of their own accord. I tried to find them in order, but they chose differently. Each one just kind of popped out at me unexpectedly.
The most interesting one was Earth. We were making things out of clay during a full moon ritual and I had chosen green. As I was rolling the clay around in my hand I just felt a little voice say to me "I'm your earth totem"! It totally shocked me, but I listened!
For me Earth is home and family. It's what grounds us and keeps us safe. Earth also represents money, prosperity, fertility, and healing. The color is green. One of the mystical creatures associated with Earth is the gnome.
Air represents freedom to me. I think this is because I have always longed for the freedom that birds have in flight. Air is what keeps the blood flowing through our bodies. Air represents beginnings, clarity, communication, and concentration. The color for Air is yellow. The mystical creature that I love the best for Air is the fairies.
Fire is passion no matter how you look at it! It's Fire that ignites us and gets us moving. Fire represents cleansing, creativity, lust, and orgasms. The color for fire is of course red. The mystical creature that I always think of with fire is the dragon.
Water to me is birth. I think of the water of the womb when I think of the element of Water. The color of Water is blue, like the ocean. Water represents emotions, motherhood, intuition, and tears. The mystical creature that I associate with water is the mermaid.
Creating sacred space:
The creating of sacred space is an important part of any ritual. It's the part that gets the mind and space truly ready to accept what you are about to do.
Once all the items are on the alter that you plan to use, you need to cleanse all of them. One by one you anoint each thing with water and earth and then fire and air tracing a pentagram on or above them. This is done with water and salt and incense. While anointing each item think about all negativity being washed away. Leaving only the positive energies that are naturally there.
Once the alter is ready you need to "sweep" the area of all negativity. Using your besom you walk around the area widdershins (counter clockwise) sweeping negative energy out. State your intent with every sweep to remove negative energy. After this you sage the area walking deosil (clockwise), stating your intent to draw positive energy in. Once the space is ready, invite your sisters in one at a time. At this time you ask "How do you enter this circle?" The expected answer is "In perfect love and perfect trust". You cleanse each sister with sage and anoint her with oil, welcoming her into the circle.
(Sacred Space for initation was created using the the Covens casting method and words)
A witch's tools:
The most important tools that any witch can posses are her own mind, spirit, and belief. This is where the saying that tools do not a witch make, a witch makes her tools. In saying this I will now state that I do own most of the "tools of the trade"! There is a purpose for each item on the alter.
The sword is for cutting the circle. Starting in the North, the sword is dedicated to Mother Earth. Then it is held out from the body and towards the ground while circling the area deosil and saying "I cut this circle thrice around, to keep love in and evil out". A blue flame is envisioned as this is done.
The athame is used any time a knife is needed in magikal workings. It can be used in many ways from carving things into a candle to cutting invoking pentagrams in the air while calling on the watchtowers. I personally use my athame for cutting the circle, and the pentagrams. My athame was given to me by my coven sister, Lotus. She had it and it didn't seem to belong to her, so she asked if any of us wanted it. I was the one that didn't have one and had been looking. I love when the tools find you instead of you having to find them!
The wand is used to draw and direct in energies. My wand is made from a tree branch with a crystal at the point and ribbons streaming down from the top. I have inscribed my name on it in the witch's alphabet. There is also a stone heart near the tip. I did not ask the tree that I took the branch from for permission to take it because I felt that the tree was calling me to take the branch for my wand. I did thank the tree though.
The chalice represents the womb of the Goddess. My chalice is made of glass and pewter. It is a flute shaped glass with a pewter fairy holding it up. This was given to me by my son and is very dear to me. It is fitting to me that it would be from my own child since it represents the womb of the Goddess.
My cord represents my loyalty to my coven and connects me to the power of the old ones. It can also be used as a measuring device. My cord has the colors of the elements in it, ribbons to signify beauty, and rope to signify the roughness of the earth itself.
The bell is a symbol of Air and is used to ward off evil spells, evil spirits, and to evoke good energies. My bell is one that was used by my mother in her youth. She recently gave it to me.
The besom is used to sweep out negativity from your home and to prepare the circle for ritual. This sweeping can be done with the besom touching the ground or not. My besom is very small, so I usually don't touch the ground with it.
The pentacle is worn for protection and empowerment. It represents the elements of Air, Fire, Water, Earth, and Spirit. To me, the circle around the star represents the connection of all five elements. My pentacle is a double pentacle. There is one inside the other. I have found that most people that would have a problem seeing it don't see it. Even though it is big, it seems to have the power to hide it's self when needed.
The cauldron holds the knowledge that the Goddess gives to us. Mine is short, cast iron, with two small handles on the side. It can be used for holding and stirring herbs, holding liquids, and for holding water or fire for scrying.
Candles are a good tool to help in releasing your intentions in to the air. I feel that lighting the flame is igniting my intentions and that the smoke is like smoke signals to the universe as to what I need and want. Candles are used to represent the Goddess and the watchtowers. The ones for the watchtowers, or the holders they are in should be the color associated with each element. The Goddess candle can be one or three, depending on whether you want to honor the triple Goddess.
My Book of Shadows is a collection of all that I have learned upon my path and what I want to hand down to my daughter. It is the place where I store my spells, my insights, and beliefs.
A working knife can be used for any cutting that is needed. It can be used in place of the sword or the athame. I personally use mine to carve things and to mentally cut things away from me that are no longer needed. I decorated my working knife with things that have the energy of those I feel great power from that are important to me. Such as my high priestess and my mentor.
This is my first degree initiation essay. I am MoonFox and I am a witch. I am ever changing, as are my ideas.