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Jan 07, 2021
An important aspect of witchcraft is maintaining a sacred space. This is an organized, calm, and relaxing space that you have specifically set aside for rituals and spellwork.
An altar is a type of sacred space and this is a space I do maintain as sacred no matter what.
Many of our ancestors kept an altar in their home. They would dedicate it to certain gods and goddesses, they would burn candles or incense and leave offerings to their deity in exchange for guidance, or prosperity, or protection.
Altars can serve an important purpose for the practical and modern witch as well. It is a space dedicated to magical and spiritual work. It can help get you into the proper mindset for whatever magic you would like to perform. It also serves as a visual reminder of your intention, so that your witchy path doesn’t get set too far to the side of your mundane daily life.
The intention of a sacred space depends on where it is and the purpose you need it to fulfill. Set the intention of your sacred space so that it is protected from negative, stagnant, or unwanted energy and spirits, and inviting to fresh, positive, and beneficial energy and spirits.
You might incorporate items that enhance your sensual perception of the space through sight, smell, sound, and touch.
The key, though, is your intention.
When you perform a ritual or cast a spell, you will likely incorporate a variety of materials like herbs and crystals, and tools like the broom, candle, and wand.
The purpose of tools in witchcraft is mostly practical. Some witches like to have tools that are only for magical use, and some will use the same tool for magical and mundane purposes alike.
The first is a besom, or broom, which you can make yourself or ask someone else to make for you. It is generally used, not as a traditional broom for sweeping physical dirt, but rather for cleansing energetically. I keep my broom by my altar, and personally never let it touch the ground.
Another tool many witches use is a candle, and probably my most used magical tool. There is actually a branch of magic dedicated to working with candles. This tool is very convenient for magic because they are readily available and generally inexpensive and they make it easy for witches who are not out of the broom closet to practice openly.
The cauldron is another tool that was traditionally easy to hide in plain sight, as they were indistinguishable from a cooking pot. As a kitchen witch, I consider the pots and pans I use for cooking my cauldrons. A cauldron can be anything that is made from a heat proof material. Many are small enough to fit on an altar. I use my cauldron for collecting materials like paper or leaves as part of a spell, especially when they need to be lit on fire. I also use it for practical purposes like mixing herbs and holding candles.
Tarot cards are not exclusively a witchcraft tool, but many witches do enjoy using them, myself included. There are many ways to use Tarot cards in witchcraft. The most common way is for divination. Divination is the practice of seeking answers from the divine about questions you have. I also use Tarot cards in spellwork and for self care, personal guidance, and shadow work.
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