Mistaken Identity

Published August 18, 2014 by witchesbrew

On several occasions, I have received a lovely email or comment from a reader gushing about my blog.  I get super excited and touched by their words…until I see they really mean to congratulate another blogger or vlogger.  I usually pass the compliment to the appropriate party and will continue to do so.  But for the record, I am not TipToeChick or CharmingPixieFlora or anyone else.  I am Ariadne Woods, witch and grad student.  I do share good content of other bloggers and vloggers, especially if they say something in a manner I can’t express myself.

If a reader likes the content I post from another party and wants to express that, if I have the permission of the other writer I am happy to pass their contact information to you.

Witch Tips: Dating

Published July 14, 2014 by witchesbrew

Finding love can be an arduous and difficult task.  You look and search and come up with only frogs.  Well, I am not saying I am an expert in dating (far from it).  But I do have some words of wisdom.

  • Don’t Feel Like You Have to Date within the Community: Just because you are a Witch doesn’t mean your partner has to be.  A person’s personality and your connection to the person is more important than their religious affiliation.
  • Come Out on your Own Time: I don’t tell every guy who buys me dinner I’m a Witch.  Just the ones who stick around.  My best advice is to play it by ear.  And don’t be afraid to tell your special person about your witchness.  If they leave you because you’re a Pagan, then they’re a jerk and aren’t worth your time or tears.
  • Sleep With the People You Want to Sleep With (Within Reason): Yes, Witches are way more in touch with their sexual desires than most people.  And most people outside of the community tend to know that.  In my experience, that has led to a couple awkward situations of miscommunication and misunderstanding.  Bottom line: if sex is your end game when it comes to dating, go have some fun safely.  If your more into building a long term relationship with someone, then I suggest setting some boundaries early in the relationship and to make your likes and dislikes in the bedroom known early.
  • Spellwork is Futile If You Do Nothing: You can do every love-attraction spell in the book, but it will yield no results if you just sit on your couch.  Go meet new people.  Expand your social circle, enriching your life with both dates and friends.  If you are shy or introverted, consider internet services.
  • Know What You Want: Before you begin your adventures in dating, I highly recommend looking inward and examining what you want from a relationship.  Do you want to settle down, get married, and start a family?  Are you looking to date casually or seriously?  What role do you want in your romantic relationships?  What would you be willing to sacrifice?  Knowing what you want will not only make your path easier, but also more accurate to your spirit.

© Ariadne Woods

Small Magics

Published July 3, 2014 by witchesbrew

Let me tell you about two spells I did on the same day.  The first was an elaborate spell bag I planned for days for a very specific purpose.  For the second one, I found out I had to make an emergency trip home, so I threw a few gemstones in a bag, said the fastest possible blessing over them, and threw them in my bag.  Both spells worked perfectly.  In their basics I did the same things: applied knowledge with wisdom, visualized, and believed in the outcome I desired.  But the amount of planning I did for each spell was vastly different.  Mind you, I knew the circumstances surrounding the first spell for a few weeks, whereas the second event was a curveball.

The point is that magic doesn’t have to be crazy and elaborate, because let’s be honest who has time to perform ceremonial magic for everything.  Sometimes you have to work on instincts and let your knowledge guide you.

So, fellow Witches, what can you do to be successful in your spontaneous spells?

  • Take Your Magical Education Seriously: If there is one rule to being a good Witch, it’s never stop reading and learning.  The more you know, the easier connecting your problem to your magical solution will be.
  • Keep Your Tools Well Stocked: Ever go to do a spell and find you are out of the ONE INGREDIENT you need?  Yeah, not good especially in an unexpected situation.  Keep track of what candles, herbs, stones, or whatever your use the most and make sure you buy more when your run low.  If you are new to the Craft and don’t have a handle on your favorite techniques and tools, pick up some white votive candles and clear quartz since both are so versatile.
  • Be Prepared: Try to learn at least one spell for each of your five magical basics: health, wealth, love, prosperity, and protection.  Remember, they need to be quick and easy.  Once you’ve mastered those areas of your life, expand as needed to other needs.
  • Consider Ingredient-less Workings: Sometimes you want to do something instantly, but lack the tools.  So, do what you can with simple techniques, such as shielding.
  • Relax and Evaluate: How much time do you REALLY have to complete this spell?  Are things moving quickly or slowly.  If you have the time to plan, take it.  If not, use your short spells.

© Ariadne Woods

A Guide for Loved Ones of Pagans, Wiccans, and Witches

Published May 9, 2014 by witchesbrew

The intended audience of this guide is for close family and friends of Pagans who are brand new to Earth-Centered religions: parents, grandparents, siblings, spouses, partners, girlfriends, boyfriends, and best friends.  While some of these materials are produced by the Pagan community for Pagans, this guide isn’t intended to convert you (Witches and Pagans do not prothletyze).  It is more to give you a general understanding of your loved one’s beliefs.

Books: All of these publications are produced to explain the fundamentals of Paganism.  The first two are for general reference, while the other publications are to characterize the history of Paganism in the United States and to discuss the legal rights of Pagans.  All of these are easy to find in bookstores and your local library (if your branch does not have it, try interlibrary loan).

  • Paganism: An Introduction to Earth-Centered Religions by Joyce and River Higgenbottom
  • Wicca: The Complete Guide by D.J. Conway *Just the first few chapters
  • Drawing Down the Moon by Margot Adler *Again, just the first few chapters
  • Pagans and the Law by Dana D. Eilers

Websites: These websites are shorter, more concentrated explanations of Paganism, including holidays and common terms.

Podcast Episodes and Youtube Videos: Its important to understand your loved one’s anxiety or reservations about coming out.  The following resources are Pagans–including Pagan parents–discussing their experiences coming out and their paths.

© Ariadne Woods

Witch Tips: One Day Festivals

Published May 7, 2014 by witchesbrew

While some of the most famous Pagan festivals, such as Pagan Spirit Gathering and the Goddess Festival, are week or weekend long affairs, some organizations facilitate sabats as mini festival experiences.  These are a great way to interact with local Pagans and to celebrate the Wheel of the Year.  Pagan Pride Days are also sometimes structured like festivals.  To find these events, look in the Witch’s Voice, Meetup.com, or ask the proprietor of any local supply shops.

Practical Things

  • Double Check Your Documents:  Tickets, parking passes, and photo ID tend to be the norm.  Make sure its in your bag before you leave.
  • Blend Style with Comfort: You may want to look you witchiest, but reconsider your outfit if it involves heels.  Flats and sneakers work well.  If you are going skyclad or plan to expose large amounts of skin, I recommend packing a cover-up for food service areas.
  • Sun Protection: Let’s avoid sunburns.  Sunscreen (with regular application), a hat, and time in the shade will help prevent any damage to your skin.  A little post-sun TLC with aloe vera gel whipped with shea butter and a few drops of lavender essential oil will sooth any acquired burns and counteract any lasting damage.
  • Little Pests: If you are concerned about the harsh chemicals in bug spray, consider buying an essential oil based version or follow this recipe: mix equal parts distilled water and witch hazel in a spray bottle.  Add 60 drops of the following essential oils according to your needs: citronella (good for mosquitoes and flies), tea tree (good for ticks), peppermint, lavender, thyme, basil, geranium, cedar wood, clove, lemongrass, rosemary, and eucalyptus.
  • Money: Most venders take credit cards these days, but you don’t always want to pay with a card because it is easy to lose track of how much money you’re spending.  The trick is to do a little research before you go to the festival to scout out the prices of food and merchandise, as well as any other expenses.  I recommend having enough money to pay for food and drink in cash with maybe $50 extra for emergencies.  If you are concerned about spending too much money on souvenirs, then reverse this method.

Pagan Sabats and Festivals

  • What to Bring: Take note of any ritual items for altars or food for a pot luck (remember to label for allergies/vegan/etc.).  Also find out what not to bring, including familiars and any illicit materials.
  • Leave Your Judgement at Home:  This is a time when many different kinds of witches, Pagans, covens, and traditions come together.  So, you will run into people with practices that you don’t understand. Even things you may think are fixed, like the direction of the elements.   Avoid any instinct to eye roll and be open to new ideas.  This includes what people are or are not wearing.  Some people take this time to be in the natural element.  Remember that being naked does not always have a sexual connotation and to treat everyone equally.
  • Do Not Do/Say/Invoke Anything You Do Not Believe: Don’t feel peer pressured into anything just because there are hundreds of people doing it.
  • Ask Before Taking Pictures:  The face-recognition technology used by social media websites and search engines is pretty advanced (think about the number of times Facebook has tagged you in something without your knowledge).  Being outed from the broom closet because of festival attendance or other activities is becoming a reality due to the high volume of information and accuracy of retrieval methods on the Internet.  So, never take a picture of someone or a ritual without permission, especially if you don’t know someone’s in-out status.
  • Read Up on Common Controversies at Pagan Festivals:  They may not manifest as a factor of your gathering, but people will be talking about them.  Examples include issues of cultural appropriation and the exclusion of transgender, female-presenting ladies from Dianic or women only rituals.

© Ariadne Woods

Tarot Update and Apology

Published May 6, 2014 by witchesbrew

Hi everyone!

Apparently my email provider sometimes thinks private messages from WordPress are spam.  Therefore some people’s reading requests got lost.  I apologize for the delay and any continued delay from the backlog of readings (I have about 20 in my queue).

Ariadne Woods

Giving No F*cks

Published May 6, 2014 by witchesbrew

Spirit dancing is the phenomena when a person is so overcome by shear joy they just feel the need to dance.  I wish I could show you a video clip of what I am talking about, but the act is so spontaneous and free that it’s hard to capture. If you have ever been to a public ritual with dancing, I guarantee you have seen it.

After my Beltane ritual, I put on music while I cleaned up after ritual.  A song with a heavy beat came through the speakers of my laptop and the next thing I knew I was twirling for the next three songs.  The feeling of utter bliss was overwhelming.  Part of it was the energy of the ritual. And I just felt light and happy and free.

© Ariadne Woods

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