Witches’ Spell: Parchment Spells

It is often common for witches to write out spells or partial components of spells for use in conjunction with their magickal workings. Some witches track their success rates, performance, etc. in their personal journal the more expensive of which may be handmade, covered in leather or suede, and boast natural parchment pages or vellum pages. There are witches who also practice spells by writing out simple parchment spells. Parchment spells are very common and easy to learn. In fact, throughout history, some of the oldest writings found on earth are spells and spell fragments from various sources on ancient parchment, vellum, papyrus, as well as carved in stone, metal, and clay.

While the types of spells shared on this post are often referred to as “parchment spells”, the use of “true” parchment is not necessary to their success. Whereas some witching purists will insist on “true” parchment for their spells, meaning certain types of animal skin/by-product prepared by an age-old ritual that has existed for thousands of years, other witches prefer high quality “true” vellum (calfskins) for spell work. Still other witches are less fussy.

For the average witch on a budget, both of the above are cost prohibitive, even though the links lead to some of the most inexpensive products I have found available online. If the witch is an active caster, an experimental witch who enjoys creating new spells for themselves and others, or a new witchling still testing new spells regularly, the cost of high quality parchment or vellum becomes exorbitant over a short time. Add to that the fact that some of the modern witches and pagans among us, are part time animal activists, some are full time and very vocal activists. Some are vegetarians or vegans, which means that both true parchment and true vellum are anathema due to being considered nothing more than “treated animal remains” by these section of our folks.

However, since spell work has been popular among various religions for several millennia and it does not seem to be going out of style with modern day witches any time soon. After a few thousand of years of writing all sorts of books, information, and even spell books, the time came when the volume of writing and printing in the world began to outstrip, by far, the volume of animal skin available for use. As such, a new, less time intensive, less expensive source became necessary and the enterprising publishing world began mass creations of papers of various styles, thicknesses, and qualities to replace the true parchments and vellums.

With the advent of parchment papers and other papers to replace the animal membranes, the “new” trend started a few hundred of years ago still thrives, today. While plant matter and cloth fibers combine to make many of the higher quality parchment papers, it is a case of to each witch their own, when it comes to preferences. Some witches prefer to buy professionally produced parchment papers and other witches prefer to make their own parchment paper.

Homemade paper is thriving because witches can add various bits of herbs or add in tiny fibers of cloth of a specific color based on their magickal intent to strengthen the spell from the ground up, as it were. There are D-I-Y instructions everywhere on the Internet that teach you how to make your own paper; you may even purchase paper making “kits” online, or special order paper from local pagan shops in many areas. Experiment until you learn what works best for you.

About Parchment Spells

A witch’s spell can be, but does not have to be, a grand affair where a circle is called, spells celebrated with specific spell incenses, burning candles, chants to a favorite deity, or complex rites around the altar, blood rituals or even sacrifices of personal items to achieve results. Sometimes a simple spell written on a piece of parchment and burned in the flame of a candle of a specific color, chosen to represent the witch’s intent is all that is necessary for a spell to succeed. Some witches will include bits of various herbs bound inside a folded spell to strengthen it. Spell specifics that are performed according to the needs and the individual path each witch; however, garner the best results. Some basic guidelines for parchment spell ideas are common across the board, as shown below:

  • Crossing or Hexing – When crossing or hexing someone with a parchment spell, the name of the target is written on the parchment in Bat’s Blood ink first, then the curse or hex is written across the top of the name at an angle to for the tradition “X” shape of the crossing spell. A single line for the curse or hex is preferable and aesthetically pleasing. I prefer them to be as equal in length as possible, but that is a personal choice.

crossing_a

  • Uncrossing or Unhexing – If you are uncrossing or unhexing another, write the name of the person who did the crossing/hexing on the parchment, then write the name of the person crossed/hexed on top of their name on the parchment in the “X” pattern. If you choose, over the top of these two names you can make the red circle with the diagonal line through it (in Dove’s Blood ink) the international symbol for banning or disallowing.uncrossing_a
  • Binding – My favorite way to do this is to link words together relating to the person in a crossword puzzle format, writing down several specifics for their life in Lampblack ink. (If you can scan and print their picture on the parchment… even better!) Give a 45-degree spin to the page after writing the facts to write out your bindings boldly in Dragon’s Blood ink over the facts/face.For example, let us say we are binding a manager, Laura Smith, who was born on December 1st. Her nickname around the office is Bobblehead because she is about as effective as a wooden bobblehead. She goes out dancing every night, was a cheerleader in high school, is married with children, has brown eyes and hair, and has a wide face with lots of moles all over it. She was born in Boise, now lives in Irving. This person is prejudiced, hateful, and wrathful. She likes to harm others, lies, spreads gossip, and spreads negativity. The finished item looks like this:bobblehead fake
  • Wishes – When writing out wishes with parchment it is a simple matter of the witch literally spelling out what they want in Dragon’s Blood ink, or want to happen. Do not be afraid to be specific in the request. If you leave the details to chance, do not complain if you are not happy with what you get.wishes_a
  • Do as I Say – Think of this parchment spell as you think of the “I will…” lines teacher made you write on the blackboard in school. (Well… if not you, then me, because I was always at that damned board!) Get a magickal focus on what you want to happen or do not want to happen. Focus on your intent as you take a piece of parchment and write “lines” in multiples on the page in Dragon’s Blood ink. “I will get the raise I deserve this month.” Perhaps, “That weird person at work will stop asking me out.” Do the lines in sets of power numbers, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, and 13.

Do-as-I-Say

  • Breaking Habits – As previously stated in the spell specifically on breaking bad habits a few weeks ago, I needed to stop smoking. I have smoked the majority of my adult life since picking up the habit at 21. Az and I put it down for just over 4 years almost a couple of decades ago, but after those four years, as the first anniversary of Az’s crossing over approached, I picked it back up. I tried in vain to put it down several times since, but there would always be a lot of stress in the days immediately following the attempt. The craving would be so intense; I would end up wanting a cigarette desperately, within a day or two of stopping I would invariably “sneak one” to chill. I knew it was better for me to stop but I love smoking, I would give in after a few days or a week; pick them back up cussing myself the whole time.After casting the spell now, I have had a day or two where I really missed smoking for a few minutes, but the intense craving is just not there. One night, last week, in particular, I was extremely stressed, but cigarettes were the furthest thing from my mind right then. I thought about them a day or two later, remembered how much I enjoyed smoking for a minute or two when remembering the stress, but the craving did not come. I have not picked them back up even though I still love smoking. Usually the craving had me back to smoking by now, this time, nah. It is a handy spell for anyone looking to put the cigarettes, or other bad habits, down. I performed my spell during the waning moon, with very little modification from the spell as written on the other blog post.

stop smoking, break bad habits,
As always, the decision to personalize the parchment spells, such as using Dragon’s Blood ink is up to you. Adding runes, glyphs, or power sigils to increase the magick, adding a pinch of herbs to the top of the spell after you have written it, to fold into the parchment, tying it with a specific color of cord, ribbon, yard or thread is a choice for the individual witch. Sealing the parchment packet with your choice of wax dripped from a colored candle to secure the edges or encase the knot work the way I do it, is optional.

Your spells and rituals should be unique to your needs and desires. Adding Mars or War Water, Venus Water or Venus Oil, Satyr Oil, a specific Moon Water, Zodiac Oil, or whatever else, a witch deems as necessary, is a personal preference and adds layers of power and complexity to the witch’s spell.

When adding runes, glyphs, sigils, etc, to a parchment spell, adding them to the four corners of the spell prior to folding them in is a good choice for any witch. When adding spell oils, spell waters, you can add a single drop for each corner and one in the center, or trace your preferred holy/power symbol over the top of the spell. If you want to add additional power, you can anoint the edges of the parchment spell, beginning at the top right hand corner and circling the parchment edges widdershins to send away as for uncrossing, unhexing, and breaking bad habits spells. When drawing power into the spells for wishes, crossings, bindings, etc. start at the top right hand corner and dress the edges of the paper in a deosil motion.

The best folding pattern I have found to lock the potential into the parchment is to do a tri-fold with the written spell and any oils, herbs, etc. inside, then turning the parchment 90 degrees, do another tri-fold, to “lock” the intent of the spell inside the parchment packet.

Tying the packet closed, is a three-way system as well with my parchment spells. I loop and tie in direction based on intent of sending or receiving, rotate the packet widdershins/deosil also based on intent, rotating three times, total, and tying three times total, then dripping wax thrice on the knot work.

As always, this is my way… not the way. Take any of these spells and personalize it to suit your individual needs adding and subtracting any layers you deem necessary for your spell work. No spell is written in stone when it comes to modern or eclectic witchcraft, the individual witch makes the spell or tweaks an existing one to suit their needs.

 

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Witchery: Scrying Processes Explained

Scrying is some of the most interesting magick a witch can learn to practice. Whether using a cauldron filed with water underneath the moonlight, using a rock crystal sphere, or a magick mirror, the tool a witch chooses is of less consequence than the manner used for scrying. Even using natural methods, such as the tall grasses in a field or the leaves of a tree dancing in a breeze, the dancing light of a fire or simple candle, scrying is a process that speaks to witches around the globe.

The medium you use should be natural to you. If drawn to air, leaves and grass blowing in a breeze can reveal what you seek. If fire calls to you, use a candle or the flames jumping from a fire. For earth, a rock crystal sphere or magick mirror, answers questions, just as a cauldron or charged metal bowl filled with water.

To practice scrying with your cauldron or a bowl, it is as simple as filling it with water to within a few inches of the lip; due to the natural elements it contains, rainwater or spring water works best. If you are inside, add a couple of small votive candles or chime sized candles of an appropriate color (related to the questions asked) to either side but do not allow the flame to touch the water surface while scrying. If you are outdoors, the light of the moon is best, however, do not allow the reflection of the moon to touch the water as you scry. Take several deep breaths and center yourself within your own mind. When your mind is clear, focus on what you want to know and allow your mind to narrow your focus to a single statement or question. When you are ready, allow your eyes to open and gaze into the water. You do not need to focus on the water itself, allow your gaze to sink into the center of the water. Allow your eyes to blink naturally; you are not in a staring contest with the water, after all. Let your mind relax around the single question, hear it in your mind as a whisper, feel it as a weight in your bones. The answer may come in pictures viewed with your third eye in the water, or as a voice in your mind. Let yourself relax and be open to the response you seek.

When using a crystal sphere or magick mirror, after it is magickally charged, do not allow sunlight or man-made light to touch it directly. I.e. protect it from fluorescent or incandescent light. I even set it carefully where candlelight does not reflect directly on the ball or mirror. I feel that candles should sit behind you as you scry, illuminating the medium you are using to scry only indirectly. Again, take several deep breaths and center yourself, as you focus on the question you need answered. Allow your gaze to sink into the mirror or ball, not focus directly on it. It is not like the movies where you see fluid shapes on the surface of the mirror or ball like a film shown on a movie screen. The shapes will occur within the mirror or ball, itself. You may see a snapshot as an individual picture reflected, you might see moving shapes showing you the answer. Some witches hear the answer audibly from the magickal item or as a whisper within their mind. How you share your connection with the crystal sphere or magick mirror will be uniquely yours. It might change as your work with it progresses, or stay the same. Only with continued workings will you learn how your individual connection works.

If you use a candle or fire to scry, it is as simple as it sounds. Once you have lit the fire or appropriately colored candle, perform your deep breathing and centering. Focus on the intent behind your gazing and allow the flames from the fire or candle to draw your attention deeply. The room or area should be darkened, if you are indoors, or nighttime if you are outdoors. When outdoors, make certain it is a still night and that you have taken all necessary precautions to keep the fire from spreading or the candle from falling and igniting other items. You do not want to have to worry about the flames spreading to you or the surrounding while you are gazing. Allow yourself to see the flames movements. Listen to the hiss, sizzle, and crackle of the flames when using a fire. Fire might choose to speak though images and/or through audible means as well. As you focus on the question, listen to the flame and watch as it dances, in order to hear and see the answers you seek. When using a candle or fire, you might also observe the smoke and with the fire, after the flames have burned out, you may try your hand at scrying for answers in the ashes.

When using nature to scry, it is very different from other means. Using nature requires you to have daylight. You may choose to listen, or observe visually, in order to find the answers you seek. Once you have chosen your medium, leaves high above you in the trees, grass on a hillside or open field, or even a tree-shaded brook or stream, you need to make certain you are comfortable. Arrange your body in a position that ensures your safety first, then your comfort. Make certain plants in your area are not harmful, such as poisonous ivy, poison oak, or poison sumac. Protect yourself from human, animal, insects, and vehicular dangers. Once ready, take your deep breaths and center yourself, gain your focus on the question. If you watch the leaves or grass moving in the breeze, you may see patterns or shapes, conversely, you may hear whispered answers to your question. The brook or stream, may answer you as the shadows of leaves form patterns or the babbling of the water becomes whispers or words you understand.

When you have a focus for your scrying, no matter which medium you chose, it can act as a doorway into your own subconscious, allowing you to interact with knowledge you do not realize you have. It might act as a way to contact the universal energy, elementals, a means to contact deities, familiar spirits, or other entities with access to knowledge beyond your own. You may receive the answer you seek; you may receive more than you seek or less. You may even end up with new questions to ponder.

When you practice scrying, it is best to keep a record of your activities. Use your grimoire or personal journal to track responses. If you experiment with various mediums, recording the results will help to track the most successful workings so you can find the most accurate medium, which works best for you. Each witch is unique and it may take time to discover with medium works best with your unique gifts. Some witches use different mediums for different questions, so, I suggest that you try as many methods as you can to see which works best for you.