Do you believe in magic? We’ve all wanted to have the power to influence the world in supernatural ways. Though science has never found evidence to support the efficacy of spells and magic, many practitioners of Wicca, witchcraft and other occult arts believe that spells can harness unseen forces to fulfill wishes. Whether for love, success, spiritual growth or revenge, spells combine symbolism, special materials, verbal incantations, the positioning of heavenly bodies, concentration and faith into rituals to turn your will into reality.
Understanding the Basics of Spells
1. Purify yourself before any spell. Before attempting to perform magic, you need to get into the right frame of both body and mind and cleanse away any doubts, demons or spiritual impurities that might distract you or make the spell go awry. Ideally purifying yourself should be a ritual in and of itself, and should leave your body relaxed and your mind nuclear.
Bathe. Take a long bath, getting your skin completely clean and soaking the tension of our your muscles.
Dress appropriately. If you have robes or other special garb for doing magic, put that on. Otherwise pick simple but formal clothes that feel light, comfortable and clean. You are asking the divine forces for a favor, so try to dress with a certain amount of reverence. If there won’t be anyone around, some wiccans swear by performing magic in the nude.
Meditate until your mind is clear. Do some basic deep breathing to improve your focus and discard distracting desires.
Anoint yourself with the proper oils. Different essential oils can be used for different purposes, so if you like find one or more that seem appropriate and dab a little with your fingers on your forehead, and perhaps your hands, hair, face and chest as well.
2. Purify your space. If you are going to be working inside, make sure you won’t be disturbed and tidy up the location where you intend to perform your spell. Visualize negative and distracting energies dispersing as you clean.
When the space is clean physically, purify it spiritually by burning some incense, sprinkling some salt water or holy water, or playing a few clear notes on a musical instrument.
3. Setup a circle or altar. You need a consecrated space to perform your ritual. This can be either a circle to protect you from the interference of negative spirits and energies, an altar to focus your dedication to a specific deity or element, or some combination of these two. You will perform your ritual within the circle or in front of the altar.
Draw a circle big enough to sit in, or a five-pointed-star within a circle (called a pentacle). You can draw it physically or just trace it in the air with your finger or a wand. Visualize protective energy coming out of your arm as you draw, sealing off the circle from in a bubble of light. You can mark the cardinal points on the circle or the points of the star with candles, stones, or some other set of significant objects.
Create a small raised platform on which to place a figurine of a deity or some other symbolic representation of the divine. It doesn’t have to be complicated: a stack of books will do, if you treat it reverently. Consider adding candles, crystals, an incense stand, or a couple objects close to you spiritually, such as a small heirloom or your book of spells.
4. Invoke the divine. Verbally call on a higher power to bless your spell. This can be a general prayer to call on the help of some deity or force, or something specific you wrote for this spell. Your invocation can also include gestures, music, dance, or ritually lighting candles or placing objects.
5. Focus your energy on your desire. Visualize the object of your spell and imagine light flowing from you into it. Visualize your wish coming true. The more vividly you can see these energies in your mind’s eye, the realer they will be.
6. Recite your incantation. For each spell, write a short verse describing your wish and asking it to be granted. It doesn’t have to rhyme, but rhymes, alliteration, cadence and other poetic structures help with focus and memorization. Speak the incantation clearly and confidently while you visualize.
7. Seal the deal. A good spell should have some element of “casting off” an item to represent your will going out into the universe. Tear or burn a piece of paper with your wish (or a symbol representing your wish) written on it; toss away a stone or symbolic object; snuff out a candle; or pouring out or drinking a potion.
8. Give thanks and clean up. Say thank you to any specific deity you invoked. Ground your excess energy by visualizing it flowing into the earth. Undraw your circle, if necessary, and dismantle your altar if you aren’t going to use it again. Gather up your tools and leave the space. Your spell is finished. Consider doing something mundane, like having something to eat, to center yourself.
Considering the Occult
1. Watch the heavens. Many magicians consider the phases of the moon, the time of day, and other astrological configurations to be of great significance in the effectiveness of any spell. For instance, a spell seeking some kind of new beginning should be cast during a new moon, so your wish can come to fruition as the moon becomes full. Some occult research will help you figure out how to optimize the timing of your spells.
2. Coordinate your colors. Colors have different meanings in different magical systems. Once you look up their significance, pick one or two colors that match your intention and use colored candles or crystals to involve them in your spells.
3. Use herbs, oils, stones and natural objects. For expert occultists, all these items have some sort of magical significance. Go to your local new age store to pick up materials that will give power to your spells.
4. Cozy up to higher powers. Different occultists call on all sorts of different deities and religious figures to work their magic. Find a system of spiritual symbolism that works for you, and invoke those characters in your spells. Just be careful—some of these spirits have ideas of their own and can twist your intentions if you can’t control them.
5. Have faith. In the end, casting a spell is all about directing your mental energies towards a goal. Whether or not something supernatural occurs because of your spell, stating your goal clearly and in a ritualized way can help you focus, give you confidence and make you work harder to make it happen. The more you believe in the power of your spell, the more likely it is to have a positive effect on you.
Casting the Spell of the Shell
1. Find a shell in shallow water. Take it, and dry it well. This is a simple magic spell to make a general wish come true. Use it to put your intention out into the universe by calling on the power of the waters and the moon.
2. Pick or create a symbol of your desire and place it on the shell. You can draw your own symbol, or you can look up different symbols that are related to your area of desire (love, family, health, success, and so on). Draw it on the surface of the shell with chalk, charcoal or something else that will wash off in the water.
3. Place the shell at the edge of the ocean or lake shore. Set it in a spot where the waves will eventually wash over the shell when the tide comes in. The symbol on the shell should be facing upwards—towards the moon.
Note the phase of the moon when you do this. Use the waxing moon if you wish to gain something and the waning moon if you wish to get rid of something
4. Draw a triangle in the sand. Your shell should be the center of the triangle.
Meaningful phrases and words may be drawn into the sand as well, as long as they are in the triangle. Alternatively, you can write these directly onto the shell.
5. Chant this spell while facing the moon. Focus on your wish and try to say the spell with reverence and conviction.
Goddess of Moon, Earth, and the Sea
Each wish in Thy name must come to be
Powers and Forces which Tides do make
Now summon Thy waves, my spell to take
6. Leave the area believing that your wish will come true. As the tide moves in, the shell should wash away, and your wish will be taken by the universe, to the Old Ones or whichever gods you believe in. You should notice results in 7-28 days.