Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Majickal Tools

Here is some of the basic info regarding the tools and their technical names hope it will help. This section may be very handy for beginners especially. You do not have to purchase any of your tools, you can make your own. In fact, I suggest that as they hold more personal power for you, charged with your own natural energies. Depending on your practice and path, they will vary.

(Pronounced A-tham-ee) The handle is usually made of a natural substance like wood, it makes sense not to use something like plastic because witchcraft is all about honoring the natural environment. The athame is purely ceremonial and is not used to cut anything, being mainly a tool of direction - casting the circle and evoking the elements. It is also used for mixing ritual substances such as salt and water, marking them with the sign of the pentagram, and consecrating your equipment. The athame is the most personal and powerful instrument in your magick toolkit, and is the one thing you should not really share. If you ever attend a circle or coven of witches, you will notice that most of the equipment is used by all members except the athame, each witch will bring their own. Because the athame is not used for cutting, the blade can be anything you choose, perhaps inscribed or with an interesting shape. The athame corresponds to the element of Fire (in some traditions Air), the direction East and is male in energy.

The Athame is more commonly know as a knife and most witches will own several ritual knives, the Athame is a very personal and majical tool which the witch will take great care over when obtaining. The Athame should fit comfortably in the hand and feel right with many witches going to great lengths to make their own blades and hone them to perfection. We also personalize them with great care with runes, carvings and other symbols with special
meanings to them, with some witches preferring to use family heirlooms such as letter openers as their Athame.

The Broom

Indeed we do use it for the cleansing rituals and many other rituals, but basically to sweep away the circle after 
we have closed it. Some practitioners also use it as an aid for Astral Travel, this is the aspect to ehre witches ar3 known for riding their brooms. Many witches will also place a broom outside of their door with the brushy side up to ward off evil spirits and to stop unwanted outside energies from entering the home. I keep a small one, in which I have made, over each doorway as well.

Many witches like to use dance and music in their rituals, and this is an instinct which hearkens back to our ancestors, when Shamans would dance around the fire before a hunt to ask the blessing of the deities and connect with the spirit of the animal. The bell has magical properties and for centuries, it has possed majickal or spiritual powers. Bells are also associated with the divine and are commonly used in the opening and closing of ceremonies and the start and closing of spell casting or majickal workings.

Goddess/s and God/s Statues

Statues can be used instead of or alongside candles to represent the god and the goddess. Use the deities that feel right to you or deities from the pantheon you have chosen to work with. You may also use somehting that represents, to you, the god and goddess or the ones in which you are evoking/invoking for the particular working which you are doing.

The Pentagram is the five pointed star which is commonly associated with witchcraft, and takes many forms,  use an actual pentagram made from twigs and twine, or draw one on a sheet of natural paper or glass. Many witches like to wear a pentagram. It is a symbol of our religion/practice, but it is also worn for protection and connection with the elements represented by the five points: Spirit, Air, Water, Earth, Fire. The pentagram on your altar is the focal point, it is where you place your tools for consecration and conduct your majickal workings. It is also a tool of meditation, and corresponds to the direction North, the element of Earth and its energy is female. The pentacle for the altar is usually a
disk or plate which is inscribed with a five pointed star surrounded by a circle, this will be used to consecrate the various other tools used and is also used as a concentration point for other magickal spells.

Salt and Water

Dishes of salt and water are kept on the altar for ritual purification, water is female and the salt male. Solutions of the two are used in nearly all majickal workings, and sprinkled around the circle to protect it after casting. Go on the hunt for some small wooden or ceramic pots, too, they don't have to match.

The cauldron is a very useful ritual tool, and is usually black inside and out for clarity in divination - filled with water, with a piece of silver in the bottom, it is used for scrying (better known as crystal ball gazing) and in ritual it is used for burning candles and mixing herbs and potions. You can also use it to cook traditional food. The cauldron’s direction is center, its energy female and its element Water
*Note: The traditional cauldron has three legs and Also represents bounty and blessings. It also represents the reincarnation and the cycles of birth, death and rebirth. We will burn incense in them or create spells in them and we witches will have cauldrons in different sizes for the different tasks we want to perform.

The wand is probably the instrument most people associate with witches, but forget what you’ve seen on the television or read in novels, you won’t be casting spells with a wave of your wand and saying “abracadabra”. Like the athame, it is an implement of direction and invocation and can be made of anything, but while some witches have beautiful silver wands encrusted with crystals, wood is more traditional. You can buy wooden wands which are made in accordance with strict ritual guidelines, or you can make your own very easily. Go for a walk in a wooded area and look for a long fallen branch, traditionally the length from your elbow to fingertip. Willow is a favorite wood to use for the wand. Don’t worry if your wand is plain and crooked, as long as you hold it in your hand and feel at ease using it, it will work just fine. Its element is Air (in some traditions Fire), its direction is South and like the athame, the wand is male. The type of wand used should depend on the character of the individual. As in Wicca, the wand is sacred to the fire element, but if the practitioner has an earthy character, they should use the djed or ankh, If their nature is of fire itself, the sistrum is recommended; if air, the caduceus, if a watery personality is assumed, the crook or flail is used for this purpose. These latter objects are used mainly in Egyptian practices.


The chalice is a female tool, the vessel, and its element is Water. Any goblet is fine, and it is used to contain your ritual drink of wine or fruit juice and for mixing ritual salt and water solutions. It is a cup which is used on the altar and normally represents the female principle of water, chalices can be made of any material but most prefer silver or pewter, though bronze or even wood is not unheard of. The chalice is used with the Athame in the enactment of the great rite, which is the union of male and female from which life springs forth. The chalice can also be used to form a bond and will be passed around from person to person so they can all drink from it, if practicing within a coven.

The Staff

Used to aid nature walking. Also used as tool for clearing your path, physically & spiritually. As with the wand, go for a walk in a copse, wood, forest or anywhere there are trees and observe. You may find a detached branch that is just right. Thank the Tree Spirit vowing your "just cause" and return to your workplace. You may ornament it in any way you wish and should be any length that feel comfortable for you. I ornament mine so htat they may be easily removed and repleced for whatever working I need it for, it to honor/represent whichever goddess or god i wish to help with the workings.

The Altar

The altar is the table or surface you use to put your tools during the ritual. The altar is traditionally set aside for ritual use only, but you can use any surface or table if it is not convenient. There are as many vairians of altars as there are practitioners, even more so. There are so amny vairiatons it is incalculatable. basically, what you need (tools) and whatever feels right to you. Use as much or little as you wish. There is no wrong way as long as it feels right to you, in most cases. There are some rituals/practices that do call for san exact setting, for these, do follow them.


The following are some of the basic items that we use within the Egyptian Majick practices.

The Sistrum

The sistrum is an ankh shaped musical instrument. It containing four horizontal bars strung with small cymbals. It represents the element of fire and is sacred to Bast, cat goddess of fertility, home and hearth, mental health and the musical arts.

The Winged Disk

A solar-type disk framed by a pair of wings, this symbol is ruled by the element of air. The disk is often seen as an emblem of good fortune, containing energies similar to the card of the Chariot in the Tarot. Some practitioners feel that the winged disk represents the star or planet of our origins.

The Cup or Chalice

Same as for the witchcraft practice, though in Egyptian majick, the proper or significant god/goddess is embellished on the chalice itself, very ornamental.

The Buckle of Isis

This symbol is a stylized representation of the uterus and ovaries. It carries strong fertility energies, and symbolizes the binding aspect of the nurturing instinct. The Buckle of Isis is used to represent the earth element.

The Lotus

This flower is ruled by the element of water. It is used as a focal point to aid in meditation and tranquility.

The Scarab

The symbol of the sacred beetle was used in ritual as a representation of fortune and regeneration.

The Caduceus

The wand with entwining serpents is sacred to the god Thoth (or Hermes-Thoth, or Hermes Trismegistus). The snakes are a symbol of the Kundalini. They cross each other four times, which symbolizes the integration of the four elements. This wand is used primarily for maintaining equilibrium, and for healing on all levels.

The Utchat or Udjat

Commonly known as the Eye of Horus, the utchat is used in healing ceremonies of both body and mind. The eye is a protective amulet in all cultures, and I prefer to use the utchat for this purpose.

The Djed or Tet

Hope says that this tool represents a stylized tree and is not indicative of a phallus. I say, "why not a phallus?!" There is nothing to be ashamed of; most religions have objects which represent the male and female creative elements, such as the chalice and athame of Wicca. The Egyptian Buckle of Isis represents the female reproductive organs, and I feel that the djed is its counterpart. It may be a stylized tree, but Murry Hope fails to make the connection between the tree and the wooden phallus that was fashioned for Osiris upon his resurrection. The djed is used as a wand and its energies give one control over their material affairs.

The Crook and Flail

These are seen as a symbol of authority on the physical plane. The crook and flail are also representative of the planting and the harvest. These tools are sacred to Osiris, a deity who is often viewed as a corn god.

The Uraeus

The symbol of the serpent should be worn only by the advanced masters - it is a representation of their enlightenment and achievement, The uraeus is worn over the third eye, and I believe that it aids in the ability to see and communicate with more advanced beings. The serpent represents wisdom in almost every culture, and the uses of this symbol should not be taken lightly.

The Mirror of Hathor

This bronze mirror will reflect negativity back to its source. The mirror of Hathor is an excellent tool for defensive majick; I would recommend that it be among the tools of any serious practitioner.

The Ankh

A symbol of the key of life and man, this tool can be used for channeling energies or scrying, if one peers through the center while in a meditative state. The ankh is also a representation of the union of the male and female principles.


It is not necessary to acquire every tool that I have listed, I simply wanted to show the student just a few of the tools that are available to aid in the practice of earth religions/practices. Research the traditions of cultures that appeal to you, and choose the tools whose energies best suit your needs. As a Basic rule, make sure that you have tools that are sacred to each element; you will use these in the consecration of all tools that may follow.

Amadea O'Sullivan  September 2009

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