Esbats

 

How To Celebrate an Esbat
Whether you’re a new witchling or just looking for some reference, you’ll find some great ways to celebrate your Esbat here!
Esbats are the Wiccan/Neopagan word for the celebration when that glorious night light in the sky, the moon, is at its fullest. The history of celebrating the moon goes back to pre-organized religion, pre-most things really. Our ancestors used the sun and the moon as the clocks of the days, weeks, and years. For emotion, harvest, planting and animal slaughter.
Typically there are 12 Esbats in the year, or one full moon each month. Sometimes we have an extra full moon in the same calendar month, giving us what we call a “blue” moon. (In 2018 were incredibly lucky. We ended up with 13 full moons, consisting of 2 blue moons (Jan & Mar,) and no full moon at all in February.)
When the Esbat rolls around, it’s a time to celebrate your feminine side and/or feminine power. While a large percentage of the witches I’ve met have been female, you can absolutely practice as a male witch. We are beings of balance and every person has a masculine and feminine side. We see it in all and in our divinity. The Sun is our divine masculine power and the Moon is our divine feminine power.
Each Esbat each month signifies different aspects coinciding to that specific month, below you’ll find a list of the commonly used names in Wiccan/Neopagan practice;
January – Wolf Moon
February – Ice Moon
March – Storm Moon
April – Growing Moon
May – Hare Moon
June – Mead Moon
July – Hay Moon
August – Corn Moon
September – Harvest Moon
October – Blood Moon
November – Snow Moon
December – Cold Moon
The themes of each monthly full moon are the same year in and year out. The differences between the years will depend on things like;
•which zodiac the Esbat is falling into that year
•is there a lunar eclipse
•is it a blue moon
•the day of the week
•retrograde of the other planets (usually mercury)
There are lots of apps to help you with tracking the moon cycles, my personal favorite is one called “Deluxe Moon.” The app tells you an eclipses coming, the zodiac sign, what the day is good for in terms or personal, business, love, and also moon planting. I also recommend the book Moon Magick by D.J. Conway, as it goes through all the correspondences, histories, and origins of each lunar cycle for that month. Including all pathways, not just Wicca or Neopaganism.
Now for things to do during your Esbat ritual.
Drawing Down The Moon
Full moons are incredibly full of positive energy and light. Witches and pagans have been known to take part in an activity called “drawing down the moon,” which essentially is just that. You stand under the full moon (or inside in the fulmoonlightht depending on weather) and spread your arms wide like a T. You would then call to the/your Goddess. Below is a sample text but you can change it to suit your mood or need or path.
“Great Goddess
I surrender myself to you
My mind, my body, my soul
I accept your light and love unto me
Fill me up with your energy,
Your power, your positivity.
Let it rain down on me like the drops of a fresh spring afternoon.
Reenergize me
Cleanse me
Protect me”
Some have said they feel little tingles or pins and needles during their activity of drawing down the moon.
Moon Water
Moon water is incredibly simple. If you can collect rainwater it is best because it is from the earth and incredibly natural, but tap water works just as well. Where it came from isn’t as important as what you’re doing with it!
You can create moon water for later spells and rituals, and if you choose to want to drink it at any point, I would definitely start with either tap/bottled water, or make sure you boil and then filter through a cheese cloth before consuming it.
You are asking the Goddess to bless the water with her full moon light in a similar poem to the drawing down the moon, and then leaving the water somewhere the full moon light can illuminate it over night. A lot of witches will also place stones in the bottom of whatever jar you choose to store this in, (usually a mason jar.)
 
Cleansing/Consecrating/Charging Tools
Cleansing your tools in the full moon light is incredibly easy, as it usually just takes them to sit on a window sill in the moons like to cleanse AND charge simultaneously. But if you’re looking to consecrate your tools for the first time, you’re going to want to do a full cleanse before hand.
This will differ path-to-path and preference-to-preference, but for me I always do it in the same way; with the elements. While performing the below actions, I am envisioning and thinking of any negative or last energies melting or floating off my new tool, and connecting with me through a flow of energy, like a Celtic knot.
•Pass the tool through the flame of a white candle(fire)
•Pass the tool through the smoke of an incense stick(air)
•Stir it in your bowl of salt(Earth)
•Stir it in your bowl of water (moon water or your own “holy water.”)
After the tools have been cleansed for the first time, you are ready to consecrate.
(I should note, if you ever wish to do a deep cleanse you can re-do any of the elemental steps, as well as use sound waves (like a singing bowl) or the rays of the sun.
Consecrating tools during astrological instances; (full moon, Sabbat suns, eclipse, meteor shower,) adds an extra kick to any magic you do with those tools from here on out.
When you’re consecrating, you’re making a statement that this tool will be used for *this purpose* and only *this purpose*.
Some tools that are usually used the same way by most witches;
•Bolline-a sharp, usually double edge knife, for cutting herbs
•Athame-a more dull knife, used for carving runes and intentions into candles. (Sometimes used dually as a witches wand.)
•Wand-for pin-pointing your intention, usually used to aid in the visualness of drawing and taking down your circle pre and post ritual.
•Besom-(or broom) for sweeping out the negative energies from your ritual space, or really any space in your house you feel you need to cleanse.
•Certain candles can be consecrated for certain moon phases, spells, and Sabbats, just make sure you have a way to remember all that later on!
Charging is definitely the easiest of the 3, as it kind of encompasses both of the two previous C’s. Charging is when you are using the full moon rays and the rays of the sun (Sabbat sun or other sun,) to up its Magick last properties. As well as it cleanses it from the energies it has absorbed in the last day/week/month/year. For the Esbat, the tools/crystals/tarot cards are placed in the full moons beam and left for the duration of the moon after you perform any ritual, if you choose to do so.
Ritual & Ritual Bath
It’s common to take a pre-ritual bath before you perform any magic, whether is Esbat or Sabbat specific, or just because you need to get something done.
Some good herbs to tie in a cheesecloth and throw in your bath as a pre-ritual cleanse are;
•lavender
•sage(do not include if pregnant or breastfeeding)
•rosemary
•chamomile
•echinacea
•calendula flower
•any herb that is specific to that Esbat or possibly the intentions you wish to attract.
Your ritual will be extremely personal, some witches will pay homage to their Goddess(es), thank them and offer libation (usually cakes and ale/juice.)
If you’re looking for spell ideas the common themes for Esbats are;
•protection
•attracting abundance
•love
•cleanse
•increasing an aspect (self confidence/love/communication.)
But really the full moon is an increase in power so you can use the Esbat to perform any spell, provided it is not impinging on anyone’s free will, lest you suffer the karmatic consequences. Of course, each Esbat has its own correspondences for the time of the year, and that may help you in decided when you will perform certain spells or ask for certain help. Doing spells for slow growth are best done close Imbolc (late Jan/early Feb), spells for shedding dark aspects of yourself are best done near Yule (December.)
Merry Part & Blessed Be
Xo
D
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Esbats

13 Days Until Imbolc

The cross-quarter Sabbat known as Imbolc is 13 days away! Set between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox, Imbolc is one of the four cross-quarter or “lesser” Sabbats. (Even though there is no hierarchy between the “greater” and “lesser” fire festivals.)

Many Wiccans, Witches, and Neopagans in the Northern hemisphere will be celebrating Imbolc in the upcoming weeks, while those in the Southern hemisphere will be getting ready to celebrate Lughnassadh.

Imbolc was known by our great ancestors (pagan or not,) as the first day of Spring or Spring-like weather. It was a time of great joy as the harsh winter they had to endure in their one or two-room home, cramped with relatives and possibly animals, was coming to an end. It developed as a Sabbat, a turning point in nature and in the year, from when the ewes first began to lactate after giving birth in the incredibly early Spring. It was the time when the ground was starting to thaw and plans for sowing crops or possibly giving birth. (Imbolc is sometimes used interchangeably with Candlemas, even though the days not only take part on different dates; Imbolc being Feb 1 and Candlemas being Feb 2, they also have different meanings from different backgrounds. Imbolc having pagan roots, while Candlemas is rooted heavily in Christianity.)

The Sabbat is also known as Brigids day, or the day of St. Brigid. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a pagan of any lineage who does not know or revere Brigid as a great Goddess, and Imbolc is the time to worship her more heavily than you may already do. She is the Goddess of the great fire, fertility, light, change, and more. Brigid is one of the few, if only, Goddess to not only survive the rampant colonization of the pagan peoples to Christianity, she even made it into their religious texts as Saint Brigid. Women would call upon or pray to Brigid in labour; to protect mom and child, in extreme change; to burn away your old self in her sacred flame and make way for you to grow anew like a new spring bud, for protection; from the nasty men that walk this Earth.

For the modern-day Wiccan or Neopagan, it is hard for us to build great fires in our home or in our backyards without alerting the fire department or getting ratted out by our nosey neighbors, in order to praise Brigid in a way she so greatly deserves. The simple remedy for this is candles, usually an abundance of them. (Never leave a candle unattended once lit!) There are other great ways to adorn your home or altar for Imbolc and for Brigid as well.

Brigids Cross
Probably one of the most common crafts of Imbolc, it holds great symbolism and power and can be useful for the entire year until next Imbolc.
The crosses were made and put outside the night before Imbolc in hopes that Brigid would bless them. They are then hung inside next to doors that lead to the outside in hopes that it will bring protection to the hearth and home. Grain cakes should be left outside as an offering to Brigid and for the hungry animals that are suffering from the harsh winter.
The cross was originally made of straw (soaked for 24 hours in water so it was pliable) but anything will work in todays day and age; pipe cleaners working the best if you don’t have time to soak old straw.

Candle Making
Seeing as the Sabbats are all fire festivals, and Imbolc’s main Goddess is one that had her own sacred flame, it only makes sense that making your own candles as part of the day would be a great crafting idea.
Candles made at Imbolc are usually incredibly powerful when blessed on this Sabbat, for anything you can think of. Future Sabbats, spells you always cast, or protection for your upcoming garden project.
I won’t go into detail on how to make candles as there are many different ways to do so, so I suggest going to your local crafting store and asking them for assistance, especially if you don’t want to just make white candles and want candle specific dye!

Spells

Seeing as Imbolc is a time for sowing seeds and stripping away the darkness of the harsh winter, here are some ideas for seeds you may wish to sow and reap by Mabon (the time of harvesting.)

-break a bad habit
-a project you wish to start
-something you’d like to achieve
-something you wish to have more of (self-confidence comes to mind.)

The important thing about working such spells at Sabbats is that you have to be open-minded and be able to see the opportunities as they present themselves. They won’t come gift wrapped with a card that says “Love: Imbolc” as great as that would be. Most pagans and witches are great at looking at all the symbolism that grows around them, but new witches may not be able to really see what’s in front of them quite yet. So keep your eyes peeled!

Correspondences

Goddesses
Brigid
Aphrodite
Venus
Diana
Arianrhod
Artio
Athena
Danu
Gaia
Inanna
Juno
Selene
Vesta

Gods
Februrus
Bragi
Cupid
Dian Cecht
Dumuzi
Eros

Colours
Light green
Pink
White
Yellow

Herbs
Angelica
Basil
Blackberry
Cinnamon
Grain
Reed
Wormwood

Stones/Crystals
Amethyst
Turquoise
Antimony
Brass
Gold

Scents
Cedar
Peppermint
Basil
Cinnammon
Styrax

Animals/Creatures
Cow
Dragon
Groundhog
Lark
Robin
Sheep
Snake
Swan

Foods
Dried fruits
Grains
Potatoes
Cornmeal
Dried/Salted Meats
Cheese
Pickled/canned foods
Nuts
Eggs

Drinks
All dairy products
Mead
Cider

 

I hope you all have a wonderful Imbolc and use it to your full advantage. I look forward to you all accomplishing great things in your year to come, with all the seeds you sow.

Blessed be
xo
D

13 Days Until Imbolc

This Week…

Well so far my eating well and exercise goal is actually sustaining!

I worked out every day from Monday-Friday for at least an hour and I’ve already felt an improvement. I’ve been sleeping better, my skin is clearing up with all the water I’ve been drinking, my digestive/bowel system is incredibly accurate, I feel great!

On Monday I even signed up for the World Wildlife Foundations CN Tower Climb. (That’s right, this witch lives in Canada!) I have two personal goals for the climb;

1. Raise $500 for the WWF at LEAST by Feb 15.

2. Complete the run in 20 minutes or less.

The run itself isn’t until April 7 so I have lots of time to prep.

I also received my Herbal Almanac from Llewelyn Publications this week and began reading and planning a veggie/fruit garden. I’ve learned when to sow certain seeds inside, in the ground, and when to harvest. Next plan is my herbal garden as well as looking into getting succulents. I need more greeeeeeen things in my house and in my life. (Much to my husbands chagrin tee hee.)

We also decided to go to Niagara next weekend and go clubbing and to the casino with his friends, which is a big thing for us. We don’t usually go out anywhere let alone to loud and flashy places. The last time we were at a club together was the night we met, almost 7 years ago… lol but I’m hoping that because his friends are going that he will have a good time and maybe we can both get out of our comfort zones.

That’s all for this week, I hope everyone had a wonderful week and here’s to the one coming!

Never stop learning!

Blessed be

D

This Week…

Wednesday Witchstagram – _.aura.creux._

Today’s Wednesday Witchstagram is _.aura.creux._ !!


Do you have a “name” for your craft? Or do you follow a certain path?
I practice an eclectic mix of the wiccan, hermetican, and thelemic rites of witchcraft, though I study all rites of witchcraft including leviathan satanism and satanism proper, freemasonry, gnosticism, hermetism, the old religion, etc.
How did you find your path? What called you to it?
I don’t think I found my path, at all. It found me; that is to say, it was a natural progression from the key events in my life.
Are you open about it with friends/family?
Yes, I am; though my family has seen my instagram, none of them have really asked me about it. My mother knows that I practice witchcraft, which she experimented in the past with.
Why or why not?
I’m open about it because we live in a day and age free of religious prosecution (for the most part), and by being open I can learn more from other witches who cross my path.
Are there any other crafts, or paths, that you’re interested in exploring?
All of them. I wish to become an incredibly learned scholar of the arcane arts, in all their forms.
What is your favorite thing to do? (Eh; Tarot, crystal work, herb work, or whatever)
I have found that I’m an incredibly powerful enchanter, so enchantments, though draining, are where most of my magical energy goes. I do also so Tatot readings, but I’m nowhere near a professional level.
Do you practice with others or solitaire?
I’ve been high priest in two covens, but nowadays I mostly practice solitarily.
Do you have a favorite author that is your go to for inspiration?
Not particularly, being fairly eclectic I have a large library of wiccan and hermetican works, in addition to much of Crowley’s writing.
Do you have a favorite Instagram/Tumblr/Website you go to for knowledge or inspiration?
Though not a wiccan blog, gaywiccans is a fantastic source for a very open minded page focused on the LGBT community run by a wonderful witch by the name of Alexis
Are you willing to allow others to reach out to you to ask you questions?
Of course! My instagram is _.aura.creux._ for anyone looking to ask questions about any rite of witchcraft, be it wiccan or otherwise.
Where do you hail from? *optional*
A little town by the name of Charlton, Massachusetts, about 50 miles from Salem and 45 from Boston, out near Worcester. 
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
I would very much like to become a more active contributor to the Instagram wiccan community, and furthermore to thank you for giving me this opportunity to do so. Blessed be!

Wednesday Witchstagram – _.aura.creux._

Wednesday Witchstagram – amethystscars

The interview with @amethystscars

Hi Danielle,
Sydney here from @amethystscars!

Here are my answers from the interview you sent over.

I hope they’re not too long – but feel free to shorten if you need!
I’ve also attached photos just of me, and some of my altar and tarot decks, again use as many or as little as you need!
Thanks again for the profile! Let me know if theres anything else you need!
All the Best,
Sydney
— —- — —- — — — — — — — — — —

Do you have a “name” for your craft? Or do you follow a certain path?
Is it too millennial of me to say that I don’t believe in labels? (lol) I guess I can most closely relate to eclectic witchcraft. For me, it’s always about what I connect with. If I can’t feel or find that connection then I can’t authentically practice it, at least in that moment. Right now Tarot, Astrology, and Crystal Work are at the center of my craft. They’re the most guiding in my life and I strongly believe in their properties to maintain self-care. Self-care is the most important path I follow tbh.
How did you find your path? What called you to it?
I actually started by studying Wicca. I had gone through a HORRIBLE breakup and felt completely lost in who I was. Wicca and witchcraft had always been an interest of mine, but never something I spent the time to explore whole-heartedly and this turned into the perfect time to do so. However, I became disheartened after realizing that Wicca wasn’t for me early on. That said, I was lucky enough to come across a witch who told me that you don’t have to be Wiccan to practice witchcraft and that changed everything. After recognizing that truth, I instantly felt that I had found myself. Raised in a Mexican-Catholic family there were just some beliefs I couldn’t fully hold in Wicca even though I don’t identify as Catholic anymore. And once that was let go of, I was able to embrace everything else that I had felt connected to. Basically it was a long journey that started with a shitty guy, but ended with an incredible part of who I am today.
Are you open about it with friends/family?
-I actually have a very small family. I just have my two moms, one is Catholic and the other actually claims psychic abilities but she works with Spirits. I really don’t share much with either but for very different reasons. As for friends, I have a small community that I can share it with openly, another batch that know its part of my life, and another that has really no idea. It varies depending on trust.
Why or why not?
-I don’t share much with my mother who is Catholic as she really fears it and I know she doesn’t want it to be something I “pursue”. My other mom’s abilities are one’s that I guess I in turn fear to engage in. I’ve had experiences with spirit work that I’m not very comfortable with still and she can tell when I’ve been practicing (literally anything) when I come to visit which totally freaks me out in terms of those experiences I mentioned. Even though she practices light work now, she’s had some very dark things happen to her and I feel the need to separate my practice in order to keep my energy and self safe. 
When it comes to my friend group, the ones I share the most with are the ones who believe and practice too! They’re the best support system. From there I have friends who don’t practice anything but I know accept me so they get the inside scoop. And then there are friends who I don’t know well enough, trust enough, or simply don’t think would understand. I don’t always share with them. I believe in protecting your energy and its necessary for what we do. So if I feel that’s by not sharing this part of me, then I don’t think it’s a bad thing. 
Are there any other crafts, or paths, that you’re interested in exploring?
-Astrology and moon rituals are two that I already work with, but would really love to dedicate more time into. Astrology is just such an expansive topic in general I truly believe it takes lifelong study. I also would love to get into herb work. I’ve always seen myself growing into an older woman with an apothecary living the recluse lifestyle we dream about.
What is your favorite thing to do? (Eh; Tarot, crystal work, herb work, or whatever)
-By far Tarot. I’ve always felt connected to it, and believe that I had a gift with it early on. I’ve only seen myself grow more and more and its something that I just love to do. I started my page just to share that passion with others because its just so overwhelming for me, it needs an avenue to flow through. 
Do you practice with others or solitaire?
-Typically, solitaire. Although, recently, I’ve been able to connect with some incredible people who are all latinx and practicing in my area so we’ve started The Valley Brujas. It’s taken me a long time to be open to group work, and to a community for me. I have a large fear of controlling a practice to ensure spiritual safety so I do take a while to fully trust another’s intention before working with them. I’m an empath, I really hold tight to that whole self-preservation/protection theme in all areas.
Do you have a favorite author that is your go to for inspiration?
-Feminist literature. There is something about a feminist (of course female) author that honestly is the most empowering thing and emboldens me in my craft as an individual. I’ve been on the Janet Fitch, Roxanne Gay, Joan Didion, Chloe Caldwell, Rupi Kaur train. But god there’s so many more! Another recent great read was The Women Who Run With Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Eses. 
Do you have a favorite Instagram/Tumblr/Website you go to for knowledge or inspiration?
There are so many! Jeff Hinshaw, of @brooklyntarot is by far one of my favorite tarot readers on IG. He’s a genuinely great guy who uses his practice so authentically. I have a few crystals from him actually. Favorite feminist witch doctrine goes to @witchdoctorpoet. Witchy woman fashion inspo goes to @bona_drag. And overall aesthetic and informational pages I love are @sabatmagazine @oldeways @theewhitewitch. To name a few…
Are you willing to allow others to reach out to you to ask you questions?
Absolutely! I share what I know, and am always eager to connect with others who can share with me in all of this, and who can teach me even more.
Where do you hail from? *optional*
-Born and raised and thriving in Los Angeles.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
My path is always growing and evolving and I want others to know that theirs will too. We all could use a little more kindness in this world, and if you know a new witch, or newly practicing tarot reader – be supportive! That said, be mindful about your communities, aesthetic based practicers can often be a negative impact on your energies and protecting yourself is important. 

Wednesday Witchstagram – amethystscars

Wednesday Witchstagram – hedydd

Today’s feature witch is @hedydd
Do you have a “name” for your craft? Or do you follow a certain path?

I’ve always described my witchcraft practice as “eclectic” – it sounds more honest to me, so to speak, since I’ve not being raised into a specific/strict pagan or spiritual tradition. However, my craft is mainly of hedgewitchery, green witchcraft and Celtic inspiration.

How did you find your path? What called you to it?

The Celtic culture called me through literature (books about Druids and Avalon and stuff…), music and even my birthplace (my town being of Celtic foundation). I began dabbling in green witchcraft and hedgewitchery when I came back home – having attended university in another city – and started spending more time in the countryside, closer to Nature and its cycles.

Are you open about it with friends/family?
I’d say yes, my family knows about my path and at the moment my partner and most of my friends are Pagan as well.

Why or why not?

Because I’ve always been firmly convinced that I wasn’t doing anything to be ashamed of. My family is pretty open-minded so they accepted my choices when they were persuaded that it was nothing dangerous. Hiding everything would have been too much struggle, and I already had anxiety issues for many other reasons!

Are there any other crafts, or paths, that you’re interested in exploring?

I’m fascinated by rootwork at the moment, I’d love to find proper teachers.
What is your favorite thing to do? (Eh; Tarot, crystal work, herb work, or whatever)
That’s a tough one, lol. I’d say crystal/herb work and pathworking.

Do you practice with others or solitaire?

Both. Sometimes I prefer being alone (mainly for little magickal works or divination) but most of the time I’m with my partner and/or our Circle.
Do you have a favorite author that is your go to for inspiration?

I have many, from Starhawk to Gede Parma. 

Do you have a favorite Instagram/Tumblr/Website you go to for knowledge or inspiration?

I find my whole Instagram feed inspiring, I can’t pick just one!
Are you willing to allow others to reach out to you to ask you questions?

Sure, I’d love to hear from anyone!

Where do you hail from?

I’m from northeastern Italy, I live among the mountains known as the Dolomites.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?

Sharing personal stories and experiences from the community it’s a great idea! In my country many baby witches and newbies struggle to find other people to share and/or compare their path with, so the more other Pagans share, the better!

Wednesday Witchstagram – hedydd

Wednesday Witchstagram – thewitchbone

This weeks feature is @thewitchbone
I particularly like her account for all the Tarot and I love reading Tarot!
Today’s Wednesday Witchstagram is @thewitchbone!
Do you have a “name” for your craft? Or do you follow a certain path?

I’m a Kitchen Witch, I like to dabble in a little bit of everything.
How did you find your path? What called you to it?

I’ve been into witchcraft ever since I was little. I’ve always been interested in tarot, crystals, and the occult.
Are you open about it with friends/family?

Yes, my family knows I’m a witch and a tarot reader.
Why or why not?

-hey find it interesting for the most part, and thankfully there are no negative feelings about it.
Are there any other crafts, or paths, that you’re interested in exploring?

Astrology is another huge passion of mine.
What is your favorite thing to do? (Eg; Tarot, crystal work, herb work, or whatever)

Crystals and tarot mostly.
Do you practice with others or solitary?

I practice my craft solitary.
Do you have a favorite author that is your go to for inspiration?

Stephen King!
Do you have a favorite Instagram/Tumblr/Website you go to for knowledge or inspiration?

All of the amazing witchy instagramers!
Are you willing to allow others to reach out to you to ask you questions?

Of course, always!
Where do you hail from? *optional*

Winchester, Ohio

Wednesday Witchstagram – thewitchbone