In the previous two posts we outlined eight of the most common tools that are used in the magickal practices. Today on How To Be A Wizard, we are going to discuss a compelling topic: The Book of Shadows.
Not Just a Static Document
In yet another example of what makes the pagan/wiccan traditions so unique and special, the main text is not some ancient, esoteric volume of controversial origin.
Rather, it’s something you yourself write!
You see, The Book of Shadows is a personal tool for each practitioner. You will be creating your own Book of Shadows. It will act as a journal, guide and record of your learning and progress.
This is where you will write out the particulars of the spells and rituals that appeal to you.
Your Personal Record
It is also where you will be able to track your correspondences.
As you progress on the path of learning how to be a wizard, you will become more and more familiar with correspondences.
This simply means objects that are analogous to certain energies, sentiments, and even people. For example, the present writer uses certain gemstones while performing distance healing sessions in order to represent the core of the person who is receiving the healing.
As your practice grows, you will find that there are indeed many correspondences you may want to keep track of. For example: trees, herbs, other plant life, colors, numbers, elements, lunar and seasonal cycles, and animals all have their own qualities and associations.
As you become familiar with these, you will further personalize your use and understanding of these objects and symbols.
You’ll integrate this information and use it in your own way. This is a big way in which the path of learning witchcraft is fun and becomes marked with your own personal style!
Following this, you can easily see how the Book of Shadows is also a place to keep note of the stories and legends that most appeal to you, and of course their attendant goddesses and gods. These figures are generally thought of as aspects of energies and consciousness, currents of the human and collective psyche that in their own way are real.
Thus, they offer specific powers and insights to those who seek them.
Please bear in mind that if you feel called to join a coven, there may well be a group Book of Shadows that acts as the document for what is important to that specific group. Oftentimes there will be a group Book of Shadows, while individual members are also encouraged to maintain their own.
Sometimes, an individual who has been in the coven for a while may offer the contents of their Book of Shadows to someone who is newer. This is in order to kick start the experience of the newer person.
If you are on the receiving end of this, you may appreciate it as a gracious gift…but please, as with all things, take in and accept only what feels right to you. As you walk the path learning how to be a wizard or witch, always honor your own personal sovereignty.
This concludes our Book of Shadows article.