Alchemy: A branch of High Magick developed in the Middle Ages which sought to magickally and/or chemically turn base metals into gold.
Altar: A special, flat surface set aside exclusively for magickal workings or religious acknowledgment.
Amulet: A magically charged object which deflects specific, usually negative energies. A protective object.
Ankh: An Egyptian hieroglyphic widely used as a symbol of life, love, and reincarnation. It is a cross with a looped top.
Arcana: The two halves of a tarot deck. The Major Arcana consists of 22 trumps, the Minor Arcana consists of 56 suit cards (sometimes called the lesser or lower Arcana).
Aspect: The particular principle or part of the Creative Life Force being worked with or acknowledged at any one time.
Asperger: A bundle of fresh herbs or a perforated object used to sprinkle water during or preceding ritual, for purification purposes.
Astral Plane: A place which is generally conceptualized as an invisible parallel world which remains unseen from our own solid world of form.
Astral Travel/Projection: The process of separating your astral body from your physical one to accomplish travel in the astral plane or dream time.
Astrology: The study of and belief in the effects the movements and placements of planets and other heavenly bodies have on the lives and behavior of human beings.
Athame: A cleansed and consecrated ritual blade. Usually double edged, and black handled. It is never used to cut anything on the physical plane. Pronounced several ways: Ah-THAM-ee ATH-ah-may ah-THAW-may.
Aura: The life-energy field which surrounds all living things.
Automatic Writing: Form of divination where the channeler uses a pen, paper and an altered state of consciousness to receive messages.
Balefire: A fire lit for magickal purposes, usually outdoors. They are traditional on Yule, Beltane, and Midsummer.
Bane: That which destroys life, which is poisonous, destructive, dangerous.
Banish: To magickally end something or exorcise unwanted entities. To rid the presence of.
B.C.E.: Before Common Era. Synonymous with B.C. without religious bias.
Bells: Often used as ritual tools. They can be used to invoke directional energies, to ring in the sunrise on a Sabbat, or to frighten away faeries and baneful spirits.
Besom: A witch's broom.
Bi-Location: A type of astral projection during which you maintain awareness of your present surroundings.
Bind: To magickally restrain something or someone.
Blood of the Moon: A woman's menstrual cycle. Should this cycle occur over a Full Moon or New Moon, she is far more powerful than during any other time of the month, as long as she acknowledges this strength within herself.
Book of Shadows: A witch's book of spells, rituals, magickal lore. Much akin to a magickal cookbook. Also known as a BOS.
Boline: A white-handled knife, used in magick and ritual for purposes such as cutting herbs or piercing a pomegranate.
Burning Times: Reference to a historical time from around 1000 C.E. through the 17th century when it is said that up to nine million people were tortured and burned by church and public officials on the assumption that they were the Christian version of Witches. This turned into an extremely profitable venture, as all land and property was seized from the accused individual and portions given to the accuser (in reward fashion) and the remainder seized by the church officials. Historians indicate that the majority of people tortured and murdered were woman and children.
Call: Invoking Divine forces.
Cauldron: Linked to witchcraft in the popular mind, this symbolizes the Goddess, the waters of rebirth.
C.E.: Common Era. Synonymous with A.D. but without religious bias.
Censer: A heat-proof container in which incense is burned. It is associated with the element air.
Ceremonial Magick: A highly codified magickal tradition based upon Kabbala, the Jewish-Gnostic mystical teachings.
Chakras: Seven major energy vortexes found in the human body. Each is usually associated with a color. They are: crown - white; third-eye - purple; throat - blue; chest - pink or green; navel - yellow; abdomen - orange; groin - red. Smaller vortexes are located in the hands and feet as well.
Chalice: A ritual tool. It represents the female principals of creation.
Channeling: A New Age practice wherein you allow a discarnate entity to ''borrow'' your body to speak to others either through automatic writing or verbally.
Chaplet: A crown for the head usually made of flowers and worn at Beltane.
Charge: The Originally written in modern form by Doreen Valiente, it is a story of the message from Goddess to Her children.
Charging: To infuse an object with your personal power.
Charms: Either an amulet or talisman that has been charmed by saying an incantation over it and instilling it with energy for a specific task.
Circle: Sacred space wherein all magick is to be worked and all ritual contained. It both holds ritual energy until the witch is ready to release it, and provides protection for the witch.
Cleansing: Removing negative energies from an object or space.
Collective Unconsciousness: Term used to describe the sentient connection of all living things, past and present. See also Akashic Records.
Coming of Age Ritual: At age 13 for boys, and at the time of a girl's first menses, Pagan children are seen as spiritual adults. The ritual celebrates their new maturity. Generally this is the age when they are permitted membership in covens.
Cone of Power: Psychic energy raised and focused by either an individual or group mind (coven) to achieve a definite purpose.
Conscious Mind: The analytical, materially-based, rational half of our consciousness. The part of our mind that is at work while we balance our checkbooks, theorize, communicate, and perform other acts related to the physical world.
Consecration: The act of blessing an object or place by instilling it with positive energy.
Coven: A group of thirteen or fewer witches that work together in an organized fashion for positive magickal endeavors or to perform religious ceremonies.
Covenstead: The meeting place of witches, often a fixed building or place where the witch can feel safe and at home.
Crone: Aspect of the Goddess represented by the old woman. Symbolized by the waning moon, the carrion crow, the cauldron, the color black. Her Sabbats are Mabon and Samhain.