Not surprisingly, I missed the meteor shower last night. I’m not much of a night-owl and am typically asleep by 10pm. (The flip-side is that I tend to get up with the sun — great in Summer, not so great in Winter. It’s a good thing I work from home).
But it’s floated through my mind that this is as good an excuse as any to talk about wishing and, more generally, practical magic.
There are two sides to my “spirituality”. The religious side – which involves making offerings, hanging with my deities, caring for my garden, tracking the wild (and not so wild) foods in my neighbourhood, and so on. And then there’s the magical side.
I identify as a Kitchen Witch. What that means to me is (a) I engage in spell-craft, my witchiness is directly linked to the magical stuff I throw together (religiously, I’m more likely to ID as a Goddess-Animist, for example), but also (b) when I say “throw together”, I really mean it. I’m very much of the “use what you’ve got (in the fridge)” school of both cooking and magic which, I gather, is pretty much the polar opposite of ceremonial magic.
What do the ingredients mean? To you? To your culture? Your found & chosen tribes?
Wishing – on stars; on birthday candles; on pennies tossed, like offerings, into moving water – is an old practice, and one we learn early from family members, day-care workers, older siblings. We learn it young enough that there’s a part of us, no matter how jaded we get, that can still believe, can still Know, that it works.
So why not use it?
I know that magic works best as a door-opener, a means of turning the tides of something to your favour, rather than a means of making something impossible come to pass without a lot of real-world work. (Classic Example: You are not going to magically get yourself a girlfriend, no matter how many candles you light, if you don’t get up the guts to go to Queer Femme Karaoke or otherwise attempt to meet people who are at least wired to be into your gender).
None the less, you’ll never know if you don’t ask. Thence wishing, thence candle-magic, thence mojo bags and amulets and milagros, and every other thing that people have come up with to nudge the powers that be towards giving us a leg-up.
What do you wish on?
– Meliad the Birch Maiden