The above photo is of my landscape.
Today, I have been inspired to discuss wild witch crafting, and why I strongly recommend even the most structured witches operate in this way in parts of their life. For me, its all of my life and way. While I have no objections at all about using items, and working with artifacts, deities, spirits, herbs, spices, etc. from foreign lands (I do this too), I am of the opinion that the main tenants of what you do and use ought to be right upon the land of which you live on. I am hoping you leave this blog with more insight on this, as well as tips and ideas on how you can either begin,, or enhance your connections for successful wild witchcrafting.
Why wild witch crafting is so important
To state the obvious, it is because this is your land, your home and surroundings of which are important to your day to day living. There is no place like home, so the anchor is already there. Rather than just have a home to go to, one should connect with, and become part of the landscape, harmonizing with their local land spirits and energy force. Everything in your surroundings has a very strong energy that is very favorable for work you do within your area; including the aid of spirits, which in both cases are very much ideal for a witch who has successfully connected with it all. These are the things that will increase the strength of a witch. In history, its known that traditionally the cunning folk/wise women worked with what they had on hand, available to them in their surroundings. This also included dealing quite frequently with land spirits and/or deities governing their land. Travel use to be very hard to do, and many never even traveled outside of their very immediate jurisdiction. So they embraced all the energy and spirits that their land and home had to offer, just like I think witches of today should try.
How to start
Some of you may be at different levels in this, and may not find every section useful, but others have never but would love to make the wild path part of their life. For their sake, I will start with the beginning tips to offer and hope benefits everyone. Anyone that has mastered this, and its the main tenant of their path might depart the blog with new insight, tips or ideas; just like I do when I read about this same topic from others on the wild side of crafting.
1.) Start getting out there and walking. Yes, I know this sounds too simple, but really its the start,, and how you walk the walk matters here. Don’t do this walk while talking on the phone, or with others, this isn’t a casual walk. Instead, be quiet and very mindfully observe your surroundings. Take a good look at what is in your landscape, the sounds you hear, the warmth or coldness of the air, and over all vibe. Watch the animals and what they are doing. Start out by doing this for a few days, to get more familiar. After a few days of just walking, next walk, try to put your mind into a more meditative state, or even a trance or semi trance state. This time around, let your mind wander in this state more. Stretch your hands out a bit and start feeling the surroundings too. Start feeling for energy and energy shifts, and let it flow up into your hands, arms and body, til you start to feel like you are part of this energy. Pay attention to any fleeting visions you might see, even in minds eye. Each landscape may have different spirits, so what you see in one place, may not be in another. They may not even be recognizable, as in described and labeled in any book you read. For instance, I have seen lots of these beings with wings that did not fit the descriptions of fae, or anything else, nor did they give off the same feel as fae or anything else that I have learned of. This is fine. This is part of the magic and mystery of witchcraft that is not found in any books. You are also likely to start seeing people of the past, who are etched into the history of the land or see past events. Try this for the next two weeks, getting out there to walk as much as possible, if not daily.
2.) After you’ve done the step above, the next time you enter into this walk you are going to introduce yourself. You are going to state who you are, and what you are doing there, and ask for any advice or knowledge that the land spirits might be kind enough to pass on to you. Let them know you are not there to harm or threaten the landscape, but to become part of it, to harmonize and connect. Let them know you hope they see you as another kindred spirit of the land. Go into your usual meditative/trance, feeling energy, and start seeing and listening. You may still have the same vision experiences described above, as well as seeing more and more spirit types, but you are likely going to now start hearing fleeting statements. Some might make sense, others not to much. Some might be instructive as well. Take it all in. Sometimes, you might here a sentence from a human spirit who once was in the area. In other cases, they might tell you what they want you to focus on, or how they wish to be approached. Some of these spirits might not feel safe, which, witchcraft is not always safe. Still they may be beings you will work with down the road, and worth listening to, and having as potential allies. If your memory is not great, it might be helpful to keep a private journal to jot down things you heard.
***Personal gnosis – At this point you are more than likely going to be gathering up a lot of personal gnosis as the spirits of the land pass on knowledge to you. This is fantastic, BUT I have seen witches show up and start fights with other witches about this sort of thing, which is not great at all. You may learn something as a *fact* from these spirits, BUT this fact may not be a fact another witch learned. In fact, facts can change and deviate over the lands, each area having their own set of facts, or ways. So what is a fact by the ocean, may not be a fact in the mountains. So never use your personal gnosis in any manner to talk down to other witches, or brow beat them with. That is also being disrespectful of your own craft and the beings that shared this with you. In fact, keep your personal gnosis safe with yourself, and only pass it on to some one if you are going to later mentor some one who wants to learn your path. So guard it as a precious part of you, and IF you do share any of it in any witch groups, make it a point to refer to it as your own personal gnosis, rather than words like *fact*. I felt the need to cover this, because the last thing I want to see is some one learning from this blog, then going out and being abusive to other witches about what gnosis they gather.
3.) Remember, as equally as important, you should be figuring out all the plant life, fungus, minerals, rocks, earth, animals around you and what their magical properties are. These will be very useful for spell casting or other reasons. Get to know the type of trees and their magical properties as well. Different trees can yield different types of wands, and etc. Make sure to jot them in your book. Also, on these walks you may wind up finding *gifts*. For instance, I have come home with deer fur, bones, feathers, rocks, etc. that I was drawn to and felt that the land spirits wanted me to take, and I always thank them for it, as should you on your adventures.
4.) Going into your land area employing the methods above now should be routine. But now you may want to find a spot that becomes your special spot. Although your landscape itself is sacred, this spot will be your most sacred, or where you create your witch circle. You will use this spot as your meeting place among the spirits, evoking and or invoking. This will also be where you do your outdoor spell casting, and petitioning, or most of your rituals and honoring of spirits or whatever deity/deities you have. Which ever branch of witchcraft you are in, a circle meaning will vary. In my case, this isn’t a circle of protection or barrier of any sort, but more like an opened portal that is kept for multiple purposes I described above. Within my circle,, the energy is always a bit different, more potent of a feel, and kept that way even when I am absent from it. I also use this highly energized circle for charging various tools simply by placing them in it for a period of time. This is where I have charged wands and currently (although it may be out by the time you read this) have an extra stag absorbing that energy field and charging up. Anyone that has held an instrument I charged in that circle can attest to the strength and energy illuminating from it. At the north part of it, I have a three pronged stag set with flat rocks that serve as an altar and base. This is where I set down gifts of my own, often from the ocean, or various flowers or feathers I find that I feel might please the old one, and the spirits. At any rate, this will be how ever you cast your circle whether you follow a wicca path, or a traditional witch way, and have it more permanently set. When evoking spirits, even with a permanent portal, it’s still always a great idea to set the compass round when inviting them, then ending the session in widdershins with the understanding that they will still walk with and guide you.
5.) Always consider yourself a steward over your land. If you see litter pick it up. Always be kind towards the life, and respectful. Be protective of the earth and animals within your landscape. You are all connected and it is your duty to over see and look after it. The spirits will notice and you will come more into their favor. The energy will least likely reject you. Remember to always say a word of thanks or show thanks when harvesting for a spell, or other need. The more you are into this, the easier it will be fore you to forage and know what to pick for what kind of magical working you are doing. Practice makes masters as always and Wild Witchcrafting is definitely a practice worth mastering.
Note for City Dwellers
I realize can be frustrating to always see blogs involving nature. However, YOU dwell within, would I dare say is one of those most energetically charged landscape. When ever I venture into the city, I am struck with the enormous amount of energy I feel. It is indeed, supercharged. Therefore, you can and should follow the same routine or tips to become one with your landscape. Even though you are surrounded by buildings, you will still have spirits native to your land, and then some. If the buildings weren’t all around, the place would be full of all the natural flora of that region. There is still trees, rocks and parkways present too. The only thing is, you may want to be a little more discreet so you do not come off as a bit of a weirdo to onlookers. Also, you might want to stick with creating the altar in your room, as hiding places in the city are hard to come by. What ever you do, don’t think you have to hang up doing something like this, just because of where you life.
****If you, or anyone else has experiences with this and would love to add tips of your own, please share. If you are trying these ways and have found any of what I said helpful, I would love to hear from you too and what in particular helped you on your way. *****